by Robert Burko
Email marketing software is exploding in popularity among both small and large organizations. After all, it's a cost effective way to achieve marketing goals. Some companies harness the power of email marketing to send out frequent daily updates, while others send out a traditional monthly newsletter. Regardless of the frequency of objective, the research clearly indicates that email is a viable platform for spreading your message and communicating to your customers.
Whether you are a seasoned email marketing veteran or brand new to the email marketing software game, these three tips can help you get off to a good start.
One important thing to keep in mind about email marketing is that it is an on-going learning process. What works today for your target audience may not captivate them tomorrow. It is important that your email marketing strategy remain adaptable, so you can easily change your approach to ensure you always get the best possible results.
Tip #1: Build a High Quality Mailing List
Your mailing list or contact list is the backbone of your email marketing initiative. A good mailing list can lead to exceptional results and a bad mailing list can make you wonder if anyone is even reading your email. In a day and age where spam concerns are at an all-time high, it is even more important that you have a high quality opt-in (preferably double opt-in) mailing list to ensure that people do not classify your message as spam. These days most ISPs assign the email marketer a reputation score. Even a few bad apples on your mailing list (people that call your message spam) can hurt your reputation.
A good mailing list is comprised of people who have requested to receive information from you and are eager to engage with the material you send. When you use your email marketing software to send out a campaign to a high quality list, you will see your open rates soar as people are drawn to your email. This will ultimately lead to higher conversion rates and make email marketing even more effective for your organization.
Tip 2: Select a Good "Email Subject" and a Well Known "From Name"
When your email marketing campaign lands in someone's inbox, they can often only see the name of the sender and the subject. This makes those two pieces of the email marketing puzzle incredibly important. These two items can be the 'make it or break it' factor for whether your campaign is a success or not. An appealing subject line can pique your recipient's interest so they open your email and read your content. A lackluster subject line can make people skim over your message or delete it without even seeing your fist line of content.
It is also very important that you use a 'from name' that your recipients will recognize. If everyone knows your company name, but no one knows your personal name, then you should absolutely use your company name. Research consistently shows that people are far more likely to open an email from a business or organization they recognize as opposed to one they don't.
Tip #3: Content is King; Make Your Email Worth Reading
These days, people are more pressed for time than ever before. With only 24 hours in each day, asking people to take the time to read your email in its entirety may actually be asking a lot. But, if you are going to expect that from your audience, then you better be prepared to deliver some compelling content. If your email is boring, dry, outdated or just plain useless, then your audience may not give you a second chance. Typically, emails with sub-par content see increased unsubscribe requests, while emails with compelling content experiences increased readership.
When you create your email, it is important that you think like the reader. What do they want to read? What topics are of interest to them? If you can answer those questions, then you can use your email marketing software to create quality content that will keep people coming back for more.
An added benefit of email marketing is that there is no long lead time. This means your content can be very fresh. If a big story breaks in your industry in the morning, there is no reason you can't include that in your email marketing campaign that afternoon. Timely content is often the most sought-after type of information, because it makes your email seem very cutting edge.
Overall, email marketing can be an incredible tool in your arsenal. When armed with the right email marketing software, a good plan, and a little creativity, you can reach out and communicate with your customers in a meaningful and effective way. As an added result, email campaigns will strengthen the bond between you and your customers.
Robert Burko is President of EliteEmail.com, the trusted email marketing software used by thousands of businesses around the globe. Try the complete small business email marketing solution today for free with a no-risk trial.