13 Ways to Reach Your Audience With Email Marketing
Here are tips directly from email marketing professionals on how to successfully reach your audience through email marketing campaigns.
For many, social media is “king” when it comes to modern marketing best practices. Putting tons of resources and time into social channels is standard practice for startups and corporations alike. However, email marketing continues to be an important content marketing strategy to convert leads to revenue. According to Tyler Sickmeyer, CEO at Fidelitas Development: “60% of consumers report that they’ve purchased a product as a result of a marketing email. This means that you should be concentrating on making long-term and personalized relationships with your customers through your email strategy.”
However, you may be overwhelmed at the prospect of being on top of your email marketing strategy, your social strategy, and running a business! In this article, we pulled 13 tips from email marketing experts where they explain simple marketing tips that businesses should implement to successfully reach their audience through email, ultimately converting that lead into revenue.
Know your target audience
Before starting any strategy, it is important to understand who your target audience is. This should start even before you create a product or a service – who is the person who would buy it? From there, you should have a persona that you can then use your marketing tactics on.
“Start by knowing where your target audience hangs out and mine those areas to create your email list. Identify your favorite clients and then Google them to discover where links to your email subscription form need to be to attract people like them.” —Shannon Peel, Creative Entrepreneurial Owner, MarketAPeel
Don’t automate for automating sake
We all love the idea of automating our work. It makes it so that we don’t have to do everything manually and can take the time to do other work that may need more brain power or strategy from us. However, just because you can automate emails, doesn’t mean you should automate everything.
“Just because you can automate email marketing, doesn’t mean it should sound automated. Make sure it comes from a person’s email address, with the person’s signature and not a department. Add warmth to your messages, imagine you’re writing the template like you’re actually sending it to a specific contact.” —Victoria Samways, Marketing and Brand Manager, Major Tom
Be smart about how you automate your emails. Make sure that the workflows are automated when it is right to do so but ensure that the content is always genuine.
Who likes cold-call emails? No one. You likely ignore or immediately delete the email from your inbox. If you want to increase your click rate and make your audience feel connected to your product or service, personalize.
“Your email marketing campaign will be that much more successful if you personalize the message to individual clients. Address clients by name, touch on products/services they have expressed interest in, and they’ll be that much more engaged. Perform preliminary research on each client prior to emailing them. While this will take more time upfront, it’ll pay dividends in the form of higher conversions later.” —Asad Kausar, CEO, Dabaran
What is great about software is that you can easily automate some of your personal touches to your emails, including having the email be from you and using your client’s name and business in the email body. This leads us to our next tip.
In order to automate, segment, test, and analyze your metrics, you need an email marketing platform. There are some standard marketing platforms that are tried and true, but the options are growing and growing each day.
In addition to the benefits listed above, when you use a software system, you can create email templates, so you do not have to create each email from scratch. Depending on the platform, they also can connect with your current CRM system, so you do not need to pull data manually. Finally, an email marketing platform will work for you—pulling data so you can see if your conversion rate is up to snuff or if you need to make changes
Another reason for using software is that you can segment your lists. Segmentation means dividing an email list into sublists that are specific to different campaigns or emails you may want to send out. You can even segment your contact lists by engagement level, as Asad Kausar, CEO of Dabaran says, “Segment email recipients based on current engagement level, then reach out to them at strategic frequencies. As an example, those who aren’t deeply engaged with the brand should be targeted with emails at a slightly higher frequency.”
Segments are great because you can use them to test different groups to see which type of email is more successful or not.
Use A/B testing
A/B testing, or split testing or bucket testing, is when you decide to compare two versions of an email to see which works better for your target audience. This can be testing one high-quality image vs another, CTAs (call-to-actions), or general content.
Lori Appelman, founder of Redline Minds says it is a mistake to “not test and revise your automated flows. They should evolve over time to deliver better results. Think 50% open rates or better. 20% or better click-through rates.”
This is the benefit of testing your emails—you can learn more about your target audience and then over time increase your open rates and click-through rates so that you can ensure that your audience is more likely to buy your product or service.
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Use stories to compel your reader
Regardless of the product or service you provide, it all comes down to the human connection. Whether it’s learning that your product has saved a customer hours of hassle or that your company gives back to your community, your customers will connect with these stories.
“Communicate with your audience through a relatable story and they’ll be that much more likely to identify with your brand.“ —Asad Kausar, CEO, Dabaran
Examples of stories can be a review, case study, or testimonial from one of your clients. It can also be showing impact through demographics or sharing data, followed by an explanation that uses numbers to tell the story to your customer.
Keep it short
If you or your customer are saying TL;DR (too long; didn’t read), then you need to know your email strategy. Just as it is important in any marketing strategy, short and sweet is the way to go.
