What is email marketing?
The basic definition of email marketing is a type of direct marketing that involves sending out commercial messages via email. However, if you’re doing it right, it’s much more than that.
Email marketing allows you to stay connected with people who want to hear from you. And while emphasis is often put on sales, email marketing is also about, education, brand recognition, and most importantly — relationship building.
So what is email marketing? Well, good email marketing is about sending targeted messages to the right people at the right time, in order to maximize your marketing efforts and achieve your business or nonprofit goals.
Advantages of email marketing
There are a lot of ways to market your business but the top advantage of email marketing is that it has the highest return on investment of any marketing strategy. This makes it a cost-effective solution to reaching your customers and donors in a place they frequently visit — their inbox.
What are the types of email marketing?
While newsletters and sales promotions are the most familiar types of email marketing campaigns, there are several types that you should be aware of.
The most important type of email campaign, and the one that every business or nonprofit should be sending, is a welcome series. After that, what type of email marketing campaigns you send out depends upon your business or nonprofit.
Here are the types of email marketing campaigns that you should consider sending on behalf of your organization:
Best practices for email marketing
When it comes to the best practices for email marketing, start with choosing a reputable email provider/vendor and branding a mobile-friendly email template with your logo and company colors. Then, create your segmented email lists for more targeted marketing.
Once you have those foundational pieces, it’s time to create your automated welcome email series, and start building your permission-based email list.
As you move beyond the welcome email series, write engaging content that directs your reader to action, carefully craft your subject lines for maximum open rates, and track your campaign results so you know what’s working and what isn’t.
Following these best practices for email marketing will give you the best opportunity for a successful email marketing campaign.
How to get started with email marketing?
The first step to getting started with email marketing is to know if you need to start using email marketing for your business and why. Spoiler alert: You do. Then, you’ll need to sign up with an email marketing vendor.
What to look for in an email marketing vendor
When looking for an email marketing vendor the most important things to check first are:
- Do they have best-in-class delivery rates? No one wants their hard work to end up in a spam folder. Constant Contact’s email delivery rate is one of the highest in the industry at 97%. That means more of your emails landing where you want them — in your customers’ inboxes.
- Is your account going to be secure? Security is everything. With Constant Contact, all of your account, credit card, and subscriber information and content is encrypted via Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) connections over HTTPS. In addition, Constant Contact requires Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) when logging in, to add an extra layer of security to your account.
After those two questions are answered, you should look for the following in an email marketing vendor:
- Customizable templates and landing pages
- Dynamic, mobile-optimized sign-up forms with custom fields and built-in security
- List management tools for building, segmenting, and tracking
- Social media integration for creating and posting social posts and ads on platforms like Google, Facebook, and Instagram
- Features for marketing automation, event marketing, and surveys
- A mobile app that allows for campaign design from desktop to mobile device
- Integrations to connect apps you’re using now plus those you may use as you grow
If the email marketing vendor you’re looking at doesn’t have the above, you might want to keep looking. Fortunately, Constant Contact has all this and more!