The benefits of email marketing cannot be understated. Mess it up and you might as well torch your email leads coming through your capture pages and opt in forms.
Normally, a person who subscribes to your list has found your website or follows you on social media, or is interested in a promotion you are running. They have trusted you with their email address and have given you permission to contact them on a regular basis. That means they like what you have to say and want to hear more from you.
Think about that for a moment.
They WANT to hear from you. If not.. they wouldn’t have asked for MORE information to be send to them by email.
If you have a captive audience within your target market who is giving you permission to contact them on a regular basis, wouldn’t you agree that email marketing is one of the best ways to market? Absolutely!
Content Marketing Definition
Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
*image from fusionmex.i-scoop.eu
Marketing firms and companies choosing to pursue a comprehensive email campaign will increase spending to $2.468 billion by two years from now. The nearly $1 billion dollar increase in this method of marketing over a five year span from 2011 to 2016 shows that email marketing is an effective way of promoting your business. That is still way less than how much a company traditionally spends on advertising. This is one of the biggest benefits of email marketing.
What is Email Marketing?
No says it better than Dan Forootan, President of EZ Publishing via Streamsend.com:
Email marketing occurs when a company sends a commercial message to a group of people by use of electronic email. Most commonly through advertisements, requests for business, or sales or donation solicitation, any email communication is considered email marketing if it helps to build customer loyalty, trust in a product or company or brand recognition. Email marketing is an efficient way to stay connected with your clients while also promoting your business.
Basically, you use an email list management system, or autoresponder, to collect email addresses from people visiting your website, blog, social media page, promotion or other sources and send them email . You want to connect with them by sending them useful email that educates, inspires, entertains, informs and finally, promotes.
1. According to the Harvard Business review, U.S. companies are spending $64 billion per year on TV ads, $34 billion on print ads, and $39 billion on Internet advertising. But they are only spending about $1.5 billion. Composing an email (even a fancy newsletter) is faster than sending promotions off to the printer. Not only is it more cost-effective, it is faster.
2. An internet-based call to action campaign in an email marketing message can drive more traffic by:
- Sending your readers to your website, blog or offer.
- Drive people to social media, which in turn sends them to your website.
- Bounce traffic back and forth between social media and your site with comments and likes.
3. Though email marketing provides companies, especially small businesses, with tight advertising budgets more leverage, there is also more room for creativity. For example, a flyer or newspaper ad is static and only in print. Email marketing can come in the form of video, audio, images, polls, and other online forms. You also have the added benefit of inserting links to past and present blog posts or promotions. People can click right then and there. That is impossible to do in print or on the radio.
Benefits of Email Marketing and What They are NOT – It’s Not For Spam
This is the FTC Compliance Guide and Email Marketing is not about “spamming”
Each separate email in violation of the CAN-SPAM Act is subject to penalties of up to $16,000, so non-compliance can be costly. But following the law isn’t complicated. Here’s a rundown of CAN-SPAM’s main requirements:
- Don’t use false or misleading header information. Your “From,” “To,” “Reply-To,” and routing information – including the originating domain name and email address – must be accurate and identify the person or business who initiated the message.
- Don’t use deceptive subject lines. The subject line must accurately reflect the content of the message.
- Identify the message as an ad. The law gives you a lot of leeway in how to do this, but you must disclose clearly and conspicuously that your message is an advertisement.
- Tell recipients where you’re located. Your message must include your valid physical postal address. This can be your current street address, a post office box you’ve registered with the U.S. Postal Service, or a private mailbox you’ve registered with a commercial mail receiving agency established under Postal Service regulations.
- Tell recipients how to opt out of receiving future email from you. Your message must include a clear and conspicuous explanation of how the recipient can opt out of getting email from you in the future. Craft the notice in a way that’s easy for an ordinary person to recognize, read, and understand. Creative use of type size, color, and location can improve clarity. Give a return email address or another easy Internet-based way to allow people to communicate their choice to you. You may create a menu to allow a recipient to opt out of certain types of messages, but you must include the option to stop all commercial messages from you. Make sure your spam filter doesn’t block these opt-out requests.
