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Emailing that Sells Small Businesses

Contrary to what may seem obvious, email is still the best way to connect with consumers. Even though social media seems to be the most popular place for people to converge, those experiences focus on connectivity between people and less on businesses. You really want to get consumers’ attention when they are quietly thumbing through their Inbox and catch their eye with a one-line grabber. Small businesses can easily expand their reach and increase return on investments using smarter emailing techniques.

Design emails that are attractive, professional and engaging. You can hire someone to do this for you, or use one of several tools available to help you do it on your own. Toolkits are fairly simple to use and usually come with support so you can get help when you need it.

Emails should speak to the reader. There several types of emails you can choose to send, depending on whom you are sending to, what stage in the consumer lifecycle they are in, and what your intention is with the email. You may have an introductory email sent out to first time visitors on your website that gives a warm welcome to potential customers and a thank you if they’ve made their first purchase. After several purchases, you may choose to send a thank you email offering a free item or discount on future purchases. The types of emails you design and send should become like letters you send to friend. They keep the relationship strong.

Send emails on a timely basis. Are they in response to actions on your website or sent on scheduled intervals? (e.g. holidays, seasons, etc.) Automated marketing keeps you in touch with your customers. Stay a stranger to an Inbox, and it could mean losing a customer. You want to time your mailings in a way that maintains a relationship without being overbearing.

Content is crucial and can seal the deal if done right. Avoid images and videos that are all too tempting these days. Yes, computers and the internet are much faster; however, most email readers will simply move an email into the trash if it takes too long to open. Keep it short, simple and engaging. The best content is delivered in blips of info, not long blocks of data.

Don’t be a SPAM. Make it easy for potential customers to proactively and knowingly sign up for correspondence. Be sure you understand the CAN-SPAM act well, so you're lists are built within allowed guidelines and you steer clear of the SPAM wasteland.

Sending email strategically can expand your reach, boost sales, increase loyalty and bring back customers who became strangers. Making better use of this marketing technique is essential to small businesses looking to grow and succeed. It's automated, easy and allows you to add that personal touch that can tip the scales in your favor. It also gives you a great yardstick against which to measure marketing results. All you need is creatively crafted content sent on a timely basis to keep connections alive and your business booming.

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