Email marketing is one of the best forms of digital contact that you can have with your audience, because it’s cost-effective, easy to set up and maintain and literally anyone can do it – plus compared to other types of marketing, it can offer a much higher return on investment.
Email marketing is exactly as it sounds: sending out marketing communications to past/present/potential customers via email. Using a combination of visuals and text, you can use email campaigns for a wide variety of purposes, such as:
- To promote a special offer
- To introduce a new product or service
- To point them towards other information on your website
- To send out a newsletter with lots of interesting snippets
- To encourage them to sign up to something
- To offer an incentive to share your content/business with friends
- For seasonal campaigns
- To win back old customers
In fact, there’s not much that email marketing can’t do: you can add video content, personalise your campaign, target specific audience segments… the list goes on!
What are the benefits?
We’ve already touched on some of the key benefits of email marketing, but let’s look at a few more:
- Cheap as chips – set up a campaign yourself and you could do it for nothing more than the cost of your time, and even if you engage a digital agency to help, it’s still going to cost you loads less than alternative marketing channels. Low production costs, no print or postage costs, no advertising space to purchase – what’s not to like?!
- Your hard work done for you – say you send an email with a great offer that can be accessed with a simple click… your audience feel compelled to share it with friends… suddenly your audience has grown, your traffic has increased and you have new sign-ups for further emails/offers.
- Direct contact – your campaign isn’t just seen by chance, because it’s being delivered directly into their inbox. This also means it’s fast, so you can see results straight away.
- Analysis – whether you use a bespoke HTML emailer or an online tool, you’ll have access to analytics so you can see who’s opened it, who’s binned it, who’s clicked on the links etc. This will help you to hone future campaigns.
- Easy to adapt – take one standard template, make a few key amends, and hey presto! You have a new campaign, or a slightly different version for a different audience.
- Positive traffic signals – because you can create as many live links as you want in your email campaign (although it’s worth not over-saturating it – relevancy is the buzzword), you can direct traffic to different areas of your website. Higher traffic levels are pretty handy when it comes to showing the search engines that your site is worth visiting, so it can help from a rankings perspective too.
Setting up an email campaign is easy!
No, really, it is! Online platforms like Mailchimp are great DIY tools which you can use if you’re fairly confident in basic design and content creation, or you can ask an agency to help with any or all aspects of your email marketing campaign.
If you really want to make an impact, you can also have a totally tailored template created by a designer, built to your exact specifications to help you achieve your marketing objectives.
One thing to remember though… make sure you get your web developer to add a sign-up function on to your website. This is a great data capture tool to ensure that visitors have an easy way to express an interest in receiving your marketing collateral – and what can be better than a captive audience made up of people who have come directly to you?!