The email marketing strategy should have a very specific purpose and goal. One goal of an email marketing strategy is to keep the products at the top of a potential customer’s mind, and begin to brand the products. By sending an email to someone on a regular basis, you can tell them about your products and remind them to visit the website or contact you for additional information.
You can also purchase email addresses of people who told other companies that they would like to hear about offers from “third parties”. Sometimes these are available from partners. This would typically be a one-time email message, telling them about a specific product offer, perhaps including promotional pricing.
Opt-in email newsletters are another way to keep your name in front of our potential customers. However, to be effective, the information presented in the newsletter should be valuable enough to make people sign up to receive the newsletter. And it should provide enough valuable information so that they want to continue to receive it on a regular basis. Simply telling them about your products isn’t enough; it should include news or commentary. Email newsletters don’t come without a cost, as someone must write it and be responsible for sending it out on a regular basis.
Before a decision is made to start an email newsletter, many questions should be answered first:
— Who is going to write it?
— Can we produce enough unique material about a subject to warrant calling it a newsletter?
— How will we get them to opt-in?
— How many people do we expect to reach each time it is sent?
— What should we expect as the subscription level (how many subscribers at one time)? At what subscription level does it make sense to publish the newsletter and at what level does it not make sense to publish the newsletter? In other words, if we only have 10 subscribers, then would it make sense to continue publishing the newsletter? What about 50 subscribers? 100? 200?
— Do we need to outsource the technical aspects of publishing the newsletter or can we handle it in-house?
If a decision is made to outsource the technical aspects of the newsletter (such as emailing it and handling the subscriptions (subscribing and unsubscribing), then a specific set of requirements must be put together. Then, once those requirements are approved, an RFP should be made available to a few vendors.
Options other than writing and hosting a newsletter of your own, is advertising with a text-based ad on other email newsletters and/or mailing lists. Many industry trade publications currently send out an email newsletters or email editions (some are daily), as well as various other industry-related websites. Also, there are mailing lists (subscribers send an email to a server and it is then automatically re-sent to all subscribers of the mailing list). If any advertising like this is done, then you need to have a strong handle on what happens when someone clicks on an ad (or visits a specific web page). They need to find exactly the information they’re looking for and then be presented with a call for action and an incentive to contact you.