One major mistake business owners make when expanding their online presence is neglecting the power of email marketing. Many businesses think that social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. are the best way to engage with their customer base. Don’t make the same mistake. You may be ignoring the most powerful social network: your own. A mailing list is the single most effective method of engaging with your audience because it allows you to dictate the terms of your messaging. Below are answers to some of the most frequent questions we get asked regarding mailing lists.
Why are mailing lists so important?
The number one reason why mailing lists are so powerful is reach. A mailing list allows you to reach more people than any popular social network. Most of your Facebook followers will never see your status updates. Only a small number of your Twitter followers will read your tweets before they scroll offscreen. When compared to an email, a status update or tweet is virtually irrelevant. That’s because an email will stay in your subscribers’ inbox until they choose to remove it. Your email will be received in the same channel as other important messages and be consumed differently than just another status update.
Another reason a mailing list is superior to social media is because you can decide how you engage with your customers. At anytime, Facebook could change their algorithm, reducing the visibility of your posts. A tweet is restricted to only 120 characters. Conversely, email allows you to creatively express your message in a way that status updates or tweets can’t. You can use the same voice in an email that you use in your content, giving your subscribers a more personal method of engagement.
Furthermore, conversion rates are significantly higher on emails compared to social media. Facebook ads have conversion rates between 0.3 to 1.1 percent. Emails, on the other hand, generally have conversion rates between 1.3 to 5.4 percent.Why do subscribers of mailing lists have higher conversion rates than followers on social networks? Because subscribers want to hear your voice. They want to know when your newest products are available, or when your latest promotion commences. They subscribe to your mailing list because they are ready to engage with your content. Subscribers regard your business so highly that they have voluntarily given you their email address.
How do I set up a mailing list?
If you’ve gotten this far, we’ve hopefully convinced you why a mailing list is absolutely necessary. The first thing you should do now is to sign up for an email marketing provider. Email marketing providers allow you to:
- Send responsive emails (meaning they look great on any device)
- Make sure your emails are received by your customers and not sent to their spam folders
- Send automatic responses when a customer makes a purchase or a visitor signs up for your mailing list
- Track and analyze your email marketing campaigns
The services we recommend most are GetResponse, AWeber, and Mailchimp. After you’ve signed up with an email marketing provider, you’ll need to place webforms on the most pertinent pages of your website to start collecting emails.
What kinds of emails should I send?
After you grow your mailing list, you’ll want to start sending emails. However, the key to a successful mailing list is not to bombard your subscribers with emails. If you email your subscribers too frequently, you will lose them. You need to mix up the types of emails you send. Start with a welcome message thanking the subscriber for signing up to your mailing list. The most beneficial email you can send is a promotional email; keep it short and make sure your offer is clear. Similarly, an email notifying subscribers of a new product or service you offer is another great way of making sales. Additionally, a bi-weekly or monthly newsletter that informs your subscribers of your latest news is a great way to connect with your audience. You can also send emails that educate or advise your subscribers; this will lend credibility to your business and build trust with your audience. Try and think of your emails as something your subscribers look forward to and less as a way to generate page views.
As explained earlier, a mailing list is absolutely vital to every business. Your business can’t rely on social media to connect with your audience. Emails are the best marketing method when it comes to converting clicks into sales. If your business needs help with email marketing, contact Business Website Builders today to find out how we can help.