“Email is a 40-year-old technology that’s not going away for very good reasons – it’s the cockroach of the Internet.” – Jason Hirschhorn
Is email marketing dead?
Email marketing is one of the most dependable and effective methods for developing a great relationship with potential customers and building a buzz around your brand, product or idea. But where on Earth do you start? Well… with our Beginner’s Guide To Email Marketing, of course.
In our Beginner’s Guide To Email Marketing, we’ll cover:
- Asking Permission
- Segmenting Your List
- Scheduling Emails
- What to Send
Ready to embark on your journey to email marketing mastery? Then let’s begin.
Step One: Ask Permission
We know, we know: you’re excited about building your email list. But you can’t cut corners here: you must only email people who have expressly agreed or asked for you to do so. You can do that with forms on gated content, with pop-ups on your website, with sponsored posts on Facebook or Instagram… however you like. The important thing is that you get permission.
Step Two: Segment Your List
While you’re collecting data to email people, ask some smart questions that help you build a picture of that subscriber. Depending on what your business does, that could be their job title or sector, their age or gender, or their areas of interest. Now’s also a good time to ask how often they’d like to hear from you and what kinds of emails they’d like to receive from you.
Step Three: Draw Up a Schedule
Next, figure out how often you’re going to contact people and what kind of things to include. While you may want to send ad-hoc emails now and again, for example, to announce a flash sale or limited offer, overall it’s much better to keep to a regular pattern that people come to expect and anticipate. Once you’ve established a pattern, stick to it.
Step Four: Send Great Content
Now you’re ready to start sending people amazing stuff to brighten up their day. The exact nature of this depends, of course, on your other marketing, content creation and sales strategy efforts.
For example, you might build your emails around weekly blog posts, your latest published videos, ebooks and whitepapers, top deals of the week, product lines updated monthly, or anything else.
Whatever the purpose of the email is, the important thing is that you’re always thinking about how this benefits the customer. What makes them excited to open this? What makes them want to click through? Look at it through their eyes – don’t just focus on what you want out of the exchange.
Step Five: Analyze and Refine
Unless you run complete, cohesive analytics on all your email campaigns, you’re kind of firing into the void. Opt for an email marketing platform that allows you to collect and analyze data easily. Track results carefully all along the chain to figure out what’s working and where you might be slipping up – and keep adapting, refining and trying out new ideas until you nail it.
Final Thoughts: Having the Right Attitude
The key to a great email marketing campaign is remembering that your subscribers are being generous by allowing you to email them. They’ve kindly agreed to let you deposit emails in their inboxes – and it’s your job to be polite and respectful about that.
That means emailing them when you say you’re going to. It means being considerate about what they might find useful – not just pushing sales on them, or wasting their time with stuff that’s of little value. It means keeping their details safe and respecting the contact preferences they set.
Once you start to think about the process from their perspective, the rest will begin to fall into place.