The idea of email replacing direct snail mail as a faster, cheaper and easier way of direct marketing to your clients might be tempting. Send out one email to hundreds even thousands of prospects and sit back and await a response, better still you can even monitor response with analytical tools.
It sounds ideal but far too often a lot of time and effort is put into this form of marketing by companies large and small thinking it is a quick fix to their direct marketing needs only to reap little or no rewards. Worse still more often than not an email marketing campaign can actually get a bad response and complaints.
Is Email Marketing a Good or Bad Tool?
Well there are lots of top 10 companies that specialise in email marketing out there which will obviously say that yes it is a good idea. On the reverse there seems to be plenty of websites where they say in today’s modern marketing world it has no place. The fact is that it does have a place and is a very useful tool if it is done properly.
If it was not a useful tool then large supermarket chains, large multi nationals and household brands would not invest so much time and money in it. Email marketing to your customers can gain great rewards but only if it is done in a planned and targeted way.
Secrets to Email Marketing Success
So how do you make it work for you?
Well first off do not waste money on companies that will supply you a database of people who agree to receive marketing emails. This will be a waste of money and time as the chances are the recipients on the list have received many marketing emails since agreeing and are very well tuned in to tuning out marketing emails. Most of the time they will simply delete and email without even reading.
Secondly email only to your own customers or people who have agreed to receive email updates from you direct without going through a middleman. This means they not only expect emails from you, they have a possible interest in what you have to offer so when you send them special offers and so on they will be in more tune to open your email just in case it is of benefit to them. You can use some sort of data capture exercise or online information request forms to generate your email marketing list.
Thirdly do not bombard them with emails. People get bombarded everyday with emails marketing this or that to them. Often they are just spam or even worse carrying with them some kind of threat of fraud or virus. Because of this a lot of people will only open emails when they know who the sender is. But even if they know you, the sender, they will start to just delete your emails if every time they look in their inbox there is another marketing email from you. Better to stagger the sending the emails to monthly, 3 monthly and so on.
Fourthly offer an opt out. Even if they were once interested they may no longer be so offer and opt out of receiving further emails. It is better for one to opt out than for that one to complain about you sending them emails and do damage to your brand.
Stay Within the Law
Be careful to stay within the law. If you do not have permission to send a direct marketing email to your customer then do not send one otherwise you may be accused of SPAM. Consumers especially are protected by laws of electronic communication so be careful.
Even if a person has agreed to receive marketing emails they may not remember ticking that box on form or a questionnaire and so even when it is not a marketing email can be perceived as SPAM. This is another reason to only send email to your own personal database of customers who have agreed to receive offers and marketing emails from you.
Make the Emails Personalised
Another simple secret is to make the emails personal. This does not just mean getting their name right, although this is a crucial element, it also means making the content of the emails relevant to them. Making offers on products they have previously bought or are similar to the products they have bought.
A personal message that is tailored to the customers needs and personal tastes, giving them timely offers such as money off certain products that fit their profile. Better still if you can send them reminders of friends and family special occasions with gift ideas and so on.
Personalised targeted messages to your customers whom have agreed to receive offers and marketing messages from you work extremely well and will have a higher hit rate. You may even get to the golden chalice of having your customers actually waiting for your emails to arrive.
Random emails to prospects who have never heard of you or your company far too often get deleted without ever being opened.
This guest post is courtesy of Mary Winston, writer and editor, coordinator for RankTopTen.com. She has extensive experience in writing articles, essays, and reviews. She adores to rank multitude of stuff including people and brands, films and TV shows, music and entertainment, sports and lifestyle. Details of note have been extracted and distilled down to a simple yet refined “Top 10” formula that reflects the essence of things at their best.