- Honor opt-out requests promptly. Any opt-out mechanism you offer must be able to process opt-out requests for at least 30 days after you send your message. You must honor a recipient’s opt-out request within 10 business days. You can’t charge a fee, require the recipient to give you any personally identifying information beyond an email address, or make the recipient take any step other than sending a reply email or visiting a single page on an Internet website as a condition for honoring an opt-out request. Once people have told you they don’t want to receive more messages from you, you can’t sell or transfer their email addresses, even in the form of a mailing list. The only exception is that you may transfer the addresses to a company you’ve hired to help you comply with the CAN-SPAM Act.
- Monitor what others are doing on your behalf. The law makes clear that even if you hire another company to handle your email marketing, you can’t contract away your legal responsibility to comply with the law. Both the company whose product is promoted in the message and the company that actually sends the message may be held legally responsible.
I’ve seen a lot of newer marketing learning adcopy mess up on #1. They see the spike in opens but it is AGAINST the CAN-SPAM act to have headlines like that.
The newbie indicator is #6, many do NOT have an autoresponder and can’t remove people off the list easily. That’s just asking for your account to be shut down.
Long-Term Benefits of Email Marketing
We have just gone over some of the benefits of email marketing. With an auto responder, email marketing benefits increase, because you have a system that allows you to use those benefits of email marketing more efficiently. Beyond just cost-effectiveness, there are long-term benefits over traditional media that can really help your business. This is not to say that we discourage using traditional media. We are simply saying that email promotion can be used in conjunction with traditional media or by itself. Whether you choose traditional media or not, there are benefits of email marketing that cannot be duplicated in other forms of promotion.
1. Can scale up promotions easily – Email autoresponders (management lists) often archive each email written. These can be shared on social media, forwarded, or even found through search engines.
Another one of the benefits of email marketing is that an email can be written and then released in order as people join your list. For example:
John joins your list. You send out Email 1, Email 2 and Email 3 to John. Jennifer joins your list a week later, just as Email 4 is about to go out. Instead of having to send out Email 1, 2 and 3 to Jennifer, your autoresponder will automatically send it out for you, in the order you predetermine. They can be sent out weekly so she doesn’t get bombarded with email. You can also send out an email to everyone at the same time. This system saves you so much time and confusion.
It is easy to use, which helps expedite your promotional campaign. The thought of sitting and emailing hundreds of clients every day may seem overwhelming. With the help of pro-marketing firms (Aweber, Tracking Info, Constant Contact, iContact, Get Response, Mailchimp, Office Auto Pilot, and Go GVO), you can quickly and easily reach hundreds of clients with a few short clicks and less than two hours set up, on average.
2. A nice way to inquire into what clients want – Have you noticed that your social media channels have faltered somewhat or your demographics are changing?
Never before in the history of marketing has real-time marketing and following real-time trends been more important.
As the world is constantly changing, your business needs to focus on changing with it. Therefore, from time to time, it is nice to ask your clients what they are looking for at that particular moment. This can be easily accomplished through an email marketing campaign. Mass mailing to your clients can provide your company with instantaneous feedback (generally within 48 hours) and the benefits of this email marketing’s turnaround time will help you to make quick changes to your marketing campaign, contest or blog content or provide exclusive deals to your most passionate customers.
3. Email marketing allows businesses the benefit of staying inside of your client’s mind – A variety of emails from an equally varied group of individuals (work, family, friends and business interests) bombard nearly all internet users today. Under the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003, businesses must include their physical mailing address in their correspondence as well as a method of opting out of the mailings.
With email marketing, your messages reach clients that have already opted in for the information they receive. The more useful the information, the more likely they are to open your messages. This means that you don’t necessarily want to send promotions all of the time – depending on your business, you want to send messages that interest them. Or you can send messages that talk about something that is greatly distressing, embarrassing or annoying and how you can solve that problem for them. Email promotion gives you the flexibility to write longer messages, or simply write a short intro to a blog post that they would be interested in reading.
An online newsletter sent to your client list, updated event invitations or business-related updates will keep you in the forefront of your clients’ mind. Deeper relationships with clients lead to greater profits for your business, as statistics from Exact Target show that 53% of online users completed a purchase as a direct result of an email marketing campaign.
4. Send extremely targeted messages – Sometimes, your list can grow so large that you get subsets of people. When that happens, it is best to target those people. Sending targeted messages does two things:
- It connects with them even more, at their level.
