Online advertising is a cheap, easy way to mass market your products and is something that we should all seek to exploit to the best of our ability. Social media is perhaps the most obvious means of doing this and can have a tremendous impact on your business (something I’ll discuss in a future blog). However, while you’re busy tweeting and posting, try not to forget the simplicity and efficacy of a good old fashioned email campaign.
Email campaigns can be very effective and I’ll tell you how, but first let me outline the limitations:
- It is far, far too easy to press ‘delete’ – think about all the emails you receive; unless the sender is a known colleague or potential client, the chances are you’ll decide that you’re too busy to read it and delete without doing anything more than scanning the title.
- Emails are inherently untrustworthy – ok so you may not be posing as a Nigerian prince but, in all likelihood, your clients will be suspicious of any email from an unknown contact, regardless of how good your offer
- Mail outs are a numbers game – a 5% return on a mail shot is pretty darned admirable so make sure you hit as wide an audience as possible
Ok, so that’s the down side, now let’s see how to optimise your marketing by writing an email that’s easy to trust and difficult to ignore.
First of all, trust in your product: you need to have the self confidence to know that you are genuinely trying to help people or to offer them a really good deal; that sincerity will come across in your writing.
The single most important part of an email is the subject. If the subject line is cheesy, insincere or obtuse you’ll be deleted before you’ve even had a chance to outline your offer. Don’t try to be too clever with this, you’re not writing a tabloid headline. Just be clear, concise and to the point.
Tell a story
The fact is that people don’t care what you can do, they care what you can do for them so outline a potential problem that your client may have and tell them how you can solve it. Remember – always emphasise the benefits of your product, rather than the product itself.
Make them an offer
Now it’s time to make that offer, with as much pizzazz as possible. The price is almost inconsequential at this point – it’s not a product for £9.99, it’s a saving of 30%. Always remember that you need to back up this offer as well, so briefly mention your credentials or throw in a couple of testimonials.
Ah the CTA, or ‘Call to Action’ – a marketer’s favourite phrase. You’ve made this astounding offer, but what’s the point if the customer doesn’t know what to do next? Make this bit big and bold, and be sure to include contact details and appropriate hyperlinks – whatever it takes to persuade them to get in touch.
Here’s the tricky bit though: your average business person might get over 100 emails a day and, by the time they get to yours, they’ll definitely be more than a little sick of them. That means that all the points I’ve listed above need to be made as quickly and succinctly as possible to stop people getting bored.
So what do you think? Are you up to the challenge? Have you received an email that made you want to say yes, or one that made you hit delete in seconds flat, and what was your most successful campaign? I’d love to hear from you on this one so don’t hesitate to get in touch via FB and Twitter, or leave a comment here.