Let's assume your marketing budget is tiny... What can you do, without spending much money?
Social media is one activity, and great for raising awareness, but it's hard to control.
Email helps you nurture your visitors and create repeat business.
When lockdown ended, several businesses kindly emailed me to let me know that after taking my advice they'd used direct mail, resulting in great levels of bookings from previous visitors.
Let's take a closer look at the benefits of building a strong mailing list and using direct mail.
These are in addition to the fact that it costs very little to send out multiple emails.
1. Mailing lists give you more control over your communications. You're not just passively waiting for people to look at your website or social media - you're pro-actively targeting them.
2. Attention: you might think your inbox is overflowing with emails but compared to social media, we get far fewer messages by email. It’s easier to grab attention because email feels more personal, easier to see and retain. If some one signs up to get your emails, you’re not competing for their attention as much as on social media.
3. Email is less passive.
4. You can decide who sees what content. You can send different emails to different people. This means you can segment markets and send them really appropriate messages that get results.
5. You can easily personalise email messages. You can’t do that on social media which feels more mass-market.
6. You can get immediate feedback on the results of your emails. If you use the right software (don’t be scared – easier and cheaper than you might think) you can see who has opened your emails, who has clicked on a link etc.
7. You can test out emails to see what works. Known as A/B testing, you can send one email to a small group of people, a different one to others and then compare results to decide what to send to the rest of your mailing list.
8. You can remind people. On social media if you don’t get much of a response, you can repeat your message but the people who’ve already seen it will think you’re repeating yourself. With email you can choose to send a reminder mailing, just to the people who didn’t open it in the first place.
9. Email feels familiar, and more permanent. We all despair of the endless changes on facebook, snapchat, rise of tiktok or what-ever the latest social media tool. Email feels more constant and safer.
10. Perhaps most importantly – you own your email list. If you are over-reliant on social media or just blithely hope people will come to your website, you’re not in control of your business. Your mailing list is a direct route to people who have said they want to hear from you. You know they’re interested.
Want to know more about how to build a mailing list and write effective mailings? Take a look at the online marketing workshop.
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Please note: all articles are copyrighted Susan Briggs