Email marketing has been around for over fifty years and has since then been providing businesses with masses of opportunities to engage with new audiences. More than 3.9 billion email addresses worldwide, with billions of emails sent from one inbox to another every day. This marketing channel has evolved over the years and remains the number one marketing channel for B2B and B2C marketers around the world.
Email marketing is known to boost ROI by 4400%, and this isn’t just reserved for the big players. According to a study, over 73% of consumers said they prefer email as their marketing channel, while 80% of business professionals consider email a vital aspect of customer retention.
Even if you are a small business with a smaller marketing budget, you can still profitably with the right email marketing strategies. Email marketing can play a major role in creating lasting, profitable relationships with small businesses and customers but depends on the strategy. Email marketing is a twofold process, as both the sender and the receiver benefit from it.
With the help of this marketing channel, a small business can gain more subscribers, increase brand awareness, customer engagement, communicate effectively, understand its target audience, and increase its revenue. In addition, the customers also get to fulfill their needs and desires by purchasing products and services, staying up to date with your company’s new offerings, and being the first to avail of discounts and deals.
Small businesses can also benefit more from email marketing as it gives the opportunity of your offer to stand out and expand the space for storytelling. Email marketing, like any other marketing channel, is constantly changing. So it becomes important to keep track of the new and upcoming email marketing trends and implement them for 2022.
This article will discuss the growing email marketing strategies and trends for small businesses in 2022.
How does email marketing work for small businesses?
Before we understand small business email marketing tactics and strategies, we must first understand how email marketing works. The five main elements of email marketing are:
- Email list building – List building is a process in which you collect email addresses from visitors and customers. This can be done using a website, social media accounts, signup forms, events, etc. The first thing you need to start an email campaign is an active email list with a database of email contacts. Next, you can create signup forms or popups to build a contact list.
- Define your goals – The first thing you should do while setting out an email campaign is align your goals with your email list and tools to achieve your desired outcome.
- Choose the right type of emails– There are many email campaigns such as welcome, promotional, seasonal, triggered, post-purchase, cart abandonment, etc. You should choose the email based on your goals and business size, needs, audience, and resources.
- Email design and content creation– While crafting an email, you have to design your email template with an attractive subject line, a pre-header, concise content, and visual-like images and videos. Then, since most recipients skim through the information, you have to make the email eye-catching by adding bold colors, fun fonts, and appealing visuals to stand out.
- Testing the emails and tracking the results – Before sending out the emails, you have to test it out by sending it to your family and friends, so they can give you feedback before it is sent to your email list. Then, once the email campaign starts, you have to check how it’s performing and make changes accordingly constantly.
What are the benefits of email marketing for small businesses?
Email marketing strategies are essential for every type of business because they kickstart the sales process, strengthen it and increase customer awareness regarding the brand. In addition, a carefully curated email campaign can boost conversions and customer acquisition. Whether you’re a B2B or a B2C company, email marketing strategy is still an integral part of the sales funnel. It evokes a sense of awareness, interest, decision, and action for the customers.
The main benefits of email marketing for small businesses are
Reach to a wider audience
Social media does not have the reach that email marketing has, as not everybody uses the new social media platform. And so, email bridges that gap and caters to a larger audience. In addition, the advent of smartphones has also made it easier for businesses to reach out to their customers over email.
Encourages leads to take action.
Your email subject line and its content inspire a prospective customer to purchase your product or service. So, make sure to add exciting offers with a clear tone and write content that triggers a response from them.
Allows you to be creative and experiment
Email marketing gives a small business a perfect platform to be creative and experiment with their ideas and strategies. The subject line and the content, visuals, and the nature of the email can be designed creatively, as you have the room to make changes based on its performance.
Boost your sales
When you automate emails based on your customer’s behavior, there are high chances that they are impressed by your email and will purchase a product or service. According to MarketingSherpa, over 67% of marketers say that delivering highly relevant content with a click-bait subject line is a strategic goal their organization wants to achieve through email marketing.
After you implement an email drip campaign, you will notice a measurable impact in your company’s open, click-through, bounce rates, higher ROI, and other analytics. It is also easy to achieve high numbers once you utilize marketing automation.
Increase in customer retention rate leads
Email is your best tool for engaging new customers and retaining the loyalty of older customers. Since emails can boost the engagement rate between a company and its customers, consistent communication will lead to trust, which will increase the customer retention rate. Besides retaining existing clients, it also helps nurture new leads by offering them promotions, offers, incentives, resources, etc.
Invest less but gain more
The biggest advantage of an email campaign for small businesses is that it brings in a higher ROI with very little investment. In addition, an email campaign is cost-effective than a social media campaign and allows small businesses to communicate with their potential leads. This way, the small businesses can reach a wider audience while keeping their expenditure low.
Top email marketing strategies and tips for small businesses
Additional Offers and free shipping
When a recipient signs up for your email campaign, offers and incentives are the notifications they want to receive from you—offering discounts or sales motivates shoppers to buy your product or services and spend more. Incentivizing your recipients will not only encourage them but will also help businesses to expand their market. Email marketing is known to be the fastest and the most effective way to communicate your latest offer.
