Think email is dead? Think again. Email marketing is still one of the most powerful and effective methods for reaching your target audience and converting them into raving fans, curious readers, and satisfied customers. The trend is even pointing to more usage from younger generations, so email marketing doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. However, if you own or manage marketing in your business, you might be wondering exactly what email marketing entails and how to implement it.
Email marketing is simple in concept. You build a list by getting your target audience to give you their email address. The incentive you use for this email exchange can be in the form of a discount, free product, special report, or informative weekly newsletter. The key is to provide value to the subscriber, so they actually look forward to your emails. Then you have the best thing a business can hope for – a direct line of communication to your market.
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Email marketing features range from automated follow-up sequences, to product promotions, to clickable links, and more. To get the most out of your email marketing campaigns, consider the five software options below:
HubSpot is one of the leading email marketing software products out there today. You may have seen one of their many authoritative articles on digital marketing on their main website. The company is known for offering advice on landing pages, ads, sales pages, email marketing campaigns, and other areas of marketing.
HubSpot has professional software meant for businesses that want to grow fast. Their features include a number of unique selling points that you may want to consider. For instance, with HubSpot you can easily upload your entire email list through the use of a CSV (spreadsheet) file. This kind of simplicity makes it incredibly easy to transfer your list to their software suite. This is true if you are currently using other email software, or if your emails are just stored in a file or your Gmail account somewhere.
Once you have loaded your contacts into HubSpot, the real fun begins. You can start segmenting your list into different categories. This is helpful, for example, when you have a list of people and some of them have purchased your core product and others have yet to pull the trigger.
By separating your list you can effectively deliver the right message to each subscriber based on their point in the sales cycle. Obviously, sending a “one day only deal” email on your product to someone who just purchased it will annoy them and make them think you aren’t paying attention to them. However, someone who is on the fence might never purchase your product if you don’t send them a reminder. Segmenting your list on HubSpot gives you the best of both worlds. You can time your emails appropriately to embrace the full scale of lifecycle email marketing: sending the right things at the right time for higher profitability and less wasted marketing dollars.
Although there are different options, ranging from free to $2,400 a month, the Professional option at $800 a month gives you access to all of the functions you’ll need to get your email marketing off the ground.
Campaigner offers a number of email features that you can leverage. It is especially useful for companies that have recurring revenue business models. The automation allows you to “set it and forget it” so you can create the system once and let it run forever.
This means you don’t waste as much overhead on marketing or creating new emails each time your customer reaches the point of renewing your service. With Campaigner the email automation features, like “auto reply” and “list merge”, mean that once a customer has purchased from you, you can send them follow up sequences and keep them engaged.
During the set-up process, you can make a number of sequences that change and adjust depending on how far along in the sales process your prospect is. For example, if you have a core product but also have upsells, you want to send them opportunities to buy the upgrades. However, you don’t always want to do this all at once. You can space out the repetition of your emails, whether it’s daily, weekly, monthly, or longer. Evaluate your sales cycles and determine the correct sequence for you.
Campaigner isn’t cheap, but it is worth it if you need this type of segmenting. Subscription options are broken down by how many contacts you have. Prices range from $19.95 a month for up to 1,000 contacts to $549.95 a month for 100,000 contacts. Each subscription level also brings with it more features.
Pardot is gaining steam as a big competitor to HubSpot and others. It started out with a simple feature set. Now, this email marketing software is as robust as anything out there.
If you sell info products or use a webinar approach, you will love how easy it is to integrate your lists from one platform to another. For example, Webinar Jam is a software that lets you gather emails from your live sales presentations. From here, Pardot allows integration by default, so with a few clicks you gain complete control over who sees what when you queue up new emails.
Pardot is perfect for medium or large businesses and its price reflects how robust it is. Pardot starts at $1,000 a month.
If you have done any research on email marketing, you will have heard of MailChimp. It is a great starter software. If you run a small freelancing gig, a web agency, or a growing startup, MailChimp offers affordable options, as well as the ability to start for free. More advanced plans cost upwards of $75 a month.
MailChimp has a template system that makes it incredibly easy to make new emails, insert links, pictures, and more with a few clicks. If you want to provide a free report as part of your lead capture system, you simply upload a .PDF, embed a video, or link back to your site to keep them engaged.
Zoho is not just a CRM (customer relationship management) software, contrary to popular belief. Actually, it is even better. It allows syncing of phone leads, email leads, and in person leads by leveraging a simple-to-use interface. This is a great feature if your leads come from places other than just email campaigns. The price is hard to beat as well, starting at $0 and moving up to $20 per month. You can even design splash pages that offer information on next steps and how to view the email you are sending to ensure they don’t end up in someone’s spam folder.
When it comes to email marketing, it can seem overwhelming at first. However, it doesn’t need to be. You can focus on building your list and adding value to your customers while you let the software do the heavy lifting. Analyze the options above and select the best fit for your company based on your current needs. Then sit back and enjoy more exposure, conversions, and profit for your company.