Email marketing is one of the easiest and most cost effective forms of marketing for small businesses. Separate yourself from other small businesses with a little bit of planning and know-how. Here are a few important lessons before you start your email marketing campaigns.
1. Ask and They Shall Receive
All professional email marketing is permission based. Before you can send an email blast to someone they need to ask to receive emails from you, also called opting in. Emails can be collected in various ways from website forms to tradeshows. Just be sure that you make it clear to your contacts that they are opting in to receive emails from you. Fishing for email addresses from websites, purchasing email lists, and sharing contacts with colleagues are all faux pas of many beginning email marketers. Start with a list of people who have asked to hear from you and you are already on your way to success.
2. Deliver on Their Expectations
Provide your new contacts with an overview of how you will be using their email address. Detail the types of email they can expect to receive from you. For example let them know whether you are sending a weekly email, monthly newsletter, or just special promotions. Setting up their expectations at the start can prevent unsubscribes and spam complaints later on. Your sign up form on your website could read something like this: Yes! Please sign me up to receive the Weekly Newsletter and Special Promotions from A Great Company. Alternatively, you could do something like this seen on the Tavern Hospitality Group’s website:
Both are great examples and set the email expectation well.
3. Divide and Conquer
It might seem easier to send every email to every person on your list; however, you are wasting valuable opportunities. Segmenting your list and sending targeted emails to specific groups yields much more success in the long run. There are many different ways a list can be segmented. Some examples include segmenting by demographics, open and clicks from previous email campaigns, and customer purchase history. Experiment with different segmentation strategies until you find one that fits your business best.
Starting with these strategies will greatly enhance your email marketing’s ROI (return on investment) and will set your business apart from the pack.