If you wonder why so many marketers are concerned about the future of email marketing, check your inbox. Chances are, you’ll find a flood of unsolicited messages from companies you couldn't care less about. That makes it harder to launch an effective email campaign, which cuts through all that noise and gets noticed.
But email marketing is not dead. According to the 2015 State of Email Marketing, when sorted by effectiveness ratings of ‘Good’ and ‘Very Good’, email marketing continues to be a clear winner for marketers, with 64% giving email marketing a positive response. The majority of survey respodents (51%) are planning to increase their email marketing budget in 2016.
One Hand Washes the Other
Email marketing is all about engagement. People respond when there’s something in it for them. So give more than you get–offer convenience, quality content, discounts and other incentives. And remember that no marketing channel is more conducive to engagement than social media.
5 ways you can use social media to engage prospective customers and grow your email subscription lists:
1. Make It Easy to Subscribe
People are busy. Even if they like your products and services, they don’t want to spend a lot of time filling out your subscription form. Make a list of all the data you want, then pare it down to the essentials, no more than a few fields. Remember that you can always collect additional information later.
Use social media features to further simplify the process. For example, you can include an email sign-up icon right on your Facebook page.
2. Keep Them Asking for More
You have valuable content that customers want, whether it’s how-to videos, white papers or case studies. Give them just a taste of that content in tweets and posts on Facebook and LinkedIn. Then gate the rest, asking them to fill out your subscription form to see it. It’s true that some just want the content, not the subscription, but you can link content to your expertise to convert doubters into loyal fans.
3. Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is
Offer monetary rewards like discounts and giveaways in exchange for an email subscription, then mention these prominently in your social media posts.
4. Let’s Get Together
Create high-traction online events containing valuable insider information. Invite customers to join you and other industry leaders for the live event. Create posts and tweets to announce your event. Ask attendees to sign up for your email newsletters on the day of the event.
5. And the Winner Is…
Use a number of social media channels, including Facebook and Twitter, to announce a contest. Facebook has a number of apps you can use to host it. Think ROI and don’t be cheap: the better the prize, the more subscribers you’ll get.
Email marketing continues to dominate lead generation channels. Successful email marketing campaigns engage prospective customers over time by offering value in exchange for subscriptions. Social media, with their focus on engagement, are ideal for building interest and loyalty, and for inspiring customers to sign up.