Email marketing tips for small business owners

In the current economic climate, small business owners are very busy. They wear many hats, including the one of a marketer.

Email can be a cost-effective and effective way to market your small business. Most information on using the channel for your marketing is geared towards larger companies.

It can be challenging for those who build and plan email marketing strategies and plans for larger organizations to reflect on the days when office politics did not exist and were required to do everything themselves.

This is until now. Here are ten tips you can implement quickly and efficiently while positively impacting your bottom line without worrying about multivariate testing and dynamic content development.

Be yourself Tip

Your success to date has been achieved by being yourself. This doesn’t change when you send an email. Your customers will return to your business because they like the atmosphere, how they are treated, and the quality of the product. You want your recipients to feel the same when they read your emails.

Your message’s tone or appearance can help you achieve this result. You don’t have to change your writing style or speaking just because you’re writing an email. Email writing can be less formal and more geared toward building relationships.

Start small

When you’re a small company, it is easy to start small. If your business doesn’t lend itself to email collection, you may not have an extensive email database address. If you run a small company, you may find getting this information from your customers easier than from Fortune 500 companies.

People who do business with you also want to do business. You have developed a relationship of trust with them, and they will tell you this information. Just ask. Tell your customers you’re launching a new exclusive email program and will only send periodic offers. Give your customers a point-of-purchase card to fill out, and then ask for permission.

Don’t over-promise

Making big promises is tempting, but it is essential to be realistic. You may not know how to use email to help your business initially, but you will need to get some email addresses before validating the idea.

You may prefer to make big promises about frequent discounts and offers but don’t do it unless you’re prepared to keep them. Email can be used for notifications and reminders.

If you run an auto repair shop, you can use email to remind customers when their following oil change is due. If you own a dry cleaning business, you could notify your customers when their items are ready to be picked up.

Find a vendor

It can be challenging to choose a vendor. You will see that the sophistication of the vendors varies from simple to complex. Demonstrate a few vendors and see which ones work best for you. Do not be afraid to learn. Ask questions and see what kind of advice and guidance they will give. Most importantly, feel comfortable with your decision.

Use what you know

You are more knowledgeable about your market and customers than any consultant. Use this information to plan your email campaigns.

If you have many professional customers who use smartphones or PDAs, you might want to create a message accessible when your clients are on the go. You may also want to target them based on their age.

By appealing to the recipient using information you already know about them, your relationship with the inbox will be extended.

Keep up with the CAN-SPAM laws

Be compliant. Include an unsubscribe link that requires only one click, include your mailing address, unsubscribe when asked, do not steal email addresses, and do not be misleading. No matter how big your company is, you must follow the law if you send an email.

Tell your customers why you’re building an email database on your website and store. You should drive subscriptions through all touchpoints if you don’t already. How else will you get them?

Small business owners can use this tactic to their advantage.

Large organizations offering incentives to the masses tend to have a lower-quality audience because many people only provide their email addresses to receive the freebies.

Most small business owners perceive the incentive as a way to say “thanks” to their customers and not just to collect an email address. But be careful–too many of these things can add up.

Track your results

You need to track your email, no matter how much I’d like to tell you that you didn’t. You will never know how it performs if you don’t follow your email.

It is unnecessary to link every email to a dollar figure that comes through the door. However, determining early what your goals are for your email program and measuring them against those objectives to determine success will help you maximize the channel.

You can set goals that are simple or complex. For example, you could aim for a 50% open rate to increase brand awareness. Or you could track conversions down to the penny to drive a 5:1 ROI. You decide!

Now, please do it! Now do it

Yes. You need to send emails once you start collecting email addresses. Small businesses have a window of up to six months between managing the email address and the first delivery. But if you want to use the address as soon as possible, it’s best to do so quickly.

You may not be able to send it immediately, but you should start sending it within three months after purchase. Otherwise, you could see bounces and nonresponsive recipients because they may not remember permitting you.

Email marketing is a highly lucrative and viral marketing channel that can quickly and effectively drive new business. What are you still waiting for?

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