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New media marketing 101 series: #5 email

27 Jan

Now here is something basic. Everyone that reads this has email. Most of you have more than one address. Personally I have a work address, a personal address and something for spam. It’s very important to me that the first two are devoid of advertising and promotional mails. This is a practice used by a lot of people.

However, email is a very important source or marketing contacts. It’s the digital equivalent of direct mail. There are a number of significant differences though. This post is about the “why”, rather than the “how”. If you want to know the ins and outs of the more technical side, read my earlier post.

Examples

Every company that is worth something does email advertising. But since the mail resides in your mailbox it’s hard to have some examples. Below you can find some visuals. Look in your mailbox and I’m sure you will digg up something.

youth_newsletter_by_lucifertje1 email_example sample_newsletter
Advantages

  • With a good database, you can do great things. Most importantly personalize your mails in terms of name, gender, interests but also target your audience very specifically. If your database contains info on a lot of different things, you can use these to send extremely targeted mails.
  • You can add a direct call to action. “Buy now” always works better with a click than offline.
    The results are easy to measure. You can see anything you want in detail and use this to constantly improve. Of course the cost is pretty low if you have everything inhouse. When you don’t, you can add the cost of a rented list to your budget.
  • No shippping fee results in the possibility to work on a global scale rather than local.
  • Since systems are easily programmable, you can send out your mail whenever you want. Combine this with the personalization and you can create a very personal and effective message.
  • The response is instant. Through measuring channels, you can see how effective the campaign is within minutes. There also is no threshold anymore to fulfill the call to action. A click is so easy.

Problems

  • Many emarketers have nightmares over bouncing mails. This means that, for some reason, the message does not reach the intended recipient.
  • You have to have a stirdy database if you want to do effective email marketing. If you have no addresses, noone will read your mail. Renting or buying a list is an option but expect to have a lot of dead addresses. You might end up paying a lot of money for a list that is only half of what you paid for.
  • The effect of an email campaign is not lasting. Expect a short term effect rather than a long tail. Also, since “delete” is a word that is embedded in the mind of most users, your email can be gone in a second.
  • If you include something that is considered “news” in your message, make sure it definately is new. Nowadays the internet audience is very critical and will dismiss your message if there is anything wrong with it.
  • Technically, some email campaigning systems are not very reliable. You might want to test the system on a low-priority target audience before you go for gold.
  • If you send too much mails, the potential customers might be repelled by you.

Conclusion

Email marketing is a very good way to market. But make sure you have a good database, an original message and a clear call to action.

Liked this article? Read the other as well:
New media marketing 101 series: #1 the Blog
New media marketing 101 series: #2 Social Network Sites
New media marketing 101 series: #3 Banners
New media marketing 101 series: #4 virals

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Posted by on January 27, 2009 in Advertising, email marketing

 

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