Email newsletters (EDMs) continue to be streets ahead of other digital marketing assets as an effective, cheap and easy way to target customers.
In the ever-evolving world of digital marketing, it’s easy to be swept up in the Cult of the New.
What’s the latest social media craze? What’s the ‘it’ influencer of the moment posting? And even though it’s a game held in another country and a game few Australians even understand, who doesn’t love the revealing of the latest star-studded, tech-heavy, super-funny Super Bowl ads?
While the popularity of different social media platforms rise and fall, while marketers find ways of wowing us with new technology, while online trends come and go, it might surprise you to learn that the most effective digital marketing tool is the grandfather of the digital marketing mix, and one as old as the internet itself.
Electronic direct mail (EDMs), also known as email newsletters, continue to be streets ahead of other digital marketing assets as an effective, cheap and easy way to target customers at every stage of the buying cycle.
Here’s what you need to know to up your email newsletter game.
What is an email newsletter campaign (or EDM)?
EDM stands for electronic direct mail and generally refers to the email component of your marketing mix.
The success of your EDM depends on two things: a large and responsive database of emails, and effective and results driven EDM content.
Describing what EDMs are used for is a bit like trying to describe what an animal is: sure, they’re all living things, but they vary widely in how they look, what they do, and their place in the world. EDMs may have the commonality of all being emails, but that’s where the similarities end.
Generally, though, EDMs fall into one of two categories: boosting brand awareness or sales conversion.
The role of brand-building EDMs is to increase awareness of your offering, your unique sales proposition, and why your business is a trusted leader in the field. They include industry updates, product news, product profiles, instructions and tutorials, among other things, and are really useful at the top end of the sales funnel, targeting people who are new to your business. In some marketing circles, these are referred to as ‘email campaigns’ rather than EDMs.
Sales focused EDMs have the singular purpose of sales conversion; the pointy end of the sales funnel. These email blasts often include time-sensitive promotions, new product alerts, and cross- promotional offers.
Why are email newsletters a crucial part of the marketing mix?
Email newsletters are a quick and inexpensive way to directly reach a large number of people, but they are at their most effective when they work with all the other elements of your marketing mix.
Say, for example, you send out an email blast, promoting an offer that expires at midnight. The offer in the EDM may be enticing enough to get the recipient to click on the link, but then it’s up to the website and its UX (user experience) to drive that interest to becoming a sale.
Similarly, an EDM might introduce a new product with a click-through to a YouTube video tutorial, which then has the job of converting information to interest and then to a sale.
There’s an established truth in marketing, which we call the Rule of Seven. That is, a person needs to see or hear a product, brand or offer at least seven times before they take action. In this respect, social media and other traditional forms of advertising such as TV or print, work to support EDMs.
A person may see a couple of social media posts, hear a radio ad, or see a billboard – then when the EDM lands in their inbox, they are comfortable and interested enough to respond.
How can email newsletters help your business succeed?
Did you know? Recent studies have shown that, after loyalty, brand awareness and trust is the second-most cited reason for purchasing from one company over another.
Given that EDMs have such huge importance in establishing brand trust and awareness, their role in the marketing mix suddenly takes on huge significance.
Yet, there are many other reasons why businesses invest in EDMs.
To begin with, you’re communicating with people who have already expressed enough interest in your brand to agree to be contacted. These are hot leads, just waiting to be converted to sales.
EDMs can also be highly personalised, via segmentation, making conversion that much easier. You can directly target recipients by location, gender and buying history.
You can directly target customers with promotions and updates on products you know they are interested in or have purchased before. You can also retarget customers who came that close to making a purchase but didn’t (e.g. abandoned carts) with an offer that pushes them across the line.
Email marketing automation can also increase conversion with very little effort. EDMs can be set up to automatically send a promotional offer to those website visitors who check out an event page but don’t book, for example.
EDMs also provide fantastic data about how your marketing campaign is performing, which can inform future email marketing campaigns. What links did people click on? Did you use images or text? It also provides a great opportunity to do some A/B testing, that is, send the EDM to different sections of the list, each with slight variables such as different subject lines, to see which perform the best.
Speak to the email marketing experts
Assemblo is a full-service marketing agency based in Melbourne that can help with refining your marketing strategy, including developing effective email campaigns and growing your email database.
To learn more, give us a call on (03) 9079 2555 or drop us a note via our contact form below.