On a recent family vacation, I was asked “How do I get started with Email marketing?”. MY coder niece (smart, young and ambitious) has started a virtual teaching platform, has loads of content to teach about, and has a strategy to get an audience to her website, but promotion? She made me sit and discuss over the course of 2 days about how beginners can make use of email marketing while starting a new business. This article encapsulates this discussion.
Email marketing, simply put, is sending out highly personalised emails to a list of people to educate them about something or convince them to take an action you desire. 3 key elements of email marketing are – building an email list, choosing a great email service provider or ESP and your communication strategy.
This list of people needs to be well researched and should be very interested in your product. The action could be a purchase of your product, a share ask, or any other action that helps your business grow.
Email marketing also needs you to track and analyse this dissemination, something we will go into deeper later in this article.
You may ask, is email marketing really worth it? There are tons of other marketing techniques, why email marketing. Well, it brings in an ROI of 122%, four times higher than any other digital marketing channel – this is not a typo!
How does email marketing work?
There are 3 absolute essentials to run any email marketing campaign or strategy.
You need an email list. You need to have a strategy to capture the emails of people who come to your website, or blog, or instagram handle or youtube channel. More on this in detail later. This is the list you send emails to to convert to leads or sales.
You need an email service provider or ESP. Think of this as a platform or a website which helps you segment your email lists (based on location, for example), customise and manage each email marketing campaign, analyse the success or failure of each campaign. A good ESP allows you to integrate other useful marketing tools that can be used to make your marketing and promotion more effective.
Communication – Third essential is your messaging and strategy. You need to look like a professional brand. You need to adjust, test and improvise on your messaging depending on your audience which also needs to be segmented properly.
For example – if you are selling a course on coding, think how would you attract the interest of a college graduate versus a professional designer who wants to learn coding on the side of his full time job.
Theories done, let’s get down to actually rolling out our Email Marketing Strategy.
Building your email list
Probably the most laborious process of email marketing is to build a sensible and useful list of email addresses that will convert to sales and growth for your new business.
The key here is to provide value to your website visitors and make them want to consume more of your content. If you add value to someone searching for information about your product, or if you answer a specific question they have about the product line you’re in, you create a connection which, often, makes them give you information for further connect.
Most often and effective methods used are:
- Strategically placed and worded opt-in forms on your website
- Lead magnets (my favorite)
Every page you talk about your service or product and how it solves a real world problem should have a simple for that collects name, email address and other information about the visitor on your website. The key here is to:
- Add the form exactly where you are talking of the solution your product offers (placement on page)
- Creating engaging content that makes the reader want to fill the form (messaging around the form)
The art of writing effective opt in forms in a separate topic all together. Here is an article that will help you create optins that send great quality leads to your inbox!
For the purpose of this article, just note the following:
- Create separate engaging opt in forms for each page/placement on your website
For example: if your page is talking about the scalbaility of coding in the AI industry, a simple subscribe form can be replaced by “to know how much you can earn in AI by knowing to code, subscribe to our email list”
- Focus on the visual appeal of your optin form: design beats content when an inquisitive mind decides to have more of something. Even simple copy with a great design will get you more emails that no design and great copy.
- Ask for the least possible information – do not go beyond asking for their first name, last name and email id. Anything else would mean the visitor to your website needs to spend more time making the decision to letting you have their information
- The use of sarcasm and humor will only help you get more email sign ups. Feel free to go big on this but do not loose your messaging and simplicity in the process
Simply put, lead magnets are when your website presents a pop up window where you offer the visitor a value adding resource in exchange for their email id.
Lead magnets could be:
- Ebooks that provide your user better understanding of your industry, products and the reason they should pick you.
- A newsletter that you create and disseminate periodically
- A discount for a product or service you provide
- A free trial of your best product or service.
- A video that guides them through the topics you discuss on your website
In 2022, lead magnets are the best way to get leads and email ids for your email marketing campaign. It creates a positive sentiment about your brand and adds value to your customer which already ets you apart from your competition.
