So Long Facebook...Hello EMAIL MARKETING!

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If you aren’t serious about dialing in your email marketing campaigns, you may be missing a HUGE opportunity. With active email accounts set to hit 5.6 billion this year, email marketing is more powerful than ever.

More and more, the internet is feeling like a collection of algorithms, cramming ads down the throats of users as they navigate to the content that interests them. Email is different - it gives consumers control and allows them to opt-in to receive information from the brands that matter most to them.

In our experience, there’s a right way and a wrong way to leverage email marketing to grow your brand. Here’s what you need to know.

Create your list and check it twice…

Successful email marketers are perceived as helpful and interested in the unique needs of the recipient. That’s why we don’t recommend buying a list of email addresses off the internet. Sending an email to someone that didn’t request to be on your list is like showing up to a stranger’s house and asking: “What’s for dinner?”

A ridiculously high percentage of your messages will be flagged as spam – meaning your email address could be blacklisted. Plus, you’re making the wrong impression for your brand.

Instead, leverage your website to invite visitors to sign-up for your email newsletter. You can even ask the individual signing up what they are most interested in about your brand.

In return for signing up, you should offer them something of value right away – we call this an “opt-in offer”. Examples include in-depth case studies, special discount coupons or VIP access to behind-the-scenes information – delivered directly to their inbox upon signing up.

Grow your list organically.

You don’t need thousands of email addresses in order to run a successful marketing campaign. What you do need are email addresses for potential customers that value what your brand offers.

The quality of your list is way more important than the quantity. And remember - never buy email lists online!

Send email marketing messages that sizzle with value.

Invest real effort into the content you’re sending out. The reader should feel like you took the time to fill them in on something that’s vitally important to them. When done correctly, your email recipients will wait with anticipation for your next message.

All of this contributes to a positive brand experience.

Do I need to spend money on an email marketing service?

Email marketing services are usually a component of a more comprehensive marketing package. If you choose to hire someone to take care of your email marketing, you’ll gain immediate access to their well of experience,assuming the service provider was well-vetted.

At Fratzke Media, we’ve seen some great results when brands own email marketing efforts in-house with the help of a strategic partner. This allows companies to own their contact lists, monitor leads, assess engagement, act quickly and pivot even faster if you need to pursue a new direction.  

Email Marketing Automation Tools

If you choose to bring your email marketing efforts in-house, there are some helpful tools available. Some of the more popular options include:

  • AWeber: Helps you leverage opt-in opportunities on your site to grow your mailing list. Also provides automated email sequences to jumpstart relationships based on where they opted in.
  • Constant Contact: Offers customized, guided campaign creation and implementation based on your industry and experience with email campaigns.
  • ConvertKit: Powerful tool for creating opt-in offers featuring your collateral.
  • Drip: A more advanced tool for ecommerce site operators that want to aggressively integrate their email marketing with the backend of their online sales platform.
  • MailChimp: Powerful plug-ins for Wordpress and other CMS platforms. Offers free package for startups and small businesses to engage with up to 2,000 subscribers by sending up to 12,000 emails per month.
  • SendinBlue: Recently expanded solution that allows online businesses to build email and SMS campaigns and chat with visitors on their site in real-time.

Why is email still so powerful?

The first email message was sent in 1971. Technology has evolved a lot since then. Yet email is still considered the gold standard in digital marketing. Why?

1. Email Inboxes Put Consumers in Charge of What They Consume

Email is something consumers can control. They get to pick and choose which email newsletters they subscribe to. Since the recipient is making the choice to “opt-in” - email marketing messages have the highest conversion rate at 66% compared to social media, direct mail and more. (Data & Marketing Association) And, if they’re feeling bombarded by unwanted messages, they can unsubscribe with the click of a button.

2. Email is Less Invasive than Social Media

With recent privacy issues, along with the disruptive nature of social media, users are increasingly choosing to delete their accounts.  Consumers  don’t trust big corporations to treat their personal information with respect, and they are tired of being spoon-fed ads based on their most recent browsing history. Email is becoming more important because it’s the last line of digital communication between brands and customers.

3. Email is More Personal

The decision to opt-in is deeply personal. As a result, your brand can leverage email to build a one-on-one connection with your customer. The content can be tailor-fit to the recipient. And they can instantly choose to hit “reply” and get in touch with you on their schedule.

Email Marketing Best Practices

If your goal is to deliver effective emails that your customers love opening (open rates) and then inspires them to visit your site (click through rates), here are a few more best practices to keep in mind.

Send Yourself a Test Email before Launching a New Email Campaign

The simplest things can trip up even seasoned professionals when they rush content to their audience. Send yourself a test email. Check for broken links, formatting issues and grammatical mistakes. It’s also a good idea to try opening your messages in multiple email programs and browsers. This helps ensure your customers will be able to engage with your email no matter where and how they check their inbox.

Don’t Blow Up the User Interface with Excess or Inefficient Code

Have you ever right-clicked and hit “view source” in an email? There’s a ton of code behind the scenes in the marketing emails that you send and receive. Excess code can slow down the loading of your message - causing recipients to move on before they’ve even seen your call to action. Slow, buggy email code will obliterate the return on investment (ROI) of your marketing campaign.

Don’t be afraid to split important information across multiple emails in your campaign. You’ll reduce the size of the individual email and allow the reader to get to the most important information more quickly.

Dive into Your Email Marketing Performance Metrics

You should check how well your email marketing is performing on a daily basis. This check can be performed as part of a more comprehensive Digital Marketing Audit. But, you really need to supplement the time in between digital audits with additional check-ins.

Don’t worry, it isn’t too difficult. Login to your email marketing platform of choice. Navigate to the area that presents you with critical campaign stats. You’ll want to dial-in on:

  • Deliverability / Bounce Rates
  • Open Rates
  • Click-Through Rates
  • Spam Percentage
  • Complaint Rate
  • Unsubscribe Rate
  • Time of Engagement (When are your subscribers reading your email?)      

If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, don’t sweat it! Fratzke Media partners with brands every day to help them master the 8 Channels of Digital Marketing – including email marketing. If you need help crafting or implementing modern marketing strategies, we’d love to partner with your brand.


James Fratzke

Co-Founder & Head of Operations

2.27.2019

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Whether you’re looking for help with a single project or a long-term strategic partnership, Fratzke Media has the resources and expertise you need to help you achieve more with your Digital Marketing.

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