Nowadays, companies (particularly retailers) can enjoy all sorts of platforms that allow them to connect with consumer and get their brand message out to the masses.
But there’s one particular type of marketing platform that allows retailers to accomplish two type of goals:
That marketing platform is commonly referred to as email marketing. Here’s more about what email marketing entails, and why it’s relevant and useful to achieve CRM and branding goals.
Email marketing (in a nutshell) involves subscribing to any one of a number of email marketing platforms in order to send interested parties messages via their email address.
The great thing about email marketing that traditional marketing strategies (such as advertising) can’t capture boils down to one word: permission.
Traditional advertising is disruptive. It hits the consumer over the head with a marketing message, often without their permission. What’s more, advertising does nothing to continue a conversation with the consumer, nor does it build a relationship with consumers.
Granted, there’s nothing inherently wrong with advertising, and it certainly has its place. But when it comes to hitting relationship goals, traditional marketing stategies such as advertising is the worst strategy that retails could (or should) use.
Email marketing is the solution to the branding and relationship problem. The solution begins with introducing permission – based marketing stategies via educational content, through entertaining videos, or through other sorts of inviting media.
After the prospective shopper has voluntarily consumed the lead-generating media, they then have the option to voluntarily enter their email address in the lead capture form. There’s never any aura of making the consumer feel entrapped, interrupted, or bothered.
And here’s something else to consider: Once the consumer has voluntarily given retailers permission to continue to contact them, then the consumer is often open to receiving traditional advertising messages in the body of the email (although they prefer less advertising and more thought-provoking, relationship-building content).
Retailers can use all sorts of tactics to try to explain their unique value in the lives of consumers, but email marketing messages actually add the show to the tell.
As an example, retailers can communicate their brand message in a way that reflects their value in the minds of the consumer, along with their value as a company. In fact, as consumers become more savvy and purposeful in the manner that they direct their dollars, retailers will see that explaining and promoting their company values more clearly will often lead to a larger quantity of sales, along with a highly quality of brand consumers.
In other words, consumers are looking for brands to support based upon their personal values. When the consumer can find a brand that they personally connect with, then they’re more than happy to make purchases and continue to support the retailer with tangible and intangible loyalty.
While retailers certain can’t connect with their email audience using real carrots, there’s plenty of ways that they can use email marketing to connect with their voluntary audience by using emotional carrots.
For example, it’s very common practice for marketers to give away something tangible or intangible to prospective email subscribers. Examples of these include a free product sample after signing up. They can also include:
… and more.
Carrots such as these make email subscribers feel valued. There are plenty of ways to attract email subscribers and brand loyalists by using carrots of all sorts.
After retailers have developed a healthy list of email marketing subscribers, they have to find ways to keep the subscribers interested while also accomplishing the task of brand-building. Marketers also have the task of accomplishing these goals in a manner that also offer email subscribers a high level of value, stoking their anticipation for the email.
After all, when email subscribers learn that a marketer’s message is full of fluff, advertising, or low-value information, then the subscriber will quickly ignore future emails, or they’ll simply click the unsubscribe button!
One way to prevent this from happening is for marketing teams to produce posts that intelligently introduces new product launches. Not only should the email speak of the new product and how great it is (which most do), but it should also educate and/or entertain the reader. It’s also helpful to make the reader feel as if they’re part of the production process.
Marketers should make email subscribers (who have ultimately become brand loyalist) feel as if their opinions about current and future products matter. The consumer should feel that they are supporting a brand that’s in existence just for their needs, and not just the company’s needs.
Email marketing does a wonderful, concise job of generating high-value leads by using permission marketing, along with relationship building strategies that ensure that the retailer can start working smarter to generate revenue, instead of working harder.