What comes to mind when you think of email marketing? Do you think of it as an out-of-date, old fashioned method that yields no real, tangible results whatsoever? If you do, it might be time to reconsider what email marketing has to offer.
Below we’ll share with you some facts and data about the ROI (Return on investment) of email marketing as well as practical tips on how to use email to market your private label supplement brand effectively.
1. The Hard Facts: The ROI of Email Marketing
Let’s first look at some of the hard facts behind email marketing. What do marketers say about it? What does research show?
- According to a 2013 survey by MarketingSherpa, marketers saw an average ROI of 119% from email marketing.
- In 2013, Litmus reported that about 82% of emails sent out by companies to customers were being opened.
- Back in 2011 Forrester predicted that email marketing spend would be growing with 10% each year.
- And with the rise of mobile, Litmus also found that users are increasingly opening emails through their phones. At the end of 2013, mobile accounted for 51% of email opens. And according to Forrester, by 2017, 78% of users in the US will access their email via mobile.
- But what about ROI? Here’s where it gets really interesting. According to global information analysis and marketing services company Experian, every $1 spent on email marketing has an average return on investment of $44.25. What’s even more fascinating is that according to calculations by Hubspot, an email-only marketing campaign could have up to $2,600 ROI on every dollar spent, when compared to a direct mail-only campaign.
Apparently marketing reports and surveys across many industries are all sending out this message: email is here to stay, and it is a profitable and successful way to market one’s business. But how?
2. What is Email Marketing Good For?
As with social media, the word ‘marketing’ in ’email marketing’ should not be taken too literally in a hard, self-promotional sense. It is much more than marketing. Call it marketing ‘in disguise’, if you will, because it’s about value, engagement and interaction. It’s about building relationships with customers, being one step ahead and offering people what they need before they ask for it. That means that you really need to listen to signals that your customers are sending out and carefully analyze how they react to your campaign.
While emails are more straightforward as a marketing initiative than social media, there are still plenty of options for you to engage your audience via email in compelling and entertaining ways.
So how can email marketing help and what are its advantages? Through email marketing you can:
- build and nurture relationships with customers
- have access to yet another channel for engagement and interaction
- strengthen brand awareness
- create more trust and loyalty through brand consistency
- drive sales and increase ROI
So far so good. But what makes a good marketing campaign actually reach all of the above goals?
3. The Recipe for a Winning Email Marketing Campaign
Email lists decay at about 25% per year. That’s quite a serious number, which means that you need to work on both offering high-quality content in your emails (to retain subscribers) as well as continuously grow your lists through different marketing channels (to add new ones).
The art of successful email marketing is complex and one blog post can hardly encompass all that can be said on the subject. But here are the main things you need to consider when working on your next email campaign.
Sending out a generic email to everyone who ever subscribed to your list is a surefire way to get people to unsubscribe from your list. On the other hand, email campaigns that focus on segmented lists have shown to be quite successful – they have lower unsubscribe rates, greater revenue, more retention and, maybe most importantly, greater relevance for customers.
In other words, email campaigns need to be targeted, which means that you need to segment your email list in a number of categories, according to the type of subscribers. What are the criteria for segmentation?
You could segment your list according to the type of supplements your subscribers are interested in. For example, have one list for weight-loss supplement buyers, one for sports supplements, one for skin, hair and nail health, etc.
You could further segment your list according to the stage at which people have subscribed. Did they subscribe after they made a purchase? Are they first-time customers or long-standing customers? Or did they subscribe after they read your latest blog post about sports supplements trends?
Content for past customers is different than content for potential customers. The former need to be ‘nurtured’ while the latter need to be ‘convinced’. In other words, ideally you should offer different emails, each custom-built to target the specific stage of your subscribers.
Finally, you could segment your lists according to demographic data which you collect directly from your customers, once they subscribe to your list or make an online purchase. Such data could include your customers’ age, location, gender, income level and more.
Type of Email
Once you’ve segmented your list, you need to consider what type of content to send out. Email campaigns can be broken down into a number of types. Each has a different goal and features different content.
Emails that you send out to customers could be in the form of:
- dedicated emails
- lead nurturing emails
- sponsorship emails
- transactional emails
HubSpot offers an in-depth look at these types of emails, the type of content they offer, their advantages and disadvantages. Also, make sure to consider who your buyers are. B2C (business-to-consumer) marketing campaigns are different from B2B (business-to-business) marketing campaigns, so make sure to differentiate and adjust accordingly.
B2C marketing differs from B2B in that the buying cycle for consumers is shorter than for businesses, in that the tone towards consumers is different, that they offer different types of content and that they should be targeted and timed differently.
First, make a good impression from the very start. The subject line can greatly influence the success or failure of your campaign. The best subject lines increase the probability of email opens by a large percentage. According to a survey by Chadwick Martin Bailey, 64% of people report opening an email only because of its subject line.
Second, be relevant. Once you’ve segmented your lists, the probability that an email will be relevant to the ones who receive it is higher than if you didn’t segment them. In any case, be sure about what you want to say, why you want to say it and whether it is relevant to the people you are addressing.
Third, be concise. Don’t overwhelm your audience. People receive large amounts of email on a daily basis and you would be wise not to ask for too much attention. Be clear, be direct, use actionable language, stick to simplicity and offer only a few main takeaways at a time.
Fourth, be consistent. Be consistent in your tone, the design, the structure and the formatting. Offer subscribers something they can recognize and identify. This definitely helps if you want to build and strengthen your brand. Be consistent up to the minutest detail – for example, have the same sender name, email address and signature or footer that are in line with the former.
Finally, be personal. Being too personal may be intimidating, so you might want to consider at what stage you can approach people with a personalized subject line or address. In any case, once you’ve established a relationship with customers, be personal in order to make them feel that you recognize and acknowledge them in particular. By the way, greater personalization is also a consequence of careful segmentation of lists.
Here are a few examples and analyses of email campaigns for you to consider and see these strategies at work.
If all of this feels overwhelming, just take time to understand how it works and how to structure your email marketing efforts. It will begin to feel familiar and comfortable the more you practice. Also, there’s plenty of email marketing software out there that offers a lot of what we’ve touched upon in the article.
MailChimp, Silverpop, Emarsys are companies that offer email marketing solutions, alongside with other marketing software services. Whatever channel you decide to get involved through, you can be sure that if you choose email marketing and do it well, you can expect good results.
Private Label Supplement offers supplement retailers expert advice on how to market their supplements effectively and grow a strong and reputable brand. We can help you create a successful marketing strategy that is tailored according to your niche and your brand’s size. Call our sales team at 855-209-0225 ext. 2 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
All my best,
Stay focused and never give up!