“7 Email Marketing Best Practices For Local Businesses“ is a guest blog post written by Kevin George, Head of Marketing at Email Uplers, one of the fastest-growing PSD to HTML email coding companies.
Local businesses are looking for ways to expand their digital footprint now more than ever before, and email marketing is a critical component in any enterprise brand’s marketing strategy. Email marketing rewards all organizations, no matter big or small, local or international, if done correctly. In this article, we will discuss seven email marketing best practices for local businesses specifically.
Let’s quickly dive into how you can perfect and boost your email marketing strategy.
Define Your Email Marketing Plan
The first step is to define your email marketing strategy. This requires you to identify and consider the following:
- Who are your subscribers?
- Where does your product/service fit in your defined industry?
- What are your industry’s standards for email marketing performance?
- Do you have a tool or platform that can measure email marketing performance?
- What action should readers take after reading your email?
- How frequently are you planning to send email communication?
- How will you personalize your emails?
- What type of copy is best suited for your audience?
- What role does your email marketing play in your overall business strategy?
To establish a baseline for what your brand should primarily focus on, we explored how respondents replied to a recent survey when asked what were their primary objectives and challenges in their email marketing, to compare with yours:
In need of an email marketing platform? Mailchimp, Pardot, Marketo, and Campaign Monitor are some of the leading tools and top contenders to consider.
Make Subscribing Simple
You must ensure that those engaging with your outreach efforts find it completely effortless to subscribe to your newsletter. To help and encourage them to subscribe to your email updates, provide adequate call-to-action buttons on your website, blog posts, and landing pages. Also, ensure that your opt-in forms have the bare minimum fields required to make signing up a seamless process. Remember that you can always gather more data after they start engaging over emails.
For your existing subscribers, optimize your email messages for shareability. Combining shareability and useful content in your email marketing is a prime way to encourage your subscribers to find more leads on your behalf by sharing your email content.
Add Only Relevant Subscribers
Contrary to popular belief, it is not a best practice to add as many people as possible to your mailing list. Instead, it’s crucial to thoroughly vet your prospective contacts to ensure the content will be relevant and worthwhile for them to read on a regular basis.
Also, keep in mind your email service provider will charge you based on the number of contacts you have on your list. Adding irrelevant contacts will not only burden your budget but raise your unsubscribes. Try to keep your list clean and only add people who are genuinely interested in your products or service you provide.
Set Expectations From the Start
Avoid using a spammy subject line as most of the Email Service Providers (ESPs) are vigilant regarding their use. Additionally, knowing that 45% of all emails are spam, readers are already hesitant to open emails and a subject line that appears to be spam is just another method of deterring them from consuming your content. Another factor that invites spam complaints is emailing those who have not opted-in to receive your communications. Follow GDPR, CAN-SPAM, and CCPA guidelines by all means.
Keep Communications Succinct in the Beginning
To better become a successful business, you should rely on time-tested tactics when it comes to email marketing. While email marketing in itself is one of the most promising digital marketing channels, with 174% more conversions being generated by email marketing than social media, it’s clear when done right email marketing can be a powerful tool.
To set your brand up for success from the start, reward your new subscribers for joining your list by extending promotional offers. You can offer them one-time, personalized discount coupons or prompt them to provide you with their birthdate to send them a complimentary gift during their birth month. Keep your initial emails brief, conversational, and rewarding to encourage your readers to continue to engage with your brand.
Segment and Personalize
As an enterprise business, segmenting your audiences can be an easy way to kick start hyper-personalization. To do this, you will need to divide up your audience based on their demographic, such as their:
- Age group
- Purchase intent
- Marital status.
This aids in personalization efforts which is the main USP for local businesses. This information enables you to better optimize your subject lines, message copy, graphics, CTAs, offers, and overall relevancy.
Capitalize On A/B Split Testing
A/B split testing helps you send the best version of your message to your subscribers. With A/B Split testing, two different variations of your email are sent to a small part of your subscribers. The version which receives higher reception is then sent to your entire mailing list. This method, while it may seem to be advanced and arduous to implement, is one most common email marketing tools to better understand your audience’s preferences. It’s also a tool many email marketing providers provide.
For instance, if you are using Mailchimp, you can send different versions of the same Mailchimp email template with two different subject lines and diverse content structure. Thus, you can get better insights regarding what entices your consumers most to help improve your engagement and conversion rates. In turn, you can better make quick marketing decisions using concrete insights through it.
Actionable Email Marketing Tips For Local Businesses
To sum up, the email marketing best practices shared above, here are the key takeaways that local businesses should keep in mind for effective email marketing:
- Prioritize personalization and segmentation right from the start of your email marketing efforts. This is especially crucial for businesses with multiple locations that may have different offers and discounts.
- Stay honest and avoid any misleading activities.
- Spend adequate time crafting your subject line and preheader text. They play a pivotal role in defining success in your email efforts.
- Make it a point to optimize your emails for mobile devices. Adopt mobile-first, responsive email template designs as standard.
- Take care of the legalities, including footer and opt-in compliance.
- When you are in your initial phases of email marketing, Internet Protocol (IP) warming is a must.
- Integrate your email marketing strategy with digital marketing channels.
- In case of any policy updates, reach out to your readers to inform them.
- Limit your purely promotional communications.
- Use different types of email messages in accordance with your sales funnel.
- Focus on automating the process to save you time and effort.
Local businesses must find the marketing channels that are reliable, trustworthy, and provide the most return on investment. Email marketing is one of the only channels that requires low investment for a high return. Prioritize adopting email marketing best practices, like those mentioned above, and continue to refine your process to better suit the unique needs of your enterprise brand.
Kevin George is Head of Marketing at Email Uplers, one of the fastest-growing PSD to HTML Email coding companies, and specializes in crafting professional email templates, custom Mailchimp email templates design, and coding in addition to providing email automation, campaign management, and data integration & migration services. He loves gadgets, bikes, jazz, and eats and breathes email marketing. He enjoys sharing his insights and thoughts on email marketing best practices on his blog.