The first thing many of us do after waking up in the morning is open our various inboxes and go on a full blown deleting spree. Getting rid of the promotional emails, offers, and junk so that we are left with only the messages we care about or need to act on. So you might be thinking “why would I bother sending out emails for my business that are just going to get trashed!?” We did some investigating on whether email campaigns are still a valid marketing approach for prospecting – especially with social channels taking center stage – and we were pretty surprised with what we found!
Email marketing is alive and well
While each business has to evaluate their goals, demographic, market needs, and resources before determining whether any marketing effort is worthwhile, we would put money on email marketing being worth the investment. In fact, one statistic we came across stated that, “Email marketing is up to 40 times more effective than social media, according to a study done by McKinsey & Company. The same study also shows that the buying process happens 3 times faster than in social media.” In addition, most business owners and marketing professionals claim that they get good results from email marketing.
RPC Co-Founder and email campaign wizard, Elizabeth Sheils, shared this, “Email marketing when done right can be your most powerful sales tool. Insider tip: If you are sending a campaign for the first time, sign up with an email marketing company that allows you to do A/B testing. Send a few different versions of the same email and see if your response rate / open rates vary.”
So if email marketing is a valid approach to turning leads into customers, what are some tips for a successful campaign?
3 tips for a more successful email campaign
1. Organize your contact list
The first step is understanding your contact list. “According to the DMA, 77% of email marketing ROI comes from segmented, targeted, and triggered campaigns.” You can’t expect to send the same messaging to everyone in your database and have it resonate across the board. It takes some time upfront, but the better you can segment your contacts/leads, the better your results will be. If you’re not capturing the necessary data when your contacts are being created (for instance, through a lead form on your website), add in the necessary fields now! With any data collection tactic, make sure you are complying with all email regulations, like CAN-SPAM and GDPR, when collecting data.
We love this tip also shared by Elizabeth Sheils regarding preparing your list for success: “One the biggest factors that can play into your email marketing campaign is the company you select to send out your emails. Picking a company that allows you to customize a delay between each email will increase your chances of landing in an inbox vs spam. By setting a delay, even just 20 seconds, you will avoid mail servers treating your emails as bulk – which is key.”
2. Set a clear goal
This may seem like a no-brainer but setting a clear goal is so important. Avoid sending an off the cuff email just because you realize you’re behind on new bookings or not seeing the inquiry volume you want. Really think through your objectives and if possible, define specific goals for email campaigns throughout the year. Taking a pragmatic approach will help you ensure your messages are landing at the best possible time and allow you to better measure results. Setting goals and having clear direction also allows you to prepare different email formats and templates for each different goal. For example, promoting a new service should look different than educating with a blog topic.
3. Focus on four types of emails
No matter what your goals are, HubSpot says there are four types of emails you should be sending to your contact list (leads).
- Building trust – not every email campaign goal should be sales driven. After all, leads are a lot more likely to turn into customers after they trust you – and see that you are an industry expert. Share helpful tips and tricks, be honest about successes and failures, and overall, provide genuine content that will give them an idea of your brand persona and value.
- Provide resources – this goes hand in hand with #1. A great way to win someone over is by providing information about something that is relevant to them! Send links to articles, podcasts, blogs, or any other educational tool that may come in handy!
- Ask for them to take action – the fun part! Give contacts a very clear action to complete – it could be scheduling a call with you, filling out a questionnaire, or maybe even leaving a review. Whatever it is, make it EASY for them to complete and thank them for their efforts.
- Call me…maybe? For leads that go dark, it’s important to notify them that they will be removed from your list and discontinue further email communication. It may be tempting to leave them on your list and cast the widest net possible, but the reality is they are no longer a valid lead and you need to focus on other prospects. If after multiple attempts to connect, they are unresponsive, try to gather feedback about why they went a different route and move on!