Email marketing is simply the act of sending an advertisement, usually in response to an individual inquiry, to an intended group of individuals. In its most comprehensive sense, every email that is sent as a solicitation, ad, announcement, or marketing message can be viewed as email marketing. It generally involves the use of email to send unsolicited advertisements, request company, collect donations or sales, or solicit personal information. It is often confused with “spam.” While spam may be annoying and unsolicited, it is legal under the CAN SPAM Act to use email for this purpose and within defined parameters. The distinctions between spam and email marketing are significant, and should not be mistreated as such.
As a marketing tool, email marketing seeks to reach the maximum number of recipients within the shortest period of time, and at the lowest cost. It aims to enhance the overall sales performance of the company by attracting new customers and keeping existing ones. For many businesses, this form of marketing works well because it is cost effective and targets a specific niche of consumers or target audiences. Also, with the use of targeted marketing campaigns, companies are able to maintain or increase their relationship with their target audience much longer, as opposed to traditional mass marketing efforts which fail to acknowledge the need of newer generations of clients and consumers.
There are many ways companies can go about implementing email marketing, such as through their own websites, through email advertising networks, through email marketing software, and through bulk emailing. It’s important that you select the correct technique depending on your company or product. If you are selling products online through your website, then you may wish to invest in a site specific email marketing software package, such as optinemail, which can capture email addresses of site visitors and keep these email addresses on file for customer reference. These email addresses can then be used to email customers directly with information related to the products or services on your site. Alternatively, you may wish to look into bulk emailing, where you can send large amounts of emails to a number of addresses that have already purchased from your company.
Once you have established a list of potential customers, you can start the actual email marketing campaign. One of the best methods of email marketing is through the use of auto-responders. Auto-responders are programs that allow you to automatically respond to any email that is sent to your company address. This helps you to save time when it comes to replying to any customer enquiries that they may have. Many times it’s easy to forget to reply back to an email that was sent to you and some people will avoid dealing with you if your auto-responder doesn’t automatically respond to their queries or concerns. With the help of a quality auto-responder service you can set up your email lists to suit your company’s marketing needs and create email marketing campaigns that will help in generate more sales and increase your market share.
The third most popular form of email marketing campaigns utilise email marketing to send out relevant free gifts to your target audience. Many companies use email marketing for sending out special offers such as free mousepads, pens, desks, etc, to their target audience. However, some companies also use email marketing campaigns to sell their own products or services by sending out mass emails regarding new releases or news about the company. The only disadvantage of this method is that if the email marketing is unsuccessful, you may end up wasting a lot of money sending out unsolicited emails which can be detrimental to the reputation of your company.
The last form of email marketing is called direct marketing and it consists of you contacting your target audience directly by placing a physical advertisement for your product or service on their doorstep. This may be done by placing an advert in a local newspaper or magazine, placing an advert on the side of a bus, etc. The beauty of direct marketing is that you can customise the email marketing campaign to fit the specific needs of your target audience. However, most of the businesses use this form of marketing because it is less expensive than other methods such as email marketing and you can customise the content of the message to exactly meet the needs of the people you are contacting.