In our last Axel Email Marketing Basics post, we discussed the importance of email marketing and covered the first step in the process to setting up a successful campaign: setting your goals. If you haven’t read it yet, we encourage you to take a minute to do so as it’s a quick read and we’ll be building off it here. . .
With that said, once you’ve decided what your specific goals are for your email marketing campaign, now we can begin to plan for and fine-tune it. This leads to our second step: establish your audience. Determining your audience is one of the most important steps of any marketing campaign and it can set you up for success or failure early on. If you have any market research available, this is the time to use it in order to inform your choices here. Once you’ve determined the demographics you need to reach the heart of email marketing now comes into play: collecting emails and assembling very specific email lists.
You have several options here when it comes to your email campaign. The easiest is starting with your (relevant) existing email contacts. Most of us, however, don’t have enough necessary email contacts to run an effective email blast campaign, but you can still use some of your contacts in your list. Eventually, you will need to import lists from services that specialize in offering email lists from databases used specifically for marketing purposes. While you can seek these out yourself, this is another value that comes with using email marketing experts: they likely already have access to these databases and have that built-in to their services.
If you don’t want to invest in purchasing email lists or your end-goal calls for a different email list plan, a third option is to build your own email list. This can be more time intensive and will have you to invest resources elsewhere in order to set up a rolling list linked to ads, your website, or related sites like social media. This approach requires engaging content and information, and often incentives like discounts or giveaways.
Bonus tip: if you’re pushing email signups on your website, another good idea is to give multiple opportunities to sign up instead of just on your homepage. A highly effective way to do this is to include email opt-ins at the end of your content pages in to encourage readers by offering an opportunity to learn more with similar content and receive updates when such content is available. By this point you have established value by waiting until the end of a page, which is much more effective than the dreaded pop-ups. Bonus tip #2: another method to build your own email list is is using targeted online ads. While it can be a longer process to build your own email list through your website or through ads, one major benefit to consider is that these lists will likely be much more relevant to your purposes.
These are each ways to build different kinds of lists and can be effective if different ways depending on your goals. For example, if your intent is to invite people to a professional event you are organizing, you would want to start with your own contacts as the first email list to use and build out from there. For other larger scale objectives you might need to mix-and-match email lists to create an extensive yet highly focused and relevant list (or lists) that will be much more likely to drive results.
Once you have a list (or several) put together, it’s important that you keep them organized around your specific goals for that particular campaign, and keep record of them for any future campaigns.
Stay tuned for the next Axel Email Marketing Basics: Types of Campaigns!