Remember the following when creating lead magnets:
- A lead magnet needs to be short well written and easy to consume – a 200 page thesis on PYTHON coding is not what is needed here.
- A lead magnet needs to be useful. It should be a tool, skill enhancer or information that the reader can use in their daily life.
- A lead magnet should be a precursor to your product or service. A shortcut in PYTHON could lead the reader into purchasing your “PYTHON coding for beginners” course.
- The lead magnet needs to be a solution to a commonly searched query in your industry. For example, “A list of scooter rental shops in Bangkok”
- The PDF or MP4 or the file to be downloaded should be immediately available and sent to the reader who filled the form.
Pick Your Best suited email marketing service provider
The most crucial step in email marketing is to pick your platform to manage your email lists, campaigns and analysis, this is done by tools that cost a subscription. These are known as Email Marketing Service providers and do about 60% of your work.
There are a few factors you should consider when choosing an Email Marketing Service provider, such as:
The size of your Email list
Some Email Marketing Service providers have a limit on the number of Email addresses you can add to your Email list, so it’s important to choose one that can accommodate the size of your Email list.
The type of Email campaigns you want to send
Some Email Marketing Service providers offer more features for certain types of Email campaigns, such as automated welcome Emails or abandoned cart Emails.
Email Marketing Service providers charge different subscription fees, so it’s important to choose one that fits your budget.
Once you’ve considered these factors, you can start exploring the different Email Marketing Service providers on the market. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of the best Email Marketing Service providers.
ConvertKit is a Email Marketing Service provider that’s designed for bloggers and online creators. It offers a range of features, including automated Email sequences, Email courses, and landing pages.
Mailchimp is one of the most popular Email Marketing Service providers on the market. It offers a range of features, including Email automation, landing pages, and Email templates.
Drip is an Email Marketing Service provider that offers a range of features for online businesses, including automated Email sequences, abandoned cart Emails, and user segmentation.
AWeber is a Email Marketing Service provider that offers a range of features, including Email automation, landing pages, and Email templates.
Sendinblue is a good choice if you are looking for an Email Marketing service provider with a user-friendly interface and robust Email Automation features. However, Email Automation can be complex to set up.
Debounce is a good choice if you are looking for an Email Marketing service provider with easy-to-use email validation features. However, email validation can be slow.
Optinmonster is a good choice if you are looking for an Email Marketing service provider with beautiful forms and a 14-day free trial. However, the forms can be slow to load.
GetResponse – Our personal favorite
GetResponse is a good choice if you are looking for an Email Marketing service provider with an easy-to-use interface and a 30-day free trial. However, Email Automation can be complex to set up.
Picking the best Email Marketing service provider depends on your specific needs. We hope this comparison has been helpful in making your decision. We have a full article that goes deep into how to select the best email marketing service.
Start Adding Email addresses to your Email Marketing Service provider tool
You have collected email addresses and chosen the best email marketing service for your new business. Congratulations!
Its now time to logically arrange these addresses into segments to help you target them in a strategic way – including messaging, types of communication emails, age, location, business interest etc.
Your email marketing service will have easy ways to upload all emails onto their platform. Do this and start tagging and segmenting them.
Choose the right email templates
The best way to get started with templates is to use a ready made template available on the email marketing service provider you chose.
Some things to look out for :
- Focus on a clean and neat design. No one reads clustered and disorganised words confused by colourful overtones.
- Look for mobile responsive templates. About 90% of your emails are going to be opened on a mobile device.
- Make sure there is enough room for your business logo, name and contact details.
- Make sure your text is short, crisp and the font is easily readable.
- Lastly, a good template drives the reader to act on the CTA.
Do not panic even if you cannot design beautiful emails. Constant Contact and OptinMonster will make you one hell of a designer and no I am not joking at all.
Here is a list of email templates that you can use right away and get started with email marketing.
