5 Reasons You Need Email - NOW!
Regardless of whether you personally like email or not for your business, email marketing is not an option. As startups, we spend so much time acquiring leads with no place for them to go. In this episode, Amy Mangueira shares five reasons why you need email now, why there needs to be balance across all your channels, and BONUS - 3 programs you can get started with *today* so your leads don't get stale, and your customers love you even more.
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5 Reasons You Need Email - NOW!
I'm Amy Mangueira. I thought I'd start off this first episode with a little introduction before we get too deep in this episode. I wanted to introduce myself. I've been in email marketing since 2003. I started email as a side hustle while I was a school teacher as a way to subsidize my salary. I started at a small fitness facility.
While I was working the front desk and having people come in off of free Groupon trials, I noticed that they didn't come back. I was self-taught. I learned MailChimp. I started to build some programs and I dropped these people into this email program. Even back then in the stone age of email, I was able to see growth, bringing people back to sign up for classes and growing the membership.
I latched on to the craft from email not being a thing to now, with roughly 306.4 billion emails sent and received per day. I moved away from teaching formally in 2015 and into marketing operations and, finally, consulting, where I've specialized in this one channel email for many years now. The bottom line is, whether you are a personal fan or not of email, your business can find some use or gain from email marketing and that is a perfect segue into this episode.
Email marketing requires patience. It's like growing a plant.
Do you ever ask yourself why you don't have your email channel up and running or you have one, but it’s sporadic? You send emails here and there yet, deep down, you know that you need it running. Do you ever think why didn't you get an email program started before you started inquiring about the first name on your list? It seems too logical, but there's some reality here.
First, marketing is hard. Knowing your target audience and getting their attention and converting them to leads and ultimately customers is one of the most important skills of a successful business. It is hard to balance all of the things, Facebook ads, website content, and organic social. We could go on and on. The startup mentality is laser-focused on bringing in those target leads with direct response approaches to get them to buy off ads. While that seems a great scenario, we have to understand how this works. Fun fact, startups spend almost 50% of their investments on Facebook alone. We spend so much money acquiring leads, yet once the lead clicks on our ad, a lot of detours can happen.
First, they might start the process and leave, more of the abandoned browse mentality. They may get close to the end with something in their cart and leave, abandoned cart mentality. In the worst case, they may realize that they're not interested at all, which means you may not have a way to have collected their basic information and likely will spend more money retargeting them. The end result here is that A) You're not capturing these users into a list and B) If you are, you likely have no way of using their behaviors and momentum to drive conversion and revenue.
Email shouldn't be something you finally start because you have people coming into your list. Email should be something you set up from the start, ahead of starting your user acquisition efforts. I like to think of it almost as working backward. Since we're not typically in that space and while that is the key driver for email, having a detour or a place to catch leads and keep them on their journey, I have five other reasons why you do need to prioritize your email channel.
Firstly, you're going to need your email list to sell. I could stop here. There are two sides of the coin that you're going to need your email list for. The first is those that do not purchase right away. While you have your Facebook ads in the social media universe, you aren't going to be able to get everybody to purchase off of a direct response attempt. Sometimes, leads need a little bit longer. They need to start to understand your brand. They need to see it in a bunch of different ways. They need to see what value you bring. We're in a time and age where I need to know what's in it for me before I commit to a brand.
Thanks to COVID, I'm not as a consumer as committed to brand loyalty as I was once in the past. There are a lot of different companies that offer the protein powder you might offer, so you have to figure out what's in it for me. If I'm not going to purchase right away off of a Facebook ad, then you've got to find a way to get my information and you've got to find a way to stay top of mind. It might be 2 or 18 months down the road, but if I'm on your email list, you're probably going to need it to sell to me.
Your email list is the most reliable way to communicate with your audience.
There's the other side of the coin, those that do purchase, continuing to engage with your customers. The worst thing ever is when you get a customer to buy from you and you get all their confirmations. They get their first purchase and you go radio silent. There are companies that I walk into every day that don't even have a newsletter going out to their customers. You're going to need your email list to sell and that is the bottom line.
Let's talk about another reason why you need an email. Email converts well compared to other channels. According to OptinMonster, over 3.8 billion people use email and it converts at 6.05%. That is high. When you compare that to social media, there are only 3.4 billion users and social converts at only 1.9%. Marketing Charts put together a study that shows email converting at 2.89%, a higher conversion rate compared to a lot of other channels you might be focused on, like referral traffic, which is at 2.04%. Paid traffic is at 1.96%, direct traffic is 1.65%, organic traffic is at 1.45% and social media at 1.22%.
