A Simple Tutorial in Quickly Becoming A Pro in Email Marketing

Every so often we hear that email has gone the way of the dodo, and that a new brilliant tactic will revolutionize the way we communicate digitally. Don’t buy the hype, folks. Email is still one of the greatest assets of digital marketing. I will get you up to speed with the nuts and bolts of email marketing and show you why it’s effective in growing your online operation. 

Let’s look at the basics in becoming an email marketer! 

Never Heard of Email Marketing?

Email marketing is used to do the following strategically: 

  • Get in touch with customers 
  • Introduce helpful information to customers 
  • Strengthen relations and increase sales 
  • Take them on the Customer Value Journey 

Achieving this is not going to happen only by sending well-written and easy to understand emails to potential customers.  Email is only one pillar of the entire marketing strategy; more is needed for engagement, acquisition and retention. 

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Let’s now see how to incorporate email into our wider plan of achieving great results. 

Why Bother With Email Marketing At All?

Many successful companies rely on email marketing because it is very effective in creating profit and growth. However, we are not after profit and growth. After you’re done chuckling to yourself, bear with me. 

It goes without saying that profit and growth are essential in any business’s success. However, dwelling on this aspect in email marketing confuses priorities. Email is meant to assist customers to go from one stage of the Customer Value Journey to another. If you focus on that, then profit and growth will come organically. 

Effective email marketing helps customers along the journey. But beware, there is a well-established structure to email marketing; there’s very little room for improvisation. If your campaign is to be successful, then you have to respect various rules, expectations and processes. 

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Follow The Rules To Be Successful

The first rule is to obtain permission before you decide to send anything to a prospect. Make sure that you are working with an email service provider with an established reputation. The best providers will give you the necessary tools to succeed: templates, tracking, automation that are optimized for mobile devices. Any of the following email service providers offer great tools for your email marketing campaign: 

  • Infusionsoft 
  • Campaign Monitor 
  • AWeber 
  • MailChimp 
  • Constant Contact 
  • Campaigner 
  • Drip 

All of the above mentioned providers have tools to run email marketing that respects regulations (CAN-SPAM Act and GDPR). 

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The second rule is to be absolutely upfront and honest about your actions. Namely, tell subscribers the types of emails they’ll be receiving and how often. And stick to it! One helpful tip is to outline your offer in the welcome email to your subscribers. 

The third rule is to offer things that will be interesting to your subscribers. Your subscribers should be used to reading your messages, which will happen only if you send relevant and helpful information. A good way to measure the relevancy of your emails is to observe your open, click-through, unsubscribe and response rates. This approach will make your email marketing campaign more effective. 

Developing Your Email Marketing Strategy

The purpose of email marketing is to offer information to your subscribers that creates trust and engagement. The best way of achieving this is offer them something valuable in exchange for their permission to send them emails. This is known as the Lead Magnet in the biz because people most interested in your offer will be attracted.  

Your lead magnet should be short and easy to understand that gives your prospect instant value.  

Think along the lines of: 

  • Checklists 
  • Instructional Videos 
  • eBooks 
  • Lists 
  • Samples 

Once you’ve gotten your subscribers, then you have to follow through and send them valuable and helpful emails like you promised. To get started, you need an effective email strategy that outlines precise results you want to attain. Think in terms of raising brand awareness, lead generation and sales. You will need to set your goals and define a success metric. Once you’ve done that, you will use a combination of the following types of emails to realize your goals. 

The first type of email is known as the transactional email. This type of email offers customer service in terms of invoices or billing notifications.  

The second type of email is the relational email, which engages your subscribers and is part of your content emails. Really, it can be any email that is not trying to make a sale. 

The third type of email is the promotional email, which is explicitly used to make a sale. The chart below illustrates what goals each type of email achieves. You will rely on a combination of all three. 

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You need an actual email campaign to build a fruitful relationship with your subscribers. 

Introducing Email Marketing Campaigns

An email marketing plan with a clearly defined strategy sends your messages to the exact stage of the customer journey where your subscribers are. Ideally, it relies on automation saving you from having to monitor daily where each email is sent. This is known as the Email Marketing Machine. 

In order to target everyone correctly, you will need to use 5 different campaigns: 

  • Indoctrination 
  • Engagement 
  • Ascension 
  • Segmentation 
  • Re-engagement 

Don’t fret if this seems a little too much. Each campaign type is very logical and easy to understand. We will now go into detail about each campaign type, what stage they’re designed for and how they function. 