Learn the Art of Email Copywriting: Catchy Titles, Images & Body
You need to write relevant copy in your email with the goal of: “ compelling the reader to know more about your product and take the action you desired while setting up the email campaign”
Your potential customer receives 120 emails a day on average. 50% of these are work related and will be read by the customer. The rest are usually scam, marketing emails, follow ups by enterprises and personal emails. Using appropriate subject lines, crisp body copy and a definite action call will separate you from the rest of the 50%, making your email openable and actionable.
The most interesting and time taking section of email marketing is to learn the art of copywriting while pitching the users.
We will go into more detail into creating effective copy for your email in another article.
10 frequently asked questions about email marketing
Why are my email campaigns failing?
Email marketing is a long-term strategy. You need to have a good strategy in place, know who your target audience is and what your goals are, as well as how to measure your results.
If you’re not seeing the response rates or conversion rates that you expect from your emails then it’s likely because one of these four things isn’t quite right:
The content isn’t relevant for them (they may not be interested in what you have to say)
They don’t trust the sender (you haven’t built up enough credibility with them yet)
The message didn’t get through their inbox spam filters (check out our tips on improving deliverability)
Why should I consider personalization in email marketing?
Personalizing your emails is a great way to make them more relevant to the recipient. Personalization makes it more likely that your emails will be opened and read, which means you’re more likely to engage with your customers, increase sales and generate new leads.
2 personalizations that can improve your email marketing efforts from TODAY:
Personalizing the subject line increases the chances that an email will be opened. People are busy; they don’t want to wade through dozens of irrelevant or poorly written subject lines. Make it easy for people to decide whether or not your email is worth opening by personalizing it with their name or other information about them from their profile or other interactions with you (such as previous purchases). This also helps ensure that if someone does choose to open an email from you, they’ll find something interesting inside!
Personalized content within an email increases its effectiveness at driving conversions (e.g., signing up for a newsletter). When someone sees something specific about herself in an offer—like a discount code specifically designed for her birthday—she’s much more likely than someone else who sees general offers that apply equally well regardless of age/gender/location etc.
What is the best way to determine how many emails to send?
Don’t be afraid to send emails more often than once a month. Email marketing is about building relationships with your customers, and getting the most out of that relationship means sending them emails when you have something important to say or sell.
What counts as “important?” It’s up to you and your business, but here are some examples:
News about a new product or service
A sale on an existing product or service
A coupon code for use in-store/online
What are some best practices for creating email content?
The key to creating effective email content is to think of your audience first. In order to do that, you have to understand their needs and wants. You need their attention, so you need something that they would like reading (or at least not hate reading). The best way to get this information is through surveys or interviews with customers or prospects. You’re trying to sell them something—but they don’t know it yet! You want them thinking about how much better their life will be when they use your product/service/etc., but also convince them that it isn’t too expensive or difficult for them.
To make sure this happens, here are some general guidelines:
Use conversational tone in subject lines and calls-to-action
Make sure there are images in every email—it helps convey the message quicker than words alone can do
End with a call-to-action—what should the reader do next?
Should I use text-only emails or graphical emails?
Here’s the deal: if you’re sending an email to someone, chances are they’ll open it. This is especially true if they have an interest in your product or service.
That said, there are some things that can make an email more likely to get read by your audience. One of these is using visuals (such as a logo and/or images) within the body of your email. In fact, emails with images receive 97% higher open rates than those without!
But don’t just throw any old image into your emails—you should be thoughtful about what kind of imagery you use in order to connect more deeply with potential customers’ desires and interests. For example, incorporating elements from previous conversations will help build rapport with recipients and make them feel like part of a community where everyone knows each other (and you).
How do I build an effective email marketing campaign?
To create an effective email campaign, you’ll need to:
Build a list of subscribers. Subscribers are the backbone of your email marketing efforts. They’re the people who want to hear from you—and who will be most likely to respond once they do.
Create an opt-in form or landing page (or both). You may have heard that “every website needs a contact form,” but it’s just as important for your site if it has an opt-in form for collecting emails too! If you don’t already have one, think about what kinds of content would be useful for potential readers on your blog or website and create something that encourages them to subscribe so they can get updates when new articles are published. Even better? Make sure it’s easy for people to find on every page of your site so there’s no excuse not to sign up!