- It increases the likelihood of converting them to customers.
The ability to further personalize your targeted correspondence to your individual clients will demonstrate a nice personalized touch that will lead your clients to trust you even further.
5. Good for the environment – The benefits of email marketing, taken a step further as eco-marketing, is the practice of improving the ecology and the economy through sustainable, paperless and interactive marketing techniques. If you are a green business or serve a lot of green customers, they will be happy to be reminded how kind electronic correspondence is to the earth.
Can you imagine how much snail mail spam there is?
Here is a little info from (http://www.law.nyu.edu/)
- 5.6 million tons of catalogs and other direct mail advertisements end up in US landfills annually.
- 44% of junk mail is thrown away unopened, but only half that much junk mail (22%) is recycled.
- The average American household receives 848 pieces of junk mail per household, equal to 1.5 trees every year—more than 100 million trees for all U.S. households combined.
- Junk mail destroys 100 million trees a year—the equivalent of deforesting all of Rocky Mountain National Park every four months.
- Largely due to deforestation, junk mail manufacturing creates as much greenhouse gas emissions annally as 3.7 million cars.
- Americans pay 370 million annually to dispose of junk mail that does not get recycled.
I’m not the biggest tree hugger… but DANG… that’s a LOT of freaking trash in the landfills… Emails are a better way to communicate with potential buyers, and current customers.
6. More direct communication – Who is the best marketer a business can have? The owner.
If you are a small business it is easier for you to directly communicate with your fans and prospects. The more involved you are, the more likely your company will find success. With the benefits of email marketing, there is no need to wait on your clients or customers to come to your place of business, call your office line, or hit up your social media channels.
You can communicate with thousands of people without ever picking up a phone. The benefits of email marketing is that it helps you to take the reins of your business’s online marketing in the most cost-effective and instantaneous way possible. If you want to see more benefits of email marketing, check out this project I put together that demonstrates how I achieved 107% open rates.
7. Fast, Easy Traffic and Feedback – Posting an email message to a new blog post can boost your traffic to your blog. Imagine having a list of over 100; 1000; 10,000 or more and sending them a message that they would be very interested in seeing. You have been communicating with them on an ongoing basis and you know what information they want to know.
Once you publish this information to your list, you have a boost in traffic. If they are really engaged, you will get a lot of commenting and sharing, which in turn gives you another boost in traffic. This kind of traffic can only be achieved by understanding and communicating with your target audience on a regular basis through email.
Primarily one of the reasons I was able to increase my email open rates on one of the campaigns to 107% open rates. See Stats Here for my Email Marketing Effectiveness in action.
8. Easy to Track – Finally, you can track your campaign effectively through your autoresponder. You can track
Which email drives more traffic
How many people open your messages
What percentage open your messages
How many people leave your list (unsubscribe) and why
All this data tells you how well your email campaigns are working. This information is important if you want to reach certain goals and keep increasing your fan base and customers.
As you can see, the benefit of email marketing go far beyond just sending out messages. Here is a recap of what we covered:
What email marketing is, its cost benefits, and how to use it.
Long – term benefits, especially with regards to building relationships, informing people, building traffic and the ease of tracking results.
Benefits of email marketing – Things to keep in mind
First of all, it is not a way to spam people, which is sending people messages they really don’t want to read.
It should not be used to push products or services excessively.
It should be used to help your client base, prospects and fans. It should give them something of value, just like your products and services do. For example, if you sell antiques – you should also be informing your email base about the hottest antiques, how to appraise your antiques properly, where to find bargain antiques for collection or resale, etc.
It should be updated regularly. Messaging once a month is not enough.
It should be used sparingly. Messaging five times per day may be too much. Some lists give you the option of getting messages as they are published, or getting them in a daily or weekly archive. Consider offering the same option to your list if you can.
With an ROI of around 4300%, according to the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing provides the benefit of practically paying for itself. Great email content, including interesting subject lines and targeted messages, helps to not only get your message across to those who wish to hear it but also increases the likelihood of your message being opened. With today’s research showing a six to twelve times greater likelihood of selling to an existing client over a new one, the 24/7 connectivity to your client base allows you to market at a time that is most convenient for you and those are the best benefits of email marketing of all.