Does email marketing (still) really work?
Does email marketing really still work these days? In one word: YES! Now that we are all connected to our email seemingly 24 hours a day via either the office or a mobile device, we business professionals are using email communication more than ever. However, does this mean that it’s easier or more difficult to get in contact with prospects via email marketing? Actually, it’s easy to get in contact with them, but harder to capture their attention. Many times when we receive email from an unfamiliar source we simply hit the delete button without even thinking about it. The majority of email spam I get is from either from retail companies of whom I am a customer offering me 20% discounts or ridiculous offers from overseas mystery people claiming that if I email them my personal information, I’ll be in line for 20 bars of gold from a mine in Africa. Rarely do I get an email that is actually focused on my own business and one that is asking me to please reach out and learn how their company might possibly be able to help me grow my business or cut costs. Also, I can count on one hand the number of actual calls I have received advising me to be on the lookout for an email and to please open it. We’ll get to that aspect later!
So why is email marketing effective? Well, let’s think about the obvious reasons:
1. It’s cheap! Unlike traditional mail, email marketing is a fraction of the cost of doing mailers. This means you can email 10 to 20 times the number of accounts for the same amount of money. What would you rather do for a new business campaign? Mail out 1000 postcards to prospects or email to 20,000? Prospecting is a numbers game and the more people you reach, the more sales you will potentially make.
2. Emails can offer a way to provide more content and test multiple creative designs at a lower cost than traditional mailers, leveraging hyperlinks to your website, company logos, links to blogs, and more - all easily done in an email campaign. In this economy, and in my opinion in any economy, it just makes more sense to email.
3. It’s totally measurable. If you send out 1000 mailers, how do you know it even got into the hands of your prospect? Even if you pay the high rate of first class, you still don’t know if they actually opened the mail or read it. With email, you can literally know the percentage of emails that were delivered, those that were opened, those that were opened and clicked through, and tie it in to which links were clicked.
4. It’s easier for your prospect to get to the content that matters. What’s easier for a prospect? Reading a mailer and then having to type in your website address and go from there? Or simply clicking a hyperlink?
5. Your sales people will love the speed from the campaign to the results. What’s a hotter lead for your sales person? Calling every account that you mailed or calling those that opened your email and clicked the “get more information now” button? Think about it! It also gives them a focused set of targets for calls - anyone who opened and clicked through but didn’t register yet as a lead.
So, in my experience and that of my customers, email marketing works and works very well. The cost of doing an email campaign is a fraction of the cost of traditional mailers. Making an e-mail template is a breeze. The ability to add and subtract various offers and information for future blasts is critical. And, being able to instantly track who opened the email and who clicked into your website is invaluable.
If you have used email marketing in the past, please let us know in the comments section below. We’d love to hear your thoughts; both positive and negative.
In Part 2, we’ll talk about the dos, don’ts and choices presented by email marketing. Opt-in vs. Opt-out and more!