While social media and other forms of digital marketing have become highly pervasive in the past few years, email, despite what some may think, has not gone by the wayside. Email marketing is still one of the mainstays when it comes to any marketing campaign and should be a part of yours if it already isn’t. For one thing, email still ranks as the number one way that people communicate with just over 99% of people checking their email daily. Email also tends to convert better than many other forms of marketing/communication. The ROI with email marketing given how inexpensive and easy it is truly phenomenal if done correctly. This is the key though with email marketing or any form of marketing—it needs to be strategic, it needs to be executed in the right way otherwise you are just wasting time and energy. In this article, we review some of the basics of email marketing.
Email Marketing Basics
While there is a little bit to mastering the art of email marketing, anyone can get started with it. It just takes a willingness to follow a few basic steps and practices, and ultimately find your email marketing groove!
You must start with a list. You can’t get started with email marketing if you have no one to market to. This is where that all-important email list comes into play. The key with a subscriber list is that it contains those people who want to be on it and what’s more, they are the right people. In other words, it’s comprised of an audience actively seeking what you have to sell and interested in your particular niche.
Take some time to figure out your core demographic. What are their interests? Geographic location? Income range? You name it, the more data you can get, the easier it will be for you to target that group of people and persuade them to subscribe to your email list. Once you’ve begun to get people to opt-in and sign up for your email marketing campaign then you are ready to go on to the next step which is to continuously grow that list, so that you can reach out to more and more consumers and hopefully convert them into customers.
So how do you expand on that list and capture even more emails? For the most part, in creating a website or blog, people will have an opt-in form and just hope that whoever visits the page signs up. This is rarely the case, however. It takes a bit more than that to build a meaningful email list for your email marketing efforts.
First off, you are likely going to need to have a lead magnet. A lead magnet is essentially some type of offer that you are putting out there in the hopes of enticing people to subscribe to your email list. A lead magnet could be a free ebook for example; so, the person would give you their email address in exchange for access to this ebook at no charge to them other than the price of that email address. It could be a short video or an MP3 file. You really can get creative here in terms of what you might offer as your lead magnet.
Lead Magnet Ideas
When trying to come up with your free giveaway in exchange for that coveted email address, keep in mind the following as far as what constitutes an effective lead magnet:
- It should be easily consumable. In other words, people don’t want to wade through pages and pages of the dry document. They want something relatively short, punchy, and powerful.
- It should contain useful information. People want things that are of value to them. Make sure that whatever your lead magnet is, it provides something actionable to readers/watchers/listeners.
- It needs to work. That is to say, people will be more interested in you as a brand if your lead magnet does something that helps them in their daily lives.
- It needs to be immediately available. So, if you are giving them an ebook, that download should be accessible as soon as they click on the link. If there are tons of steps involved with accessing the content, this is only going to turn users away.
Email Marketing Copy
Once you’ve generated a sufficient email marketing subscriber list, now you are ready to start in on the actual campaign. The most important ingredient here is going to be the emails themselves. Content is so critical, also the design is an important element to think about as well.
Short and sweet is far better and more effective than long and drawn out. People are inundated with emails every day; they don’t have time to read through them all in-depth. Get to the point and make it meaningful. As far as the actual copy goes, here are some basic things to think about:
- Make it personal and address the person you are emailing by name. There is nothing worse than a mass email that goes out to everyone on the planet. People like personalization; they pay attention to personalization. Make sure your email follows suit.
- Always have a CTA. You can write the best email in the world, but if ultimately you are not asking the recipient to do something, your email is going to be worthless. Those CTAs need to be in there.
- Include buttons. The easier you can make the process on the reader, the better off you will be. Direct them to a clickable button and odds are, they will go ahead and click!
- Make sure you offer something of value. The email can try and persuade them to look further into your company, but even if it’s just a couple of quick tips, offering something of value in your emails will get you more attention.
- Keep it short and simple. We can’t stress this one enough. The shorter the better—people don’t have all day to read your copy. So make it count!