Email marketing is not the sexiest kid on the digital marketing block by any means.
While other marketers are telling you you need to be creating Instagram Reels or spending hours a day on Clubhouse, I’m here to tell you that it pays to invest in getting your digital marketing house in order first. We need to invest in our own assets, and after your website, your email list is the 2nd most important digital asset that you can build. There are many other benefits of email marketing that will convince you to take it more seriously.
Let me explain these benefits one by one.
The ROI of Email Marketing is Proven
First, there’s one major reason why email marketing is used so much: it has an excellent ROI. Sometimes, this value is realized through specific sales that wouldn’t have happened without those emails. This email marketing statistic really says it all:
However, many other benefits of email marketing are less obvious. Let’s dig into these other benefits related to increasing ROI one by one.
1. Inexpensive to Launch an Email Marketing Campaign Yet High Return on Investment
Most of us know that it doesn’t cost a lot of money to send emails. Personal users can get free email accounts from several providers across the Web. However, for proper email marketing campaigns you might need a paid service. This can be as simple as a business email account all the way to elaborate email clients, each with subscription costs. The other expenses are composing the emails and getting people to sign up.
However, even with these expenses, email is a great value. In fact, according to Emarketer, the ROI on email is better than both social media marketing and paid search. While most marketers recommend a mixture of these techniques, it does demonstrate that email is a critical method of getting sales leads.
Want even better results? Check out some of these recommended email marketing tools.
2. Increases Brand Awareness & Helps You Stay Top of Mind
Whether your brand is just starting out, or has been around for over a century, one of the best benefits of email marketing is brand awareness. Often, consumers are looking for the next great thing, and if you’re a legacy brand then this issue can work against you. I mean, who buys the same cotton T-shirts from the value store anymore, right? Wrong! Plenty of people see the value of an old, reliable brand.
At the same time, being a new entrant into the market forces you to increase brand awareness so people will try your products. For brands of any age and size, though, staying at the top of consumer’s minds is a major advantage. Email marketing is one of the best ways to get there.
3. Strengthens Customer Relationships
Let’s look at this one from a human perspective. Most of us have the best relationships with people we talk to often, whether that’s through email, social media, or old-school methods. Among the benefits of email marketing is the ability to strengthen customer relationships. Because when all is said and done, brands are run by people, and it’s people who buy from brands.
4. Generates Traffic to Your Site
Simply put, if you include a site link in the email then there’s a high chance your customers will click on it. This works whether the link is to your latest product, some sort of promotion, or simply a press release. Even if the customer doesn’t want to buy something, curiosity will often lead them to click through. Then, they might find something else that’s compelling. As with bricks and mortar retail, getting them through the “door” is often half the battle.
5. Emails Help Improve Leads and Sales for Your Business and Products
There’s more to email marketing as a conversion tool than driving clicks, however. In fact, 80% of professionals say that email marketing is an effective way to get and keep customers. Similarly, the Direct Marketing Association reports that 66% of consumers have made an online purchase as a result of emails they’ve read. Taken together, these statistics mean that if you aren’t emailing your customers, you’re missing out. People don’t just browse because of email, they buy because of email.
The Easiest Type of Marketing?
One of the benefits of email marketing is that it’s easy to use. Almost everyone in the United States uses email to some extent, and so it’s a familiar medium. So long as you can avoid becoming an annoying spammer, your emails can become a great way to connect with consumers.
6. Easy to Get Started and Use
As I mentioned above, email marketing at scale does require some extra tools. However, these tend to be easy to use. If you can click and drag content elements into your email client, this is arguably the hardest part. Many clients even give you access to free clip art and templates. Then, scheduling the emails is done with a few mouse clicks.
7. Easy to Measure Growth and Performance of Your Emails and Email List
Depending on your goals, measuring your progress can be quite simple. For instance, the growth of an email list is easy when you use best practices. At the same time, you can track that growth with basic analytics features. Even Gmail will tell you how many “contacts” there are, and commercial clients are more sophisticated. Likewise, the performance of different emails is easy to track with an effective analytics program. Then, results over time can be compared to both goals and historical data.
The Differentiator of Email Marketing
Have you ever thought about the fact that third parties have some degree of editorial control over most forms of advertising? Look at the Facebook rules, for instance, and you’ll see a host of disallowed speech. At the same time, magazines, TV, and radio all reject ads that don’t conform to their standards. Email is different, though. With email, there are very few restrictions and the definition of acceptable content is mostly defined by you and the consumer.
8. Allows Your Business to Own Your Contacts’ Email Address
Among the benefits of email marketing is that email addresses are essentially private information. Due to the anti-spam regulations in most countries, you need permission to use people’s email for marketing purposes. This gives your brand a certain exclusivity: one way or another, people develop some affinity with your brand before emails can begin. Likewise, your competitors also need permission to email them. If a customer is brand loyal, then you have a huge advantage. Everyone else? They need another way to get attention.
