At Digital Freak, we’ve always stood by email marketing – the oldest and still one of the most rewarding and functional ways to connect with customers. This medium has really come to the fore during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing an effective way to share important information in a regular, readable and enticing format. In fact, according to HubSpot, emails are up by more than 44%! Here’s are some great tips from our digital marketing agency on how your business can use email marketing to connect, inform and grow.
Email Marketing – How to Get Your Tone and Content Right
There are several approaches that different brands are using with their email marketing content.
- Some are back to business as usual with no mention of COVID-19 at all – these are usually the businesses who are essentially operating as normal as restrictions have lifted.
- Others are using email to inform customers of the safety precautions they are taking, the new or limited services they are offering, or the support they are giving to charities and frontline workers during the pandemic.
- Many are using email to bring a little positivity back to their clients through uplifting specials and perks.
In order to be successful, your emails shouldn’t regurgitate dire forecasts or information everyone has seen 100 times before. You want to authentically and naturally weave relevant information into your marketing material. According to Twillo, 37% of surveyed consumers said that they best responded to content that was inspiration and helped them.
For example, you can find inspirational stories that connect with your brand and what it means to be part of your community. You can share uplifting stories from your employees and clients, or connect with your customer’s immediate needs or solving a problem or objection.
It’s Not All About Selling
Unsurprisingly, almost every industry is currently struggling to meet sales targets and, although open rates for emails have increased, BounceX research showed that there’s only been a 1.5% increase in conversions and a 0.4% increase in sales. This is due to a number of factors, from suppliers being closed down and industries being limited by restrictions to consumers facing personal financial limitations from salary cuts and general uncertainty in an economic crisis. This doesn’t mean that email marketing isn’t having an effect, however.
During a crisis, email marketing can play an important role in brand awareness and upliftment for consumers that really pays off in the longer term. Marketing that focuses on fear and anxiety (even time-limited offers) tend to fail where content that shows compassion, community and care generate effective returns. You can see this in the increased read-rates of email marketing content even in hard-hit industries like travel, tourism and food.
Industries that show an ability to connect with the consumer and offer value get the best responses – something that has been clearly seen in the food and restaurant industry. Restaurants that have pivoted to sharing online cooking videos, meal kits and safety-first takeaways offer an escape from boredom, help with everyday tasks and convenience for busy, stressed out consumers.
Click and open rates have also been exceptionally high for industries who have cancelled physical engagements and adopted digital alternatives, especially those who are assisting with relevant and critical services like online learning, home office equipment and services, digital meeting and collaboration tools and computer or IT support.
It is also helping organisations that relied on brick-and-mortar stores or face-to-face interaction to adapt to a new normal for business. Email marketing is an effective way of informing your regular customers of how they can access your goods and services as you switch to ecommerce, as well as help make them aware of your ecommerce facilities as this becomes and increasingly crowded space.
Don’t Overdo It!
It’s a difficult balance to achieve, but you don’t want your brand to go from informative and helpful to annoying spam. Some tips to follow include:
- Limit your number of emails – One email a week is plenty! And if you don’t have anything new to say, wait another week or two rather than repeat yourself.
- Use segmentation – Only send out information to the segment of your customer base that will find it relevant. Email marketing has come a long way in recent years and there are easy ways to break up your subscribers according to their interests, location and even shopping habits. This way, you don’t spam your entire customer base with information that’s only relevant to 25% of them!
- Change it up – Not every email should be about COVID-19. If restrictions or your services change, then sure – send out an email. Otherwise, look for ways that your brand can be useful and uplifting. Find ways you can cheer your customers up (discounts, inspirational content or specials), help them out (entertain kids, solve remote working issues, help with tasks around the home, etc.) or add value (discounted vouchers they can use when you are back in operation, a free hand sanitiser or 3-ply mask with every order, etc.).
Get Creative, Inspiring and Informative with Your Email Marketing!
Want your marketing emails to inform, inspire and incentivise your customers? Our talented email marketing team is ready to assist you. Our digital marketing agency helps clients of every size, from every industry, and anywhere in Australia to realise the power of truly great email marketing. Contact us today and find out how we can help you stand out and get found online!