Whether you are a B2B sales rep, a business owner, or in the marketing department for a fortune 500 company, email should be a permanent fixture in your marketing mix. While other social tools have emerged that can be very effective, don’t neglect your efforts via email. Email marketing in the form of a well written and value filled newsletter is a great engagement tool that enables you to stay top of mind, and establish yourself as a go-to resource for your clients.
I possess over a decade experience using email effectively to generate leads and grow profitable business relationships. Here are a few best practices that I have used successfully that I recommend you consider to upgrade your results.
First and foremost, every email you send out must contain value based information that is relevant to your target market. Treat your emails as a newsletter. Yes, it is ok to send out promos or information regarding special pricing. However, if your email does not contain valuable information, it will end up being deleted and people will opt out at a high rate. Use the opportunity to showcase your expertise and demonstrate the exceptional value you bring to your clients.
Make it personal. Most people receive 50 or more emails a day, and nobody likes to receive spam. The more you can do to personalize your email to show that it is being sent by a real living and breathing person that is engaged in the business community and not some automated system, the better results you will have.
Use a rich HTML format to give your emails a professional look. Add in relevant images and videos to make it visually appealing. Place cross platform links to your website, social media, and blog. Plain text emails come across as boring and do little to grab the readers attention.
Track analytics and analyze the data to adjust your strategy to maximize your effectiveness. Platforms such as Constant Contact make tracking analytics very easy. With Constant Contact’s built in analytics you can see who has viewed your email, track your click-through rate on links, measure your subscriber retention rate, and open rate.
Constant Contact also enables you to integrate with social media and share your emails via Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. This feature greatly expands the reach of your email far beyond your lists.
Offer to help out. Make your network available to them by offering to make an introduction to someone within your circle that they may want to be doing business with. Offer to follow them on their social media or to help with distribution of a blog, website, or other marketing materials via your social channels. You will find your response rate and engagement will increase if you are able to extend a genuine offer to help. People are far more likely to buy from someone they see as a “friend” of their business.
Use social proof to enhance your credibility. In the past, I have provided a link that goes directly to my recommendations page on LinkedIn. Once there new clients can see all the great things that my past clients have said about doing business with me. If your business has a high rating on Yelp or other sites, make sure to leverage it within your emails.
Nearly 63% of consumers indicate they are more likely to purchase from a site if it has product ratings and reviews.
Billions of emails are sent across the world every hour. So, how do you maximize your chances that your email gets read amongst a crowded inbox? A subject line that gives a preview of the value contained in your message works best. You might get a higher read rate if you use one of those click bate subjects. However, once people click and they realize they have been duped, they quickly become annoyed and are exponentially more likely to click on delete or the dreaded opt out button.
Are you using email to enhance your content marketing efforts? If so, would you be willing to share a few of your best practices with us in the comment section? I’m all always looking to continue learning to perfect my craft, and would love to hear from YOU!