This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
If you are running a small business without a large marketing or IT department, email marketing services give you another level of resources and support to draw on without paying to expand your business team. From suggestions about the best way to design your emails to one-on-one customer support in troubleshooting difficult email marketing challenges, your email services provider is another valuable player on your team.
Welcome emails are the first email your subscribers receive after they’ve confirmed their email address. Since this is their first interaction with your brand in their inbox, make it memorable and worth their while. After all, subscribers are highly likely to open and click welcome emails compared to other types of promotional emails, according to a study from Experian.
“I recently had some white space in a newsletter I couldn’t get rid of. So I called customer support and they explained the image needed to be resized and the issue was cleared up immediately. A great thing about Constant Contact is if you’re having a problem, you can just pick up the phone and someone will solve your problem in a matter of minutes.”
As social media grew in popularity, many marketers started to question the future value of email marketing. Those thoughts, however, quickly waned as marketers saw the return on investment (ROI) of email continue to be the best among all marketing channels. What are the advantages of using email? Check out this list of reasons why email marketing is king for business owners.
While inbound marketing is getting a lot of buzz, a well-rounded marketing mix should include both inbound and outbound marketing strategies. Inbound works for broad lead generation activities, but outbound is good to amplify your inbound efforts, and target specific opportunities. So what exactly is outbound marketing? It’s using outbound channels to introduce your message and content to your prospects, typically through rented attention, rather than making your content and messages availableon your own properties.
Attention scarcity is driving a shift from “rented attention” to “owned attention”. Historically, most marketing has been about renting attention other people have built. An example of this would be if you purchased an ad in a magazine or rented a tradeshow booth. But in the noisy, crowded market that today’s buyers live in, rented attention becomes less effective as attention becomes even scarcer. Of course, this is not an either-or proposition; you will ideally use a mix of rented vs. owned attention for your lead generation efforts to be affective.

While some digital marketing tactics take time to implement and even longer to deliver results, email marketing is rather quick and direct once you learn the basics of developing a campaign. The assortment of email marketing tools and platforms make it easy to quickly create and distribute professional marketing emails that help you get immediate results.
One way to accomplish this is to actually mix in content with your promotions. Make your promotional emails focus on the sell or offer, and highlight this focus using your stand-out CTA. Then, maybe beneath the main offer, you can provide additional free content that supplements the offer, using a less eye-grabbing CTA. This gives customers an on-ramp to dip their toes in without pulling the trigger on a purchase, which may give you more opportunity to convert them later on.
Run sweepstakes or a contest. Although contests can potentially bring in a lot of sign-ups, the inherent downside is the person you’ll attract is looking for free stuff. Use a giveaway to break through the noise, or to jumpstart your list, but don’t rely on them to grow an engaged audience for the long term. Check out contest apps on the Shopify App Store.

Another thing you could do is partner with another company to create an asset and share the leads with each other. Klientboost, a PPC agency, did this when they were trying to grow their sales leads. They partnered with the company Invoca, a call-tracking company, as a way to get in front of their target audience. This was one of the main ways that Klientboost grew their revenue from $0-1M in a year.
In the old world of information scarcity, the concept of “lead generation” meant marketing found the names of potential buyers and passed them to sales. Buyers expected that they would have to talk to sales and sales expected to speak to uneducated early stage buyers that may not yet be qualified. This has all changed. Today, buyers can do their own research online and can find a variety of educational resources through search engines, social media, and other online channels. Through content resources, today’s buyer can learn a great deal about a product or service before ever having to even speak to a sales person.  So businesses must make sure that they build their digital presence.
Include your contact information in the newsletter. You always want your contact information in an easy-to-find area on the newsletter. The purpose of your newsletter isn’t necessarily to sell, but if your customers are inspired to reach out to you because of the newsletter, you want them to be able to find you. You could put social media contact buttons in the header or footer of your message; you could go the more traditional route, and include your phone number and email address; or you could do both. In the example below from our very own VerticalResponse newsletter, you’ll notice the social buttons in the top right corner:

Bulk e-mail system: unlimited lists, unlimited recipients and no recurring fees: Why pay for each contact or email sent? Keep as many email contacts as you wish in your database, and use a bulk e-mail system to send out your e-mails as often as you need, without constantly worrying about how much you are spending. Sending out a small mailing to some hundreds contacts or a large one to 20.000 people have the same cost: a single bulk mail software system license of 99 Euro / 129 Dollars.

