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How to Get Started With Email Marketing

Take a second and think about your own email inbox. Do you receive emails from your favorite stores and brands? More likely than not, you receive quite a few each day. These could be newsletters, product updates, or flat-out sales promotions. You may even have an email or two from a brand or company you’ve had little interaction with, other than supplying your email address.

Email is an important channel to utilize in your digital marketing strategy. While some may think that email marketing is dying, it’s actually the opposite; it is a low-cost opportunity to stay connected to your audience, both current and potential. There are a number of options for format and frequency. Here are a few tips to get started with your own email marketing:

1. Build your email list

How else are you going to send out emails if you don’t have a list? There are a few different ways to build up an email list of current or prospective customers. The first and most important part of this tip is that you absolutely should NOT buy an email list to start blasting to. You will likely just have your emails sent to the spam folder or trash and it will be a waste of yours and the recipients’ time (and you’ll probably turn those consumers away from your business). 

Instead of wasting money on buying an email list, collect emails from current and prospective customers. As this article explains, you are a guest in their inbox and must get permission. Nobody wants (or checks) emails they don’t remember asking to receive. A few ways to gather emails from customers include: 

  • Giveaways or promotions: Do a small giveaway, whether in-store or on social media (or both), and ask for customers to sign up for a newsletter or emails in order to enter.
  • Free download: If you offer software, eBook, or interesting article, allow customers to download it from your site for free by signing up for emails.
  • Newsletter: Just be straightforward and offer a newsletter to customers that would like to receive regular updates about your company, business, and products. 
  • Product/service updates: Have a new product launching soon? Offer email signup for updates! 
  • Promotional: Offer customers the option to sign up for promotional emails with information about upcoming sales and even exclusive discounts.

2. Deliver quality content on a consistent schedule

Did you promise weekly, biweekly, or monthly emails? Can you deliver on that promise? If you don’t deliver a consistent schedule that was promised when signing up for emails, people will either get annoyed or forget who you are, and ultimately unsubscribe. 

When determining your schedule, you need to consider the type of business and products or services you can offer. Does it make sense to send weekly emails or should you only send them monthly? Will too many emails annoy your customers and lead them to ignore or unsubscribe? There are a number of important questions to ask and factors to consider when deciding on an email schedule.

Once you’ve determined your schedule, start looking into an automated email service such as Mailchimp or Constant Contact. These are great platforms to schedule emails in advance so that you can be sure to meet your promise of delivering quality emails on a consistent schedule. These services often offer extra benefits including analytics and stats. Compare the services and pricing and choose the best one for your business.

3. Do not spam your customers

This tip is a continuation of the last, but it is so important that it needs to be its own piece of advice. Do NOT abuse your email list. If you have told your customers that you will send emails weekly, do not send daily emails to them. Very few businesses need to send daily emails to their customers, so consider how often you feel like your customers want to be in contact.

If you are the business owner, it is easy to fall into the mindset that your customers are always ready to be in contact with your business. This isn’t always the case. While you want and need to stay top of mind to your customers, there is a fine line between staying in contact and being needy. And nobody likes needy. Don’t bother your customers, or they will leave.

4. Start with Smarter Searches

Running your business takes a lot of time and effort and so does managing your email marketing list. Email marketing is one of the many services that we offer at Smarter Searches, so contact us today and let us take your email marketing to the next level.