Editor’s Note: This article was originally published by Web Marketing Today. Practical Ecommerce acquired Web Marketing Today in 2012. In 2016, we merged the two sites, leaving Practical Ecommerce as the successor.
Email marketing is a mainstay for Main Street businesses. It is the perfect tool for such a scrappy group as you who must be resourceful while creatively growing your company.
Let’s break down the reasons why. Here are six, to consider:
1. Email Is Cheap
By cheap, we don’t mean poorly constructed but, rather, the other type, the one that gives a bit of relief to your wallet.
For example, if you wanted to reach out to 10,000 contacts multiple times each month, you would have a hard time spending even $100 with any of the major email marketing vendors such as Mail Chimp, Constant Contact, or iContact.
Most vendors load up the features and provide generous contact limits very inexpensively, especially when compared to the price of direct mail or magazine ads, where costs can hit the multiple thousands mark easily.
2. Email Can Make You a Better Marketer
“Main Streeters” have never let not knowing something stand in the way of moving forward. Like marketing for instance. Few local business owners are expert marketers and often rely on trial and error for most of their outreach.
Modern email marketing toolsets excel at building in the knowledge you would factor into your marketing campaigns if you only had the background to do so.
Suggesting a time to send, comparing open rates against similar companies in your industry, and pointing out which messages received the strongest response are integrated into these systems. All you have to do is settle in with a cup of coffee and thirty minutes to review the data, neatly organized for you, presented in the dashboard.
3. Everyone Uses Email
You don’t have to ask if everyone in your market uses email. They do.
Social media is an amazing marketing and engagement environment, but no one can say with confidence that everyone you want to do business with is on social media. Not even Facebook, with its more than 1.5 billion users, can lay claim to that.
With email, nearly everyone, from millennials to retirees, business professionals to sports figures, has email and uses it frequently.
[E]mail gets delivered 90 percent of the time compared with a Facebook post that hits, on average, two percent of fans and followers.
According to Litmus, a web-based email creation, testing and analytics platform, 91 percent of email users check their email at least daily. That blows away any comparable activity level on social and so far exceeds what traditional marketing can claim to reach that it isn’t even funny.
Also, email gets delivered 90 percent of the time compared with a Facebook post that hits, on average, two percent of fans and followers. What’s more, email generates three times the conversion rate of social media and returns a whopping $44.25 for every dollar spent. Now that’s what we call a hard working dollar.
4. Email Expands Reach without Expanding Payroll
If only there were more time in the day, more money in your pocket, and more of you to go around, the better all of this would be. But since that’s not the case, email makes it seem like there’s another you, without actually having to add another employee to the mix.
Email is ideal for carrying your persona into the world with messages that are you, just pre-written and dropped into an automated calendar to send without you having to touch it a second time. More of you would definitely help, but since that’s not happening, there’s email.
5. Email Improves Your Image
As a Main Streeter, you don’t get a pass on looking professional just because your business may be small. First, second, third, and fiftieth impressions matter and, with email, you get to take advantage of professionally-designed templates that make you look as sharp as anyone.
Some email-marketing vendors even make it easy to take what you’ve designed and print it out as a flyer or poster.
6. Email Has Low Production Costs
A final benefit of email marketing for Main Street businesses is its ability to keep costs in check. Once subscription costs for the email marketing system are covered, the incremental cost to communicate is zero — no postage, no advertising costs, no printing — nothing.
This makes it an easy decision to use email to share your news, promote your products, and move your business forward, all without the pressure of breaking the bank.
If there is one marketing tool ideally suited to the needs of local businesses, it’s email. These six reasons are proof positive that email is a marketing tool that Main Streeters can rely on to deliver measurable results at a price that fits even small budgets.