There’s a reason 99% of consumers continue to use email every single day. Even in the hypercyber age of 2021.
It’s because email isn’t dead.
I’ve used that phrase an awful lot on this blog, I know. But I’ve had to, because email still has a pretty bad reputation.
“Don’t bother emailing me, I don’t check my inbox.”
“I’m so sick of email – it takes up all of my day.”
“We’re using Slack now. Email is pointless.”
“I’ve got 8,981 unread emails on my phone; what does your red dot say?”
But the truth is that we all rely on email. More importantly, if you’re a business, the fact that most people check their email anywhere up to five times per day means that this “ancient” form of digital communication is actually pretty invaluable.
It’s a brilliant marketing channel, and in 2021, you need it more than ever. Let me explain why.
1. It’ll help you ethically build a prospect list
People are pretty sensitive about their data these days, and for good reason. There are far too many nefarious types out there who either want it for illegal activity or to simply try and force products in front of the data owner. And data is currency in 2021.
However, you’re not a criminal, and you run your business properly; you understand that to grow a list of hot prospects, you need to obtain their data ethically and deliver on your promise to help, educate and provide relevant solutions to their problems.
You can only do this cost effectively with email marketing. Pick the right email marketing platform and you’ll be able to integrate GDPR-ready forms super easily into your website and grab data that people want to give you.
Over time, that email marketing list will become one of your most valuable business assets, trust me.
2. You’ll enjoy super ROI
Ah return on investment; it’s that elusive thing we all want from marketing campaigns, isn’t it?
Only, if you chuck a chunk of your 2021 budget at, say, pay-per-click advertising, it’s more than likely to swiftly evaporate unless you spend a fortune on the services of an expert. And that means any ROI you’re likely to experience will take forever to arrive.
Email marketing is rather different. In the UK, every £1 spent on email marketing delivers an ROI of £38.
Sure, that’s an average, and it certainly isn’t guaranteed overnight, but it’s a tantalising glimpse at what’s possible. Name another marketing tool, channel or strategy which can deliver that kind of bang-for-buck without bringing in an expert team to help you.
3. It plays to the mobile life we all lead in 2021
What’s the first and last thing you pick up each day? Go on, admit it – it’s your smartphone, isn’t it?
For all of the entirely understandable rhetoric about limiting our use of these handheld rocket ship computers, there’s little doubting that we are a bit addicted.
I know I am.
That means your audience is, too. The people who are either waiting to become customers or who already count themselves among your customer base regularly have their phones in their hands.
One of the most common tasks they’ll perform, as we learned earlier, is checking their inbox. That’s why email marketing is so important; for you, it’s a defined route into a single point of entry. It’s as personal as communication can be (beyond SMS marketing), and you have numerous chances throughout the day to grab your audience’s attention.
4. You can keep in touch with customers regularly
You may have been told that you need to be ultra-careful with email marketing to ensure you don’t get on your audience’s you-know-whats, but get it right, and this is one marketing channel which you can use frequently.
The key lies in effective audience segmentation and adjusting your content so that it delivers the right solution at the right time.
If that means sending one particular bunch of potential or existing customers an email every day for five days – go for it. It’s 2021, everyone knows how to unsubscribe if they need to.
5. You can remove some of the focus from social media marketing
Don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing bad about social media marketing; it’s a wonderful tool.
But it’s damn hard work; it’s a real slog.
More so than you would think.
So, why not divert some of the focus you have on trying to grow your followers or elicit interaction on platforms like Facebook and Twitter, to email instead? As noted earlier, the potential ROI on offer is far greater, and you’ll have more fun doing it, to boot.
Don’t ignore social completely. In fact, make sure you’re joining up your marketing efforts on both email and social; your business should be talking the same language via both channels and delivering a consistent experience that builds a fascinating brand presence online. Make 2021 the year of technological collaboration.
6. It’s so persuasive!
Email marketing has a massive trick up its sleeve which sets it apart from many other forms of marketing.
The subject line.
It’s the element of any email marketing campaign on which should spend the bulk of your time. This is because it provides the one chance you have to encourage an open.
It’s impossible to understate the importance and power of the email subject line. It’s capable of being more persuasive than any tweet, Instagram post or banner advert. The best subject lines draw people in so wholesomely, that the rest of the email barely has to do anything to encourage interaction with the call-to-action.
7. It’s brilliant for existing customers
Have you tried email marketing with your existing customer base? Chances are, you’ll already have obtained a collection of their emails addresses ethically during the sign-up process.
So, why not use them?
You’ll be amazed by the engagement rates you achieve. Existing customers are always going to be more engaged than prospects, and if you get your subject line and content right, you should enjoy above average open and click rates with every send.
Email marketing is, arguably, the best way to keep customers abreast of product updates, upcoming events and important company news. It’s also a brilliant tool for distributing special offers and upsell campaigns.
So, no more talk about email being “dead”, or surplus to requirement because of platforms like Slack. For the foreseeable future, it’ll remain one of the most important marketing channels to which you have access as a business.
It’s also arguably the most cost-effective when you use it properly. So, what are you waiting for?