Email marketing involves sending email messages to a list of subscribers that contain information, offers, discounts, and promotions. It’s one of the most common and effective types of marketing used online today. There’s a popular saying among internet marketers that states, ‘The money is in the list.’ Let’s explore why.

The Basics of Email Marketing

The first step in email marketing is to build a list. You can do this by either creating a website or using offline materials to collect names and email addresses. This is what’s called an ‘opt-in’ list, and it’s very important that people have chosen to be on the list. If they haven’t opted in, they won’t be responsive to your offers.

The best way to get people to sign up is to offer an exclusive freebie or discount. Once they’ve signed up, you send them an email to confirm, and they receive the free offer or discount. A software program called an autoresponder is used to manage your list and automatically send messages to your subscribers.

Getting names and email addresses is just the beginning. You then have to nurture your list and build a relationship with them. You can do this by providing helpful information and high-quality content. They’ll see you as an expert and friend, and this builds trust so that you can then start making offers.

Email marketing is useful for any kind of business, whether online or off. In fact, it’s an easy method for offline businesses to increase engagement with customers. In addition to SMS, email is also a great way to market to cell phones and mobile devices. You can send discounts they can use at your practices.

The Benefits of Email Marketing

The first guideline for success with email marketing is that you should never buy or trade for a list. Subscribers need to opt-in and confirm their subscription. When you buy a list, not only are you getting untargeted prospects who are probably not interested, you’re also spamming them when you send unsolicited messages. With anti-spam laws like the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003, you could pay dearly for this.

When you do start making offers, be careful about the products and services you promote. Don’t pass off anything on your list that’s less than the best quality. Nurturing your list is about building trust, and one bad product can destroy that trust quickly. Remember that people can unsubscribe by simply clicking on the link at the bottom of the message.

Always be responsive to your list and treat them like gold. When they have comments or questions, listen and communicate with them. Pay attention to your analytics so that you know what works and what doesn’t. Marketers who take care of their list keep their subscribers for the long-term.

Action Steps

  • If you don’t have a list or aren’t thrilled with what you’ve got, spend a few minutes brainstorming what you might be able to do that you can’t now once you’ve got a targeted audience to work with. A good email list is a powerful tool, and realizing what you can do with it can be a great motivator for diving in deeper.
  • Let’s get started with establishing a baseline for your current email marketing campaign by focusing on some basic questions about your email list, if you have one:
    • How responsive are your subscribers?
    • How did you build your list?
    • How regularly do you use your list?

Ready for a deeper dive? Explore the resources below!

When you are ready to really dig into this stuff, remember that there’s a real mix of marketing advice out there. Some of it’s awesome, some of it’s half-baked, lots of it is outdated, and a whole lot of it is designed to help sell products, not professionals services.

We’ve filtered through the best of what is available to provide you with actionable advice in our Deep Dive recommendations that are from the most trusted resources and are designed specifically to promote professional services like yours.

Moz’s A Beginner’s Guide to Marketing Automation

At the heart of any scaleable email marketing strategy is a well-oiled marketing automation machine.

Marketing automation allows you to deliver personalized messages to potential clients for your practice based on their needs, demographics, and actions.

In this comprehensive email automation primer, Moz provides you with all of the basics that you need to know in order to put this strategy to work for you.

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