You’ve probably heard the bustle, seen the infographics, read the blogs, and skimmed the guides – you get it – email marketing is an exceedingly effective strategy. Yet, the sheer pressure of what it takes to start what seems like a colossal and time-consuming project stops you dead in your tracks. Knowing that 293.6 billion emails were sent and received each day in 2019 might not help soothe your fear of email marketing either.
But why is email marketing, old and timeworn, still standing as strong as ever, if not even more so than before? Based on 2019 data, the widespread usage of email is to blame, with 3.9 billion global email users reported in 2019 alone.
The competition is undoubtedly fierce. With inboxes around the world overflowing with promotional content from prevalent brands and businesses, how are you supposed to cut through the noise and get your content marketing out of its own echo chamber? Where do you even get started?
Let’s rewind to the most rudimentary ideas surrounding email marketing. We want to pave a clear and actionable path for the microbusinesses and solopreneurs out there trying to reach out to their audience through the use of a cost-effective and resilient strategy. Here is how to create a surefire email marketing strategy from nothing.
Every marketing plan is built around specific objectives that a business aims to accomplish. Although tempting, starting an email marketing campaign as soon as you employ an email marketing service might not be the greatest of ideas. Like with most things in digital marketing, it is best to have a sturdy plan before taking action. Therefore, think about the goals you want to accomplish through your email marketing efforts before hitting send. Do you want to grow your subscriber list? Launch a new product or feature? Improve email click-throughs? Retain customers and turn them into brand advocates? The choice is yours to take. Simply remember your goals as you move forward and remember to make them S.M.A.R.T.
Build an Email List
After establishing your email marketing goals, it is time to materialize your strategy by building an email list. Marketers around the world are shaking their heads in agreement when we say – your email list is your power. If your email list is short, brimming with discrepancies in audience interests or simply not aligned with your targeting, you are most likely going to do more damage than good. Without a quality email list of recipients ready to resonate with the content you distribute, all of your content marketing efforts would go down the drain.
Though time-consuming, capturing email addresses to bulk up or create an email list from scratch is inherently simple. A popular list-building method can be explained in one sentence: Create a valuable incentive that persuades people into subscribing to your email list. However, the real hurdle in this process is choosing an incentive that will persuade your website audience into filling that flashy opt-in form. What exactly could tempt them to do so?
Here are some enticing ideas of what to give back to the reader:
- A cheat sheet
In a culture of instant gratification, what better way to earn email addresses than to offer shortcuts that will fix someone’s problem? Offering already researched and consolidated information is a valuable incentive for those seeking the quickest way to solve a problem.
- A case study
Client case studies can be an inspirational and helpful tool for someone who is looking for an experienced perspective.
Not only will an eBook help you earn those coveted email addresses, but it will also establish you as a thought leader in your landscape.
- Mind map
Mind maps are diagrams used to visually organize information, and when made into incentives, can be used to visualize concepts, ideas, and processes.
Checklists are simplified tutorials for people looking to learn how to do something without doing the research themselves. They are quick to create due to their short-form nature, and therefore, cost-effective.
If you need more ideas, check out our previous blog where we reveal 5 easy ways to grow your email subscribers. Finally, remember to place numerous easy-to-see subscriber opportunities scattered throughout your website in order to facilitate the opt-in process for visitors. Your opt-in form can take the shape of a header bar, a slider, a pop-up or a form at the end of a blog.
Create a Buyer Persona
Understanding who your customers are is an important piece of the puzzle to develop effective email marketing funnels. A buyer persona is a written representation of the individuals inside a customer group. It outlines who they are, how they live, what they like, and what they may want. These fictional profiles are made to identify shared motivations and challenges so that you can create messages that appeal to specific groups.
In order to create segments of buyer personas, you need to collect data and complete research in three areas:
- Demographic characteristics
These are the tangible characteristics of a person such as age, gender, income, marital status, education, and whether or not they have children at home.
- Psychographic characteristics
These are intangible and emotional characteristics of a person such as their beliefs and values.
- Behavioral characteristics
These are the actions a person takes that can be used to distinguish consumer preferences such as the car they drive, hobbies, and magazines they buy.
You can collect this data by conducting interviews, creating online surveys, and by simply brainstorming with your team if they have direct contact with the customer. Once you have corroborated your buyer personas, you can create tailored content for them and offer accordingly.
