Email Marketing: A How To Guide

In 2022, over 4 billion people used email! Email marketing is a very powerful tool to connect with your clients and prospects.

The good news is that it is getting a lot easier to collect an email list and create visually appealing emails to send to your customers and prospects. Here’s a simple overview of why email marketing matters and how you can get started quickly.

First, What is Email Marketing?

Email marketing is simply the effort of communicating your business’s value to your customers and prospects through email. Email marketing is typically opt-in meaning people have signed up to receive your communications through a website, a digital subscription service, or at your office or store.

Why is Email Marketing So POWERFUL?

The opt-in nature of email marketing is what makes it so powerful. Your audience has chosen to hear from you so you know they are interested prospects.

The second reason it works so beautifully is how easy it is to share email once received. In 2021 alone, over 319 billion emails were sent and received each day. It’s super easy to take an email you received and forward it to a friend who is also interested in the offer… creating the viral nature of email communications.

Email marketing lets you quietly remind your customers and prospects that you are out there and that you offer a service or a product that they like, need, or value.

How Do You DO Email Marketing?

If you have a website, add a sign-up box on your homepage. When you add the email sign-up, try to place it in a couple spots, including: the upper right hand corner, the footer, and the contact us page. You can also ask customers if they want to subscribe at the register after making an in-store purchase.

Choose an online email platform to create your emails. We recommend Mailchimp for new users because the entry pricing is free up to 2,000 contacts and the user interface is very good.

Most email platforms offer an additional feature for email sign-up and many integrate with the primary vendors including Mailchimp and Constant Contact; WordPress sites can add a WP plugin to their site.

If you have a website and you added the widget for Mailchimp or the feature to add email subscription to your site, then make sure you create a list within Mailchimp (or Constant Contact or other email marketing vendor) and that you connect the list to your site. This may sound tricky but most website platforms make it very easy.

What Information Should You Send in an Email Marketing Campaign?

  • Newsletter: A newsletter can provide updates on your organization’s activity, helpful information and specials.
  • Announcements: Share information about local events that you are sponsoring or that are relevant to your audience.
  • Special Offers: Are you offering a new product or service that you want to make sure people are aware of? Is your business offering a special deal? 70% of customers will open an email in search of a deal or coupon. Email promotions are a great way to communicate your business offerings.

How Do You Create an Email-Marketing Template?

Using Mailchimp as the sample vendor, create a user account on the site.

  1. From the home page, go to the left side menu and choose Campaigns, then Email Templates. At the top right, click Create Template.
  2. Hover over one of the many convenient templates and click Apply or Preview to see more. Once you’ve chosen one, name your template. (These pre-made templates are especially good for beginners!)
  3. Now that you have a template, you can easily place images and edit the content to fit your brand and needs. Mailchimp also has a great guide for designing emails.
  4. The drag-and-drop interface makes it easy for users of all experience levels and abilities to customize a template to create a branded, attractive, engaging email.
  5. Make sure to hit Preview to see your email before sending it out. You can also send a test copy of the email to yourself to see how it looks in your inbox.
  6. And now, send (or schedule) it! Select Send at the top of the page to send it out now (you will see a confirmation window making sure you want to send it) or you choose Schedule to send at a later time (not available for the free subscription to Mailchimp!)

So, Jump Off! Try It Out!

Email marketing for your business may just be what your customers are looking for from you. Sixty-one percent of consumers say they would like to receive weekly promotional emails from their favorite brands!

Establishing your first email can be time consuming, but the process moves a lot faster once you have your original email established. The return on investment for every $1 you spend on email marketing is an average of $42, or 4,200% ROI!

Three Vendors Who Offer Email Marketing

  • Constant Contact: Great user interface but they charge a fee after an initial trial. So, if you volume is low they may not be the best option.
  • Mailchimp: Great user interface and they do not charge for up to 2,000 emails. This is a perfect choice for people who are just starting out.
  • HubSpot: As a HubSpot Partner, we encourage many of our clients to explore their free and paid services, like their awesome Email Marketing tool. Send bulk emails that are tested and optimized for different devices and inboxes and easily create engaging emails with a drag-and-drop editor and personalization tokens.

Email marketing can grow your business, increase your audience, and boost your marketing strategy to help your business reach success.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have questions about implementing an email marketing campaign for your business!

Thanks for stopping by,

Editor’s note: This blog post was originally published in February 2013. It has been updated and republished in March 2022.

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