Email marketing refers to management and sending of email newsletters to your subscribers. In this post I will discuss the importance of why email list management is necessary for an online business, a small or medium sized business:
1) Stay in touch with your customers: Email marketing is the cheapest and the easiest way to stay in touch with your customers. Nowadays, there are various other ways by using social networks like Facebook and Twitter but email marketing still beats them all. You can either post an update in Facebook or tweet in Twitter about your product updates. However, only people when they log in their account, will receive the notification. A simple way is to send an email newsletter which everyone will check as people may or may not login to their social networking account in a day or two but they will definitely check their emails.
2) Instant reaction: If you are offering a discount or a coupon which is ending in a few days then the best way to inform your customers about it, is through email marketing. When I post an update in Facebook or when I tweet it I see that there is a considerable time delay for open rates. Also, very few people actually check these updates. However, when I send an email newsletter I see that open rates and click rates (for the links in the email) starts showing up almost instantly.
3) Returning customers: The most important thing about a small business is to maintain the existing customers. If you want to turn your first time customers in to regular customers then you have to communicate with them on a regular basis. This communication could be anything about offering them discounts and coupons, product updates, information about new products, or wishing them New Year. This will increase the number of returning customers.
4) Increase in sales: Constant communication can do wonders for your small business as when a customer receives discounts or coupons, and even if they don’t need the products almost instantly, they will still end up buying it because they are getting a decent discount.
5) Potential customer to a real customer: Email marketing is also helpful for subscribers in your list who are not your customers (as of yet) and they have subscribed to your mailing list just to wait for some discounts or offers. When you offer a discount, it helps them to make a decision.
6) Scheduling: Nowadays, all the popular email marketing software provide an option to schedule the emails. If you wish to send important information to your customers at a specific time then email marketing is the only option.
7) Email list segmentation: You can easily segment your list to divide it in to multiple categories as per your requirements. Then, you can send email blasts to a particular category. This particular feature is not available with any form of electronic communication.
8) Create HTML newsletters: With any professional email list management software there are different types of drag and drop editors so that you can create you newsletters within no time. Also, many email list managers have pre-designed templates for creating HTML newsletters.
9) Multimedia content: By using an email list management software you can embed multimedia content like images, flash, videos, etc. in your newsletters.
10) Open rate and click tracking and conversion rate tracking: A professional email list manager has various tracking tools like open rate tracking which is used to check how many people have opened your emails. Then, there’s click rate which is used to track how many subscribers have clicked on to a particular link in your email. Conversion rate tracking tells you many people who have actually bought the product or signed up for your service.
11) Reporting: By using open rate, click tracking rate and conversion rate tracking you can easily generate customized reports for your email campaigns. These reports are helpful to judge whether your email campaign was successful or not. Also, you can use these reports to tweak your settings the next time you create email newsletters. You can also use reports for A/B testing.
12) Opt-out: All email list mangers use the technique of opt-out for sending outgoing emails. This makes your email list management activities professional, and it stops any type of spamming.
13) Discussions: You can also use a discussion list based email marketing software for sending emails. A discussion list is the one which allows replies from subscribers to email list groups. Also, your customers can reply to you directly in a regular email list.
14) Highly customizable: Email newsletters can be created as per your needs. There are various tools and editors for creating both text-based and HTML based emails.
15) Email subscription form: You can add tools like email subscription form in your website or blog so that new subscribers can easily sign up to your list by using double opt-in mechanisms.
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