Email marketing can be the most valuable tool to help new businesses gain visibility at a relatively low cost. While social media marketing or online advertising may be in vogue now, email is still the most effective way to engage with an audience, in terms of ROI. Statistics show that approximately 91% consumers check their primary email account daily – this certainly sounds very promising but it poses a huge challenge too. With approximately 122 billion emails flooding inboxes across the globe every minute, how does one cut through the clutter to get noticed? How do you, as a start-up, grab eyeballs and begin building your brand? Here are some tips to get you started.
Although buying a ready-to-use mailing list may sound like a great shortcut to success, it isn’t so. Creating a database from visiting cards you have accumulated doesn’t serve the purpose either. Essentially, your audience has to be interested in you and what you are offering. Hence the golden rule of ‘No Spam’. Ensure you are CAN-SPAM compliant before you start mailing. Include ‘subscribe’ and ‘unsubscribe’ options so the recipients can opt out when they want and you eventually end up with a set of customers who are genuinely interested in your mails.
In the email marketing world, personalisation was ‘invented’ to get the recipient’s attention. However, since then, every marketer has jumped on the personalisation bandwagon. With the result that over time your audience has become desensitised and learned to ignore these emails. The new e-marketing tip is thus ‘No personalisation’. Keep your subject line friendly, short and casual, don’t over-sell or over-describe. Your subject line should entice curiosity without appearing too clever.
Getting your recipient to open the email is half the battle won. However, the actual content in the mail is what really matters. If the subscribers are happy with what they read, they will stay engaged and probably even look forward to further emails. So make sure your content is amazing- EVERY TIME! The email should look chic and distinctive; it may make sense to create your own template for this.
It is estimated that more than 60 percent of emails are accessed from smartphones these days. Therefore, it is crucial that typefaces, graphics and layouts are designed in a way that’s compatible across all formats. Secondly, keep the email copy concise; we all know no one likes reading long emails on the phone.
Your CTA is your final instruction to your reader. A Call-to-Action button should ideally lead from a question or a no-obligation statement which communicates a benefit. This benefit could be a free e-book or a trial rather than a purchase. In other words, you’re prompting people ‘to try us’, thus instilling confidence. The CTA click also helps mobilise people to take the next step, encouraging them to respond right away.
Large conglomerates can get away with sending mails from a ‘no-reply’ address, but as a start-up you would want to send mails from a personal email id, preferably of someone who holds a position of trust in the organisation. This helps establish your belief in your brand and your willingness to go the extra mile for it.
Once you get started, you might get tempted to keep sending mails. Do not overreach. Do not send multiple mails a week to your customers. And do not send mails your target reader is not interested in. If they want to read only about offers and promotions, don’t send them newsletters or press releases or news about any awards you might have got. Be visible, but not overly so.
A successful email marketing campaign can not only enhance your brand value, but also nurture and grow a loyal customer base. As a start-up though, the trick is to be wise – start slow and focus on building a strong reputation.