10 Steps to Achieve Success with Email Marketing

10 Steps to Achieve Success with Email Marketing

As we continue to dive deeper into different digital marketing techniques, today we are going to talk about how to have success with email marketing. Email marketing is one of the oldest marketing techniques, and it continues to be one of the most effective marketing strategies if done correctly. Email marketing can help you find new leads, build or maintain a presence in your industry, increase traffic to your website and improve the relationships you have with customers. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never attempted email marketing or if you’re well versed in it, these 10 tips can help you succeed in email marketing. 

1. Choose an Email Marketing Platform

You won’t be able to run a successful email marketing campaign without a proper platform. Imagine trying to send hundreds of emails manually through a regular email platform like Gmail or Yahoo, it would be a nightmare. Some of the most popular email marketing platforms are SendinBlue, Constant Contact, Hubspot, Mailchimp and Zoho. Each of these platforms has similarities but it’s important that you choose one that has the features you require. Some of the most popular features that you’ll definitely want are A/B testing, automation, list segmentation and mobile optimization. There are plenty more cool features, but these are the ones you’re going to want to make sure the platform has before you decide to subscribe. You also need to ensure that whichever platform you choose is able to integrate with your CRM system. If you can get your CRM and email marketing to work seamlessly together, it will make your life so much easier!

2. Clean Up Your Existing Lists

While this tip only applies to you if you’ve tried email marketing in the past, it’s critical that you clean up your contact lists. Cleaning up these lists means adhering to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), the legislation requires you to get consent from customers before sending them emails. 

It’s important that you understand the two different types of consent according to the CASL, implied consent and express consent. Implied consent is when a customer has purchased a product or service from you within the last two years. Express consent is when a person agrees, whether it be a written or oral agreement to receive emails from your business. 

3. Grow Your Contact Lists

If you want to reach more customers, you need to put an emphasis on growing your email marketing lists. There are plenty of ways to do this whether it be through an opt-in button on your website or getting email information from any of your in-store customers. However you decide to grow your lists, make sure that there is some enticing reason for the customer to be willing to give you their email information. Maybe they’ll be the first to find out about new promotions or they’ll get a discount on their next oil or tire change. Whatever it is, make sure that the customer can find value in giving up their email address. 

4. Segment Your Customer Contact Lists

Segmenting your lists is important for a few reasons. First of all, it allows you to organize your lists based on their location, interests, purchase history and lead source. Why is this important you ask? Because it allows you to send the most relevant emails to the appropriate customers. Sending an email about a truck sale to a customer who’s only interested in sedans isn’t very effective. 

5. Develop an Email Strategy

If you want to be successful with email marketing, you can’t just send out an email for every promotion or news piece you have. You need to put time into defining your goals and then figure out what you need to do to achieve those goals. Every email you send out should have a specific purpose. For example, maybe you want to increase traffic so you share an interesting blog you just posted. Another example would be sending new promotions to old customers to try and get some repeat business. There are so many different ways to successfully use email marketing, figure out your goals and strategize accordingly. 

6. Be Simple With Your Email Design

With email marketing, simplicity in design is key. Don’t overwhelm your customers with an email that has a million things to look at. Keep your designs simple and easy to read, using appropriate headlines and images that complement the email content well. Each and every email you send should have a clear call to action so readers have direction as to what to do next.

7. Create Meaningful Content

There’s a giant difference between making noise in marketing and actually providing useful content. If you want to increase trust and awareness in your dealership, you need to be putting out meaningful content. Meaningful content means content that engages, educates and entertains the people reading it. 

This may mean having to hire a professional writer to write your blogs and email marketing content. If you have a strong writer in house, there’s nothing wrong with using them, but don’t give up quality content to save a few dollars. In the long run, investing in a professional content writer can actually make you more money. 

8. Make Your Subject Lines Enticing

Millions of emails are sent every day, how are you going to make sure that your email stands out from the rest and actually gets opened? The answer to that is having an enticing subject line that the customer can’t help but look at. Your subject lines need to be clear, actionable and evoke interest in whoever is reading it. 

Here are some tips on writing powerful subject lines:

  • Let the readers know what the email is going to be about in the subject line, never deceive your reader
  • Personalize the subject line by adding the customer’s name or the vehicle they’re interested in
  • Be conversational and friendly, use humour when appropriate
  • Avoid spam words that will put your emails directly in your customer’s spam instead of in their inbox. Some of these words include: urgent, free, best price and using words in all caps. 
  • Keep it short, try not to use more than 50 characters or 12 words
  • Use a sender name the customer will be familiar with

9. Take Advantage of A/B Testing

A/B testing is an integral part of any marketing strategy. You need to test to see what works best in order to fully maximize your marketing efforts. For example, you may want to A/B test when you send your emails and how that affects the open and click rates. If you’re noticing that the emails you send out on Tuesdays consistently get opened more than emails sent out on Fridays, you can start scheduling your campaigns on Tuesdays. Another thing you’re going to want to A/B is the type of subject lines you send. If you notice a particular style of subject line works better than the next one, you can start using that style of the subject line for more of your email campaigns. The more you A/B test, the better understanding you’ll have of your audience and in turn, you’ll see more marketing success. 

10. Maximize the Use of Automation

If you want to make the most out of your time and budget, you need to ensure you’re taking advantage of automation. Not only should you use automation to schedule and send your email marketing campaigns, but you should also set up automated responses. Setting up automated responses means based on how the customer reacts to your email, you set a trigger that activates a particular response. For example, perhaps a customer clicks a CTA on your email, with automation, you can set it up where that customer will be added to a list that receives a follow-up email or call regarding that CTA. This will allow you to narrow your focus on the customers that are showing interest in your product or service.

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