Question: What does a small business have that big businesses don't have?
Answer: Personal relationships with their clients.
Each time you speak with a customer in your store, emailing someone who has a question, or answering the phone, you’re building a relationship or rapport. Bigger companies would have a much tougher time doing this because of their size. They just can't get personal. It’s rare if they could pull it off.
The good news is, it’s never been easier to grow the relationships that are so crucial to your on or offline business’s success.
I use email marketing as a cost-effective solution that gives me the power to reach customers in a place most people visit every day — their inbox. Besides, Email makes it easy to build customer relationships because you’re able to deliver relevant information in the form of how-to's, useful information, and even stories. You occasionally deliver special promotions exclusively to the loyal customers on your email list. That builds trust and loyalty with the people who matter most to your business.
Statistics have proven that 66% of consumers have made a purchase as a result of an email marketing message (Direct Marketing Association, 2013). Or that email is almost 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined in helping your business acquire new customers (McKinsey, 2014).
Part of building a good list is with a little bit of good planning. You should use email to deliver the right message, to the right people, at the right time. This will help turn new visitors into loyal customers, and turn new customers into loyal advocates for your business.
There's 3 important steps to follow for building long-lasting customer relationships with your email marketing.
#1 - Ask for permission!
Most email marketers usually skip this step and tend to build a very weak list. It's important that the customer asks to be on your list because that ensures the quality of your list. So before you add a name to your contact list, you must ask the customer for permission.
When you ask permission, you’re able to build a list of people who are interested in your business and are excited to hear from you. They’re more likely to open your email, and less likely to mark it as spam, and will stay with you longer than contacts that are added without consent.
Permission-based email marketing is the best route to developing long-lasting customer relationships that can drive repeat sales and valuable word-of-mouth for your business. These practices also keep you in compliance with legislation like the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL).
#2 - Treat your email contacts with care
Since you've been personal with your clients, chances are you already provide a great experience for your customers when you’re face-to-face. Email marketing can extend that experience.
This is what a new customer is saying when someone takes that step to subscribe, “I’d like to get to know you better.” Then and only then is when they’ve invited you into their inbox. Don’t abuse that relationship by constantly promoting your products and services.
Remember, instead of making your newsletter all about you, think about how you can offer your subscribers something of value. Whether you choose to send them useful information or a special offer, having their interests in mind will show you care.
#3 - Create a compelling newsletter
You'll want to create a newsletter with content your subscribers aren’t going to get anywhere else. What this information is depends entirely on your industry, your company goals, and what will specifically move your readers to action.
Think about what your readers will find interesting, useful, or otherwise entertaining. Stuff that could stand on its own even if you had nothing to promote. Encourage subscribers to connect with you beyond your newsletter by linking off to a recent blog post, a useful video, or a social media channel that your business is active on.
Don’t Underestimate The Power Of Email Marketing Relationships
Email marketing allows you to control the message, when it goes out, and who receives it.
Subscribers have actively made a decision to give you permission to contact them, which means they’re interested in what you’re offering.
You’re able to build stronger relationships with your audience — and people do business with or help people they know, like, and trust.
Now hurry and put these tips to work!
I've used several Email Marketing services and still do today. It's an important part of my on and offline businesses. Whether you’re a seasoned marketer or a small business owner with little marketing experience, you can go ahead and compare my favorite email marketing tools I've listed for you below.
Take your business to the next level. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Compare the companies listed above and choose thee one that fits your needs today.