“People remember only 20% of what they read. The biggest mistake with an email marketing campaign is to write paragraphs. Marketing, advertising, branding is all about creating a message that will be remembered. And the science of human recall is that visual storytelling is more successful than wordy emails. People are hard-wired to remember images, words not so much. So the key to email marketing is dynamic imagery supported by a few words. Not the other way around.” —Halina Biernacki, Owner, Promote Your Business Online
As business owners, we understand if your passion for your product or service means that you are verbose in your messaging. But it is important to remember what your target audience needs to hear versus what you want them to hear.
Limit to a single call-to-action
Brevity also means that you should keep one call to action in your email marketing. If you add multiple CTAs then your audience doesn’t know what to do and may end up completely ignoring your emails. Elyse Flynn Meyer, Owner & Founder of Prism Global Marketing Solutions has more to say:
“Engage your audience with a single call-to-action in your emails. We have found that well-written emails that have a clear purpose, concise messaging, and a single call-to-action drive the best engagement and help you connect more with your target audience. It keeps your email focused and your audience is more likely to take the desired action. Emails with too many images and too much content should be avoided. Too much content and visuals can overwhelm your target audience and make them lose interest in your email. Consider sending a few emails over several days/weeks if you have multiple pieces of content or information to share instead.”
CTAs are not only important in the body of the email. Be sure that your subject line is clear and concise as well.
Keep existing customers interested
Any sales team can attest that low-hanging fruit is the easiest to pick. In this case, which would mean your existing customers.
“Keep existing customers interested. Reminding your customer that they haven’t purchased an item in their cart or wishing them a happy birthday is fairly easy on the company end, but it actually greatly increases the potential for sales. Keep your existing customers interested by sending out occasional emails linked to milestones, carts, and other common markers.” —Tyler Sickmeyer, CEO, Fidelitas Development
For example, your existing customer will likely jump at the chance for a coupon. If you are using the metrics from your previous emails, you should have an understanding of what your existing customers are interested in and use that to develop new email campaigns for your business.
Don’t forget about mobile
It is a must to optimize your email marketing strategy. As of 2022, 85% of users use smartphones to access email. If you are not planning for what your email will look like on a mobile device then your campaign will fail. This is what Nicole Densen, Marketing Manager at Big Leap had to say:
“Mobile makes up more than half of worldwide traffic. Your email recipients could be anywhere when they open your email so it’s important to provide them with a seamless user experience. Simplify your copy, be strategic and intentional with your images, and leave enough spacing around your buttons and links for anybody to click without accidentally clicking on something else.”
This is why several of our other tips are so important—keeping it short, limiting calls-to-action, and personalizing. By utilizing these tips, you are ensuring that your emails are read regardless of the platform.
Make sure your email doesn’t go to spam
Nothing is more infuriating than creating a strategy, the content, implementing it, and then finding out it is leading nowhere. While creating your marketing campaign, you should be mindful of technical preparations to avoid your email going to the spam folder.
First, ensure that there is an unsubscribe or opt-in option in your email. Second, check for potentially “spammy” words or content that can trigger your email to go to the spam folder. It is also important to have an accurate reply-to address. Finally, be sure to stay on top of your email lists and segments. Do not keep using the same lists and subscribers over and over again if they are not accurate. If you noticed that your conversion rates are low, take a look at your strategy overall to ensure that your emails are not going to junk.
Use an email schedule
Why create the stress of preparing an important email campaign the day before? When you have a solid marketing strategy, aligned with your business strategy, then you should already have a timeline of key marketing strategies, including email campaigns.
“The final big mistake we businesses make is creating emails the day before. It is crucial to have an email schedule. Utilizing an automated email workflow system can be highly useful in taking control over what your audience receives via triggers or tags. You are able to blast emails accordingly without having to worry that you’re sending the wrong email content. What’s more, emails are most effective when they’re part of a wider campaign. However, you should also be aware that relying too much on automation could lose meaningfulness and a sense of personalization. So, find the right balance and enjoy the power of email marketing. —Katya Vakulenko, MG, Soup Agency
By preparing your emails ahead of time, you can be sure that it is built for success. You will have completed A/B testing, understood your customer persona, and ensured your lists and segments are accurate.
Do you have an email strategy?
As you can see, email marketing is a key component of any successful digital marketing strategy. Find email marketing tools to help with automation, understand your target audience, use brevity and analyze the results. If you follow these steps, you are built for a successful email marketing strategy.
However, we understand that doing all this work on your own, while maintaining a business can be difficult to do. Luckily, UpCity has an in-depth list of email marketing providers that can help you along the way.