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Email Marketing for Small Business: A Guide to Getting Started and Building Success

Dec 6, 2023 | Digital

Home > Email Marketing for Small Business: A Guide to Getting Started and Building Success

While social media and other marketing channels often take center stage, email marketing continues to be a powerful and cost-effective tool for small business owners. Email Marketing is an especially powerful tool as it provides a direct line of communication with your audience, fosters customer loyalty, and can significantly impact your bottom line. In this blog, we will explore the key elements of successful email marketing:

  1. List building
  2. Segmentation
  3. Crafting engaging email campaigns tailored to the needs of small businesses.
  4. TLDR: Summary of Email Marketing

I. The Foundation: Building and Growing Your Email List

There are several avenues that you can take in order to build an email list. The main differentiation is in the length of time it may take to create a more robust list. 

A. Create Irresistible Lead Magnets:

    Let’s back up for a second, what are lead magnets? 

    Lead Magnet is a marketing term for a free item or service that is given away in exchange for contact information. Offering valuable content in the form of ebooks, guides, or exclusive discounts, to incentivize visitors to subscribe.

    So how do you make them irresistible?  It’s important to ensure that the lead magnets are relevant to your target audience’s interest or address pain points. Making sure this lead magnet is actually of value is key. 

    B. Optimized Signup Forms:

    Streamlining the signup process with user-friendly forms on your website and social media platforms makes it easy for those who are interested to follow along. It’s important to remember to only request the essential information to minimize friction and encourage more signups. If you ask for too much information, users are going to be less likely to complete the form.

    C. Implement Double Opt-In:

    Double Opt-In is a method that has a few more steps for users to sign up for an email subscription. This may cause less conversion as it takes an extra step however, it increases the list quality and reduces spam in the process. It ensures that only those who genuinely want to receive your emails actually receive them. 

    D. Utilize Pop-Up Forms Wisely:

    Pop-up forms are another way in which you can build up your email list. By implementing exit-intent pop-ups or timed pop-ups you can capture visitors who are about to leave your site. Additionally, if it makes sense for your business, you can use these to offer an additional incentive for those who subscribe through pop-ups. This is oftentimes seen in retail websites with a coupon code in exchange for an email address. 

    II. The Power of Segmentation: Targeting the Right Audience

    Segmentation is a great way to keep your email list organized and ensure that you are sending the right emails to the correct people. So how do you do this? 

    A. Collect Relevant Data:

    It’s important that you gather information such as preferences, behaviors and demographics of your target audience. This information could be gathered from surveys, preference centers, and analytics tools as well. 

    B. Segmentation Strategies:

    There are several ways you can go about segmenting (or dividing up) your email list. You can divide it based on demographics, subscriber preferences or behavioral data such as purchase history, engagement, and so much more. This will allow you to tailor the messaging towards each group specifically. 

    C. Dynamic Content:

    Dynamic content allows you to personalize your emails more. It allows you to set conditions to showcase items based on data. Ultimately, creating more engaging and relevant experiences for each user. 

    III. Crafting Engaging Email Campaigns

    Once you’ve built your audience and segmented them into groups, it’s time to hone in on the actual email. Emails are composed of several pieces, broadly stated they consist of: subject lines, content, CTA’s (call-to-actions).

    A. Compelling Subject Lines:

    Subject lines are often seen as the first impression as they are the first thing (aside from the sender’s information) that users see. Therefore it is important to capture attention with concise, compelling subject lines that pique curiosity or offer a benefit and hook the user into opening the email. Subject lines should be short, oftentimes no more than 9 words or 60 characters to ensure it’s easily read on mobile. It’s important to test a few different approaches to see what resonates best with your audience. 

    B. Mobile Optimization:

    Mobile accounts for 41.6% of email opens in 2019 and that number continues to increase. Therefore, ensuring that your emails are mobile-friendly is crucial! Be sure to test your email across various devices prior to sending it out. 

    C. Quality Content:

    The actual content of the email is crucial to engagement rates. If you provide valuable content that is relevant, solves problems, educates or entertains your audience they are more likely to continue to open your emails moving forward. It’s important to make sure that your content is not 100% promotional but instead to find a balance of content to maintain a healthy relationship with subscribers. If you solely promote, your audience is less likely to engage and more likely to unsubscribe to your emails in the future. 

    D. Clear Call-to-Action (CTA):

    Call-to-Actions (CTAs) guide subscribers to a desired action. Similar to CTAs on a website they must be clear, compelling and action oriented. To learn more about CTAs overall check out our CTA blog! On emails, CTAs oftentimes lead subscribers to making a purchase, downloading content or visiting your website. 

    E. Test and Optimize:

    Testing as with anything is important as you can see what different elements of your email perform better, for example you can test subject lines or CTAs or visuals. Regularly analyzing your performance metrics can assist you in optimizing future campaigns. 

    TLDR: Summary of Email Marketing

    Mastering email marketing requires a strategic approach, continuous refinement, and a deep understanding of your audience. By focusing on list building, segmentation, and crafting engaging email campaigns, small business owners can leverage this powerful tool to build lasting relationships with their customers and drive business growth. Implementing these strategies will not only help you stay top-of-mind with your audience but also contribute to the overall success of your marketing efforts.

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