Summer is fading out and fall is now well underway, and that means the end of the calendar year is approaching. It may soon be time to look back on 2014 and assess how you performed with regard to your marketing goals. Every company wants to do more to connect with consumers, forge strong relationships and ultimately build a brand - how did you do in this area?
Here's a guess - you probably didn't achieve as much as you'd like in the email marketing department. This is a common thing in business today, because marketing offices often get so swept up in developing mobile apps and tackling other new-wave technologies that they often forget about email.
Email marketing still matters. It's still one of the best ways to get in touch with customers because it's cheap, it's easy and it helps you reach a wide variety of people - not everybody has an iPhone, but just about everyone alive has an email account. So as the end of the year approaches and you're looking to make improvements across the board to your strategies, the fall might be a good time to examine how your business aligns with email marketing best practices.
That's the thinking, anyway, according to MediaPost. Email marketing expert Amanda Hinkle opined that this fall, marketers should attempt to find a balance - it's time to explore all different areas within the email marketing realm where you can make improvements, and try to shore up all of them.
"Achieving balance does not necessarily mean that all elements are equal," Hinkle explained. "It simply means that they are in the correct proportions. Building on this sentiment, let's consider how we can strike the right balance in our email marketing programs to drive engagement."
So where, specifically, can you better yourself when it comes to email? There are four areas in particular that merit a closer examination:
Devising a strategy
There are countless ways of connecting with your audience, and there are no doubt plenty of strategic changes you could make. Have you thought about broadening your audience and appealing to more demographics? Have you considered technical changes, such as optimizing your emails for more different devices? What about improving data quality and getting a better contact list? All of these moves can help.
Broadening your content
There are a lot of different types of marketing content. Some messages are informational - not really delivering a sales pitch, but rather just sharing valuable knowledge about your industry that people might care about. Some are social, focusing not so much on information but on crafting deeper relationships. Still other emails go for the hard sell, diving straight into the nitty-gritty about what product or service they're offering. Which approach works best for you? It's worth reconsidering.
Expanding your creativity
Within whatever category of email content you might choose, there are still many directions you can turn. If you write social content that's designed to relate to people, how do you go about it? Do you want to be serious and talk about real people and their issues, or go the goofier route and send funny images and videos that will leave a different kind of lasting impact? The choice is yours, so be creative.
Fine-tuning production methods
It's also important to take a look at the technical aspects of what you do. For example, how do your email marketing professionals schedule their days? Does it require a balance of planning and strategizing versus actual writing and sending of emails? Are there ways to remove inefficiencies and get more out of each day? This is certainly worth thinking about.