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Email Marketing for Enterprises

Instructor: Tara Schofield

Tara has a PhD in Marketing & Management

Email marketing has become an effective form of sharing specials, discounts, and coupons with customers. This lesson explains the benefits of email marketing, the challenges of email communication, and suggestions for successful email marketing.

What is Email Marketing?

Email marketing has become an effective, inexpensive, and immediate way to communicate with current and potential customers. It is also an accepted method of communication with vendors, partners, and employees. As a result, email marketing is an important aspect of daily business operations. In just a matter of minutes, an electronic message can be written and sent, and a response can be received. From a marketing perspective, information can be sent about promotions, sales, or special offers, and customers can respond by purchasing a product or service immediately. This method of marketing has transformed how companies interact with customers and conduct business.

Benefits of Email Marketing

The greatest benefit of email marketing is the convenience of staying in contact with customers. By gathering email addresses, a company can communicate with their shoppers on a regular basis. They can offer specials, gather information, or share helpful tips about their products and services.

Because email marketing is very low cost, companies can quickly and cheaply send a message to their customers that can generate thousands of dollars of revenue in just minutes. The database is comprised of interested buyers, which gives the company the ability to send targeted message to people who have already expressed an interest.

Let's imagine you own a juice and smoothie shop. You have gathered customer email addresses since the day you opened and now have about 30,000 emails on your email list. Each week you offer a new, limited-time smoothie. It wouldn't be practical to buy television advertising or billboards when your offer changes so frequently. However, you can easily send an email to your customers to alert them to the weekly offer. You notice a drastic increase in traffic in your store the day your email is sent. This is evidence that your email marketing is effective.

Challenges of Email Marketing

One of the challenges of email marketing is the small percentage of people who receive your message and open the email. While the acceptable open rate varies based on the industry you are in, the basic open rate is 2-4%. That means that if you send 10,000 emails, you can expect that 200-400 emails will be opened. If you expect 10,000 customers to respond to your message, you will be very disappointed by the low open rate.

Another challenge is the frequency of email address changes. Many people change their email address on a regular basis. The email you have on file may be an old address that they don't use any longer. They will never see your message and may not think to update their new address on your database. Instead of having 10,000 customer email addresses, you may actually have many duplicates or undeliverable addresses. Your list may only have 7,000 or 8,000 real addresses.

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