Email marketing is not only one of the easiest ways to reach your customers, it is also one of the fastest and cheapest. The problem comes once you realize that today people are much less likely to give out their email address than in the past. Even still, both online and offline businesses really need to be focusing on collecting the email addresses of your customers and potential customers. Here are some reasons why along with a few tips to help get this vital marketing task handled.
Easier To Stay In Contact :
The most obvious reason for collecting all email addresses is the fact that this makes it much easier to stay in contact with both customers and prospective customers. In fact, you can even segment your overall list in order to send special message to each separate group or category.
Even as an offline business who might not have done any type of internet promotion in the past, this is still valuable. In fact, you can develop sweetheart deals and offers that make it easier for someone who might be sitting on the fence to make that first purchase. From there, you can give them incentives like discounts and maybe even create a VIP cub, develop a regular (weekly or monthly) newsletter so they can stay informed as well.
Market Related Companies, Services :
Something that many small businesses might overlook about email marketing these days is that the things you market don't necessarily need to be your own. That means you can go out there and find complimentary products that would be a good fit based on your customer's purchase history, or based upon what your prospect was looking for when they found you.
You could develop a significant secondary source of revenue coming into your business just through finding other products or services to promote, earning a nice commission on each sale. Obviously, you always need to take care of your customers so you never promote anything unless it is top quality and really does what it claims...which means you need to do your own research first.
Help To Reduce Service Calls & Claims :
Maybe your business is involved with the sale of a product or something that can potentially result in service calls or claims. Perhaps you sell something where having a little bit of training for it could make the customer even more successful, or even less frustrated? This customer service angle is very often overlooked as a reason for collecting email addresses.
You could create a series of emails, or even videos (or other mixed media messages and trainings) to provide all of the back end service, support and training your customers or clients could ever want. The beauty of this is the training only needs to be created once (and then updated every so often). After the initial time and effort, you're done. But, it will significantly impact your bottom line if you currently send out technicians for repairs other types of service calls.
Bottom Line :
Collecting email addresses is something all small businesses must do, whether you are primarily online or offline. Even something as simple as a corner sandwich or hot dog cart could collect business cards with emails, develop a small (or even large) mailing list and then send out discounts, enroll customers in VIP programs, and keep people informed with a nice little newsletter every month. After this, you will probably think of many ways to use email addresses. So, get started developing your own collection strategy.