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Traditional methods of mass marketing (hard copy mail-outs, cold calling, etc. generally ) have their place in today’s armoury of weapons to attack the market, expensive to deploy and have limited, if no feedback mechanism, making the measurement of success tough.

One weapon you must consider is email marketing.

I don’t mean endless spam type campaigns, but targeted, focused email campaigns to prospects and customers which give a positive benefit to your target audience, like newsletters and technical bulletins, that include opt out and permission based marketing which will deliver value.

So what’s the first step?

You should have a list of customer emails which will be your first step down the email marketing path. You should start with something like a newsletter or similar communication to your clients. Tell them what you intend to do and the frequency of communication with them and a tangible benefit to them  – this could be just keeping them informed of industry news, new products and services you offer or special offers that they may be interested in.

Then you need a good email marketing tool. This is vital as it will either be an asset to your marketing strategy moving forward, or a millstone which will cause you so many problems in the future. At JCK, we regularly scan the marketplace for great tools, with loads of features but a sensible cost break and we choose the most suitable for your needs. One such tool just delivered this to you (as we use blog posts for our email too!). What’s more important is that I know you have read this and what other items you have clicked on within this newsletter too!

Feedback is the actual heart of any e-marketing system. If you don’t get the instant feedback, then you don’t know if the email has delivered the results you need. Feedback is of particular importance for campaigns to prospects or unknown buyers. You will have little or no relationship with these potential clients of the future, but need to know if what you are offering will attract them to start a relationship with you. It is proven that you will almost certainly need to contact these prospects (or even suspects) at least four times to get attention with up to 12 times to get a sale.

So what kind of information should you get back from an e-marketing system?

Typical information from an e-marketing dashboard includes

1. Delivered – this will tell you how many emails were delivered
2. Bounced – this will tell you how many emails were incorrectly addressed and who
3. Opened – tells you how many were opened and by whom
4. Clicked – this shows you who clicked on what and when – also how many times the clicked
5. Unsubscribe – tells you who does not want to receive emails again
6. Complaints – shows you who complained to the ISP regarding your email
7. Inactive – says they were delivered but not opened

If you have anything less, then the package is not right for the job.

So to answer the initial question of why use e-marketing?

Answer: Anybody who wishes to communicate effectively with at a very low-cost point getting instant feedback with either an existing client, a prospect (somebody who has enquired but not committed to purchasing) or to suspects (not known to the customer by anything else other than an email address or other necessary information).

As to cost comparisons, a traditional mailer will cost in the region of 30 – 50 pence per item delivered at the lowest end of the scale. With email marketing, the cost is zero. Both media types will require thought, design and compelling copy or graphics and will cost similar amounts. However, there is no cost of print or delivery with e-marketing.

The next question is how to write that killer message that will get read…..that’s for next month.
For more information on e-marketing or to see a demo of InTouch, please contact us.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kevin Bourne

Kevin's approach to marketing always starts with the end in mind. He helps clients work out what they want to achieve and then uses his technical skills and foresight to make sure it happens. Originally from a Financial Services background, Kevin is also passionate about the return on investment so he makes sure his clients understand that having just an online presence is not enough - it's about getting found online. That's why clients looking for the combination of a solid online foundation combined with innovative ideas to drive awareness really do appreciate his input.

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