Email marketing is an important marketing tool for any small business. Let’s get that on the table up front. Although it may not be as glamorous as social media marketing platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Instagram, it has proven to be more effective for delivering conversions and higher ROI. When small businesses are looking for a cost effective, shareable, measurable form of marketing, the benefits of email marketing place it right at the top of the list.
Another one of the unique benefits of email marketing is that email provides a more versatile channel for communicating with your customers. Not only are you able to send text and images over email, but you can also include video, attachments, and links to relevant content. For example, if your business has created some content assets that you’d like to share with your email list like a how-to video or an informational e-book, you can link to or embed video into your email message and attach any additional content assets or link to a landing page that allows customers to download the e-book.
The problem is that information abundance equals attention scarcity. This is known as attention economics. Social scientist Herbert Simon was the first person to discuss this concept when he wrote “in an information-rich world, the wealth of information means a dearth of something else: a scarcity of whatever it is that information consumes. What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients.”
Spam - commercial email or 'spam' irritates consumers. If your messages aren’t targeted to the right people, the recipient may delete your email or unsubscribe. You need to make sure that your email marketing complies with privacy and data protection rules, and that it is properly targeted at people who want to receive it. The 'click through rate' for untargeted emails is likely to be very low.

When it comes to marketing your business, it’s important to be where your consumers are.  Email use is thriving and is used by 95% of online consumers.  91% of consumers reported checking their email at least once a day (Exact Target).  In fact, it’s not uncommon for consumers to check their email dozens of times each day.  Using email marketing to promote content and your products and services is a great way to drive more traffic to your website and is a highly effective tool for nurturing leads through the buying cycle.
With email marketing, you are able to quickly and directly reach your current customers and leads on your email list. This direct communication means that you are not limited by the decreasing organic reach of social media. You don’t have to wait months to see organic traffic come to your site through the search engines. You also don’t have to buy PPC or social media ads to start seeing results. With email marketing, your email list becomes an important asset that you can continue to see benefits from for years to come.
Once you've tested the entire roster of emails listed above, you'll see that subscribers respond to some emails more than others. Don't be surprised if they're not just looking out for discounts. After all, email marketing is really about building a long term relationship with your subscribers. That kind of relationship-building requires more planning and variety. In return, you'll get better brand recall and customer loyalty. 
”My advice to newer agents that are looking to work through the holidays would be to use the fact that you are present and available during the holiday season as the dominant messaging in your marketing. And if you have listings that you are going to be showing during the holidays, have holiday-themed events such as a holiday-themed broker’s open with spiced cider or at your Sunday open house have a jazz musician playing holiday music. You can also take new pictures of the property with some holiday decorations to use in your social media posts.”
While there are many tools on the market to support this, our favorite here at Nutshell is MailChimp. Not only does Nutshell offer a powerful integration with this tool, MailChimp is easy to sign up for, and offers free subscriptions up to 2,000 contacts. Click here to learn more about how Nutshell integrates seamlessly with this tool! Sending mass emails to thousands of clients from Nutshell can be done within minutes.
The low cost and relative ease of carrying out an email marketing campaign means that it is a tool that is accessible to almost any business. A small mechanic's shop can put together an email list and then send out coupons for oil changes or brake jobs. The scope and sophistication of these campaigns may not be as great as larger businesses, but that doesn't mean they won't be effective.

The pervasive nature of email is clear. 91% of Americans use email every day, so there is a 91% chance that your email will be seen in some form. Social media marketing does not provide that rate of exposure to a target market. Email conversion rates are three times higher than social media according to McKinsey & Company. Since the end goal is to convert into sales, this number is meaningful.
Analyzing the emails of competing businesses can be a great way for companies to plan their own. This can be done easily by just signing up for their email lists. Competitor's emails reveal what kinds of images, messages and specials they are using to appeal to their customers. Businesses can then tailor their email campaigns to match or beat the offers of their competitors.

