Starting a new or small business can be both exhilarating and challenging. We know because we’ve been there! In the digital age, one of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal is communication with your audience. When it comes to cost-effective communication tactics for small and new businesses, email marketing can’t be beat.
How does email marketing work for small businesses?
There are five key elements you need to succeed with small business email marketing:
- Define your goals: It’s crucial to sync your goals with your email list and available tools. Doing so ensures that every email you send has a clear purpose and aligns seamlessly with your desired outcomes. You also want to make sure you’re realistic with your expectations. Generating leads via email often requires a long-term strategy in which you engage with and grow your audience over time. Don’t give up just because no one responds to your first blast!
- Choosing the right email platform: Having the right tools is an essential part of any job. For small business marketing, that means selecting the right email marketing software. Sure, you could build all of your lists and campaigns manually, but you have a business to run. Using a platform unlocks automation, best practices, design tools, and a seamless email campaign process.
- Email list building: The art of list building lies at the core of successful email marketing. This entails gathering email addresses from your website, social media profiles, signup forms, events, and other channels. To kickstart an email campaign, you’ll need an active email list with a well-organized database of contacts. Consider setting up engaging signup forms or popups to expand your contact list further.
- Email design and content creation: Start with an eye-catching template, infuse intrigue with an enticing subject line, and follow up with a compelling pre-header. Keep your content concise yet powerful, complemented by engaging visuals such as images and videos. To truly make your message pop, introduce bold colors, scannable elements, and visually appealing elements.
- Testing and tracking: Before you set your emails free into the digital world, give them a trial run to ensure everything is in perfect order before reaching your subscriber base. Once your campaign sets sail, keep a keen eye on its performance. Monitor metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversions.
How do I start email marketing as a beginner?
Starting email marketing as a beginner can seem like a daunting task, but with the right steps, it’s an achievable and powerful tool for your business.
Here’s how you can incorporate the five main elements of email marketing in a step-by-step process to get started:
Step 1: Create your email marketing strategy
- Define your campaign goals: Decide if you want to send promotional, transactional, or other types of emails.
- Choose from common email types like blast emails, monthly newsletters, welcome emails, promotional emails, and reminder emails to suit your objectives. Sequences like welcome emails followed by promotional or reminder emails can be effective at building engagement with your audience.
Step 2: Choose the right email marketing platform
- Select an email marketing tool that aligns with your business needs, ensuring it offers essential functionalities and fits your budget. These platforms streamline list management and provide valuable performance metrics.
- We’ll save you some time here: use ActiveCampaign. It’s the best software we’ve come across for small businesses (and we’re not getting paid to say that!).
Step 3: Build your list
- Grow your email list by manually collecting contacts, adding signup forms to your website, and leveraging your social media presence.
- Consider offering incentives, like discounts or downloadable content, to encourage sign-ups.
- Avoid buying lists. They’re generally outdated and can lead to compliance issues.
Learn how to build your email list, fast!
Step 4: Create your emails
- Focus on clean, simple designs that effectively convey your message. Consider whether plain text or branded emails work best for your audience.
- Craft compelling subject lines that pique interest and provide motivation.
- Keep the messaging clear and include a strong call to action.
- Tailor your language to resonate with your target demographic.
Here are our designer’s top tips.
Step 5: Send the campaign and analyze the results
- Use your chosen email platform to send out your campaign and gather data on its performance.
- Analyze metrics to identify areas for improvement.
- Test different elements through A/B testing to refine your approach and enhance future campaigns.
You may also be interested in: The benefits of email marketing for small businesses
Ready to do some email marketing for your small business?
Email marketing is a vital tool for new and small businesses. It’s affordable, it’s effective, and it’s a great way to maintain two-way communication with your customers. Remember, it’s not just about sending emails; it’s about building lasting relationships with your audience. We hope these five key elements and steps have given you the confidence to get going. If you’d like some help along the way, we’re here for you!