5 Ways to Make the Most of Email Marketing

by Mark Stewart

According to a recent study by Campaign Monitor, email marketing still has the highest ROI of any outbound marketing initiative. In fact, email marketing generates nearly $44 for every $1 spent. While this is great news for marketers, email marketing can be tricky to master. With billions of emails sent each day worldwide, it can be difficult to break through the monotony and not overwhelm your customers. Here are a few ways to maximize email marketing and effectively communicate with any audience.

Constantly cultivate. The most important part of email marketing is cultivating a strong email list. There are a few different ways to do so and it’s critical to implement more than one method to ensure you’re consistently growing your list. One simple way is to add a sign-up form on your website. On that form, share what subscribers will get from joining your email list, like expert knowledge, access to exclusive discounts and more.

Adding a sign-up option to external forms like memberships or general intake forms is another avenue to collect emails. Your customers are already providing you their email, so it only makes sense to give them a chance to opt in on the same document.

Finally, consider using a lead magnet. Customers are much more likely to provide their contact information when receiving content like a free eBook or webinar in exchange.

Rethink your message. Offering a product or service? Then it is very likely your email messages are intended to sell something to your subscribers. There’s nothing wrong with promoting an offer, but if that’s the only message you’re sharing, it is time to reevaluate the messaging as you should also share what you can offer to customers beyond that.

According to another recent study from Campaigner, nearly half of consumers say they receive too many emails from business owners and marketers. This means you need to make your message unique and worth opening. Consider sharing unique information readers would find valuable. For example, if you’re a salon owner you could share the five latest hair color trends. We are in a sharing economy and that means sharing our intellectual property. When you do this, it shows your audience that you are an expert and you know what’s trending. Consider the knowledge a doctor or real estate agent can share about their area of expertise and how a reader may appreciate that content.

Continue the conversation. If you create engaging content and your customer is reading your email, then make it very easy for them to continue the conversation. One simple way to do so is adding hyperlinks inside the email back to your social media accounts and website. Additionally, when you create fun and engaging content, it’s more likely that your subscribers will share with family and friends — which helps you reach a new audience.

Make it mobile-friendly. People are primarily using their phone to read emails, with 81% of people opening emails on their mobile device only. This means that it’s critical to have your email marketing optimized for mobile first. In fact, according to SafeCycle, 42.3% will simply delete non-optimized emails and only 11.3% will read it anyway. When optimizing for mobile, make sure that the font is large enough to read and be mindful of the image size. Large files and wide images can take longer to load and distort the email.

Avoid overwhelming your subscribers. The frequency of email marketing is a balancing act. You want to stay top of mind for your customers, but not overwhelm them with emails. If you have valuable information to share, weekly emails are a great place to start. Based on the response you receive, like unsubscribes or link clicks, you can adjust your frequency accordingly. In addition, many email marketing platforms offer readers the option to change the frequency of the emails instead of fully opting out. Be sure to analyze this information to see if there are any trends and consider changing your approach if needed.

Email marketing is a valuable and powerful tool when used correctly. By following these simple steps, you can update and adapt your strategy to create a more engaged audience.

Mark Stewart is a former Fortune 50 leader and founder of the small business marketing and business accelerator Concept2Completion. Stewart serves on the board of directors for the East Valley Partnership, Job Creators Network and several business leadership organizations throughout Arizona.

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