Email marketing is as close to a “no-brainer” as there is in digital marketing.
But there’s a lot to learn if you want to execute a successful email marketing strategy.
At 2 the Top’s recent Learn Email Marketing meetup—part of our ongoing “Learn Digital Marketing” series—we addressed mission-critical questions like:
- Should you invest in email marketing?
- What is required to execute successful email marketing campaigns?
- How often should you send emails?
- How do you measure the success of email marketing?
- What kind of results can you expect?
If you missed the free Email Marketing meetup, following is a quick review of the key questions, concepts, and tactics we covered.
Should You Invest in Email Marketing?
If you’ve attended any of our monthly Nashville Internet and SEO Marketing Group meetups (held the third Thursday of each month at Emma Bistro on Lea Ave. in Nashville), you know that the answer to this question is: “It depends.”
That is, it depends on you and your business, the resources you possess, and what your competition is doing.
But if your business has existing relationships, email marketing is a big opportunity to nurture and grow those relationships. A good place to start is to consider the objective(s) you want to achieve.
What Are Your Email Marketing Goals?
Begin by considering your goals. Do you want to generate traffic? Optimize for conversions? Drive revenue?
And are you primarily looking to generate new customers or to reach existing customers?
In large part your objectives may be driven by the type of business you operate. For example, an e-commerce business will likely have different email marketing goals than a Web publisher or a B2B service business.
What Is Required To Do Email Marketing?
In general, you need time, money, and expertise to successfully execute email marketing campaigns.
More specifically, you also need:
- An email list
- Email marketing software
- An email marketing strategy
If you haven’t yet begun to collect email addresses, start now.
Generally speaking, you want to make it easy for people to subscribe to your emails. The more information you ask for at sign up, the less likely it is that customers (and potential customers) will sign up.
Types Of Email Marketing Content
As for the different types of emails you might want to send as part of an email marketing strategy, these can be grouped into four categories:
1. Broadcast emails: A broadcast email probably goes out to everyone on your list. It might advertise an event, or a sale, à la, “Sale starts tomorrow. Everything must go!”
2. Onboarding emails: An onboarding email is sent when someone signs up for an account, à la, “Thank you for signing up!” Many times this is the first in a series of emails that is delivered to new customers.
3. Transactional emails: A transactional email goes out when a transaction has been completed, à la, “Thank you for your order,” or “Your order has shipped.”
4. Triggered mails: Finally, a triggered email is delivered after something has happened that warrants notification of the recipient.
How Often Should You Send Emails To Your List?
This is another question where the answer is “it depends,” because you should only email when you’re providing value. However, for most businesses sending an email at least once a month probably makes sense.
How Do You Measure The Success Of Email Marketing Campaigns?
As you might expect, measuring the success of your campaigns is critical to improving your efforts over time.
There are five metrics that are commonly used to measure email marketing success:
1. Open rate: Open rate refers to the percentage of your emails that are opened by recipients. (The subject line of your emails is the biggest determining factor in your open rate.)
2. Click-thru rate: Your click-thru rate is the percentage of recipients who opened your email and clicked on one of your Calls to Action. (This metric illustrates your level of engagement.)
3. Conversion rate: How many of your recipients actually bought what you were selling?
4. Average order value: The average dollar amount spent per order.
5. Churn rate: How many people are unsubscribing from your emails?
Know too that segmentation can play a key role in improving your metrics and results. Segmentation involves dividing your email subscribers into groups based on select criteria, like geography, interests or purchase history. Generally speaking, the more you personalize and segment out your list the more effective your email marketing will be.
How Can You Avoid Spam Filters?
In a nutshell, there are three primary things you can do to reduce the chance of your emails getting caught in a spam filter.
1. Double opt-in: If you utilize double opt-in, that means subscribers have not only given you their email address and permission to email them, you’ve taken an extra step—re-confirming that they want to be on your list and receive emails from you.
2. List cleaning: If an email bounces back to you with a message that that email address does not exist (a hard bounce), you want to remove that address from your list. If you repeatedly get a soft bounce, that is, an email comes back to you with an explanatory message (à la “the server is down”), that’s also a good reason to remove that email address from your list.
3. Make it easy to unsubscribe. At minimum you need to provide the option for recipients to unsubscribe from your emails; typically this option is included in the footer of each email you send.
What Kind Of Results Can You Expect With Email Marketing?
There are a wide variety of benefits that can be derived from email marketing, not the least of which is that regular emails can help your business stay top of mind.
But email marketing also has a reputation for delivering tremendous return on investment (ROI). In fact, according to Campaign Monitor, “Email marketing is the king of the marketing kingdom, with a 3,800% ROI and $38 for every $1 spent.”
Getting Started With Email Marketing
So, if you haven’t done so already, start collecting email addresses and thinking about how you can provide value to your subscribers. Ideally, you want your subscribers to look forward to receiving your emails because they know you’ll be making their life better, easier, or less expensive.
Need Professional Help With Email Marketing?
If you or your business is looking for help with your email marketing efforts, 2 the Top Web Design and Marketing can help you achieve the email marketing results you’re looking for. Just give us a call at 615-874-1455.
Meanwhile, be sure to attend our next Nashville SEO Group free meetup—part 8 of our “Learn Digital Marketing” series—in which we cover Online Reputation Management, including crucial topics like:
- The most important review sites
- How to encourage good reviews
- How to deal with bad reviews
The free Learn Online Reputation Management meetup will take place Thursday, September 19 at 6:30 pm at Emma Bistro. We’ll cover the same material again at our next Lunch and Learn, on Friday September 20 at Noon. The Lunch and Learn is $20 and will be held at 2 the Top Web Design & Marketing at 615 Main Street.
See you then!