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Email Marketing In 2013: What’s Working And What’s Failing

 

License: Creative Commons

License: Creative Commons

When utilized correctly, email marketing can be an extremely powerful sales tool. However, many businesses fall short of ever making the most of this channel. If you want to ensure that your team is on the right track for 2013, let’s look at some of the dos and don’ts of email marketing in 2013:

People are Very Receptive to Email

If you spent much time reading posts from tech bloggers, it wouldn’t take long before you’d start to believe that email is dead and Facebook and Twitter are the way of the future. While both Facebook and Twitter have their uses, it’s important to remember that tech bloggers live in a bit of a bubble. As a result, their usage and habits aren’t reflective of the average lead that a salesperson actually cares about. When you cut past the hyperbole and look at real numbers, the truth is email continues to gain popularity. A recent analysis of over eighty billion emails found that open rates have increased each quarter since the second quarter of 2011.

But That Doesn’t Mean They’re Clicking Through

While open rates show that email is actually more viable than ever, that doesn’t mean that people are blindly taking action on anything that is sent to them. During the same period of time that open rates have increased, click through rates have actually fallen. There are two main issues that are likely the most responsible for this trend. First, there are plenty of companies that don’t fully understand how to utilize their email marketing to the fullest. Although they’re able to pique subscribers’ interest and get them to open emails, they don’t provide compelling enough offers for people to take action. Second, not every email requires recipients to take action in order to be effective. Research has also found that since 2010, entertaining or educational emails have become one of the best ways to build strong relationships with potential and current customers. Many companies forget that not every single email needs to be focused on making a sale.

Focus on Relevance, Being Compelling and Adjusting as Needed

As previously mentioned, not every email needs to be a direct sales pitch. If you focus on delivering real value to leads and current customers, it’s going to work in your favor. When some salespeople hear this advice, they think it means they can never make a direct pitch. However, that’s simply not true. Just keep in mind that when the time does come for a pitch, if you want recipients to respond, you need to make it truly compelling. The other best thing you can do for your efforts is pay attention to all of the analytics data that’s collected. This data tells you exactly how your efforts are working, so all you need to do is analyze it and adjust accordingly.

Craig Klein is the president of online CRM and email marketing company Sales Nexus. Circle Craig Klein on Google+ or follow him on Twitter to learn more.
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