Email Marketing Dos and Don'ts – How to Do It the Right Way
The internet age has taken the world by storm. It's now possible to find or figure out virtually any contact's email address. People are connected more now than ever before. Instead of picking up the phone to pitch a prospect, a salesperson can simply send an email or connect with the person on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter. While this new world has paved the way for many savvy entrepreneurs and marketers, this availability of information unfortunately also means it is easier for people to abuse the system.
When using email to market your business, it's important to remember a few things.
Here are some dos and don'ts of email marketing…
Do greet the recipient.
People want to know that you took the time to find out a little bit about them before making the contact. It is a fast turn-off for me when I get an email that does not include my name in the greeting. My name is not hard to find on my website. If the URL doesn't give it away, it can be found easily on my about page. Take the time to read about your prospect. If you're not able to find any information, at least use the person's first name and be sure to get the spelling right.
Do keep it brief (unless you're sending a query letter to an editor or publisher).
When sending an inquiry, keep it brief. You're not writing a novel, so keep it concise – short, sweet, and to the point. We're all busy people and we don't want to spend time reading long emails. Get to the point quickly.
Do use a call to action.
What action do you want your recipient to take? Do you want to send a service brochure or a writing sample? Do you want to schedule a quick call? Make it easy on the recipient to respond. Keep it simple and only use one call to action.
Do provide value.
In your email, offer something that is helpful to the recipient. How can you help them improve something? And if you sell widgets, be sure your prospect buys widgets. For example, if you are pitching your fantasy novel to an editor, be sure she actually purchases fantasy novels.
Don't suck up.
It's okay to mention an achievement but keep it brief. Going on and on about it is a turn-off for most people.
Don't send attachments.
Before you send an attachment, establish a connection with the recipient. Don't send your service brochure or resume or portfolio to anyone unless they have given you the go-ahead.
Don't add people to your email newsletter list without their consent.
This goes without saying, but since I keep getting added to enewsletter lists I didn't subscribe to, it clearly still needs to be included. Please don't add people to your list unless they requested the information. Not only is it a turn-off to the recipient, but you run the risk of being reported as spam and if too many people complain, your email management service can be shut off.
The art of email marketing is value, relevancy, and relationship. Get those things right and you'll stand a much better chance of earning a response from your prospect.