Email Marketing – An SMB’s Most Powerful Secret Asset?
One of the main factors that set SMBs (Small and Medium Businesses) apart from large scale enterprises is the need for rapid growth from one side and having limited resources from the other side. All while competing, in some or all targeted market segments, with companies that are more established, with more budget and stronger reputation.
That’s why if you own or manage an SMB, you’re more likely to always have an eye on maximizing results and getting the highest possible ROI on every dollar you spend. This makes email marketing a perfect match for SMBs marketing strategy. Statistics show that in terms of ROI, email marketing consistently outperforms all social media platforms and every other digital marketing technique. With a $39 average ROI for every dollar spent on email.
Let’s talk in numbers
Well, email marketing doesn’t have all the hype that comes with marketing and advertising on social. But when it comes to actual numbers, email marketing runs circles around all social media platforms, and it’s not just in terms of dollar-wise ROI. According to a report on email marketing by Get Response, marketers rated email against other digital marketing channels. The results showed that more than half the marketers surveyed gave email marketing positive ratings compared to other channels.
When we look further, the previous statistics make perfect sense, as by this year active email accounts are expected to hit 5.6 billion worldwide.
The hidden perks of email
Unlike other more complicated forms of marketing, creating content for email marketing is very cost-effective and much easier to produce. Today there are many low-cost or free email marketing tools and software that you can use to send personalized emails to large groups of people with a click of a button. All you need is a strong strategy, a well-crafted email and a mailing list (if you don’t have one, we have a couple of suggestions at the end of the article, stay on board!).
One of the special perks of email is that once you built a good email list, you can use it strategically to serve other aspects of your marketing strategy. You can use email to distribute relevant content that you produce on other channels. Like sharing an educational piece of
content that was uploaded to the company’s YouTube channel. Or a blog post that made a buzz on the blog. This is exceptionally beneficial for SMBs that have relatively lower advertising budgets.
Unlike social media, email allows marketers more freedom to personalize and craft their promotional message to their audience in a much more sophisticated way. Starting from personalizing the message by the recipient’s name, all the way to using sophisticated algorithms to identify your customers’ individual interests based on which type of emails they interact with. Which not only gives you insight on your audiences’ preferences but also helps you send each customer more of what they’re interested in.
Email is measurable! it can give you solid numbers on the performance of your email campaign. Starting with the open rate, click through rate in addition to dozens of other metrics and KPIs. This measurability allows marketers and business owners to know what works and what doesn’t work in their email campaigns. So that they optimize it in the future emails they send their customers. For SMBs in general, having insights on what your customers like and don’t like, even if it was through their email behavior statistics, can be a game changer.
According to recent studies proved that customers trust suggestions from family and friends more than they trust advertisements. Email campaigns by nature are easily shareable. All the recipient needs to do is to forward this promotional offer or that relevant piece of content they received from your business to friends and family members that might be interested. They just enter the email and voila, you’re in their inbox too. The fact that email promotions are easily shareable can give you exposure to more interested customers, or even better, gets you more sales directly.
What about getting the actual emails?
This step stops many marketers and business owners from leveraging the perks of email marketing. And to be fair, they have a point. Creating a well-crafted email campaign is completely useless if you have no one to send them to. But things don’t have to be that hard. Here are a few ideas that you can put to action to build your mailing list:
- Capture emails in return of freebies. This works really well for service companies, it can be a free digital product, free consultation session, an eBook, a video training series, etc. for eCommerce and product companies it can be a discount, free shipping or any other valuable offer.
- Create a flash sale. One that requires an email subscription or creating an account.
- Promote it through your website. You can place an email subscription bar on your homepage, for example.
- Host a contest or a giveaway. One that requires email subscription. You can team up with an influencer to reach more people.
There are dozens of other ways to build a mailing list, you can hire an expert for a few months to help you build a strong mailing list of interested customers to get you started.
Email marketing has proven repeatedly that it’s a reliable strategy. That’s why it’s a good idea to consider integrating email in your SMB’s marketing strategy. You don’t need to break the bank or take huge risks to start. Just begin with a small budget, test your audience’s reaction to email and optimize as you go along. Once you hit a jackpot, you can then put more resources into your email marketing, scale it and reap the benefits.
What experiences have you had with email marketing? Share with us in the comments below.