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eMail marketing campaigns
Deliver an event driven service by continuous engagement with your clients
September 2012


email marketing campaign: in blog.jeroenhoekman.com

eMail and eMail marketing have been around for a while and there are signs that the use of eMail is declining. Some universities in the US for example do not give their new students a university eMail account anymore, as too many of them turn to social media platforms instead. Thus it is a good question to ask yourself if you should still use email marketing with your customers. Is it better to look elsewhere for your internet marketing? Or does eMail marketing still deliver a profitable return on your investment?

eMail marketing has a couple of very strong advantages. An eMail marketing campaign can be set up quickly and easily, enables you to reach a large audience at relative low cost and can be almost completely automated, so that it does not need a lot of work to keep it going. These are important advantages from an economic and resource point of view, but the main power of eMail marketing lies in its use to target your customers on a one to one basis and to reach them with the right message at the right moment.

eMail marketing campaigns
When implemented correctly and based on your buyer profiles, you can set up an email marketing campaign around situations, specific events or phases your customers go through, sending them the next message when they reach the next phase. For example, if you sell new cars, you will know how much time it takes people to drive the first 3,000 kilometres, which is usually the moment they need their first service. By sending those new clients an email one week before that average time has expired, you will reach most customers at the moment they are thinking about getting a service and they will be more positive towards receiving an eMail from you instead of seeing it as spam. Based on the time they come in for the first service, you will get a better idea of how much kilometres they drive per month and your next eMail, for their following service, can thus reach them even closer to the date they do need a service. By constantly interacting with your customers and registering every interaction and every customers’ action in your eMail database (or CRM), you will improve your timing of every new eMail messages over time, turning it into a valuable service for your clients.

After a while you can also start using your eMail newsletter to get more of your marketing messages out, by adding other (marketing) messages and advertisements beside the main message. This should never become the main content of your eMail, as this will turn customers away, and once they stop reading your messages they will most likely never do so again. Thus your ads and other messages should either be small, or be accompanied by a gift or discount, to make them more attractive to your clients. Specific messages could be added as part of a news article or an article about a certain topic that is of interests to your target group.
Make sure you build in sufficient options to interact with you, either as an interesting discussion about a certain topic, or as simple feeback about your product, services or the eMail newsletter in specific. Ask your clients what they like about the newsletter and what not; ask for their opinion about subjects and make sure you find out what their interests are. Interaction will keep your clients involved and you can use their feedback to improve your newsletter and thus the amount of leads it will bring you.

Automated interaction
The feedback will also help you to create a completely automated newsletter. Once you know what your clients different issues are, you can create a series of newsletters that will automatically go to the right target group. Based on interactions in the newsletter, your server will be sending out either follow up newsletter A or B, each dealing with a different issue and thus delivering the content each specific customer is looking for. This also means that once you have set up the system, you do not need to do much anymore. Every new customer receives the first newletter and based on the interactions will receive the right follow up mails after that. The only thing you need to do is check the results regularly and fine tune the whole process and the specific newsletters when needed.

The most important reason for using eMail marketing campaigns is that they allow you to maintain in direct contact with your clients. Once you have their eMail address and their consent to send them emails, you can send them new messages , offers and discounts whenever you want. Mind though, this kind of campaigns work best (and is not considered spam by your customers) when you send them what they want, when they want it. That is why the interaction is so important. It will give you the information you need to determine what your customers are in need of; what they are looking for, and when it is the most convenient time to send it to them.

Like with all new marketing methods, you need to start with little steps. Set up small campaigns and measure what works and what doesn’t. Ask your customers for feedback on your campaign and for their preferences to improve your interaction with them. You can set this up yourself, but there are a lot of services out there, that could help you both with the eMailing system, to help you develop and send the emails and with the development of your email marketing campaign.

eMail use might be declining within certain population groups, but it is still one of the most used communication tools around and an effective way to stay in touch with your customers.

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Some examples of social media and social media marketing campaigns that caught my attention:

United breaks guitars
Still an excellent example of how social media can damage a companies reputation and how this tends to stay for a long time.

 

 
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