There are so many ways that you can market your business these days. Not all are right for every business and in a lot of cases some will be a waste of money (and/or time) for you. You’ve already started with a great, relatively simple and cheap option with building your website, but just having it sitting there won’t bring you all the business that you could get. Even if we look at online options for getting customers engaged and brining them back there are many options that might work for your business but one of the simplest options that can bring real customer retention is using email marketing.
That sounds complicated!?
Now I understand that “email marketing” sounds a bit overwhelming. The fact of the matter is that you have been doing email for the last few years at least, maybe even 10-15! It isn’t that hard to email and that is really all we are talking about. You are just sending an email to your customers like you have thousands of times before. Maybe to make it less overwhelming we should just drop the word “marketing”. Today we will talk a bit about email. Think of it as a simple way to keep previously interested people in the loop and maybe bring them back to your website. Looking back over the last few months, how many times have you received a newsletter or some other form of email communication that you clicked through to either read an article or check out a sale? (If you don’t think that you do, pay attention to this over the next couple of days – I bet you do it more than you think.) Done correctly, email is a very simple tool that works.
What could I email about?
Email can be used for lots of things. If you write a lot of articles on your website, you can send newsletters that have “teasers” in them to bring people to your most important articles. You could talk about upcoming events (online or local) and use email to remind people about those events. You can also use email to talk about product sales and new products or product lines you have. This last one is great if you have a list of people who have bought from you before; they trust you and are interested in what you sell – capitalize on that!
Email can be a backup plan
Over the last couple of years (and mostly more recently) I have heard so many stories of people who were making good money with online businesses when all of a sudden things tanked. Google decided for one reason or another that they didn’t like that businesses website and all the traffic that was driving sales suddenly dried up. (Now I’m not trying to be all doom and gloom here but yes, relying on Google to help you make money isn’t a good option – they are running their own business and may change things in their algorithm that could negatively affect your website – just be aware it happens.) In most cases the business owner didn’t have a lot of options. They had to start a new site from scratch without any customers. In a few cases though, the business owner had an email list that they used to communicate with their customers. They were able to continue the important conversations and even move their customers to a new website once they got up and running.
Part 1 of 3
The last thing I wanted to mention today is that people love to get emails from people they want to get emails from. Your email could just make their day better when they open their inbox and see it there. With that being said, make it easy for them to get off your list if they want to. If they don’t want your email, you are just bothering them (see previous post on permission marketing). Today I’ve just talked about email in general. In the next two posts in the series I’ll talk about specific tactics and programs you can use to setup and utilize email to keep your customers engaged and create a new avenue to drive sales. If you have any comments so far, feel free to start a conversation in the comments section below.