The power of email is undeniable. Reaching out to customers and prospects with tantalizing offers via email works. The statistics vary by industry, but a 10 – 20% open rate is expected for most emails –which means that your message is being received by a large percent of your prospects. Getting an open rate that is consistently over 25% means that you’re doing a great job managing your lists and creating a message that is grabbing your audience.
But could your email campaign be doing even more?
Yes. You could be building brand awareness. Regardless of your current open rate, if you are only using email marketing to communicate offers and sales, you may be missing out on a great opportunity to build brand awareness. By touching your customers with news, products or industry-related information, you will be increasing the likelihood of recall of your brand the next time your prospect is making a buying decision.
Personally, I get a lot of marketing emails. Many of them are deleted or left in my inbox unread, but I still see the company name in the email envelope. Like your prospects, when I am in the market for tires, pet food, a vacation spot OR a great recipe (FREE, no less), I am more likely to visit the sites that send me information that is pertinent to my needs, or have had great offers in the past.
I’m no different than the average consumer, and your prospects are probably average, too! So get busy. Start emailing your customers on a regular basis (NOT DAILY), and you will increase awareness of your brand, services and expertise. As you DO, here are some good guidelines to remember:
1. Contact them with a clear, concise message. Short and sweet is good.
2. If the email includes a link to your site for news or product info, be sure that it goes to that page, not just to your home page. If someone is directed to a page that has no relevance, chances are they’ll leave.
3. Contact them regularly, but ONLY if you have a something to say. “Happy 4th of July” in a subject line probably won’t get your email opened, but if it does, your message should be more than a shot of Uncle Sam with a “From All of Us at XYZ Corp!”. To do so could get you ignored, or even worse – unsubscribed.
4. Your email envelope may be all your customers see. Make sure it says the right message, every time.
One of the best ways to maximize the effectiveness of branding emails is #4 –your email envelope. Don’t underestimate the power of that one little line – it’s where you will increase recall and brand awareness. It may include only the FROM and SUBJECT line, but some users have their email formatted to display the first line or two of the email, so never underestimate the power of an interesting headline, too.
Here are 5 points to remember about your email envelope:
1. Your subject line is brand awareness advertising and it should reflect at least one of your brand attributes. For example, if you sell office supplies and you want to be known as the company that has same day delivery, be sure you have that in your subject line.
2. Your subject line should reflect your brand message, but it should directly relate to the email content. Shaking things up with a humorous or to-good-to-be true offer can increase your open rate, but once your recipients catch on it could backfire when they STOP opening future emails.
3. Create a persona that embodies your product or mission and send the email from that persona – every time. For example if your company manufactures fire extinguishers, you may use MisterFlameEnder@USAFire.com. It’s more personal than, firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com, and it should be fairly transparent that the persona is not real, to prevent confusion.
4. Most importantly, include your brand name in your “from” line. As obvious as it sounds, some companies’ domain names aren’t their brand name, and it can cause confusion.
Unlike offer-driven emails, brand awareness is hard to track – which is why marketers tend to overlook this valuable tool when creating a budget. Once you’ve created a template and email persona, branding emails are easy to create and maintain. You’ll be surprised at the long-term benefits!
Need help implementing an effective email marketing strategy? Holland can help. Call Bryan Holland at holland advertising : interactive at 513.744.3001 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org