Determine Your Campaign
There are many types of email marketing campaigns to choose from, and this decision relies heavily on the goals you have established earlier. What are you seeking to accomplish with your campaigns? We have connected the dots for you and outlined the approaches below:
- Welcome emails – Onboarding & Brand Familiarity
This is the perfect chance to introduce yourself and to invite your subscriber to connect with you via social media. Also, remember to showcase your brand and to say thanks for subscribing!
- Newsletter – Keep In Touch
This type of email is typically sent monthly and its purpose is to drive your subscribers back to your website and to give them free, valuable content.
- Announcement – Drive Direct Sales
Released a new product, feature or service? An announcement is your opportunity to keep an engaged audience updated on anything new happening in your business. Although the passing of information is the main goal of these emails, it is also aimed at leading people to your website, where they can purchase your product or service.
As you can see, there is a clear correlation between the campaign you choose to send and your broader email marketing goals. However, if you are simply looking to keep your audience engaged and up to date, we suggest sending a monthly newsletter.
Create Your 1st Campaign & Send
It is now time to create a beautiful and impactful email campaign. If you don’t have an eye for design, it is advisable to choose a template from an email marketing platform rather than designing it yourself. This will ensure a clean and cohesive aesthetic that will place the weight of your campaign in your text. Here are other things to be mindful of when creating your first campaign:
- Personalize Emails
People want to be seen as individuals. In fact, according to Campaign Monitor, emails with personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened. Personalizing emails can be as easy as using your subscriber’s names rather than a general “hello,” but you can also take a step further by segmenting your subscribers. Segmentation is the practice of sifting the data you collect when people fill your opt-in form. You can divide groups by age, gender, and geographic location to ensure that you are exclusively sending material that relates to the reader.
- Stay On Brand
Are you using your brand’s color scheme or logo? Is your copy taking the same tonality it does on your website? Staying on brand is an important aspect of all email campaigns. Because your emails are probably not the only interaction your subscribers are having with your brand, you need to keep a cohesive brand identity throughout all of your platforms. This, in turn, will build brand loyalty and trust.
- Set A Clear Path
What action do you want your subscribers to make when reading your email? In order to direct your readers towards clicking a CTA (call-to-action) or link, your email’s visual structure and copy must guide them there. Many marketers opt for an inverted triangle design similar to that of a sales funnel with a broad beginning and narrower end. Your readers’ eyes will be naturally led towards your desired action and follow the narrow path downwards.
So, what now? Now it’s time to empower your brand with the exactitude of data. You’ve sent your first email campaign, subscribers have opened and clicked – how exactly do you measure success and what can you do to improve? Here are the most important metrics you need to track:
- Open Rate – This is the number of times your email has been opened.
- Spam Percentage – This is the spam score given by email marketing providers based on the number of links included and spam trigger words.
- Click Rate – This is the number of subscribers that interacted with your email by clicking on links to visit your website or view products.
- Bounce Rate – This is the number of particular email addresses your email marketing provider couldn’t deliver to.
- Complaint Rate – This is the number of people who received your email and marked it as spam.
- Unsubscribe Rate – This is the rate of unsubscribers per email.
These metrics should give you an advanced overview of the success of your email campaigns and help you determine its weaknesses. Make changes and test out different variables to obtain the best outcome out of your email marketing efforts.
Although decades-old, email marketing still proves its place as one of today’s most successful digital marketing strategies out there. Its cost-effective and multi-dimensional nature is sure to drive in extraordinary conversions and boost revenue when your strategy strives to follow these actionable steps.
Want to take your email marketing to the next level? Contact us at Birch River Design Group in Scottsdale, Arizona to start talking about the next steps in your email marketing strategy.
Are you local? We’d love to buy you a coffee and chat about ways to improve your digital presence in 2020!
A brilliant marketing campaign can do wonders for a business in no time. It can promote brand awareness, bring in customers, and increase revenues. Moreover, the successful run of an ad campaign can further enliven and ignite a team’s motivation to dream big and achieve more. In reality, though, not all attempts to reach out to your target clients get favorable results.
In ECommerce, the chance for failure becomes higher as the competition continues to intensify. A report from EMarketer predicts that the money firms will spend on digital advertising will reach over $375 billion by the year 2021. As online and offline campaigns can be quite costly, you surely would not want your investments to go to waste. If your firm has been enjoying the fruits of a great marketing tactic, you would like to keep that lucky streak going. The following are four tips to ensure that your campaigns would not just be one-hit wonders:
Marketing campaign performance fluctuates. Therefore, constant monitoring is a must for each and every ad you run. A high-converting ad can be transformed from a low-performing one without any warning. However, if you are regularly mindful of the metrics your ads are showing, you can easily spot the areas where you may need to do some adjustments to prevent the campaign from losing its appeal. Campaign monitoring reveals essential information about your customer’s behavior which you can use to further improve your campaigns.