9. Some People Prefer Email
One of the great things about email is that almost everyone uses it. At the same time, email is something that can be opened when you have a minute, and not at the mercy of a ringing telephone. Likewise, emails can be followed up on at the right time, and not just when an ad pops up on a webpage.
Maybe this is one reason that so many customers love email marketing. 73% of millennials prefer to get emails from businesses over other communication methods. This is a very valuable demographic, as they spend plenty of money online. Other consumer subsets prefer email as well, with 99% checking email daily.
10. Better Engagement through Emails
For most of us, getting an email deserves a response. This is especially true when the sender is a person or company with which we have a connection. On the other hand, paid social, banner ads, and other traditional advertising is often ignored. Although most personal emails require a reply email, marketing emails don’t require the same level of engagement. Even clicking through and browsing the website can get results.
The difference between engagements from emails vs. social media is like night and day:
Naturally, there will always be emails that don’t need a response. For instance, an order confirmation email, while it provides an opportunity to sell something, is mostly informational. Then again, include a coupon to help reap the benefits of email marketing. Maybe your customer forgot something the first time.
11. You Can Reach Customers Without Relying on Advertising
Generally speaking, advertising is only seen when a customer navigates somewhere on the internet, pops open the newspaper or consumes other media. However, emails are a more intimate part of their lives. As robocalls ruin the act of answering the phone, email is becoming the best way for people to communicate. This is even more true for companies that need to contact people. Not only is email less intrusive, but everyone hates getting interrupted during dinner.
Here’s my point: the benefits of email marketing include an ability to reach customers anytime, anywhere. Smartphones mean that email is always at their fingertips, just like the radio used to be. And, you don’t have to pay Gmail for access to our customer. Just push the send button.
What No One Taught You about Email Marketing Strategy
Of course, reaping the benefits of email marketing requires proper strategy. After all, there’s more to email marketing than just cranking out words and phrases. Instead, everything needs to be done with specific goals in mind, and at the optimal time.
12. Emails Help You Reach the Right People at the Right Time in Realtime
Just because email isn’t the new telephone ringing at dinner time doesn’t mean it isn’t time sensitive. What do I mean? Depending on your audience and their location, there are optimal times for sending marketing emails. For instance, B2B brands will want to target working hours, while B2C brands are likely to go for leisure time. The linkage between time and intended audience can be more complicated, however. Products such as hearing aids could be better marketed during the day, due to the high number of senior consumers.
Likewise, sending an email at the right time can spell the difference between the email getting buried by others, and its being opened. Fortunately, if you have an email program then the email can be pre-scheduled. This would allow a sender in California to reach a recipient in India at breakfast time, even if they work the day shift.
Recommended Reading: When is the Best Time to Send Marketing Emails? (with pre-send checklist)
13. Allows You to Personalize Content While Automating Email Campaigns Using an Email Marketing Tool
Let’s be honest: automation is taking over many aspects of our jobs, but it isn’t necessarily an attack of the robots. Personalizing content for email is similar to the mail merge of yesteryear. In other words, you can have an email program add specific names to the emails before they’re sent. Going this route allows a recipient to see that you have put at least a minimal amount of thought to your marketing pitch. This option isn’t available on other types of internet-based advertising. Any good email marketing tool will help you do this easily.
14. Deliver Targeted Messages to Different Segments of Your Target Audience
Among the benefits of email marketing is the ease with which we can tailor a message to each audience. Using A/B testing and analytics, we can compose or create more than one email message. Then, each can be sent to the subscriber group for which it was designed.
What’s so awesome about this? Traditional media doesn’t allow for much personalization. About all you can do is create one advertisement for a particular publication or media station, then something else to go elsewhere. This would mean, for example, showing men’s fashion by a given company in places where guys hang out, and their ladies’ clothes somewhere else. With email, you can be much more precise.
15. Allows You to Provide More Value to Your Audience and Build Trust with Educational Content
Finally, you can reap the benefits of email marketing by using email as a way to distribute content. Probably the biggest reason to do this is that content marketing is highly valuable as a customer education tool. For example, let’s say you’re a B2B brand in the construction industry. Your company has just launched a major improvement on the power drill, and you’d like everyone to know it. To help educate contractors, you’ve posted a detailed writeup on your website complete with diagrams. By sending a brief announcement and article link by email, you’ll encourage people to check it out.
As you can see, there are many benefits of email marketing.
Email is an efficient way to reach many consumers across most industries. In addition, email has a personal touch that can’t be duplicated anywhere else. Best of all, email marketing is accessible to just about everybody.
If you aren’t doing email marketing, you should be.
Photo by Гоар Авдалян on Unsplash