Mar 22 2010

Email Marketing Works – Here’s Proof

Email marketing has become an integral part of small business marketing success.  Today’s small business owner understands the importance of using email in their business.

I talked recently about what type of information to include in emails to your customers and why you don’t need a website to launch an email campaign.

Today I want to stress WHY you should be using email.  With email you can:

  1. Direct customers to your website
  2. Announce your latest projects
  3. Target your audience
  4. Track who opens your email and what they’re interested in
  5. Get feedback from customers
  6. Crate a much larger impact on immediate sales and long-term relationship strength than traditional advertising
  7. Provide training
  8. Save money – no paper, printing, postage
  9. Increase sales – It’s easier to sell to existing customers than it is to find new customers
  10. Provide product support
  11. Build trust with customers
  12. Educate customers on consumer trends
  13. Put your business on autopilot with autoresponders
  14. Notify customers of current events
  15. Offer free or discounted products/services
  16. Measure results with tracking

Need Proof? Look At These Statistics.

The Ad Effectiveness Survey commissioned by Forbes Media in Feb/March 2009 revealed that email and e-newsletter marketing are considered the second-most effective tool for generating conversions, just behind SEO.

79% of consumers have signed up to receive e-mail at least from one company, according to Forrester Research, and two out of three people surveyed said they read e-mail every day of the week. (E-commerce Times)

E-mail marketing delivers a US$51.45 return on investment (ROI) for every marketing dollar spent, according to the Direct Marketing Association.

A survey of 55,000 consumers by Decision Direct Research revealed that the number of respondents that visited a Web site when they received an e-mail promotion increased to 62 percent in 2007. (E-commerce Times)

66% of those surveyed said they had made a purchase because of a marketing message received through email. – ExactTarget, “2008 Channel Preference Survey” (2008)

2/3rd of US Internet users surveyed said email was their preferred channel for written communications between friends. – ExactTarget, “2008 Channel Preference Survey” (2008)

Consumers who receive both email and direct mail on average contribute about $17 in revenue and $4 in margin per household.- Merkle “Driving Successful Email and Direct Mail Integration” (2010)

‘Social media ROI’ was an important buzzword for 36% of executives. – Anderson Analytics and Marketing Executives Networking Group “Marketing Trends Report 2010” (2010)

58% of US Marketing Executives feel ‘Marketing ROI’ is currently the most important buzzword/trend to pay attention to. – Anderson Analytics and Marketing Executives Networking Group “Marketing Trends Report 2010” (2010)

Email presently generates 21.6% of total revenue from campaigns. – Direct Marketing Association “The Integrated Marketing Media Mix” (2008)

Discussion

What would you add to the list of reasons you should use email?  Have you seen any interesting statistics that reinforce the importance of using email?  Please share your comments below.

Mar 19 2010

Does Your Business Make Noise Or Make Beautiful Music?

I was reading an old magic book the other day, “Tarbell Course in Magic”, published in 1927.  One particular paragraph really jumped off the page for me.  I would like to share it because I think it has a valuable lesson you can apply to your business.

“There is a big difference between a magician and a man who does tricks.  One can give medicine to a friend but that does not make him a doctor.  Giving medicine is only a small factor.  One must be able to diagnose, so as to treat, and be trained for emergencies.  It requires years to make a physician.”

The author was making the point that the making of a magician is no different than that of other professional people.  A business owner must be trained in the mechanics of business, the alternate methods of operation, and be skilled in delivering the company’s product or service.  Background is crucial to success.  You must understand business and your customers.

A musician is not just a person who plays a piece of music.  He had to first learn the scales, then how to combine notes into harmony.  Proper timing is also important.  Studying music history builds an understanding of art.  Many individual elements create the “whole” musician.

Your business is much like the musical instrument.  A business owner must learn how to play the instrument.  One person plays a guitar and the audience cringes at the awful sound.  Carlos Santana plays his guitar and you immediately know the music comes from his soul, mesmerizing his audience with beautiful music, holding them spellbound for hours.  The difference – he spent hours on fundamentals to ensure he had a foundation on which he could build his unique sound.

One business owner sends an email to his list and 50% of the recipients unsubscribe because they feel it was spam.  Another entrepreneur sends an email, and customers rush back to his place of business or hurry to check out his website to get more information.

He is successful because he understands business fundamentals.  Things like It’s About Them, Not You or Customers Buy Benefits, Not Features.  He understands what marketing really means.  He also knows it’s important to be authentic.  All these pieces form the successful business.  Leave any fundamental out, and you start on a path to failure.

This sounds so simple, many will overlook the importance of the basics.  I often get caught up in the latest greatest technology or some cool new shiny object.  There’s a time a place for these things, but they won’t help if I don’t have a strong foundation to build on.

What are some fundamental practices you should be reviewing for your business?  Do you think it’s important or a waste of time?