Here's another way to look at it. If you have 2,000 email subscribers, Facebook fans and followers on Twitter, 435 people will open your email, but only 120 fans and only 40 Twitter followers will see your message. With email, you're reaching a lot more people. If you're spending time promoting your business on social or spending money on paid ads, you absolutely should start focusing on your email list. Otherwise, you're probably leaving money on the table. Remember, it isn't a matter of this or that, which seems to happen when we get in this state of overwhelm. It’s simply mapping out all of your channels and dedicating some real-time to developing a consistent cadence for email.
Another reason is your email list is the most reliable way to communicate with your audience. I bet you didn't even realize that. Your audience is the most important part of your business. They keep your business alive and they support you. They tell your friends and family about you and they buy your products and services. You want to make sure you have a reliable way to communicate with them and that's where your email list comes in. Unlike social media, you don't have to worry about an algorithm change or not showing up in your followers’ Instagram or Facebook feed, or one of them disappearing completely.
Remember when MySpace was the most popular social media platform? Here's my point. Your email list gives you a way to communicate with them anytime without worrying about these types of problems popping up. Did you also know that email helps drive additional traffic back to your website? It’s maybe one of my favorite things. Emailing your list is an easy and fast way to get traffic back to your website. Every week, you can send out a newsletter, for instance, that promotes a new product, blog post or video. You can include a button or link that sends your subscribers back to your website inside that email.
Your email list is also made up of warm leads, which means that they're more likely to engage. If you're offering a new service or have written a new article, they're more likely to buy, share or comment. The beauty of this is that we often think that we have to be sending promotional emails all of the time, but we find that 4 out of 5 emails should be education to product connection. Sending people to a blog might be a nice way to help them understand the value of a product and it's a no-brainer to buy from you.
The last thing I'll share with you is maybe the most amazing part of all, you own your email list. You own your email list, which is not the case with social media. You do not own your social media accounts. I've seen so many businesses build their entire platform around Instagram or Facebook. Don't get me wrong. Social media is a great place to grow your brand. However, it's important to remember that you're at the mercy of the social media gods. With them, nothing is guaranteed or owned by you.
For example, if most of your followers are on Instagram or you get the majority of your traffic from Pinterest, there's always a chance your followers or traffic will disappear. It is mind-boggling, scary and not stable. One algorithm change can mean your pins or posts showing up at the bottom of the feed and you never know when a new social media platform will surface and the one you're using becomes a thing of the past. I can't even tell you that in 2020 the shift to TikTok and how difficult that was for a lot of brands.
Your email list is something you can own. You can email your subscribers anytime and even move your entire list from one email marketing platform to another. If you want to grow your brand on Instagram or Facebook, that's okay. Make sure to focus on your email list as well. If you don't have your email channel up and running, you need to. Actionable next steps. Get your core program set up. Your programs can work their magic when the leads start coming in, moving your users along the path until they're ready to purchase. It will be in their time.
Email helps you stay top of mind. Email marketing requires patience. It's like growing a plant. You need to check-in and nurture your programs regularly. We cannot set it and forget it. We need to check-in, look for opportunities to test and optimize, check in with our audiences, continue to segment and keep evolving. For starters, get some programs off the ground and go from there. Something is better than nothing, for sure. A few quick wins, get a newsletter going, preferably for non-purchasers and customers separately.
Next, start a program for every person who gives you their email address off an opt-in form from your website or a Facebook lead form. Capture their email address and move them through a program where they can get to know your brand a little bit and you have a better chance to get that newsletter off and to them.
Another third quick win, on certain times of the year, we've got holidays or key moments. Capitalize on those and try sending a promotional email here and there. If you're already sending a newsletter on a decent cadence, a promotional email might be a nice way to move the needle. There are three easy ways that you can get started with email and make sure that you balance it out. It can't all be social media.
At some point, you will reach that stage where you've got this huge list you've grown and you know you need email. It's like this bomb that goes off. You need it now and the list might not be primed anymore. We have list churn and we have to be able to capitalize on the momentum at the moment. The sooner you can get any email going, the better. Remember, if you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments. Until next time, happy emailing.