Email marketing involves sending marketing messages directly to the prospective customers. Emails are sent to a targeted list of recipients for promoting or selling, products/services made by a business. It is considered as one of the fastest, easiest and most inexpensive marketing methods. Unfortunately, like any other marketing strategy, email marketing too has it's own advantages and disadvantages. Following are some of the pros and cons for small businesses.
Advantages of email marketing
Small businesses should consider email marketing for many reasons. Through email marketing, they can promote a product/service directly to a group of people. It will not only develop your business opportunity, but will also generate good sales revenue at a very minimal cost.
Following are some very good reasons for small businesses to consider email marketing:
• Easy to use: It is very easy and simple to use, as you can message instantly to thousands of prospective customers anytime. All you need is the list of email IDs of specific and potential customers to distribute information about your business. It saves a lot of time.
• Time and cost effective: Email is a cost effective business communication tool compared to other marketing methods. In today's competitive world, to stay ahead of your competitors, you need to adopt email marketing strategies, as it takes less time to create awareness of your business and is also cost effective.
• Personalized promotion: As already emphasized, it enables you to send a business's promotional message personally to the prospective customer. This helps in establishing a relationship between the business and the customer by encouraging direct and straight communication between the two parties - while a business can customize its message as per the various selected categories of potential customers, customers can directly give their feedback/reply on the message through the email.
• Segment based marketing: One of the best things about email marketing is segmentation. You can segment your list based on the prospective group and tailor your messages to those groups, this helps you in targeting specific group of audience and also increases the effectiveness of your marketing strategies. While segmenting your email list, recipients will appreciate to receive messages that are relevant and useful to them.
• Trackable sales and user engagement: Another advantage of email marketing is that, the sender can track the sales generated by email marketing. Thus, if a user purchases the product/service, from the link provided in the email, it can be tracked in the sender's server.
Likewise, it is also possible for the email marketer to know how many email recipients have clicked the link, how many clicked but did not make any purchase and how many skipped the mail outright. By this, the seller can review the email strategies, and find the loopholes, and weed them out to make the marketing more efficacious.
Disadvantages of email marketing and how to avoid them
Unfortunately, email marketing has certain disadvantages and the biggest disadvantage is spam. Let us now discuss the disadvantages of email marketing.
• Emails may be considered spam/junk: Many people believe that marketing emails sent to them are spam and junk, may have viruses in them and if opened it may badly affect their computer. Further, if the information provided in the email is not relevant, the recipient is likely to delete your message. So, while sending emails to potential customers, provide genuine business address and contacts, so that they trust your business.
• Engaging customer is tricky: Keeping customers actively engaged for a long time in your business is very difficult. Initially, when customers receive emails from your company, they tend to show interest, but over time, they feel bored of your messages and you eventually lose on a loyal customer. Hence, a good subject line and text about your business, are indispensable to draw attention of the customer for long period of time.
• Compatibility issues with browsers: Tailoring a site for browser compatibility is a major issue, as there may be some problems that may come about while sending image and video emails to customers. If the customer encounters problems while opening the mail, s/he will never get back to your website. Therefore, avoid images and videos in your emails as far as practicable, as it might impact your business.
• Unorganized email campaign: Email campaigns that are incorrect and unorganized may leave your potential audience confused. You need to follow a clearly defined strategy while mailing messages to customers. It is always better to segregate the customers who are likely to get interested in your product/service and only send messages to them. This shows professionalism in your business.
Hire a specialist email marketer
Given the advantages and disadvantages for small businesses, it is pretty sensible to hire a specialist email marketer as s/he knows the job well and will create relevant and valuable email messages that will attract and target potential customers. Email marketers do a thorough survey on your business and will work closely on promoting your business.