Email marketing has various definitions based on a different opinion by experts but I love the one that says “Email marketing is a form of direct marketing that uses electronic mail as a means of communicating commercial or fundraising messages to an audience”. Email marketing is an efficient way to ensure that small businesses can reach out to their customers, grow their customer base, and build their reputation.
Most of all, managing an email campaign is easier than most people imagine because email marketing allows you to build relationships with leads, customers and past customers. It’s your opportunity to speak directly to them in their inbox, at a time that is convenient for them, coupled with the right messaging, email can become one of your most impactful marketing channels.
Although most people think that email marketing is mostly used by some of the largest businesses in the world, email marketing isn’t just for big brands with big budgets. Rather, email marketing is one of the best marketing methods available for small businesses with strict budget considerations.
The importance of email in business communication cannot be underestimated because not only does email enable an immediate response, it also ensures we keep track of all outgoing and incoming communication. Email is also cost-effective and provides invaluable marketing opportunities. In its broadest sense, every email sent to a potential or current customer could be considered email marketing.
However, the term is usually used to refer to sending emails with the purpose of enhancing the relationship of a merchant with its current or previous customers and to encourage customer loyalty and repeat business by sending emails with the purpose of acquiring new customers or convincing current customers to purchase something immediately.
Email marketing has several key advantages over traditional mail marketing, including the following:
- An exact ROI can be tracked and has proven to be high when done properly.
- Email marketing is often reported as second only to search marketing as the most effective online marketing tactic.
- Advertisers can reach substantial numbers of email subscribers who have opted in to receive email communications on subjects of interest to them.
- Over half of all Internet users check or send an email on a typical day.
- Email allows marketers to reach out to consumers with personalized, relevant, dynamic messages.
- Transactional emails allow businesses to respond automatically to important consumer events like purchases or shop-cart abandonment.
Small businesses can take advantage of email marketing because they are in a unique position to benefit from email marketing, as they have more flexibility in their image. For example, as a small business, you can build trust with local customers much more rapidly than larger corporations, which may not resonate with smaller communities as easily.
One of the most important practices to remember with email marketing today is to be as transparent, honest, and open as possible with your customers. Unsolicited or generic emails are losing ground and falling out of favour, as the modern consumer has come to respond better to more organic approaches.
Let’s consider taking small business marketing to the next level to discover the top benefits of email marketing for small businesses as well as why email marketing is the right way to reach your goals:
1. Email Helps Reach and Build Potential Consumers
The number one reason why email marketing is a no-brainer for companies is that consumers prefer email. Most small businesses are working with limited marketing budgets, which means that they can’t waste time with marketing tactics that won’t resonate well with their target market. While social media has become a popular way for small businesses to communicate with their audience, brands sometimes just can’t get the organic reach they are looking for through these channels.
However, social media isn’t the only answer. Email also provides a professional and direct medium that allows businesses to reach out to their leads and customers. What’s more is that most customers actually prefer to communicate with brands through email.
The most probable reason is that it is permission-based. The people on your list actually signed up because they want to get updates from you. They’re interested in learning more about your brand including your promotions and discounts. And that alone makes email marketing such an effective strategy to reach your customers. In fact, one study from Marketing Sherpa reports that 72% of customers prefer to receive promotional messages through email.
The latest product launch, your next big event, and any news about your business are all great topics for regular newsletters. If a customer has opted in to receive emails from you, then you shouldn’t be shy about actually sending out emails and making contact with them.
Your customers like to know that you’re thinking about them. They want to be made aware of the latest that’s happening in your business. Why wouldn’t you keep them up to date, if that’s what they want?
Obviously, it’s nearly impossible to reach out to all of your customers by phone. Not to mention that would be a very time-consuming task. Sending mails out is costly and wasteful. Email is the best way to reach out with an update for your customers quickly.
You may be wondering why customers prefer receiving updates from brands through email. Here are just a few reasons why we think email marketing works so well with the modern consumer:
It’s convenient. With access to email right on their smartphone, most customers find this type of communication very convenient. Not only can consumers stay connected with their favourite brands wherever they are, but they can easily redeem any coupon codes or other special offers right from their phone.
It’s personal. Today’s customer is bombarded with marketing messages, and they tend to respond best to those that are personalized and relevant. With this marketing strategy, you can personalize your messages and content based on the subscriber’s preferences and buying patterns. Email segmentation makes it easy to deliver the most relevant offers and content to the customer.
It’s instant. Customers like the ability to get information about exclusive offers and last-minute deals. Sending email campaigns allows your small business to instantly and directly get the word out about these sales and promotions so that your customers can take advantage of the opportunity to save.
2. Email Integrates Well with Other Tactics
Yet another one of the top benefits of email marketing for small businesses is that it integrates well with other marketing tactics. Email does not have to be used in a vacuum. Small businesses can create marketing emails to meet a variety of marketing goals and use email to support a number of other campaigns. This allows them to get the most out of their marketing spend.
For example, email marketing integrates well with social media marketing. If you are running a social media contest or giveaway, you can drum up excitement for the campaign through email. Additionally, you can use email marketing to grow your social media audience by including social share buttons and CTAs within your email content.
Email marketing is versatile, allowing small business owners to integrate this tactic into their other digital marketing campaigns like social media.
Another way that email marketing can be integrated with other tactics is by offering your business a platform for promoting new content. Content marketing is a vital part of any digital marketing strategy as it allows your business to educate, entertain, and connect with your leads and customers. However, your content marketing is only effective if you have a way of getting your content assets in front of your leads. Email is an effective way to promote this content across your target market, allowing you to get more eyes on your content and drive more traffic back to your site.
