In these tight times, companies no doubt are reducing their marketing budgets, or at least are very careful about where and how they spend their marketing dollars. Online marketing generally, and email marketing specifically, will continue to be one of the least expensive yet very effective ways to get in front of existing and prospective customers.
Why is email marketing effective? Besides providing very tangible and measurable results in terms of how many users open, click, or forward the email, a company can grow trust with their subscribers over time. And that trust isn’t easy to gain.
To start, someone must give up their contact info to join your list, so you better provide something valuable in return. Next, they must stay as a subscriber, so you better minimize your hard-sell language, or at least mix it with some free, valuable information. Then, they must open your emails, so work on your subject lines to make them powerful. Lastly, you’d like them to click on links in your email, so they must be noticeable and convincing. Plus, if your subscribers find your content so compelling that they forward your email to their friends, then you’re really on to something!
Once you establish this trust with your subscribers, they will buy from you. Some might buy right away, some may buy later, but having a large email distribution list with trusting subscribers is key. Some companies use their email list as the most important marketing channel. They grow the list to hundreds of thousands of loyal subscribers; every time they launch a new product, they notify their subscribers and guess what! They generate instant sales.
Email marketing is also inexpensive to maintain compared to various offline marketing strategies such as direct mail or print advertising. Whereas postage costs 42 cents or up for direct mail, most Email Service Providers (ESP’s) charge less than 10 cents per email address. And you don’t have to pay printing costs.
An effective way to reduce your email marketing budget is to ensure that you don’t have subscribers who won’t ever open your emails let alone buy something from you. How do you do that? Use the double opt-in option which will result in a “clean” list with only loyal subscribers who are truly interested in your products or services. Since ESP’s charge per number of email addresses on your list or number of emails sent, you can reduce your costs. In these times, every penny counts!