Marketing to and interacting with your customers on an ongoing basis can feel like an uphill climb. There’s so much you can do, so it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. Email is a safe and easy way to start marketing to your customers more effectively, build a relationship with them and gain their loyalty.
Your email ideas don’t have to be revolutionary to be effective, and marketing via email is well worth it: The number of emails sent and received per day is expected to reach 246 billion by the end of 2019, according to Radicati. And 89 percent of Americans check their email at least once each day, according to Eleventy Group.
Essentially, this medium isn’t going away any time soon. And if anything, it’s evolving with our technological preferences: Over 61 percent of Americans say they check their email mostly on their smartphones, so make sure your emails are mobile optimized before you dedicate resources to these efforts.
Below, you’ll find seven email ideas for building awesome customer relationships.
It’s no secret that people like feeling special. Take advantage of this by offering exclusive offers to your most active customers and to those who could become more active if marketed to (i.e., customers who’ve made more than two purchases but haven’t visited your site in over six months). This offer could be exclusive early access to sales items or a first look at upcoming products.
If your business is listed on any review sites, it can be a powerful tool to leverage your customer base to improve your site ranking. To do this effectively, you want to provide a two-way exchange. Ask your customers to leave a review of your products or services in exchange for a gift card or discount code. You can limit this to the first 20 to 50 respondents (depending on your budget and review quantity goals) to create a sense of scarcity and urgency.
If you run a forthright business and offer good products, you are likely to receive the positive reviews you deserve — especially if you offer a discount or gift card for your customers’ time. Sure, there will be the occasional naysayer, but no service or business is expected to be perfect. Over time, having online reviews will help other prospective customers during the buying phase when they’re comparing you to your competitors. Social proof is a bigger deal now than ever before.
Another way to make customers feel appreciated is to reward their loyalty with an anniversary offer. This can include a discount or simply a thank you. The customer will feel like you care about them specifically and appreciate their continued business. Even if it feels like an out-of-the-blue contact, it can remind your customers of the positive experiences they’ve had with your brand and products. This type of email will encourage them to continue using your products or service, or encourage them to take another look if it’s been a while.
Birthdays and holidays are great times to give your customers a shout out or promotional offer. Birthdays are when your customers feel most special, and being part of the festivities can reinforce their positive feelings about your business or the partnership you have. Likewise, budgets run tight during the holiday season and on holiday weekends. Stand out by reminding your customers that you’re offering a promotion to them because of their loyalty and to ease the strain on their wallets. This approach will put the focus on your customers’ needs as opposed to your own.
As you begin to learn more about your customers’ preferences, you can tailor your marketing message. Knowing your buyers’ personas will help you be intentional with the inventory and services you offer, as well as how you distribute information about them. But first, you need to know who your customers are.
One way to do this is by having a subscription call to action. You could offer a monthly newsletter or 10 percent off in exchange for your customer filling out an online form. The information you request here can include basic information (i.e., customer name, email, company, phone number) and advanced information (i.e., company size, income, gender).
The advanced information should help you direct the correct products to your customers; for example, if you’re in the retail space, determining the gender and style preferences (i.e., casual, formal, athletic) can help you emphasize relevant products to your customers. After all, 75 percent of customers say they’re more likely to buy from a retailer that recognizes them by name and knows their preferences based on past buying behavior, according to Evergage.
Do you have customers that have gone stale? Maybe they loved buying from you a year or two ago but have since changed preferences, or maybe your retail location is no longer local, but they can still shop online through your e-commerce store. Entice these customers by offering a special promotion or sneak peek because they’ve been gone so long. They’ll be more inclined to come back and make a purchase, and may find that your products still meet their needs.
The refer-a-friend strategy works best when there’s a two-way offer as well. Some subscription boxes do a great job of this by offering a discount or free item to both the existing and referred customer to try their service. If your products and services speak for themselves, it should be an easy sell to keep the referrals’ business past the initial offer.
Which of these email ideas was your favorite? Do you have any to share with other readers? We’d love to hear from you!