When promoting products or services to potentials customers, email is by far one of the most versatile and cost-effective marketing strategy brands can leverage on. Technology trends make come and go, but emails have been around for decades, and there are no signs of it retiring anytime soon.
Even with the growing prevalence of social media, email is still the best way to communicate and engage with customers. Email marketing allows brands to design targeted messages, making every interaction more personalized and meaningful. If you’re reading this article to know what email marketing has to offer for your business, then read on to get started.
Types of Email Marketing
There are different ways you can distribute your email message to customers depending on the type of email marketing method used:
- Newsletter – It is a great tool to keep followers and customers in the loop about your brand and the latest products or services you offer. A newsletter can be sent out on a predetermined schedule–whether daily, weekly or monthly. You can ask customers to sign up for your company newsletter by adding a visible opt-in form on your website, preferably after a customer purchased something, downloaded or read your free content.
- Email Campaign – With email promotions, you can inform customers about your brand’s latest product launch, sales and other events.
- Transaction Emails – These are automatic notifications sent to customers after doing certain transactions like purchasing something from a site.
- Lead Nurturing Email – These type of email are distributed to prospect leads in the hope of converting them to a customer.
- Surveys – Get feedback from customers on things or ideas your business can improve on by sending them email surveys.
Web Hosting Plans vs. Email Marketing Platforms
Here at Vodien, we often get a lot of inquiries from customers on whether or not they should send emails directly (free with their hosting plan) or invest on a third-party email marketing platform instead.
Sending emails directly from your web hosting plan may seem an easy choice, but you’ll soon find that using an email marketing software to automate your email campaigns is more practical and convenient in the long run. Here’s why.
- Growing your email list is a breeze when using an email marketing software because you already have a pre-made signup form templates you can customize according to your target audience. With direct emails, you would need to design and automate these sign-up forms yourself, which could take time and money if you don’t have any background in web design.
- Nowadays, most email marketing software already includes tons of email templates you can tweak according to your brand’s desired look. Even without any knowledge and experience in graphic design, it’s so easy to create professionally-designed emails in just a few minutes.
- There could be email sending limits placed by your web hosting providers and if you do mass email, this might be a breach of your Terms of Service, so do check with your web hosts on this matter.
- If you are subscribed to a shared hosting plan, a grave aspect to consider is the fact that you’ll be sharing hosting resources with other customers. This means that if certain IPs on your shared server are flagged for excessive spams, your IP might also get blocked and blacklisted by some sites and search engines.
- With email marketing, companies can monitor, measure and analyze which emails are opened, bounced back, deleted before they are even read and which of these did customers actually clicked and bought something from. Email marketing software comes with a smart analytics system that provides a real-time report to help you make better decisions on your next campaigns.
Best Email Marketing Automation Software
If it’s your first time to venture into email marketing, choosing the best tool can be daunting with the abundant choices available in the market today. Don’t worry, we’ve been there and we will summarize just a few of the best platforms you can check out.
There’s a reason why many brands are using MailChimp for their email automation needs. This Atlanta, Georgia-based company boasts of more than a billion emails sent through their software. One thing great about MailChimp is that they start with a free plan which allows you to send 12,000 emails a month for up to 2,000 subscribers. If you want more features and customer support, you can upgrade to their paid plan that starts as little as $10 per month.
Starting an email marketing service with Constant Contact is free for the first 30 days with a 30-day money back guarantee. You can also cancel anytime. Marketers will find Constant Contact software generally easy to use with its wide array of pre-designed email template for just about any purpose–be it for a corporate or non-profit organization.
Just like Constant Contact, Get Response offers a 30-day free trial when signing up for their service. Pricing starts at $15 per month for 1,000 contacts. Aside from the ability to create customize email marketing campaigns, they also offer other product to help increase your conversion rates such as webinars, landing pages and CRM. Their Enterprise Solution is an all-in-one marketing solution designed specifically for large businesses. It has a Perfect Timing feature that allows you to predict the best time of the day when your subscribers are highly likely to open and click on the email based on their past actions.
Want to a feature-rich email marketing solutions at an affordable price? Then Active Campaign is for you. Starting at $9 per month, send unlimited emails to at least 500 contacts and get chat and email support when you need one.
Active Campaign is not just an email automation platform. If you want to attract and manage leads, it has its own CRM solution to convert leads to customers effectively.
Even with the unpredictable nature of technology, email remains one of the most stable platforms that withstood time. It is a great channel to attract and engage an audience, helping you increase ROI for your business at the least possible cost.
By growing your email list on any of the platforms we mentioned in this article, you can better reach your audience with beautiful and highly personalized email messages that resonate with your brand.
Now, we’d like to ask you: have you tried using email marketing for your business? If so, what tools did you use and how was the experience? We’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments below.