In previous articles we've explored how the different of an effective inbound marketing campaign all fit together. We've dug deeper into the overall inbound principles and looked at ensuring each element is balanced properly so as to maximize effectiveness.
We covered lead generation, blogging, and social media to date, now it's time to take a look at email automation.
Element 4: EMAIL MARKETING
Email marketing has grown into an integral part of many small businesses in recent years. Companies such as Constant Contact and Mail Chimp have made managing a small database and sending them money emails easier than ever. The toolset and responsibility may not always create ROI however, the results of busy business owners (with marketing core competencies) trying to manage an email campaign are mixed.
Are intent in looking deeper into email marketing is to ensure we're following the proper princicples and best practice techniques necessary to capitalize on our efforts. Afterall, there is a large opportunity cost to all business owner's time spent on marketing. If you're running a business you know how much you have to do, just think what else you could be doing with your time to affect the bottom line!
You have better things to do with your time, we must show great results and help improve your brand image instead of deteriorating it. Sadly this is the case with many email marketing efforts, the sloppy, poorly laid out and designed newsletter most of you are sending out just doesn't help your image. If you're pumping out a designed-it-yourself email newsletter you're probably getting the results you paid for, if leads aren't coming in as a result the answer lies in inbound marketing.
When done as part of an inbound marketing campaign your email campaign will support your other efforts, helping nurture your leads through the sales funnel. You'll be able to introduce your database to new content and offers, prompt them to take next steps, and keep your brand and offering front of mind until they're ready to buy. Add to this professionally designed email templates from a marketing firm like Revenue River and you'll be on your way to email marketing success.
Now that we've established that email marketing should be professional and attractive with inbound principals with content pieces to redirect to for conversions it's time to look at some helpful tips you can use to bring balance to your email campaign.
There are some interesting findings about email marketing and we hope you can implement some of these tricks and tips to your campaign. The resulting balance and focus on correct implements and timing of release will be a welcome result.
- The earlier you bounce back to them the better they convert
- The less you send the more they unsubscribe, believe it or not
- Most will unsubscribe right away, or they will stay
- Max click-throughs are on Saturday and Sunday, earlier the better regardless of day
- Be passionate in your email titles
- '&' symbol gets more clicks – means content heavy gets interest
- Question marks should not be used in email titles
- Don't use hashtags, no one cares about your #twitterknowlege
- Avoid parentheses, if you have to you [ ] instead
- Always use the addressee's first name
Overall Strategy -
- The more links you put into your email, the more clicks you get. Tells the reader there is a lot of content and value in your message
- The more links you have, the less unsubscribers you'll have!
- The newer the subscriber is, the more click-throughs you'll get. Best chance to hit them is when they first sign up
As you can see there is some data here that you wouldn't intuitively think would be the case. Did you really think the more often you send an email the less likely they are to unsubscribe? Once you've begun to implement some of these basics it's time to blend and balance these approaches with best practice techniques.
Here are some basic best practice instruction for your email campaign that should help you balance the simple against the complex. Remember, the goal is not to send them an email it's to have them open it but rather to have them engage and buy becuase of it!
- Use clear calls to action
- Use paths & links instead of attachments
- Allow social sharing on every email
- Always include a follow us section
- Allow recipients to open email in a browser
- Always create a text only version of your emails
I hope this article gives you some better isight into the world of email marketing and about some of the unique advantages this element of marketing campaigns. As you find yourself becoming more involved with email automation you may find you have a need for some advice or help. That's where we come in, Revenue River is a Denver marketing firm that specializes in inbound marketing. Email marketing is a fantastically valuable tool to your inbound marketing, we hope this article will help you be more effective and efficient.