Indoctrination

This email is sent to new subscribers to welcome them, tell them about your offer and hopefully get them looking forward to your emails. This campaign is made up of usually 3 emails, which are sent every 24 hours. This is a common structure of the campaign: 

  • Introduce new subscribers to your brand 
  • Offer helpful information to your subscribers 
  • Show them some of your best content 

Let’s take a look at an example:  

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A helpful tip when sending this type of email is to make sure that your message is consistent, since these emails are sent to new subscribers. Be sure to mention any previous emails and get them excited for the next one. 

Engagement

This step of your email marketing campaign starts when a subscriber does something. Maybe they filled out a survey which indicated that they are interested in a specific topic. Now, you will send them emails on that topic. This step of the journey aims to turn your subscribers into buyers with amazing offers taking into account their previous actions. 

Let’s recap. You first inform your prospect that they’re receiving the information based on their expressed interest in a particular topic. Then, make an offer or present a solution while also responding to any objections that may arise with accepting the offer/solution. Finally, make sure your prospect understands why accepting this action is logical based on their previous actions. 

Take a look at a sample engagement email: 

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Ascension

This step of the campaign is geared toward moving the customer along their customer journey. The ascension campaign occurs after the purchase of the product. The idea here is to turn your one-time buyer into a regular customer by informing them what next step they should take. 

Follow this outline to make your Ascension Campaign successful: 

  • Applaud them for their purchase. 
  • Present the next logical step and respond to any potential concerns. 
  • Instruct them clearly on how they should proceed. 
  • Kindly ask them to make a purchase or take some action. 

Here’s an example: 

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Segmentation

The target here is your entire subscriber list that is used to determine who is interested in a topic. The subscribers who are interested will click on the link and will be “segmented”. These subscribers are then led into an engagement campaign. 

When running this type of campaign, consider sending blog posts, videos or even gated content. Don’t hesitate to use coupons, sales or special offers to entice your subscribers. Try to have them attend your webinars, workshops or consultations. 

Please note that this type of campaign is geared toward making it easier to enter the ascension campaign. 

Here’s an example: 

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Re-Engagement

This campaign does what its name implies; its goal is to re-engage a subscriber who hasn’t clicked on your link in the past month or couple of months. This campaign tries to rebuild a relationship with the subscriber and hopefully drive sales. 

Once you’ve identified the inactive subscribers from the past 30-90 days, send them a motive to re-engage with you. Then bring them up to speed on all the fun things they’ve missed and offer them exciting content to get them interested in your brand. 

Take a look at this great example:  

Image Source: Digital Marketer

Please note that if they don’t re-engage, don’t fret! Simply send them your best-performing emails on a weekly basis.  

Making Good Use of Email Automation

As you’ve probably noticed, email marketing in a complex undertaking, but luckily your email service provider can help you automate the process. Don’t worry if you’re not tech savvy, the process is built in your provider. Typically, your email service provider allows you to send emails in two different ways. The usual broadcast emails which offer content and promotions. You send these manually. You can also send emails as autoresponders. These emails are sent only when someone carries out any of the following actions: 

  • Subscribing 
  • Asking for a lead magnet 
  • Signing up for an event you’ve organized 
  • Buying something 
  • Clicking on a link 
  • Not following through on a purchase; abandoning a shopping cart 
  • Remaining an inactive subscriber and not engaging with emails 

Check out this autoresponder map: 

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Getting Started

When setting up your automation, consider where the person is on their Customer Journey and what they need to hear when they take any of the mentioned actions. How do you convince them to move forward to the next logical step on their journey? Once you’ve taken all of these points into account, you can set up your campaign. 

How Do I Know If My Email Marketing Strategy Is Working?

Have a look at the metrics given to you by your email service provider. 

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  • List Growth: Is your subscriber list growing? Compare the rate of new subscribers to those who unsubscribed. 
  • Delivery Percentage: This is simply the percentage of emails that are delivered to your subscribers. It should be at least 95%. 
  • Open Rate: The rate at which your emails are opened in relation to the amount sent. 
  • Click-Through Rate (CTR): The rate at which your emails are clicked relative to the amount sent or opened. 
  • Unsubscribe Rate: Pretty self-explanatory; the percentage of unsubscribed emails in relation to the amount sent. 
  • Complaint Rate: This is an important metric, which indicates the percentage of emails marked as Spam in relation to the amount sent. 

How Effective is Email Marketing Really ?

Pretty darn effective, actually! Email marketing regularly produces the higher Return on Investment (ROI) than any other marketing strategy. It is important to synchronize your content and marketing campaigns in such a way that you reel in new subscribers, build strong relationships with them and help them along their journey.  

If you follow the process outlined here, your emails will be opened and your business will expand exponentially!