Email is an Effective & Efficient way to Retain & Grow Business
The way you likely communicate with your employees is one of the most effective ways to also communicate with your customers. Email is a proven method to retain customers as well as to grow your business.
Statistics show email is one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies small to medium businesses use to build their brand as well as attract and retain business. And during the current pandemic, when more and more consumers are using broadband to stay connected, email marketing could be more important than ever.
According to Oberlo, an e-marketing company, for every $1 companies spend on email marketing, they can expect an average return of $42. That is because consumers who purchase products through email spend on average 138% more than those who do not receive email offers.
Email is an inexpensive way to promote your company as well as the products and services you provide. For example, a monthly newsletter allows you to remain connected with customers and inform them about special pricing and new products available. It is also a way to keep them informed about news within the company and how the company is involved in the community.
Marketingsherpa, an online marketing and publishing company, reports that more than 70% of people prefer to be marketed to via email rather than through social media. While these trends have been changing, email remains the best place to send a promotional message without annoying potential customers. When customers opt-in to receive your emails, they expect to hear from you, which makes contact seem less invasive.
More importantly, an email list is one of the only direct lines of communication with members that you own. Social media apps such as Facebook operate off of algorithms that you can’t control. This means you may not be getting the value you expect.
An email marketing campaign that you control is the easiest and most effective way to track how your email marketing strategy is resonating with customers. Online tools, such as Mailchimp or Sendinblue, make it incredibly easy to track how many customers are reading your emails, where they click, and how long they spend reading them.
Many businesses use a process known as drip marketing, a method of sending automatically generated email messages to customers on a predetermined schedule.
For example, a welcome email may go out as soon as someone signs up for your service. Another may go out a few days later with tips and information about how to get the most from your products and services. Another may go out to touch base with them after a week or a month. Drip emails can also be set up based on triggers or actions the customer takes. An email can be automatically generated once a customer purchases a product or service. Another can be sent following a service call at their home. Or, customers can receive monthly bill reminders. The options are limitless, and the content is totally up to you.
Setting up a drip marketing campaign may seem like a daunting task, but there are a number of apps that make the process quick and easy.
Creating a List
The first step to launching an effective email marketing campaign is to create a list of your customers’ email addresses. You may already have email addresses for many of your customers and only need to compile them in a list and organize them based on demographics that will help you target offers directly to customers most likely to take advantage of them.
But gathering email addresses and updating your lists is an ongoing process, and there are a number of ways to go about it.
- Website: Collecting email addresses through your website can be extremely effective. Emails can be gathered through online contact forms that allow customers to contact your customer service representatives through email. You can also include pop-ups for visitors to sign up for your newsletter or special offers.
- Social Media: Another effective way to grow your email list is through social media. While studies have shown that most customers do not want to receive marketing materials through social media sites, it is an excellent place to post opt-in links for customers to sign up for additional information.
- In-Person: Most consumers are familiar with being asked for an email address as a cashier rings up their purchases. This same method can be used anytime a customer interacts with a customer service representative or a service technician. This is especially effective when a new customer signs up for your service.
Online advertising agency WordStream conducted a survey that revealed 80% of retail professionals said email is the greatest driver of customer retention. Social media was a distant second at 44%.
Email marketing is an inexpensive and effective way to stretch your marketing dollars and make a big impact on new and existing customers.