Keeping customers interested in your brand is something that many companies struggle with, and free email marketing is a very cost effective way to achieve this. If you’re thinking of creating an email campaign (or just want to spruce up your existing one), here are some top tips for avoiding the junk folder:
1. Avoid the hard sell. There’s nothing that consumers hate more than feeling pressured to buy products or services, so avoid overly ‘salesy’ language, particularly in your email subject line. Words like ‘buy’, ‘free’, and ‘offer’ will turn people off quickly, and may mean that your email hits the junk folder without even being opened. Instead, opt for interesting information that you think they will want to know, and tie this in with your products or services in some way. The purpose of a marketing email is to remind your customers of who you are and what you do, and to gently ask them ‘do you need us?’ Be brief and tactful, and stay on the ‘allowed’ emails list!
2. Be seasonal. If you can tie your emails in with current events, your readers are much more likely to be interested in what you have to tell them. News or products which link in with holidays or world events such as the US elections, Christmas, Thanksgiving, and New Year all work well. This is because many people subconsciously become more aware of advertising that is aimed towards an upcoming holiday; if they have been thinking about Christmas gifts, an email which discusses gift wrapping ideas would catch their eye (and probably gain their attention for a minute or two). Tap into seasonal trends that they are currently contemplating, and you can successfully gain interest.
3. Offer them something they want. Now we’re not necessarily talking products or offers here (although they can be interesting to a customer), we’re thinking more of information. A car retailer might get a little interest with the email subject line ‘new cars in stock this week!’, but are likely to get considerably more interest with the heading ‘top five supercars of 2012!’ Information which is related to your field will be interesting to your readers, and makes you look knowledgeable and up-to-date. You can offer sneak-peeks at new product lines or give a limited amount of information on a new service or industry story – and then direct readers to your website for full details. Ideally, you are aiming to turn email contacts into paying customers, so using emails to direct them to your website is desirable.
4. Be regular. Send emails every couple of months or quarterly, to keep your company present in your customers’ minds. Weekly emails can be too overpowering and may be seen as a nuisance, whereas a longer gap between emails gives your readers some breathing space. It also gives you time to come up with top quality content to grab their attention!