Keep on improving.
You cannot expect a marketing campaign giving high click-through-rates (CTR’s) today to stay that way forever. The figures are bound to drop anytime as people’s interest in it wanes. This is why it is important to keep on finding ways to further enhance your campaigns. You can use the insights you gather from studying your customer’s preferences to tweak your ads. To continuously run a successful campaign, you need an attitude that always strives to be better than the best. With an attitude that never settles down even if your campaigns look almost perfect, your brand will stay fresh and interesting to consumers and serve your competitors a plate full of dust.
Advertise on various channels.
To get optimum returns on your investment, you do not want to lay all your eggs in one basket. Digital marketing today offers various channels where your brand can get exposure and it is best to take advantage of that. You can place marketing campaigns on Facebook, Google, or Instagram. You can also try running ads on YouTube or send out email campaigns. Trying out several channels can be costly but in the long run, it is a good way to determine which channel should you prioritize and focus on. Another thing, being seen in as many channels as possible will help your brand become familiar to many.
Seek reliable partners.
Networking is something that will never run out of style. Even in the online world, having amicable partnerships is something that will likely be beneficial for your marketing campaigns. Thus, keep your eyes open for firms or individuals that can help propel the growth of your business. To expand your audience reach, you can propose an ex-deal with popular influencers. Forming partnerships with other firms that are not direct competitors will help solidify the wall you are trying to establish for your brand.
We are living at a time when digital marketing is already the norm rather than an option for firms that wish to reach out to as many clients as possible. However, the dilemma is that not all firms have the skills and knowledge to carry out a well-thought-out brand marketing online. So how about having a reliable digital marketing agency at your back? Our dedicated team can expertly execute and monitor your online campaigns while you can conveniently focus on enhancing your products and services. Contact us, the Birch River Design Group, today!
Marketing is a dynamic field, an area that continuously evolves and adapts to the changing times. True enough, the way people promote and sell products from years ago is starkly different from the tools, platforms, and methods available today. As the competition in online marketing continues to intensify, new ways of marketing tactics keep on emerging. Changes are happening at such a fast pace that we must keep up with the latest trends and innovations. If you are looking for a way to succeed in E-commerce today, omnichannel marketing is a term to know.
What is omnichannel marketing?
In omnichannel marketing, online sales transactions are made much easier and convenient by providing a seamless experience to the user in various channels. In an omnichannel approach, products and services are available on different platforms. These platforms can be a physical store, a desktop pc, or a mobile device. Clients have a smooth, hassle-free experience all throughout the sales journey despite the various channels. From browsing products to the actual purchase and follow-up transactions. For example, customers can browse a sales catalog using a desktop, then choose products to order later on using a mobile device. Clients can then make the actual purchase by visiting the physical store.
Multi-channel or omnichannel? What is the difference?
Omnichannel marketing strategy is often confused with another tactic – the multi-channel sales approach. Its similarity makes many people assume that they are one and the same. However, one way to understand the omnichannel strategy is to know how is it different from the multi-channel tactic. Businesses employing a multi-channel approach create and maintain their brand’s presence in different channels and platforms. Here, the products are available to the clients in as many channels as possible. Yet it does not guarantee that the experience with a product on one channel will be the same on another channel. Whereas, omnichannel marketing ensures that no matter which channel the client chooses, the sales experience is never confusing or disrupted.
What are the benefits of utilizing an omnichannel strategy?
For brands that refuse to be left behind, omnichannel marketing is a great strategy to invest time and effort on because of the following reasons:
It can tremendously increase profits.
The main aim of omnichannel marketing is to significantly improve customer service. Every transaction is as efficient and rewarding for clients as it can be. If done right, an omnichannel experience can lead to satisfied customers that will most probably come back to purchase again. As it fosters brand awareness and customer loyalty, businesses can likewise expect their profits to go up as well.
Improves workflow processes.
As the omnichannel strategy improves the customer experience, it can also simplify and hasten business processes within the organization. A client can go to a brick and mortar store and show the product he or she wants to purchase from a mobile device. A store staff would then just need to get the customer data to locate the product the clients wish to buy. Omnichannel combines processes and information from different channels so it becomes easier and faster to complete transactions.
Provides valuable data to create better campaigns.
