Email Marketing Basics: All You Need To Get Started Easily
Email marketing is an excellent choice of online marketing medium. You can use it for various purposes, the main reasons being the intent to sell your product an/or your services to others, for online publicity, build a reader/fan base, etc. It is a very powerful tool that will help yield great results, when used effectively and correctly. Very often, I still find that website owners and/or bloggers haven’t yet started using it simply because they are ignorant of the benefits of Email Marketing and how it can be an added advantage for them. That said, here is a very easy guide that will help you understand what Email Marketing really is and get started with it.
Basics of Email Marketing:
Before we actually proceed, let’s hold on for a moment and understand what marketing is at its basic level. That will help understand the concept of Email Marketing better. That said, our next question is:
What is Marketing?
Simply put, marketing is a way to promote something. This is more commonly used in relation with promoting a product and/or a service. And you do marketing because you want to introduce your product/services to people so that they come to know of it and buy it/use it. So basically you are making people aware of a product and help them understand the benefits of using such a product. This, is Marketing.
What are the results of Marketing?
The general motive of Marketing is to make a sale for profits. If you have a product that solves the needs/problem of a person, then you approach them and make them understand the benefits of using your product. And if the person feels that your product will really solve their problem, then he/she will consider buying it. In broader terms, if you are “marketing”, then the direct result of a successful marketing could result in a “sale”. In terms of a user, the result of “successful marketing” results in a “purchase” or “use of a product/service”.
What is required for successful Marketing?
You need to know pretty much everything about the product that you are trying to market. If you know the inside-out of any product that you are trying to market, then the chances are high that you end up making a successful sale, because you can explain the advantages of the product to the prospective “customer” very well.
You will need to know all the benefits the product has to offer. This is required to “convince” a customer as to why your product is better and how it will help them.
You will need good communication skills. You know about the product, but the customer doesn’t. So it’s in your best interests to communicate effectively and explain the advantages of the product. The ability to present the product also counts. So there’s a lot more to this and so I will try to cover this in a later article.
What are the different forms of Marketing?
Marketing can take many forms. Some of the common ones include, but not limited to are:
- An Advertisement
- Radio Announcement
- TV Commercial
- Press Release
- Twitter Account
- Google Plus Page
- Facebook Page
What is Email Marketing?
Now that we have seen the different forms of Marketing, it would now be very easy to understand what Email Marketing. Simply put, Email Marketing is a way of promoting your product, business or service by using emails.
Most of the times, Email Marketing is associated with a commercial intent. But the most important factor in it is to offer products/services that will be useful to people. Apart from making profits, the goal of Email Marketing should be to build brand recognition by means of customer loyalty and trust in your products.
Why to use Email Marketing (Advantages)?
Now that internet has evolved, we are no longer shackled by the chains of traditional forms of advertising. We can leverage the power of internet to promote our products & services and thereby, grow our business. Following are some of the main reasons/advantages of using Email Marketing to promote your products, business and/or services:
- Unlike other forms of marketing, Email Marketing is very cost effective. It’s very easy to send emails and hence the rates to market your product via emails is very low. Unlike Television advertising, you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars for a single campaign. So this results in huge savings.
- You don’t have to approach potential customers personally in order to explain about your product to them. And sometimes you don’t even need a website in order to explain about your product. You can simply send an email that tells about the advantages of using your services/product with a link to purchase it. Interested users may visit the URL and purchase it. However, having additional information about the product on your own website with a link to it in the email that you send, can really motivate users to visit it and get familiar with it. That will improve the chances of sale.
- Relies on your efforts more than anything else and hence the much time & efforts you invest, the higher could be your profits. You no longer have to rely on search engines to send you traffic. Simply use Email Marketing to get started and earn significant profits.
- Email Marketing is very powerful once used right, so someone who gets the right hang of it can hundreds and even thousands of dollars every day.
- You can maintain an assorted list of emails that you wish to include in your Email Marketing. That will help you cut down unnecessary costs and focus on the market and people that you truly desire. This email list is prepared based upon feedback from users, the percentage of likes that you received, user’s spending habits, etc.
How to use Email Marketing?
Does the idea of Email Marketing sound good so far? It’s good to use it but it could seem fairly complex especially when you are getting started with it. There is a lot associated with it.
You will need to design the emails so that they look impressive and deliver a positive message. And you need to target the right people so that they can avail your offer and/or respond to your email. Based upon the actions taken by the users, you will then need to analyze the results and work on improvements to make it even better experience for the users.
Types of Email Marketing
Every email that you send, does not necessarily have to sell a product. The email could also include just an intro message or a welcome message, a free offer, etc. That said, there are basically 3 types of Email Marketing. They are:
This basically involves you sending a message promoting your product and this will be the main aim. You will need a list of email address that you wish to send this promotional message to. If you are able to assemble such a list on your own by interacting personally with people either locally or over the web, then that’s good. If not, then you can also rent email lists from other service companies.
