Email marketing has had its ups and downs. From the low-cost answer to mass marketing communication to the pariah of spam flooding global inboxes. Yet, if you take a step back, email is just another way of communicating, a tool in the marketing kitbag.
I have been using email as a Business to Business marketing tool for over 20 years and through all this time, it has proved a really valuable asset – when used appropriately! Why is it that so many people still think that the best approach is to throw as much mud as possible hoping that some of it will stick? It is the poor, thoughtless use of email that is giving it the bad name for the rest of us.
Here are my Top 10 Tips for effective email marketing in 2021:
- Email is just another way of communicating.
Marketing is all about communication and email is a great way of communicating, However, it should be used as one element of a joined-up plan.
- Be straightforward and honest
Email marketing has been and continues to be abused by businesses. This doesn’t make it bad or wrong but it does give email a less-than-ideal reputation as a marketing tool. You must allow for this in your planning and make sure you take a professional approach. Don’t add fuel to the fire!
- Your data is your greatest marketing asset – treat it accordingly
Information is power. Building your own, high-quality, database can be time-consuming but it is the key to building strong business relationships with relevant contacts.
- Always respect your contacts
Building confidence and trust with your customers and contacts take time but they are the key to solid, long term business. You may not always get it right but never take your contacts for granted.
Businesses sometimes use the fear of missing out (FOMO) as a hook for their marketing messages. Too often, contacts drawn in by FOMO end up being disappointed by reality.
If you feel you need FOMO to bolster your offer, question your message and/or your targeting.
- Marketing communication is always 1 to 1.
No matter how diverse your market, each contact you make is with an individual – don’t forget that!
The more that your contact feels your message is meant just for them the better
You may be able to push a button and send thousands of emails but each one is going to a single inbox
- Spam filters are a challenge and they aren’t going away. Learn to live with them
Do everything you reasonably can to improve email deliverability. There technical tweaks and content rules both of which can significantly reduce the risk of your email being caught by spam filters. This is, some of your emails WILL go into spam. Content relevance and targeting will help but factor spam filters into your planning.
- Analytics are important but more for trends than absolutes
This links into #6 above. There are many ways you can measure and monitor your email marketing. Use the feedback to ensure your efforts are having a good impact.
- Mix up your content
A mixture of news, advice and offers is a great way to keep your contacts interested. Try to deliver your messages on the back of interesting, engaging content. Most people are a bit nosey but get bored quickly! Don’t forget when people see marketing, their first thought is often WIIFM (What’s In It For Me?)
- Quality ahead of quantity – always!
Don’t just send out a zillion emails of rubbish because you can. A well thought out message delivered to a relevant, targeted audience will produce the best long-term results.
- Every business email is a marketing email
Remember that every business email you send says something about the way you do business. They are all marketing emails!
Email marketing in 2021 a final thought
Email marketing in 2021 is not the be-all and end-all. It should be used as part of the joined-up and integrated communications approach that is central to running, promoting and growing your business. Don’t forget that sometimes it is better to pick up the phone, or Zoom or Teams, or even meet (remember that?)
Want to improve your joined-up marketing email? Let’s have a chat…