Grow your email marketing using Facebook

With so much focus on social media marketing, it’s easy to overlook that email marketing is still alive and working well. In fact, according to the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing yields an estimated 4,300 percent ROI. AdStation reports that every dollar spent on email marketing offers a return of $44.25.
Email marketing is one of the best ways to zero in on members of your target audience. This is why you want to continually build your list. Facebook is a great source for doing just that.
Facebook has the numbers
For so many people, Facebook has become the ultimate one-stop where they can get information on everything from intimate updates from friends to information on their favorite brands. Facebook now has more than 1.23 billion monthly active users, 945 million mobile users and 757 million daily users. With numbers like that, it is common sense to tap these users to gather new email addresses and potential customers.
Create a sign-up form
If you haven’t done so already, create a sign-up form on your Facebook page. Make it easy for those who already are connected to your brand to easily subscribe to your list. Many email providers such as MailChimp, Constant Contact and GoDaddy provide step-by-step instructions on the process. Go to the support portion of your email provider to get information about how to add a form to your Facebook page.
Once you have the form in place, encourage subscribers by providing information along with the link.
Add an incentive
To further encourage subscriptions, take time to create an incentive. It’s not necessary that you give something away; you can just provide a link to “learn more.” For example, say you have a conference or speaking engagement coming up in three or six months. Promote that now and let your audience know that if they sign up today, they will be the first to learn the event details.
If you do offer e-commerce, consider providing something special for those who share their information: discount on purchase, a value-added thank you or in-store coupon.
Whenever you create an incentive, make sure you have a good visual and the call to action is clear.
Provide exclusive content
Even if you don’t have a product to discount, it does not mean your business doesn’t have something vital to offer. To gather sign-ups, provide exclusive content for users. Solve their problems. Be their go-to source. Content could be a downloadable guide, e-book, or even a recipe that you won’t provide anywhere else. Get creative and think about what you have to offer. Remember your target audience and what it expects from you.
Host a webinar
Facebook is a great forum to get the word out about webinars. When you host a webinar, you can collect information about the participants and add them to your list. As with incentives, whenever you advertise your webinar, make the promo visually enticing. Be clear about what you will offer during the webinar and make the call to action easy to find. Make sure the time of the webinar is front and center and take into consideration time zone differences.
Contests, sweepstakes and giveaways
Facebook used to be a great source for getting out the word about sweepstakes and contests. Changes at Facebook altered the way those promotions got shared with “Friends.” Today, only 11 percent of users share sweepstakes and other giveaways.

However, Convince and Convert suggests there is still a way to get to this group of users. They say using the “frictionless sharing” based on Facebook Open Graph is much more effective. As they explain, “The Open Graph Frictionless Sharing feature is automatic. Frictionless sharing will not require your participants to click on a button in order to share their participation in your sweepstakes. Instead, once they have installed your Facebook app and have accepted the automatic ‘share’ dialog, their participation will be shared automatically on their timeline as well as their friends’ newsfeeds, and tickers.”
Once you’ve got ’em, use ’em
Continued growth of your email subscriber list is a vital element in the success of your business. Once you’ve taken the time to gather new subscribers, remember to use that data to your advantage. According to Capterra, there are 251 email marketing software solutions currently on the market that can get your email marketing message out.
Always keep in mind the mobile audience and optimize your mailings to be read on a mobile device. Data from Litmus Software states 33 percent of email opens occurred on an iPhone. TechCrunch found that 75 percent of Gmail’s 900 million users access their accounts on mobile devices. Thus, it is still very possible to reach your target audience via email. They just may not ever read it on a desktop.
If you have a content marketing program, or are planning one, download our ebook:  100 mistakes businesses make when starting, optimizing and scaling content marketing programs.  Learn from the mistakes of hundreds of other companies.  100 mistakes walks you through common and uncommon challenges that they faced with their content marketing programs.

10 email marketing mistakes to avoid

Email marketing is an extremely effective way to get your message out to prospects and customers. Email allows for segmentation so you are able to target your message to those who will most want to read it. In fact, HubSpot found that 13 percent of all leads come from email marketing.
According to Pew Research, 92 percent of adults use email. Additionally, Radicati Group found that while social media is popular, there are three times more email accounts than Twitter and Facebook accounts combined. Campaign Monitor reports customers are six times more likely to click-through from an email than from a Tweet.
Committing yourself to email marketing is an important business step. Here are 10 common email mistakes you want to avoid:

Not getting permission

A surefire way to stop your email marketing efforts is to spam people. Not following the CAN-SPAM Act can get you into legal trouble. Make sure the people who supply their email addresses understand you will be contacting them via email. If you have an email form on your site that doesn’t specify this or if you upload a list of addresses you gathered somewhere else, permission is not granted. Be clear about how you will use an email address.

Not being aligned with your marketing plan

Every part of your marketing efforts should be cohesive. Email marketing never should stand on its own. Doing so confuses the recipient. Your branding, colors, fonts and logos, should be part of your email campaign. Make sure links within the email go to your website.