As the name suggests, the main goal of Retention Email Marketing would be to build your relationship with your customers. It should provide a meaningful and valuable information that the customer can use it to their advantage. Including a promotional message or an ad of your product is optional.
Instead of sending your own emails, you take help of others. You simply include your own promotional messages in newsletters published by others, for their readers and you pay them for doing so.
What are the main requirements to use Email Marketing?
1. The main requirement to use Email Marketing is that you need “permission” of the recipient, in order to receive your emails. Without their explicit permission, your promotional email message can be considered as “spam” even though you have no such intent.
2. The second most important requirement is to have a link to “unsubscribe” the recipient’s email from your Subscribers list.
Failure to comply with the main requirements of sending repeated promotional emails can make you liable for heavy penalties. Also legal action may be taken against your company, which is undesirable. So you have to make sure you follow the guidelines to be on the safer side.
How to get permission from a user for Email Marketing?
Let me give you an example. Suppose you have a website and you are selling some products. A user purchases a product and while doing so, he opts to receive “promotional emails” by ticking a checkbox (in general). By ticking the checkbox & submitting the information, the customer has now “legally opted” to receive your promotional emails. You can now include that customer’s email in your address list to send you next promotional email. So that’s one way to get user’s permission.
Another way to get user’s permission is via Opt-in Form on your website. Placing a form with an option to opt-in just to receive promotional emails is a very good way to get customer’s email. Sending a promotional email to such a user is now perfectly valid as the user has explicitly indicated the interest to receive the promotional emails from you.
Why NOT to use Email Marketing?
- Don’t use Email Marketing to “spam” users. Uninterested people usually unsubscribe from promotional emails and sending promotional emails to such people is considered spamming.
- Don’t use it force a user to visit specific website, especially when it’s not your website.
- Don’t use it when you are wanting to focus on short term money making goals.
- Don’t use it to send bulk emails to targeted users.
- Don’t use it to send bulk emails to database of email addresses.
Who Email Marketing is for?
- Email Marketing is definitely for someone who wants to harness the power of digital marketing by leveraging the power of internet and emails while abiding by its terms and conditions.
- It is for someone who does not want to rely heavily upon search engines for customers.
- It is for someone who wants to take matters seriously and personally in their hands and promote products and services only to targeted groups of people.
- It is for someone who wants to save huge money on advertising costs.
- It’s not restricted to an individual or a company. As long as you want to promote your services/products, Email Marketing is for you. So if you are a Web Designer/Web Developer or a MNC, you can use it to let users know about your products so that they can hire you and or buy your products.
When is the right time to use Email Marketing?
- If you are low on budget and want to reach targeted audience, use Email Marketing.
- Go for it if you have been trying to promote your products and services by using traditional methods but have met with very little success or no success.
- If you have a large audience that you want to reach with minimal efforts.
- You already have an audience and wish to target new markets.
- When you want to build long term relationship with your customers.
- You want to make more profits.
What you need to do for Email Marketing?
The main part that you need to deal with to get started with Email Marketing is to collect list of email addresses that have opted in to receive your promotional emails or find companies that can send your promotional message in their emails to their subscribers. In this later method, you won’t have access to the email list.
But should you have an email list, here are couple of brilliant options that you can use to get started with Email Marketing effectively.
1. Use Email Marketing Software
2. Use Email Marketing Services
Email Marketing Softwares:
Email Marketing Software lets you take matters seriously in your hands. You can use it to create profitable customer relationships for your business. Based upon the features offered by the software you will be able to do a variety of things such as design the newsletter that you wish to send, prepare email lists, Import/Export data, perform analysis of data so that you see can see ROI, monitor campaigns, etc.
Email Marketing Services:
If you think that doing everything yourself manually is too much work and/or if you are short on time and wish others to do the “dirty work” for you, then Email Marketing Services are perfect for you. Some of the other benefits of using Email Marketing Services are:
- You can use easy tools such as “Email Wizards” to create email newsletter.
- You can create newsletters on the go using any device such a laptop, mobile phone, etc. without having to carry around your Email Marketing Software (if you own one).
- You don’t have to worry about tracking and reporting. Everything will be provided to you for your convenience by the service you choose.
- You can reliably track delivery.
- You can use API to integrate the data with other business applications you may have.
Where to go from here?
So far if the idea and methodology of using Email Marketing to promote your business, products and services is clear, your next should be to check out the different Email Marketing Services that you can use for your next promotion campaign. I will be posting an article very soon about the best Email Services out there,so bookmark this page and check this section later to find out more.
What do you think of Email Marketing? Have you ever used it for promoting your business? Have you used any Email Marketing Software and/or Email Marketing Services? What are your reviews on them? Please feel free to share your thoughts and ideas by commenting below.