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Wednesday, 15 August 2018

How SMEs can leverage Email Marketing


The Internet presents opportunity for any sized business. The Internet also connects everyone so long as they have a connection to the digital domain.

People use the internet to communicate, shop, date and transact, while marketers target their prospective audiences over the internet, making it the foundation of a peaceful online shopping ecosystem.

It’s common for most business owners (especially those in Malaysia) to be an  owner of a brick-and-mortar shop. Having an online presence reduces the restrictions on your target audience. For example, you are not tied down to an audience that is conveniently located around you only.

It is proven that the best way to communicate with your customers is through email.

Learn how email marketing can help your small business.


1. It helps to Build credibility


Building relationships is the foundation of any business. You can do more with email marketing, as you are able to build trust and recognition among your subscribers by sending helpful and educational information.

2. Increase and Build visibility beyond your location


Irrespective of their geographic location, you will be able to send emails to your target audience with just an email ID and this will help improve the visibility of your business.

3. Cheaper alternative to most physical forms of advertising


Assuming you are sending an email to an email list of 1000 subscribers, you may be spending < RM10. Research shows that you can earn up to RM34 for every RM1 you spend on your email campaign, you will find out that emails are the most profitable marketing channel.

4. Increase awareness about your business. Increase traffic visits (online and offline). 


A successful email is the one that manages to make the subscriber click and get redirected to a relevant landing page (for omnichannel businesses) or your storefront.

5. Market with a personal touch 


Connect personally with your customers, by segmenting the information that they want to receive. By tracking the customer journey, you can personalize the email copy to building a meaningful relationship.

6. Turn one-time sale into a repeat order / Help patrons stay connected with new updates


Anyone who purchases from you may lose contact as they step out. By having them in your mailing list, you can keep in touch with them. This will enable them to shop from you time and time again.

What your business needs to implement email marketing?


An Email Service Platform (ESP)

Email inbox services such Gmail, Hotmail or Outlook cannot be used to send bulk emails owing to restrictions placed to avoid spamming. You need to invest in a professional email service provider to send emails in bulk.

Some provide services for zero to nominal fees for emailing less than 2,000 subscribers, while others charge you based on the mailing list strength. If you are starting out, you can choose MailerLite, MadMimi ReachMail or MailChimp. We conducted a review for MailChimp. You can read about it here.

Templates are readily available, but it is good to have a customer outsourced professional to help you with this. However, sometimes you need to design a custom email template for providing a good user experience.

Tips to start your Email Marketing

Build your mailing list both offline and online


To start out, you can talk to your existing customers to share their email addresses to get information about your business. Some of the ways to create excitement are:


  1. Coupons and Sales Promotions
  2. Loyalty or Rewards Programs
  3. Company News and Updates
  4. Contests and Sweepstakes
  5. Free Content like E-Books
  6. Products or Service Information
  7. Exclusive Peeks at New Products


What emails would you send?


Newsletters

For prospects / customers to exchange their email and time to read your emails, be prepared to send them valuable information. Do not sell to them as they would associate this with spam, and you would lose email authority.

In addition to newsletter you should also send:


  1. Transactional emails like order receipts, upsell & cross-sell emails, re-order reminder emails that are associated with building relation post-purchase.
  2. Promotional emails to inform your customers about special or limited stock events and promotions
  3. Holiday and seasonal emails for the brands who conduct special campaigns during holidays.
  4. Customer loyalty emails for existing patrons to show how valuable they are to your brand.
  5. Separate your mailing list as per preference and hit Send
  6. No two customers will have same interests. You need to learn / understand their preferences and what products they are interested and segment the email list accordingly. This ensures that the customer receives the information that interests them.


Learn more about Everworks email here. You’d be surprised what email can do for your business.

 
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