Why We Still Like E-Mail For Your Northern Virginia Small Business in 2020

In an age where we are always looking for the most effective way to get our word out there, whether it’s Yelp ads, LinkedIn ads, having Silver Line pitch you email as part of your digital marketing strategy seems pretty boring, doesn’t it?

While there can definitely be a tendency to overlook email, believe it or not, email is one of our favorite digital marketing methods.

Why?

1. Two-thirds of consumers have made a purchase as a result of an online email marketing message.

2. People spend an average of 2.5 hours per weekday checking personal emails at work.

This is an amazing statistic. Some will argue that this does not necessarily mean they will act on  emails, but at the very least they’re paying attention to your email. We think this makes a lot of sense.

3. It’s cost-effective!

We’ve seen claims that email marketing returns 4,300%. We’re reluctant to tie any rate of return to email marketing, but it’s cheap. Apart from the cost of having us help out, which we tend to offer in marketing packages, the only cost is email software, which we include in our packages. For businesses with lists of under 1,000 subscribers, it’s even cheaper.

Top 10 Ways Local Businesses in Northern Virginia Can Do Email Right

1. We format emails so that they fit iPhone or Gmail. 56% of all emails are being read on iPhones or Gmail.

2. Add pop up email list sign-up forms. Something like the below image pulled from Kate Spade’s site makes sense. Nothing too obtrusive. Some people prefer slide-in forms that don’t cover the entire page, especially for pages with lots of content. We don’t like to load pop-up forms right when the page loads, however 10-45 seconds is a decent amount of time before letting the pop-up form come up, but results vary. We go as far as to think about the colors of the sign-up form. Some marketing studies have found that a blue call-to-action button as part of these pop-up forms is associated with the highest success rate.

3. Encourage social followers to sign up for your email list – and make the offer compelling. The reader thinks: I already like your page on Facebook, why do I need to now have you clutter my inbox? The Kate Spade example above is a strong example. Kate Spade is deciding that giving you 15% off an order is worth more to them than your email address. By having your email address, they can send you deals in the future – that they expect will result in higher earnings for them than the 15% you’re saving on an order.

4. Don’t necessarily craft the email you think 100% of people will open, because it doesn’t exist. The average email open rate is roughly 20%, but it varies by industry.

5. Try not to bombard. It’s not clear how often emails should be sent. We can however strategize on the best time of day to send emails. As a rule of thumb: you want to send emails often.

6. If you run an online store, use cart abandonment emails. Many of the types of businesses we look aren’t e-commerce businesses, but here’s a link to learn more about this. In short: as you might have experienced, if you add something to your cart on a site and don’t buy it, you might get an email. If of course, they have your email address.

7. Complete a list scrub every several emails. Take a look at who isn’t opening your emails. The higher the percentage of users who don’t open your emails, the more likely it is that your emails are going straight into spam or into the “Promotional” category in GMail, which has a lower open rate. This is because GMail and other email providers will begin to classify your emails as Personal, Promotional, etc. based on whether your email’s recipients open it, and how they engage with it.

8. Focus on good content. The name of the game for 2020 local email marketing in Northern Virginia is likely going to keep with an acronym called EAT – expertise, authority and trust.

The nice thing about email newsletters is you don’t have to worry about SEO.

9. Consider ditching the fancy templates – This depends on your open rates. We craft email newsletter designs.

10. Leverage existing content – Creating an email newsletter does not mean putting together unique content for the email – though have some unique pieces.

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