Omnichannel marketing tracks the customer throughout the sales journey and collects important data along the way. It reveals information such as the device used, the products searched, and products purchased. Exporting these data for analysis is a way to further personalize the marketing campaigns of a brand. It can also give insights as to which channels are the most effective for ad campaigns and which ones need improvements.
The rise of the Internet and digital technologies brought about significant changes that greatly challenged old forms of advertising. Although print media, TV ads, and outdoor billboards still exist, businesses with a growth mindset are now actively exploring the wonderful possibilities of digital marketing. Venture into the world of online marketing by having a reliable guide and partner such as the Birch River Design Group. Our digital marketing team based in Scottsdale, AZ can help you plot and implement the best online marketing strategy for your brand. Schedule a meeting with us today!
Plotting a foolproof digital marketing strategy is impossible without knowing the latest digital marketing trends. For this reason, savvy online marketers are constantly searching for ways to broaden their expertise and enhance their skills. Moreover, since the digital landscape is moving at such a rapid pace, simply keeping up with the trend is not enough. To stay ahead of the competition, it is also necessary to keep an eye on future developments religiously.
As you carry out to fulfill the remaining tasks for the last quarter of 2019, gather updates and forecasts about digital marketing trends for the upcoming year. The following are some key trends that can help ensure and maintain the success of your web marketing ventures for 2020:
Make way for more video content.
A quick look at your Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram feed will show that video content is on the rise. This digital marketing trend is not so surprising because it is generally easier to watch a video than read a lengthy article. This observation is backed by a Hubspot survey showing that the majority of consumers prefer video content. You can also expect the popularity of videos to continually rise with a Cisco study saying that 82% of internet traffic will come from videos by 2020. Therefore, you may want to start exploring how to use videos to boost the marketing goals of your firm.
Amp up your marketing with personalization.
The digital world has intensified the competition among brands and companies to gain consumer’s patronage and loyalty. Nowadays, it is no longer sufficient to spread your marketing materials to a wide audience. Digital marketing trends determine that your goal is to create a positive experience that will keep customers coming back. One way to do that is through personalized marketing. Also called hyper-targeted advertising, there are many ways to implement personalization in your marketing initiatives. You can do it by employing tools that direct your promotional ads only to its intended audience. Personalization also means customizing services based on a client’s request. As firms continue to seek ways to improve services and strengthen relationships with clients, personalized marketing is here to stay.
Chatbots for better customer service.
Exceptional customer service can go a long way in propelling a firm’s growth. Thankfully, artificial intelligence or AI has found a way to respond quickly to all client’s queries and concerns – through a chatbot. As firms continue to seek digital marketing trends to improve customer relations, you can expect the usage of this technology to rise. A forecast from Marketing Land also says that chatbots can bring in $112 billion retail sales by 2023.
Are you thinking of investing in digital marketing and trying to follow digital marketing trends to no avail? Start exploring the benefits that digital marketing can do for your firm by partnering up with Birch River Design Group. Our competent team in Scottsdale, Arizona is ready to handle the digital marketing needs of your firm. We will gladly explain the services we can offer your company. Do not hesitate to schedule a meeting with us today!
Visuals are always an important aspect of any piece of written content, whether online or offline. Aside from the aesthetic value it brings, images also make content more interesting and comprehensible. Research published by 3M backed this assumption by reporting that visual aid improves learning up to a whopping 400%.
In the online world, adding images is one of the easiest ways to enhance a published blog or article. Moreover, it is also an effective way to increase the chances of getting a high search engine ranking. However, it is also possible not to see any positive results if you are clueless about the best practices of using images as a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tool. Taking note of the following basic tips can help you maximize the benefits of adding pictures alongside your online content:
Choose relevant pictures of high-quality.
You want to complement the text, so make sure that the pictures you will add will make it more valuable for the readers. To help you find the most appropriate image, be ready to provide adequate answers to the following questions. Are your images relevant to the content? What is the purpose of your image? Does it pique the interest of your target audience? Does it make the content a lot easier to understand? The appearance of your images highly matters as well so it is always a must to choose clear and high-quality pictures. Irrelevant and blurred images reflect a firm’s adherence to quality and negatively affect a brand’s reputation. Another important thing to remember is to only use images that will not put your website at risk for copyright complaints. You can choose to take your own pictures and upload or search on websites that offer good and royalty-free stock photos such as PublicDomain Pictures and Wikimedia Commons.
Use appropriate size, file type, and quantity.
