Do you open your email daily and get bombarded by a ton of marketing emails and spam? I do. I get hundreds of emails each day – partly due to my shopping addiction – but also because I use that email for online forms.
My process for getting through these emails quickly is this: I highlight the “check all” box and skim the senders’ names and the subjects for anything that catches my eye, un-click those, then hit delete. The ones that remain (the emails I unchecked before hitting delete) might be from my favorite stores, my daily horoscope (obviously), and my favorite blogs and newsletters.
Essentially, I’m left with the ones that are most relevant to me. And I read these consistently. What does this boil down to? That email marketing can still work. Even on a twenty-something-year-old who is plugged into all forms of communication like myself. I’m going to look for those 20% off deals at my favorite stores and read articles that keep me in-the-know about the businesses I like to keep tabs on. If they are targeted and they provide valuable content, I want to open and digest. In short, it can be extremely effective.
Here are my top 5 reasons why email marketing is so important:
1. Email marketing keeps your customers informed…
Emails have the ability to keep your customers informed. Consumers are capable of checking their email when it is convenient for them. It can give them a feeling that you are thinking of them. This email can be as simple as saying: “Hi, you’re on our mind, here is a special offer!” or “Here is an update on what has been going on here in recent weeks.” Those that have signed up to your email list have already made a commitment to receive these notes. So they will likely enjoy these emails (as long as you give them something worth reading) and it will boost engagement with your customers.
2. Email marketing helps you reach mobile users…
According to SeeWhy, 62% of smartphone conversions came from email in December 2013. The percentage of consumers opening up their email on a mobile device is now greater than 50%. These are significant numbers to take into account when planning any marketing strategy. More and more consumers are using their mobile devices to access not only emails but all other types of media and information. Hit ’em on the go!
3. Email marketing is action oriented…
For a long time now, 22 years actually, email has been a form of communication. As the years have gone by, email has fast become one of our main choices of communication. We have all been groomed to reply to an email in some fashion. Whether it is to reply, to forward, click through to something else embedded within the email, delete, or to buy something, or to sign up. We tend to do something with the email. Knowing this, you can use email to drive people to your website, to pick up the phone and call or any other call to action. In fact, 23 percent of sales last year were attributed to email marketing.
4. Email marketing is measurable…
Most email services, like Constant Contact, offer the ability to track what happens after you have sent out your email campaign. You can track delivery rates, bounce rates, unsubscribe rates, click through rates, and open rates. This gives you a better understanding of how your email campaigns are working, which ones to tweak or which ones to get rid of altogether. These metrics should not be ignored. They are an important part of your internet marketing campaign as a whole. HubSpot suggests that 16-30 emails a month is the “sweet spot.” And try to shoot for 25% open rate and 10% click thru rate (but this will vary by industry). See this list for a more accurate benchmark.
And last, but of course, never least, the cost. You can reach a large number of consumers for less than pennies per message. The cost per (possible) conversion is so low with email marketing I cannot believe every company does not participate, or engage more often.
Email marketing services such as SendGrid costs $0.0006 cents per message at their platinum Marketing Email level. Mail Chimp allows you to send up to 12,000 emails a month for free. They also do offer larger monthly plans for growing businesses with up to 600,000 subscribers and high volume sender plans for anything over that. Another email marketing company, Vertical Response, offers free email marketing up to 4,000 emails a month and 1,000 email contacts. They also offer subscription services for higher-volume senders. We all know it’s not just about the cost-per-message, it is also about the cost in time to manage these email campaigns. According to Shout It Out Designs, at a 15,000 email database, your company would spend about 152 hours per year managing the campaign. This would include writing, drafting, scheduling, sending, etc. of the emails, answering any questions about offers, missing coupons or other concerns and database maintenance: adding and deleting members, updating information and other tasks.
Simms Jenkins, CEO of BrightWave Marketing and author of The New Inbox: Why Email Marketing Is the Digital Marketing Hub in a Social & Mobile World, says, “Email is more important than ever, not less. And those who leverage email most effectively will be the big winners.” I tend to agree. So get out there, leverage email as a main marketing tool and become a big winner. What do you have to lose?