This may come as a total surprise, but email marketing is actually a form of marketing that is as old as the hills. The concept behind email marketing is to promote products or services by sending out mass emails to groups of people. Sounds pretty straightforward, right? Well, it is. Except that today, the definition of “marketing” is quite different than what it used to be back in the day. So, let’s dive into what email marketing is and how it works.
Origins Of Email Marketing
In the pre-digital age, people primarily got their news from print publications and television. So, when the first emails started being used to market products, the concept of email marketing was actually born. In those days, businesses would buy lists of email addresses from large marketing organizations such as Google and Yahoo! Now, with the explosion of digital marketing, things are very different. Thanks to the world wide web and social media, people are getting their news and information from all sorts of places, including websites, blogs, and social media platforms.
So, if you’re wondering how email marketing and social media marketing fit together, here’s a quick article from the folks at HubSpot that explains the basics of digital marketing, including its various forms, like email marketing and social media marketing. The article also touches on the differences between the two and the benefits of each.
The 3 Types Of Email Marketing
Back in the day, people mostly used email to send newsletters and promotions. So, over the past few years, as email marketing evolved, the formats of these emails evolved with them. Today, there are three basic types of email marketing:
1. Unsubscribe option
A lot of people have become accustomed to getting massive marketing emails from their favorite brands, and they’ve almost stopped reading those emails because they feel like they’re being sold to without even knowing it. The truth is, the majority of these emails are automated and don’t offer consumers any real options aside from clicking a button to continue receiving these emails.
With the explosion of the “great content” trend in digital marketing, content creators have started to play a larger role in driving consumer interest in products and services. While crafting an engaging piece of content can be incredibly beneficial for business growth, having the option to unsubscribe from email marketing is critical for giving people the control they rightfully deserve over their own data.
2. Product demo, reviews & comparisons
In the world of digital marketing, product demos, reviews, and comparisons are considered “showroom” content. This type of content is meant to provide consumers with an in-depth look at a single product or service, typically through the use of visual aids and explanatory text. For example, let’s say you’re purchasing a pair of shoes and you want to compare the performance of different makes and styles. You’ll likely be sent email marketing pieces for each of the brands you’re considering buying. Along with each email, there will also be a place where you can click to view the product demo or review.
This type of content is considered “showroom” content because it’s meant to provide consumers with information about a particular product or service, but it can also be used by businesses to market their products. Essentially, businesses can use this content to “show off” their offerings, with the goal of convincing customers to purchase their products.
3. Relationship building & engagement
In the world of digital marketing, “engagement” and “relationship-building” are critical elements used to determine the success of an online initiative, typically through email marketing. The term “engagement” refers to actions taken by users on your site, while “relationship-building” refers to actions taken by users who have taken an initiative to get to know you, your company, and your product, but don’t necessarily know what you do yet.
For example, say you’re running a real estate blog and you notice that one of your readers has been engaging with your content for quite some time, but they haven’t bought your product yet. You can use this information to engage with them more subtly, through email marketing. You can try sending them emails with tips and tricks for saving money on mortgage payments or offering free counseling sessions for first-time home buyers. The goal is to develop a relationship with this person and hopefully, they’ll be motivated to buy your product or service eventually.
How Email Marketing Works
Email marketing is a powerful tool for businesses and marketers because of its wide reach across different platforms and devices. Today, people get their news and information from a variety of places, including websites, blogs, and social media. As a result, they receive all sorts of competing messages about products and services, making it difficult for businesses to keep up with the growing number of emails they have to sift through.
As people receive more and more messages about products and services, simply cutting through all the clutter and getting people’s attention is more difficult than ever. With email marketing, businesses can employ a variety of tactics to hone in on their ideal audience. They can build relationships with existing and potential customers, position themselves as an expert in their industry, and generate revenue through affiliate marketing and sponsorships.
Why Should Businesses Use Email Marketing?
Email marketing has been around for so long because businesses realized its power quickly. Once people get used to receiving a steady stream of promotional emails, they come to expect it and actually look forward to them. In other words, businesses have learned to “game the system” and use email marketing to their advantage.
As people receive all these promotional emails, it becomes easy for businesses to gain their trust. Once people have trusted you enough to give them their email address, they’re much more likely to purchase your product or service. Especially if you can convince them that you’ll never spam them or sell their information to third parties.
To Do List:
Now that you’re aware of what email marketing is and the different types of emails available, you can start to implement some of these tactics. Here’s a short list of things you can do to get started:
1. Set up a single email address for your entire company
If you want to get serious about email marketing, you’ll have to set up a single email address for your entire company. This is so you can easily send out automated emails or use tools like HubSpot to create campaign templates that can be reused across multiple platforms.
What’s more is you don’t have to worry about sending out mass emails because they’ll all go to a single inbox. You can also set up email filters to ensure you only get important messages, while deleting the rest. Finally, you can create rules to automatically categorize incoming emails, so you never have to worry about them going to waste.
2. Use email templates
Creating email templates is a great way to make sure your emails look consistent and don’t look like they were composed by a one-person marketing committee. You can find pre-made templates in a variety of industries, like real estate and travel, that you can modify and use as is or splice together to make something truly unique and personalized for your target audience.
3. Personalized emails work better
One of the major reasons why email marketing is so effective is because businesses take the time to customize their emails, addressing each person by name and attaching a personalized message. Just because someone signed up for your email list doesn’t mean you can spam them with generic emails about your product or service. Take the time to find out what interests them and send them information that relates to what they want.
It’s also important to look at the analytics behind your email marketing to get a clear understanding of what is and isn’t working. Take the time to segment your lists and send out different types of emails to different groups of people.
4. Create different types of campaigns
If you find that one type of email doesn’t seem to be working all that well, you can create a whole new type of email marketing campaign and send it out with a new list of people to convince. Just remember, audiences grow tired of constantly being pitched products and services, so you want to try and avoid this as much as possible. This is where segmentation and bait-and-switch tactics can really help businesses achieve better results from their email marketing efforts. When a business segments their email list and sends out targeted campaigns, they can greatly increase the chance of an interested party taking action, and increase revenue and savings, as a result.