Posted by: CogitoErgoPost | September 28, 2015

Email Marketing. Sans Envelopes and Stamps To Lick

Similar to other forms of digital marketing, email marketing can be well measured with telling results. As an aside, I recall this opinion about print advertising. In purchasing print ads, it is like asking 200 of your friends and relatives to fly with you to some exotic location on a seat sale—for $5 per seat. You and your cohorts will know precisely the costs, plus departure and arrival times. However, the time everyone will leave the exotic local is a mystery. In that example, you will know when your ad will appear in the magazine, and who, for the most part, will be the recipients of the publication. On the other hand, you are unaware as to when your ad will precisely be seen by the potential buyer.

With email marketing, key analytics will indicate email opens, forwards, and those that bounced (2 types: hard bounce can mean email address is no longer active, or soft bounce indicates a full mailbox). Then as a form of follow-up, the sales staff, for instance, can be provided with a report as who showed interest in the email. No guessing game with respect to time of engagement with the reader, or potential client.

Also, like traditional printed newsletters, the digital version can contain content that engages the reader. Avoid self-serving-related content, rather content that will benefit the reader. One way of determining what type of content is popular is to write the opening paragraph, followed by “click more” to read further. The majority of the article’s content will not be seen unless the link is clicked. So, the analytics can log as to which article link was clicked; and hence, appealing to read. This way, popularity of specific content can dictate future articles.

Email marketing systems are usually executed through 3rd party vendors. An excellent company that I have used since 2004 is Mailout (formerly Industry Mailout). Founder Gregg Oldring and his team are a proud Canadian company that has been in the email business since 2001, where they have sent out a billion emails for clients. And they claim about a third were opened, compared to a minimal 2-3% rate of open for traditional, more expensive direct (snail mail) marketing.

What I enjoyed about working with Mailout is the helpful and immediate support I receive every time I called. For example, I was confused about spam regulations in Canada (Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation, CASL) and the US; and they were quick to demystify them. In addition, and what is imperative, is that Mailout’s system addresses spam-related issues, both through the delivery side and recipients’ side.

Other email marketing tips, for example:
• Do not email on a Monday or Friday; try and email in the middle of the week and not around holidays where the email will sit in someone’s inbox unopened
• To avoid spam filters, subject header and content of email should avoid spam-related words such as buy direct, earn moneyyou’re a winner, etc.
• Be honest to your customers and reflect your true company brand
• Experiment on what content will work

Other benefits of email marketing include, but not limited to:
• Email template can be consistent with established branding
• Tradeshow follow-ups
• Reinforcement messaging of internal sales announcements and promotions
• Targeted region through a specific sales representative
• Precise segmentation of data list
• Add names to the data list obtained from tradeshows, seminars, web site, social media, etc.

There is more to email marketing than what I outlined. Planned and crafted properly, the medium is an effective part of the Marketing ‘P’romotion—and with measureable outcomes that can meet company (or non-profit) objectives.

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