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Email Marketing: What is that?

Generally speaking, email marketing is the process of directly marketing a business offer to a group of people via their email addresses. You can probably understand why it generates a lot of emotional discussion in the marketing field, and why the Canadian government has introduced legislation to limit how we go about the business of emailing people whose business we desire. (See fightspam for more information about the legislation). Some people do abuse the process.

We all get a ton of email already and, just like in the days before the internet, nobody actually wants to see a stream of junk mail flooding out of their mailbox and into their life. Remember the days when we had to sort through stacks of paper flyers in order to get to the actual letters, bills and magazines in our mailbox? Well, that’s still happening in the real world to some extent. And the issue has made the leap to email. The Canadian government wants to limit how that works in the virtual world. Its regulations relate to how you build the list of email addresses you use for emailing, and we’ll get to that in a moment. For now, let’s look a little deeper at what email marketing is, and how it might help your business develop more leads.

How Email Marketing Develops into Leads

While every email you send to an existing or potential customer might be considered email marketing, we tend to think of “Email Marketing” as a specific process that involves the list of email addresses you’ve collected in order to stay in touch with your customer base. The emails you’re sending out might be promotional in nature (i.e. they tell people about a seasonal sale, special discount, short-term offer or other sales-oriented opportunity), or they might be designed to encourage customer loyalty and position your business more effectively in the marketplace.

Consider the Type of Content to Use in Your Email Marketing

If you manufacture gardening equipment, for example, and you’re bringing out a new model of weed whipper in time for next spring, you might send a promotional email out to your distributors this June offering a 15% discount on the current year’s models.

You might also decide to publish a regular newsletter to share information about your company, your products and your services, so that customers and prospects can learn more about you and “warm up” to the idea of doing business with you. This kind of “retention email” serves to increase brand recognition and help you stay connected with your clients while promoting your business at the same time.

You might also decide to send a “welcome” email to anyone who opts in to your list. Welcome letters can not only provide valuable information about your company, they can also serve as a vehicle for asking your new contacts for key information about the particular products or services they’re looking for. This can help you add them to a specific list that will let you fine tune your offer to them in future.

Other email campaign opportunities include sending out announcements on products or services, a newsletter regarding your company and/or or coupons for future purchases.

There is a lot more to know about email marketing and if you feel you would like more information about how my team and I can help your organization implement an email marketing program, please get in touch!

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