Create conversion-focused email templates with compelling subject lines and calls-to-action in mind–this means testing different versions before sending any campaigns out into cyberspace so that each message is successful at driving conversions based on its own unique offering (such as discounts or special offers).
How do I keep people from unsubscribing from my list?
The first step to keeping your audience engaged is making sure they are receiving emails that are relevant, interesting, useful and timely. If you send too many of the wrong type of emails (ie: boring), people will unsubscribe.
But how do you do this? Here are some strategies:
Keep track of which topics get the best response. If you find one topic performs better than others in terms of open rates or click-throughs, then focus on creating more content related to that topic.
Be careful not to flood your audience with too many emails at once; if an email from a brand arrives in their inbox every day, there’s less chance they’ll click through than if it was sent once per week or once per month (this may also depend on what kind of offer is being promoted).
Learn how to reduce emails going into the spam folder.
How can I make sure that my emails get delivered?
The best way to ensure that your email gets delivered is to send it only to people who want to receive it. If you’re sending an offer for a product or service and someone has not purchased from you before, make sure you have their consent first.
You should also be sure that the address where the emails are being sent is valid and doesn’t bounce back as undeliverable. A good rule of thumb is never send out any kind of email if there is any chance of it getting returned as undeliverable; instead, contact the recipient directly and find out why they aren’t getting their emails in order to fix the problem before resending any messages.
When crafting an effective subject line, use short sentences that highlight what’s most important about your message: “Get 10% off on all items this weekend” or “Your free gift included with purchase.” You’ll also want to avoid overly long subject lines (more than 50 characters) or those that contain too many details (“Our new line at 30% off”).
Finally, although shorter messages may seem appealing at first glance because they take less time for readers’ eyes to scan through them before deciding whether or not they want more information from us later down inside our message body after opening up one final link; however this practice can backfire badly because some readers might miss important details along way due lack attention span due focused only towards bottom half where links located.”
Can you give me an example of what a good opt-in form looks like and contains?
Here are some tips for creating a great opt-in form.
Include a clear call to action. Your goal is to get people to sign up, so let them know exactly what they are signing up for and provide them with an easy way to do it. Don’t ask for too much information (just the basics), and make sure that you offer something of value in exchange for their contact details (like an ebook or white paper).
Include a description of the product or service. Provide context around what you’re offering so people understand why this is relevant and useful to them.
Include a link where they can purchase your product/service. If someone wants more information about your product or service, they can follow that link right away without leaving the page – no more searching around!
Provide a way for people who fill out your form to contact you if there is any confusion about filling out their info correctly or any problems with their payment method during checkout process on website sales platform like Shopify — this will help ensure customer satisfaction from start until finish which leads directly into repeat business from loyal clients who have already purchased once before having positive experience with brand due time; plus word-of-mouth always works best when customers are happy & satisfied!
Can you give me an example of what a good email promotion looks like and contains?
An email promotion is a special offer that you send to your customers via email. It can be used to announce discounts and sales, promote new products or services, or share interesting industry news with your contacts.
To create an effective email promotion: Start with a clear goal in mind. Do you want to drive more traffic to your website? Get people interested in buying one of your products? Get them excited about signing up for a free demo of your service? Whatever it is that you’re trying to achieve through this email campaign, make sure you know exactly what it is before moving forward so that all of the content that goes into the message will help achieve that goal.
Personalize the content of each message. The main reason why most people don’t open promotional emails is because they don’t feel like they were written specifically for them—and nothing screams “not personalized” like copy-and-pasted emails sent out en masse without any thought given toward individual recipients! You can use software such as Mailchimp or Constant Contact (both have multiple plans available) as well as some third party tools like Klaviyo (which offers freemium options).
As an entrepreneur starting a new business you are juggling between many tasks. Email marketing is the most effective, easy to set up and highest ROI method to promote your business. This article hand holds you through a step by step guide to get started with email marketing.
Please comment on any other topic about setting up your online business or email marketing that you would like a simple, clear and precise write up on.