Information Technology Marketing

Email marketing for your small business

email marketing
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What is email marketing?

The term ‘email marketing’ in its broadest sense involves a business emailing a message containing commercial content to a person, or more usually a group of people. You may imagine that email marketing only happens when you email a specific offer or a promotion to a current or potential customer. This view is too narrow – to be successful with email marketing, you need to treat every single email you send out as email marketing.

Every point of contact with a potential customer is a great chance to create a sales opportunity. On the other hand, it is also a chance to get it wrong, and lose an opportunity. Email marketing is no different from any other customer contact. Every contact is also an opportunity to get your brand seen (and remembered) by a wider audience. A strong brand coupled with consistency across all the various media is vital, even in email communications. We discuss the need for a brand in this article.

Why should I use email marketing?

Basically, because it works. A recent survey among small businesses found that the vast majority of them cited email marketing as their major driver in both gaining and retaining customers.

The other reason is, emails are great value for money. Strong and compelling marketing emails are relatively inexpensive to produce and cheap to distribute. Research has revealed that the return on investment in a good email marketing campaign is massive. For every £1 you spend, you can expect to get back more than £30 on average.

Successful email marketing doesn’t happen by chance. Here are a few things to consider while planning your own email marketing campaign.

Consistency

We have mentioned brand. Your emails must conform to the same brand you use in every other medium. This means consistency with your website, your social media pages, your leaflets and flyers. Use the same language, colours, fonts, image style – the list goes on.

Make it device-friendly

People will view your emails on any number of different devices, and they must all get the same message. You need to consider the smaller sized screens of smartphones and tablets, as well as the larger viewing areas of desktop computers and laptops.

Make it easy to subscribe (and unsubscribe)

Your email should point to your website or social media page, and a link needs to be available to make it easy for a potential client to subscribe. Keep the data capture to a minimum – people get fed up with filling in lengthy online forms, especially if they fear you may somehow misuse their data. A name and email address may be sufficient.

If someone doesn’t want to continue receiving emails from you, they are unlikely to want to buy from you either. Make it as easy as possible for them to get off your list. Put an ‘unsubscribe’ link where it’s easy to find, and obey the instruction as soon as you can if a person clicks the link. This is the best way to avoid angry (and potentially damaging) exchanges via social media, or complaining emails.

Keep it short

Your email content should be interesting, easy to read, and split into short sections. Most people won’t wade through long paragraphs of unbroken text, and you will quickly lose their attention. Add interesting (on-brand) images to break up the flow. The aim is to get someone interested, and wanting to find out more.

Make it easy to get in touch with you

Any emails should include links to your website, social media pages, plus a phone number. A single click that gives access to your online presence is a great way to encourage people to find out more about you.

Get some professional help

Marketing can seem like an intimidating subject, and it is so easy to get it wrong. The good news is that there is plenty of professional help available. Whether you need advice on setting up marketing campaigns, email marketing, or you just don’t know where to start, we are here to help.

 

For more information on email marketing, email us at editor@startuphelp.org.uk or complete the form below.

 

 

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