Email Marketing – the forgotten Digital Marketing Tool

Email Marketing – the forgotten Digital Marketing Tool

email marketing3

With the advancement of technology and the availability of an array of Digital Marketing tools, Email Marketing is often the forgotten tool, despite it being one of the most valuable.  It is essentially the first marketing tool that diversified from traditional marketing into the online world with the move from Direct mail to Electronic direct mail.  With the increasing adoption of email software to manage email marketing campaigns, email marketing brings such benefits of higher open rates and a very favorable return on investment.

So what is Email Marketing?

We have all received those annoying emails from a company where you’re not sure if you subscribed to them or not, and you feel the content isn’t relevant to you.  Email Marketing is another way of marketing your business, allowing you to convey short, simple messages that have a specific call to action of the recipient.  Email Marketing is an extension of your website.  While a website tends to be passive, in that visitors have to go searching for information, Email allows you to actively make contact with your audience and communicate a message.

“The process of delivering relevant, engaging and timely marketing messages about your products and services to a specific group of recipients via electronic mail” – Digital Marketing Institute

The main difference is that you have a captive audience that have asked to be engaged with your website, and also allows you to direct people to specific landing pages of your website.  Each email should have a specific call to action, with most of them ultimately trying to generate traffic to your website or premises.  This form of marketing has seen resurgence in recent years due to the benefits it holds and most importantly the costs involved versus other forms of digital marketing. With the growth in tablet ownership and broadband penetration, its means there is great scope to reach your customers.  As we go through this post I will detail what it can be used for and the benefits, it is clear that this is a tool that should form part of your digital marketing plan.

What is Email Marketing used for?

–          Attracting new customers

–          Persuading new customers

–          Persuading repeat purchase

–          Encourage customer loyalty

–          Communicate about special offers or events

–          Building a company’s public image

–          Develop and nurture customer relationships

Email Marketing

To view the full Email insights report from the Marketing Institute of Ireland click here

What are the benefits of Email Marketing and why use it over traditional marketing?

What works well with email marketing is where data is used correctly to create a value exchange – a customer’s valuable information for your valued time.  Your subscribers need to know they can trust you and this is where the legal implications take effect.  The main benefits of email marketing are:

–          Cost: As a small business with a limited budget, email marketing provides a cost effective way to communicate with your prospective     customers and generates a valuable return on investment over traditional marketing mediums

–          Speed: Emails can be reactive to market conditions, allowing you to get emails out to your database very fast.

–          Design and easy to create: with the growth in email marketing software, the hardship has been taken out of design.  Many software applications such as mailchimp, exact target, to constant contact, all have pre designed email templates allowing the average business to take full ownership of their email strategy, they just need to decide what content to wish to communicate.

–          Personalisation:  A key feature that email has over traditional media is the ability to personalise to a audience based on the data they have already provided.  Airlines are a prime example of how this can be done effectively, where they tailor emails based on search requirements or previous purchases.

–          Measurable: email campaigns can be tracked using numerous software application from aspects such as read rates, click through rates, right through to conversion rates and the best time of the week to send emails to reach your audience.

To read more on how Alaska Airlines have used email marketing successfully, click here

 

Considerations for Email Marketing:

–          Consent: email marketing is heavily legalised in terms of data protection and what can be sent to subscribers.  Emails can only be sent when a person has given explicit consent to do so or you have obtained their personal contact details in the course of a sale and told them the purpose of gathering. All emails outside of this are referred to as Spam or unsolicited bulk email.  Ultimately, it is the recipient who decides if your are spamming by them not being familiar with your business, they forgot opting in or the content is irrelevant to them.

–          Building a list: there are numerous ways to start building your list, but you should always stay away from any business offering to sell you an email list and there is heavy fines if you send non permission based emails.

  • Segmentation – segment your list in order target messages for better engagement whether it be through gender, age, or geography etc.
  • Add a subscribe form to your website or  gather opt in email subscriptions by getting customers to sign up in store and make it easy for them to subscribe. You can also gain subscriptions through Facebook apps, competition entries or other forms or simply at trade shows or sales calls.

–          Design:  The main goal of email marketing is to drive people to your website and to convert them.  As you are emailing them it is important that quality of content and design is up to scratch.

–         Mobile: Ensure your emails sent out are mobile optimised and that   content can be read on various operating devices.

We hope you enjoyed the above post, feel free to leave any comments.

 

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Posted on April 3, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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