Proper use of visuals in the online landscape is a way to greatly improve the UX or user experience of your website. If you want your visitors to stay and come back, provide an efficient and fast-loading website. One way to do this is by using images of good resolution, appropriate size, and right file type. High-resolution images may look stunning but it usually comes with large file sizes that can slow a page down. The solution is by resizing the images to strike the right balance between resolution and file size. You can resize images with programs such as Photoshop or Sketch. Free online tools are likewise available such as Pixlr and Canva. In terms of file type, web images are usually in a JPEG and PNG format. To make it easier, many photo application tools come with a feature that allows users to save for the web.
On the other hand, you will find a number of recommendations about the ideal number of images per particular word count. A better way to settle this is by taking into consideration how the images can support the purpose of your website and deliver what your target readers want to see. If your business is selling something, you want to help readers make a good decision by presenting your product at all angles. Meanwhile, if your industry is offering services such as bookkeeping or editing, too many images may not be necessary.
Optimize images with tags and keywords.
The best SEO practices in SEO always emphasize the use of tags and keywords. Thus, if you want people to discover your website through the images you utilize, it is essential to utilize keywords. Replace default files names of images with a keyword that best represents what is shown in the image. The blogging platform, WordPress, has a feature called alternative texts which allows bloggers to input an appropriate alt tag for an image. The texts you use can improve your chance of getting a high SERP (search engine results page).
Do you want to maximize the potential benefits that the Internet can do for your firm? Partner up with an agency that is passionate about utilizing digital technology for business growth – the Birch River Design Group. Our digital marketing agency based in Scottsdale, Arizona has the expertise to leverage your online success! Schedule a meeting with our team today!
Here’s an interesting and rather shocking fact: stats from blogging platform, WordPress, reveals that an estimate of 2.75 million posts are published every day. That amounts to 70 million new blog posts every month. With such a huge number of content available online, it is quite an understatement to say that content marketing spells hard work. The real bulk of the work is barely starting once you hit publish.
The best content is practically useless if no one views or reads it. Thus, the main aim of content marketing is to deliver the message to as many people as possible, and in the process boost brand awareness and generate revenue. Unfortunately, a study released by Ahrefs states that 91% of content gets zero traffic from Google. As the Internet keeps on growing, the task of content promotion is also becoming an even harder challenge. Without a content marketing strategy in place, it is not impossible for Google (and other search engines) to totally ignore your blog post. Do not let your content go to waste by practicing the following tactics in blog promotion.
Come up with a plan.
Strategies always come with a well-thought-of plan so start by plotting clear goals and action plans. Specific objectives set the direction for your tactics and can likewise result in content promotion ideas. Another important factor in an effective content marketing strategy is the target audience. If you want readers for your blog, design your overall strategy around the interests and concerns of your buyer persona.
Create SEO-friendly content
Internet live stats say that Google receives around 40,000 search queries every second. This number suggests that your target readers are hoping to find you by typing their queries in the search engines. Make it easy for your readers to discover you by keeping the best search engine optimization (SEO) practices in mind. Inserting the right keywords, meta descriptions, and title tags can go a long way in increasing your blog readership. SEO rules are ever-changing so content marketing professionals should always be on the lookout for the latest news about it.
Inform and educate.
Search engines may lead readers to your blog but you cannot expect them to stay if all you can offer is poor content. So while keeping SEO principles in mind, remember to write for people. You want to avoid a high bounce rate so provide content that gives answers to the questions of your readers. You can also create content based on the comments and suggestions of your readers. Take time to produce educational and informative content to make a good impression on readers and even encourage them to keep on coming back. Moreover, quality content will likely results in shares.
Send email blasts.
You want to spread the word once a blog post is live and one way to do that is through e-newsletters. With a study proving that email marketing continues to be an effective tool to reach out to people, growing your email subscribers is, therefore, one important factor in the success of your content marketing tactic. An email though can easily get lost amidst a number of messages in an inbox so implement tactics such as personalization and segmentation to make your message stand out.
Connect with influencers.
It doesn’t take a genius to see that so many people today spend too much time on sites such as Facebook and Instagram. Since your target customers are probably on social media, it is surely a good place to promote your content. You can start a social media page and engage with your followers. Another good idea is to seek partnerships with key influencers on social media.
Amidst all the buzz and hype about online marketing, is the idea of using digital means to grow your business still a blurry concept to you? Our digital marketing agency, Birch River Design Group can provide clear insights on how the Internet can drive your firm to success. Consult your concerns and queries to our team of digital marketing professionals based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Schedule a meeting with us today!