COVID-19 has impacted all of us, so I want to discuss the economic impact it has had on business. While some local businesses struggle to survive, others are thriving. Supply and demand issues, along with restrictions imposed for safety and welfare of the public are major contributors to current business vitality. But beyond that, there is advertising.

The Power of Email Marketing

COVID-19 Uncovers Commonalities

While working from home, I dove into webinar after webinar, like many of you. While gaining education, I discovered two common factors for businesses that were performing during COVID-19: brand awareness and email marketing.

Brand awareness was an obvious strength—if you are top of mind, you will be remembered and people are more likely to do business with you, when the moment of need occurs. However, the power of email marketing during the crisis captured my attention and I believe it’s essential that local businesses incorporate a strategy to grow their email marketing efforts and improve ROI.


Effective Email Marketing Takeaways

I’ve invited our Executive Director of Digital, Kelli Frieler, to have a discussion with me to cover some of the top takeaways for effective email marketing we discovered this year.


Kelli Frieler, Executive Director of Digital

Theisen: How are you seeing successful businesses using their email databases to generate sales during this down economy?

Frieler: Well there are really two approaches.

The first is one of the traditional features of marketing. We need to find a way to consistently and frequently engage with those that have done business with you before and are more likely to return. Email allows us a channel to control the message and the timeliness of the delivery.

Maybe they shopped on your website and left a cart with items, maybe they haven’t purchased from us in the last six months and are due to return.

Email allows you to target specific users within your database with a customized message.

You can build a message based on their interactions with you, met then where they are in the purchase process.

The second approach is one of growth. Businesses actively seek to grow their database by attracting prospects with email messages and using advertising channels to attract new prospects to their database. An example would be a conversion from a social channel like Facebook to your email database so you can begin a targeted messaging strategy to convert them into a customer. Using social media to entice a follower to sign up for your VIP club or to receive your newsletter. This is one of the many reasons for companies to be present on several channels as well.


Theisen: How do you measure success in email marketing?

Frieler: An average successful email open rate across all industries ranges from 15-25%. However, you should really get to know your industry average, and target a number that’s above average.

Take for example e-commerce. The average retailer doesn’t need you to open all ten emails they send you in a week. All they need is you to open one and make a purchase and they are net positive on the investment. In fact, according to HubSpot, email generates $38 for every $1 spent, which is an astounding 3,800% ROI, making it one of the most effective options available!


Theisen: How do you break through the clutter of an email inbox?

Frieler: It’s just like social media, you’re competing with thousands of other businesses to show up in someone’s news feed. The great thing about email marketing is that someone has voluntarily subscribed to receive this message from you, now you just have to delight them with the right subject line and content or valid reason why they should do business with you.


Theisen: Any final takeaways?

Frieler: Use compelling copy to draw people in and engage with your brand on the radio and social media.  Then, your website and email database will naturally become a magnet for people to take one action step closer to becoming a customer. Building your database and delivering relevant and timely content has been a key to business growth in this unsteady economic climate.


Email Marketing In Action

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