Poor subject lines

According to Convince and Convert digital marketing advisers, 33 percent of email recipients open email based on subject line alone. One third of your list will look at the subject line and decide right then and there.
Take the time to clean up and craft your subject line. Get personal. According to research by Adestra, personalized subject lines are 22 percent more likely to be opened. Avoid buzzwords, be concise, descriptive and limit the subject line to 50 characters or fewer. Add a sense of urgency, if possible. But don’t make every email one that needs to be opened “now!”
Finally, remember to test. A/B tests help you figure out which subject lines are better. Testing helps you determine what resonates best with your target audience.

Not focusing on the audience

You have to remember that not every email (or other marketing tactic) is an automatic conversion. Make sure your email messages are not about you and your needs (such as “buy now!”). Marketing is about the customer and his or her needs.
Every one of your emails should focus on your target audience. Be the solution to their problems. Don’t just try to sell to them. Instead, focus on helping them. If you forget about your audience, you will lose them.

Improperly segmenting

Keep in mind that not every person in your target audience is the same. Email marketing allows you to zero in on individuals and be more personal. Take the time to segment your list so you can speak more intimately to specific people in the audience.
When segmenting, considering different regions, locations, states or zip codes. If your product or service differs depending on age or gender, be sure to segment accordingly. Pay attention to engagement and buying behaviors; new customers should be targeted differently from long-standing customers.
Remember, shouting through a megaphone is different from whispering in someone’s ear. When you send the same message to everyone, it’s done through a megaphone. Taking time to target your customers let’s them know you are speaking directly to them. After all, no one in Texas, New York or Arizona, for example, will care about an offer that’s only available in Chicago. Shouting that out via a general email message will alienate those readers and likely lead to unsubscribes.

Long and confusing messages

Keeping in mind the way your emails are received is also important. Research by Campaign Monitor found 41 percent of email is opened on mobile devices. When you consider how a recipient sees your email, you’ll want to shorten it. Most messages are too long. You have approximately three seconds or less to engage a reader.
Additionally, don’t confuse your readers. Give them a picture, paragraph and a point of action. Make your message clear and concise.

Ineffective images

Using the correct image can gather attention and make an immediate impression. When deciding to use an image, make sure you have the rights or have purchased the rights to the photograph. Never use something that might invite legal problems.
Large images take a long time to load. Crop photos so they are no wider than 600 pixels. Always preview the email before sending. Make sure the image appears properly for mobile users.
Limit the number of images in your email. After surveying more than two million of their customers, email provider Constant Contact found, “with some industry specific exceptions, emails with three or fewer images and approximately 20 lines of text result in the highest click-through rates.”
Remember to optimize for blocked images. Approximately 60 percent of your audience will have images disabled. Thus, more than half of your readers will miss the call to action (unless they agree to download the images). While embedding in-line images can help with some blocking, it is not effective on all email clients. Create well-written alt tags to provide information about the image and give readers an idea about what they are missing if they don’t download the photo.

Not optimizing

Considering how many people open emails on a mobile device, marketers who do not optimize their email messages for mobile lose customers.
Email service provider Constant Contact found that 80 percent of smartphone owners say it is “extremely important” to read emails on their mobile devices. If they cannot, 75 percent of the nearly 1,500 survey respondents said they were “highly likely” to delete the email.
However, the good news is that 23 percent of readers who open an email on a mobile device open it again later according to Campaign Monitor.

Too much mail

Findings from survey conducted by YouGov showed that over-communication turns customers off. Two-thirds of those surveyed (in the United States and United Kingdom) said they would unsubscribe if they received too many emails. Research firm Chadwick Martin Bailey revealed 69 percent of subscribers said that too many emails is the No. 1 reason they unsubscribe.
Do some research to determine what your target audience is willing to accept. In general, once a week or once a month works well. You might even consider creating your subscription form in a way that lets the reader decide. Allow him or her to choose to receive emails on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.

Not monitoring, measuring or managing

One of the most common mistakes email marketers make is failing to analyze the results of a campaign. If you don’t learn from your results, your future campaigns will suffer.
The data you collect in email metrics can be a gold mine. First, you’ll discover a list of good and bad addresses. Remove hard bounces. They will only cost you money as you resend emails that will never be opened.
After a period of time, typically three or six months, take a look at inactive subscribers. If they have not opened or clicked-through, consider removing them from the list as well. Remember, you want to focus on your target audience. If these subscribers are not engaged with your mailings, they are not part of the target audience.
Examine open rates and days and times that emails are opened. By doing this, you can find the best time to send future emails.
Additionally, diving deeper into the data may allow for better segmentation based on who has opened, how often they open, when they open and whether they have shared the mailing with others. Being able to pinpoint specific readers helps you be more personalized with your mailings going forward. When that happens, a bigger percentage will be opened and you will engage with your customer more successfully.
If you have a content marketing program, or are planning one, download our ebook:  100 mistakes businesses make when starting, optimizing and scaling content marketing programs.  Learn from the mistakes of hundreds of other companies.  100 mistakes walks you through common and uncommon challenges that they faced with their content marketing programs.
Do you need content for you email marketing efforts. Tempesta Media is a managed services provider of custom original content for digital agencies, PR firms and enterprises.

Send this to a friend