Subscribers are generally a diverse and quality audience that can be leveraged to determine popular opinion. Companies can create surveys to help formulate important brand identifiers like incident response strategies, potential sales, new branding, etc. Consider sending an email requesting customer feedback on products, services, or policies. Utilize this information for quarterly reports and action plans. Companies can also create an email marketing campaign asking their dedicated consumers for online reviews to boost sales.
Unlike marketing channels such as billboard ads, flyers, or television commercials, email marketing allows you to communicate with your customers and leads in real time. This makes it the perfect channel to send timely messages to your email subscribers. For instance, if you are having a last minute sale or want to remind customers of a promotion that is ending soon, you can quickly put together a marketing email that will reach reader’s inboxes in just enough time to allow them to take advantage of the promotions that are set to expire.

TAB franchise owners often advertise free taster sessions on their sites, so local business owners (or anyone who stumbles on their site) can get a sense of how the TAB community can help them grow their business. We’ve found this to be an effective way of overcoming the hurdle of skepticism and to show the power of our service rather than explain it. With only 6% of business owners considering themselves “very trusting” of B2B vendors, the best way to market to them is by educating, not selling.
Next to guest blogging yourself on different sites, try inviting one of your audience influencers to write a guest blog on your site. Just like you guest blogging on another site, you can give them a backlink and a platform to increase their audience. If you really want a famous person on your site, you might even consider paying her or him for writing a guest post. The goal is that you get a quality article and most likely the influencer will share it with their audience.
Companies can build campaigns centered around events they are hosting or sponsoring to build their brand persona and engage with their customers. Highlighting philanthropy is an easy way to capture the hearts of consumers while subtly persuading them to further patronize their business. Most email marketing platforms have themes and templates for invitations, follow-ups, reminders and thank-you email. Not only can businesses maintain an organized guest list and manage ongoing communication without hassle, but they can also highlight how they are affecting their community, creating brand loyalty among their subscribers.
Another example is KissMetrics, the advanced analytics platform, who has two tools in a section of their site called /growth-tools/ around (1) calculating statistical significance for AB tests and (2) building URLs with UTM parameters for easy campaign tracking. These are useful to their exact target audience (marketers that run AB tests and other marketing campaigns):
Companies can build campaigns centered around events they are hosting or sponsoring to build their brand persona and engage with their customers. Highlighting philanthropy is an easy way to capture the hearts of consumers while subtly persuading them to further patronize their business. Most email marketing platforms have themes and templates for invitations, follow-ups, reminders and thank-you email. Not only can businesses maintain an organized guest list and manage ongoing communication without hassle, but they can also highlight how they are affecting their community, creating brand loyalty among their subscribers.
Newsletter Emails — Sent on a regular basis—such as monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly—newsletter emails are a great way for organizations to reinforce their industry expertise, build loyalty and engagement with subscribers, as well as grow a list of qualified prospects and customers. We have clients who get a triple-digit ROI on the email newsletters we produce for them, meaning a very strong payback. In addition, check out this great infographic for all the ways you can calculate the return from an email newsletter for your business.
As popular as newsletters are, they have a drawback. When you send multiple links or blurbs in an email, you weaken your main call-to-action. Your subscriber may click on the first link or two in your email but may not come back to the others, or they may skim your email and move on. So, if your main goal is to drive a specific action – sign up for this webinar, buy this product, read my latest blog post – you may be better off with a standalone email. These emails are dedicated to just one topic and put the call to action front and center. Your readers’ attention won't be diverted, so they’re more likely to take the action you want them to.
In conclusion, email marketing definitely offers numerous benefits to small businesses. Even though social media landscapes keep evolving, small business email marketing’s importance will keep on growing. To put it short, the benefits of email marketing comes down to the fact that it is exceptionally cost-effective while working extremely efficient.
The increasing popularity of social channels has directly attributed to information abundance. Through social networks, buyers have been able to research and learn about products and services through influencers and peers.  Additionally, a profound shift has taken place within social media channels. Although social is still important for branding and generating buzz, lead generation is becoming more and more important. By tapping into all the social media channels, from Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and Google+, you can be where your customers are and create that trust.
Since our partnership began back in 2015, it has been our job to provide a new look and theme for all visual assets across all of the various platforms & formats in which the club releases content. You may be familiar with our explosive paint clouds of Cobblers colours, to glowing gradients and dynamic shards, we’ve now provided a variety of seasonal graphics for the club, and look forward to raising the bar again for next season.
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