According to a study, more than 100,000 small businesses have shut permanently since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in March. And, this figure continues to rise.
Also, according to a survey, nearly 7.5 million small businesses are at risk of closing their doors permanently over the next several months if the pandemic persists.
And this isn’t the case for one country or two, but it’s a story of almost all the countries. Almost all businesses are facing similar problems. During this time, with most of the employees working from home, businesses are left with only one option i.e. customer engagement.
For instance, research says customers that are fully engaged represent a 23% higher share in profitability, revenue, and relationship growth. Also, companies that successfully engage their B2B customers to realize 63% lower customer attrition, 55% higher share of wallet, and 50% higher productivity.
In short, businesses are failing and the only way for them to survive is through customer engagement.
But which is the best method to engage customers?
Glad you asked!
Don’t believe me?
Well, email continues to be the main driver of customer retention and acquisition for small and midsize businesses. According to a survey, 81% of SMBs still rely on email as their primary customer acquisition channel, and 80% for retention.
This applies for all types of businesses, mid, small, and large. But it can be largely helpful for businesses that are re-starting their work after some time.
Also, email marketing post COVID-19 will be crucial for businesses as it will take time for customers to step out of their houses. And the only way for businesses to reach customers is through their inbox.
So, in this blog, I will share with you some tricks that I feel will work wonders. Let's start.
1. Filter Out Active Subscriber from Your Mailing List
If you are restarting your businesses, it is likely that you already have an old subscriber list.
For those who are starting from scratch here is a quick guide for your email marketing journey.
For email marketers, building a list of subscribers is the first step but it is also important to have subscribers that are active and fit your segment.
For instance, if you are a PR agency and thinking of announcing on behalf of your clients. In such a case, sending emails about the announcement to a list of reporters, who have probably never heard of you, would be considered spam according to the FTC.
Instead, you can send them to people who have a business relationship with you or are your clients, then you'll probably be okay.
So, first, you need to separate active users from inactive ones. As a result, what you will get is a narrow list of subscribers based on specific criteria which will be far easier to manage and helpful for a successful email list.
This will also allow you to retarget your subscribers base with extremely relevant content.
2. Make Your Emails Personal and Encourage Readers to Reply?
Once you are all set with your subscribers list, you need to start focusing on how your email subject and body will look like.
Before planning the subject line and body you need to remember that your email should be personalized and warm.
Personalization is important, let's assume, you can reach each one of your subscribers. This can be as though they’re someone you know or they are a trusted friend. So, you call your subscribers by name, provide them with messages, and deliver a perfectly tailored content as per their needs. As a result, your subscribers will always be excited and look forward to receiving emails from your brand.
Also, 74% of marketers said that targeted messages and personalization of emails improves customer engagement rates.
To personalize your email campaign, you should remember what can be personalized:
- Subject Line
- “From” name
- Email content
All five elements can help you create a great personalized experience for your reader.
Another important point to remember is to encourage your readers to reply. This is going to help you build a two-way conversation.
For your first email, you can ask your subscribers how they have been and what their current situation is. Or, you can simply send a thank you email for sticking around in hard times.
3. Make a Long Conversational Thread
Imagine opening your email this morning and 53 emails were sitting for you to open. To top it off, you clean up your spam and find it full with LI group notifications, newsletters, and other promotional emails.
This might get a little frustrating for anyone to review and reply to.
Just like that, customers can get frustrated with the pile of emails sitting in their inbox, that which they might not even bother to open. This will eventually hurt your campaign as you might end up in the spam or worst trash even before you catch the customer’s eye.
Creating a conversation threading allows you to set up a sequence for your emails. A thread also allows your contacts to receive emails in a single conversation.
Another advantage of threads is that it gives you the context of your contact and allows them to see all of their interactions with you in one place.
To keep the email thread running smoothly, you should use the reply button and keep the email subject intact to keep the email thread intact.
4. Include Interesting Offers and Discount and Add CTAs
We all like offers and discounts, especially those that are specially tailored for us.
For instance, Experian’s 2013 Q4 Email Benchmark report shows that emails with coupons have:
- A 14% higher open rate;
- A 34% jump in unique clicks;
- A 27% increase in transaction rates;
- 48% boost in revenue per email, compared to other types of promotional emails.
Using discount coupons or other irresistible offers in front of your customers can automatically create a call to action.
For example, if you are a cosmetic company. If your customer has been eyeing a product on your site but hasn't made a purchase yet. Then you can share personalized coupons and discounts on that product. This will increase your click-through rates and also CATs.
5. Use Marketing Automation Tools (& Track Subscribers)
Newsletters and one-off campaigns have become indispensable and will hold a place in your email marketing strategy.
But the smartest companies are stepping their games up. Most of the big brands have now started to set up automatic email campaigns that are triggered by a user’s actions.
Simple, because these automatic emails are personalized, timely, and hyper-relevant to the reader. This usually results in higher open rates and more clicks.
Let’s take an example, imagine if a brand wants to send an email to a user when they sign up in their app. This content of this email will both welcome them to the app and also guide them in an attempt to get them to become a frequent user.
But, creating and sending each of these emails manually will be a huge waste when they sign up. Rather, you can set up an automated welcome email whenever a new person Signups.
Email automation can help you set up email once and then as people trigger it, the email will continue to be sent to them without you ever having to lift a finger.
Email automation tools can help with that. There is a list of automation tools but it is always helpful to make a list of your requirements beforehand.
These tools also allow you to keep track of your subscriber.
6. Nurture Email Marketing Campaigns Until It Converts into a Lead
Email marketing benefits cannot be counted on your fingertips. But if you fail to nurture or convert your subscribers to leads then these benefits won't help you.
There are certain steps you need to follow to turn your subscriber into leads which will then convert to sales.
This is the last but most fragile step in email marketing. If you can nurture email marketing campaigns till it converts into a lead then it is the best use of email marketing.
Email marketing post-COVID-19 will hold the utmost importance in any marketing strategy. This also means that if businesses want to get back to work with a bang can utilize this strategy to its full potential.
In this blog post, I have shared 5 tips that I have personally used and have worked wonders for my marketing strategy.
Email marketing benefits are enormous and there is only one way to utilize it – trial and error. But, with these 6 steps, we aim to help you minimize these errors and swoop your customers off.