3. Email marketing is efficient with your time and budget.
Within a small business, there are time and budget constraints, and, in most cases, there’s simply no way around this. While buying an advertisement to play during the Super Bowl would be nice, it’s not an option for most small business marketing budgets.
Even targeted direct mail campaigns that deliver flyers to the mailboxes of people near you can be costly. Between designing, printing, and mailing costs, you could spend several dollars per flyer delivery. Send out flyers to a thousand people and, suddenly, you have a very expensive campaign on your hands, with no promise of results.
The time involved with shooting television commercials or recording radio ads can also eat into your bottom line. Every moment you’re not focusing on your business is lost revenue or, at the very least, a lost opportunity to connect with people on a personal level.
One of the biggest benefits of email marketing for small businesses is the efficient use of time and budget.
Designing a professional email marketing campaign isn’t complicated or time-consuming. Sending emails to a large number of subscribers is also very cost-effective. You get direct access to the email inboxes of potential customers, without having to pay the costs of direct mail.
Dollar for dollar, email marketing is one of the most cost-effective forms of marketing available to your business.
4. Email Marketing is Affordable
Most small businesses are working with a limited budget, which means that they need to find the most affordable ways to reach and engage their audience. Email marketing is a cost-effective digital marketing tactic that takes very little investment to get started. Additionally, it is also relatively inexpensive to maintain over time, allowing small businesses to get more for their marketing spend.
It’s no surprise why so many small business owners are eager to start developing email marketing campaigns.
While traditional marketing tactics like print and TV ads or direct mail can cost thousands of dollars over the course of a year, email marketing allows small businesses to reach a wide audience for just pennies per recipient. Such a significant ROI allows you to do more with less, which why email marketing is great for small businesses that are working with smaller budgets.
The costs involved with this marketing strategy are relatively few. That being said, the exact costs of your campaigns will depend on a few different factors, including what resources you have in-house. In addition to creating an email strategy and identifying campaign opportunities, you will also need to decide on who will create the marketing content and implement your campaigns.
If you do not have the in-house resources to develop and implement your small business email marketing campaigns, then you might consider hiring outside help. Though working with an email marketing agency does require an up-front investment, it can actually help you save more money in the long run. Working with an agency allows you to free up your own team to focus on other core business tasks.
The agency will also be able to help you see better results more quickly given their experience with this tactic. If you’re considering this option, contact our team to discuss which of our email marketing plans would be best for your business.
5. Businesses Achieve High Email Marketing ROI
Now that you know how affordable email marketing can be for your organization, let’s talk about ROI. One of the top reasons why email marketing is so effective for small businesses is that it provides a strong return on investment. No matter how tight your small business marketing budget may be, you can still take advantage of the immense benefits that email marketing provides.
Consumers who receive marketing emails tend to spend more, providing an attractive ROI for small businesses.
Though the actual percentage of email marketing ROI will vary from business to business, there are a number of ways why email marketing provides value for small business owners:
Email marketing increases company revenue. The most obvious way that email marketing helps provide a positive ROI for small businesses is by helping to increase revenue. Email allows you to reach a wide and willing audience while also keeping costs relatively low, leading to positive revenues.
Email drives more traffic to your company website: Another way that email provides a return on investment is by helping drive more traffic to your company’s website. Email subscribers are more likely to be qualified leads, which means that this traffic is relevant, increasing the chances of conversion.
Email marketing can improve sales conversions: Marketing emails work well as part of your lead nurturing campaigns as they can help move leads through the marketing funnel quickly and effectively. This means that email marketing is an effective way to improve sales conversions.
Email helps you improve brand awareness: Increasing visibility and building relationships with your target consumers is an important part of not only landing new sales but sustaining repeat sales over time. Email campaigns like email marketing newsletters help you build brand awareness, which contributes to sustainable growth over time.
When you are working with a limited marketing budget, it’s important that you get the most for your marketing spend. Email marketing helps small businesses get a significant return on their marketing investment, no matter how limited their budget may be.
So now you know that email marketing matters to small businesses and is capable of launching you ahead of your competitors. It can open up new markets, bring in new customer bases, and help build strong, long-term customer relationships. These advantages are very essential, especially to small businesses, with email marketing, you can deliver engaging newsletter content directly to your customer base.
Here are some quick tips to consider you build that powerful and robust Email marketing of yours:
As a small business with local clout, you can use your regional expertise to promote your brand as an expert in the area. That can be achieved, both efficiently and conservatively, through the strategic use of email marketing. Developing a reputation as a local expert via your email content helps cement stronger customer relationships, which are vital to small businesses.
Always make it easy for customers to subscribe to your newsletter. Don’t try to make it too fancy or add too many steps. Also, be sure to let potential subscribers know what to expect in terms of content before they sign up. Customers who sign up for your newsletter will lose trust in your brand if they find that the content is different from what they were led to expect.
Keep in mind how difficult it is to grow subscribers and how competitive the internet is, with so many firms vying for attention. Take care to produce high-quality, exclusive content in your newsletters that customers can’t expect to find anywhere else.
Think about it.
Your social media could disappear in the morning and take all your followers with it. You’d be left with nothing. But therein lies the beauty of an email list — it’s yours. So if all else goes belly up, you’ll still have a direct line of contact with the people who are most interested in your brand. And the intimacy of email as a one-to-one channel will bring you even closer to that audience.