Let’s be honest.
Not many people wake up in the morning thinking ‘I can’t wait to read the next marketing email that drops into my inbox’.
Most are full of sales guff.
Day after day showing you offers for things you don’t want. Encouraging you to buy stuff you don’t need.
Then there’s the special offers.
So many special offers it makes you wonder if these businesses ever actually sell anything at full price, ever.
Plus, they’re just so many marketing emails. Most of them, people don’t even remember signing up for in the first place.
An email marketing list is a precious thing for a company. Because it belongs to them.
Google can’t wreck months of work by changing an algorithm on a whim. The only thing that impacts you email list is you.
If you do it right, email marketing can still be one of your best lead generators.
Most email lists are wasted
Here’s how a typically poor email marketing plan is run.
Customers hand over their email address when they buy something online, or they sign up to a loyalty scheme, or they download an eBook or sign up to a webinar if they’re in B2B.
Their email is added to a central email list. And then bombarded with the same marketing messages.
It doesn’t matter what the customer is actually interested in, they just get what everyone else gets.
And then marketers wonder why their open rates go down, unsubscribers go through the roof, and nothing ever gets sold.
So, how can you make the most of your email marketing list?
Segment your list
Segmentation is key to successful marketing.
It’s how you figure out the right messages for the right people, and make your marketing more relevant, and personal.
There are tonnes of ways you can segment your list.
- Geographically: Country, city, town, population size etc
- Demographically: Age, gender, income, education, job etc
- Psychographically: Lifestyle, concerns, personality, attitudes, values etc
- Behaviourally: Previous purchases, intent, buyer stage etc
You can also interlink each of these segmentation lists to get even more specific based on the nature of the campaign or offer.
By figuring out specifically who your emails are targeted at, you’ll be able to do better with the next phase of successful email marketing.
Get personal in your emails
A lot of marketers think the extent of being ‘personal’ in emails starts and stops with putting a person’s name at the top.
Getting personal means figuring out what an individual needs from an email, and giving it to them.
All of your marketing should be focused on creating 1:1 communications.
The person receiving the email should think it’s been written specifically with them in mind.
What problems are they having right now that you can help them solve?
It might be trying to find the right accounting software for their business. It might be trying to find the ideal birthday present for their wife or husband.
Either way, you should tailor your emails to solve that problem and give them the information they need.
Remember, you’ve got a tonne of data on customers, and if you’ve segmented your email list properly, you should be able to create multiple email campaigns, all targeting the right people with the right messages.
This is why your segmentation is going to be so important.
Same product, different sales messages
Even the same product will have different messages depending on the person you’re targeting.
The message you use to sell marketing automation software will be different depending on the person your contacting.
A marketing manager will want to know how your technology will make their lives easier.
A finance director will want to know the ROI and money side of things.
Sending the wrong message to either one means your emails will fail.
Don’t ‘Always Be Closing’
Yes, ultimately any marketing is done with the idea of getting a sale at the end of it.
But that doesn’t mean you should be hitting leads around the head with sales offers and promotions any chance you get.
Sales offers and promotions should be the exception to what you send to people on your email list so when you do send them, people haven’t got worn out with another “get 50% off sales” email.
Even if you’re a fashion brand, you don’t always have to use emails to promote offers.
Use seasonal changes or new fashion trends to send interesting emails for people to read.
You can keep your customers warmed up for sales using this kind of content and then when you do send your sales and promotional email, your customers are more primed to buy something.
Have a strategy behind your emails
Here’s one problem a lot of marketers have when it comes to emails.
They see each email as its own thing. So they all come across as random.
Every email you send should serve a purpose to move leads further towards a sale.
Even your emails that offer advice and guidance are keeping prospects engaged with your business so when they’re more ready to buy from you when you make the eventual offer.
Depending on your list or segmented campaign, you should have a series of emails connected to moving a prospect down a certain path.
Here’s an example.
Let’s say a B2B customer has just downloaded an eBook.
You send the first email with the link so they can get the eBook.
If they open the link, you send another email a few days later (once they’ve had a chance to read the content) offering another piece of content, linked to the eBook that they might also find useful.
If they open that email and click on the link, send them a final piece of content (more bottom of the funnel like a product page or product guide).
If they read that, they’re obviously interested in your product and you can now try and set up a sales call or get them engaged.
If they’re not ready for sales yet, put them back into the start of another workflow.
There is a belief by some in marketing that after a while, if you’re prospect isn’t engaging with all your emails you should stop. Don’t.
Just because they don’t engage with one campaign, only means they’re not interested yet.
So keep going. If they unsubscribe from your emails, sure it’s not good.
But it only means they weren’t likely to buy from you anyway. And now you can spend more time with prospects who are still engaging with you.
Your email marketing can be your best weapon
As we’ve said, most of your other marketing channels are at the mercy of search engines and social media platforms.
A single change in an algorithm can undo all your hard work overnight. But your email list is yours.
If you take the time to segment it, target your content and keep your audience engaged you’ll see increases in sales over time.
They might not happen straight away. But they’ll happen.
Plus, believe it or not, people share emails that they find useful, interesting, or entertaining.
Email marketing is the ideal platform to have conversations and build relationships with customers.
Treat your email list right, and you’ll see the payoffs in the end.
Interested in improving the conversations and sales from your email marketing?
Get in touch.