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The conventional marketing wisdom in the distribution industry today is that the effectiveness of email marketing is fading away. However, the trust about email marketing effectiveness may surprise you.
According to recent surveys, email marketing is perhaps even more effective with millennials and remains popular and effective with consumers of all ages.
According to the study, nearly 68 percent of teens and 73 percent of Millennials said they prefer to receive communication from a business via email. In addition, more than half rely on email to buy things online.
Email has many benefits for younger buyers who are becoming more powerful in your customer base. Thanks to smartphones, email is always with them and can include eye-catching layouts, social media links, video and more. So, email has become more engaging than ever. Additionally, because their phone is always with them, buyers report reading emails all day long. Nearly half of the respondents said that reading email is one of the first things they do upon waking. If you take a smart approach to email campaigns, your message can be with them everywhere they go.
The Right Way to Do Email Marketing
Unfortunately, there is a right way and a wrong way to do email marketing. According to the study, if you get it wrong you will lose 80% of your email list to unsubscribes. In other words, if you make your emails targeted and engaging, you will continue to see success. If you simply send mass messages out to your entire list, you risk losing the prospects you worked so hard to get.
What makes email engaging?
We’ve been helping distributors execute targeted marketing for years and we’ve learned some important practices to make your emails more engaging to drive buying behavior. Here’s what works with buyers:
- Make the email personal. Buyers ignore, delete, and unsubscribe from mass emails. They prefer emails that are personalized, fit their needs and offer unique value. In fact, studies show that segmentation improves revenue per campaign by almost 8X.
- Send targeted recommendations. You know more about your customers than you realize because you understand their purchasing patterns. Instead of trying to force a random product sale in every email, you can determine the right offer to make at the right time. Is there a complimentary product that was just introduce? Run a list of customers who recently purchased in that line. Don’t send product recalls or replacement notices to everyone on the list, just those who bought the product. Don’t promote specific product training to your whole list, offer the right classes to the customers who buy those products.
- Add value, don’t just sell. Buyers don’t want to see sales pitches in their inbox, but they love getting information that helps them in their jobs. Show them how to succeed, don’t just pitch your products.
- Teach them something. Teaching your customers something new has a dual benefit of engaging them with your brand and featuring products in a way that is inoffensive. For example, teaching them how to install products, upsell their clients or create new services gives them a way to expand their business by using the products they buy from you.
- Use social proof. Share real stories of how other customers have succeeded with you. Tell them how you carried a special part or facilitated a job delivery or provided customer support. Show them through social proof stories how easy it is to work with you.
- Involve your vendors. By providing vendor content, you can sell your products without pitching your own company. You’re sharing third-party information that seems less pushy. Also, vendors love targeted marketing and many distributors have found way to pay for their entire marketing campaigns with vendor comarketing.
If you’re wondering how to get started with targeted marketing, we’ve created a program we call Targeted Marketing as a Service (TMaaS) that provides all the benefits of an expert targeted marketing strategy at a fraction of the cost of hiring a marketing employee and executing complex campaigns. If you’d like to learn more about how TMaaS can help you, please schedule a quick 15-minute conversation to get started.