Email marketing: the under-used content channel
Mobas’s PR and Social Media Account Executive, Harriet Hunt, takes a look at how businesses can use email marketing to provide value to their customers and increase sales.
We know many of you reading this will be questioning whether email marketing can be called under-used. The majority of you either have an inbox full of marketing emails or spend a lot of time deleting and unsubscribing to them. Perhaps you’re not interested in what that business is trying to sell you any more, or you just never read them. But what if they provided you with value every time you opened one?
In social media, we often talk to clients about the importance of providing value to your audience. Although selling the product is the primary focus, it won’t be the reason your target customer follows you – or stays signed up to your email list. They’ll follow you because you provide value with every single one of your posts, whether that be industry insight or tips they wouldn’t find elsewhere. The same goes for email marketing.
The two major types of value are ‘learning’ and ‘feeling’, and the easiest way to provide these is by telling a story. Starting with a story draws the audience in and brings the emotion and reality to the email – this is your ‘feeling’. Stories are also an easy way to show personality and build trust between you and your customer. The story could be as simple as something funny that happened on the ride to work, or the cooking disaster from last night’s dinner – just make it real. From this, you can lead into a lesson. What ‘lesson’ from your business’s offering can you apply to the story? This could be that the power of building networks on social media helped turn the cooking disaster into a brilliant meal. Finally, segue into an offer, e.g. ‘Speak to Mobas for help with building a network on social media’.
Once you’ve got the content sorted, you’d think the next step would be to make it look pretty with images and videos. Wrong. Images take up brain space, leaving less capacity to take in the valuable content of the email. Sending an email without an image makes it more likely to stick in people’s minds – and it’s a smaller file size too!
The next important question is how often should you be sending emails? Contrary to what you’d assume, in the case of email marketing, more is more. If you’re providing value in every email, then sending an email a day still shouldn’t be too much. Think of your email marketing as your favourite TV series. If they’re releasing episodes every day, you’re going to be way more connected to the programme than if they release them once a month, or even once a week. The same goes for your marketing emails. The more you send, the more likely it is that you’ll be top of mind when the time comes that they need your product or service. Just make sure you provide value in every message.
But what about the dreaded spam folder? The higher your email health score, the less likely your emails are to end up in the spam folder and, similar to a credit score, the better evidence you provide, the better your score. If you think of it this way, sending a monthly email only gives 12 pieces of evidence in a year, a weekly email gives 52, and, as you’d guess, a daily email gives 365 pieces of evidence that you’re a trusted sender and not a spam account.
Put simply, whether it’s social media or email marketing, providing value is key. Use your personality, tell a story, teach them something and then go in for the sale.