So, when you have to do special promotion on a particular product or service, you can offer a certain percentage off and watch your sales increase. On the other hand, free shipping has become the golden standard while offering incentives. You can make the free shipping work for your small business by setting up restrictions. For example, you have to set a minimum order amount to qualify for free shipping while offering free shipping. This way, you are not losing profits when offering free shipping.
Personalize your emails
With email click-through rates and open rates consistently decreasing over the years, it is important to grab the recipient’s attention with the help of some personalization in emails. For example, instead of sending generic messages, you can add a salutation with a name that can be enough to attract your subscriber. In addition, you can personalize emails by using behavioral targeting and letting a recipient or subscriber know when you are coming out with a new product or when there are on sale. You can also send your best leads a special discount to thank them for your loyalty.
These types of emails will bring in more sales and a higher ROI. For a small business, the engagement rate of your emails is directly proportional to the amount of personalization you add to your emails. Personalized emails help you stand out within an inbox because it is highly relevant and provide tailor-made content. For example, a customized element in an email can be based on the name, location, interest in certain products, content download, last purchase of your company, position on the customer path, landing pages they visited, etc.
Encourage signups in your emails.
Emails subscribers are considered soft leads that can become full-fledged customers or clients. According to a study done by the DMA report, over 60% of users sign up for an email newsletter to receive information on offers and sales. Replacing a link with an opt-in signup form is known to increase your newsletter subscription rate by 20 – 50%. There are many ways you can add signup forms in your emails; the most common ways are when you ask for email signups within your contest or giveaway entry form.
Make sure to keep your email short, easy, and accessible. While the placement of the signup also makes a difference, it also depends on your site design, audience, and industry. The most common places are the top header, after a post, footer, or even as a popup box. Of course, you also have to add email signup forms everywhere appropriate in your (homepage, contact page, and your footer) website.
Send updates about your brand.
Email marketing is the best medium to keep your loyal subscribers informed. Nowadays, every customer expects to get order notifications through email when purchasing products and services. Therefore, it is essential to allow the customers to track their orders and schedule their delivery. Abandonment cart email campaigns are the best strategies to remind customers and inspire action.
The product update email campaigns also help the customers stay updated as it delivers information about the improvements and secure the customer’s trust in the product. Product updates are also helpful in keeping the users engaged, promoting new features, and driving traffic to the website. You can also connect with subscribers on special occasions like birthdays, anniversaries, festivals like Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Christmas, etc. These types of emails make the customer feel special.
Mobile responsive emails
A responsive email is usually customized for the recipient’s chosen device. The responsive email templates are designed with coding to display perfectly on the screen size they are viewed in. Since most people nowadays have a smartphone, it is important to come up with mobile-responsive emails, as it shows up perfectly on a mobile screen.
Mobile optimization allows you to have greater visibility, reach and improves the overall user experience. Mobile responsive email is also known to increase sales and generate more engagement. If you do not implement it, your subscribers will face difficulties reading your emails, which will lead to the recipient facing a negative experience and then losing trust in the brand.
Give them the option to unsubscribe
An unsubscribe link allows recipients to cancel their subscription when they don’t want to receive email from your brand. This link is often placed in the footer of the email and is added in an email to protect the brand’s email deliverability rate and avoid being moved to the spam and junk folder. If you are a small business, it is crucial to let go of your customers, which will be more beneficial for the company.
A tip here is to always add the unsubscribe option somewhere on your email copy, so recipients who want to leave can leave. This way, you can easily filter out the leads that are not interested in your brands and focus on the ones that take the time to read, engage and share your emails. Also, make sure to provide them with quality content in your emails; that way, most recipients won’t bother to look for the unsubscribe button.
Attractive email subject line
A good catchy or attractive subject line will help you convince the recipient that the emails contain information that can benefit them. You should make the subject line to create a good first impression because this is what determines whether or not the recipient will open your email. Unfortunately, when you are a small business, it is difficult to come up with an email subject line that will capture the recipient’s attention.
To ensure your brand stands out in the recipient’s inbox, you have to be direct and convey the important information in a few words. You can also add emojis or certain words that will create a sense of urgency and lead to the customer purchasing your product or services. The email subject line should be relevant to your recipient’s needs, interests or likes.
Be transparent and honest with your products and services.
When it comes to email marketing, especially for a small business, you have to remember that honesty is the best policy. It would be best to be completely transparent about your products and services and their features. Ensure not to send them something they did not sign up for and send them the kind of content or information they expect from you. You should advertise your products in the best light but do not make false promises to your customers, as they can otherwise lose interest in your business.
Email marketing is still the most preferred channel of communications for digital marketers of both B2B and B2C brands. Over the years, email marketing has helped small businesses reach their target audience. But to be successful with this medium, it is essential to use the correct strategies, tools, and metrics. With the email marketing strategies above, any small business can make a name for itself in its industry. Make sure to focus on your deliverables, quality of the content, and customer needs and watch your leads, sales, and ROI increase.