Posted on Jan 12, 2021

Email Marketing 101: Fast Facts You Need to Build a List and Launch an Email Marketing Campaign

Email marketing is an online marketing strategy where emails are sent to people who have signed up to receive them. Consumers then use these email marketing leads to perform an action, like read your blog post or make a purchase. 

It’s essential to use email marketing for small business because it offers a direct line to customers. It’s also a great way to solicit feedback, and it can help you build a target audience quickly.

Keep reading for a quick rundown of what email marketing entails. You’ll learn:

  • When and why to use email marketing
  • How an email marketing specialist can help your business
  • The role of email marketing leads and lists 
  • Which email marketing tools to use 
  • How to launch an email marketing campaign

When and Why to Use Email Marketing 

Email marketing for small business can be used for several reasons, including: 

  • To conduct surveys or gather feedback 
  • To generate website traffic
  • To build an email marketing leads list
  • To boost sales 
  • To encourage repeat sales
  • To connect on a personal level

Email Marketing Specialist 

An email marketing specialist is an email marketing planner who specializes in developing an email marketing strategy. Email marketing specialists help businesses generate leads and run successful email-driven campaigns.

Email Marketing Leads and Lists 

Before you create an email marketing plan of your own, you need to build a mailing list. 

A mailing list is a set of email addresses you’ve received over time through a form on your website. When someone visits your website and likes what you offer, they may input their email address to ensure they receive updates about your company. 

Over time, you can use this mailing list to send emails to promote products, services, and special offers. 

Typically, you will use email marketing to generate leads. Leads are the people behind the email addresses that make up your mailing list and who have expressed interest in what you have to offer. People on your list are a targeted group of consumers to market to. 

To collect leads, you can use a variety of forms on your website or blog. A few options include: 

  • Static opt-in forms, landing pages, and lead magnets
  • Calls-to-action that appear at the end of pages and blog posts
  • Pop-ups, sliders, and other eye-catching lead generation forms

You can see how Constant Contact offers a drag-and-drop form builder as part of its service: 

Email Marketing Tools

While there are free and premium email marketing tools available, you’ll likely need to opt for a paid plan if you want to build a substantial list. 

Two email marketing tools to consider are:

  • Constant Contact, which offers a free 60 day trial for you to get acquainted with the platform
  • HubSpot, which offers a full marketing automation solution that includes email marketing service, sales, social media, and CRM 

Email Marketing for Small Business: Your First Campaign

After you collect email marketing leads, you can create your first campaign. First, decide what type of email you want to send. 

Within most email marketing for small business services, you can select from a variety of templates that simplify the email creation process. A few examples of templates include:

  • Thanks for signing up: Once someone submits their email address, you can configure an autoresponder email that greets the email subscriber and thanks them for joining your list. It’s a great way to acknowledge them and welcome them to your mailing list. 

For example, when you sign up for Michaels’s email newsletter, you see colourful graphics, a welcoming tone, and quick links to important website pages: 

  • Newsletter: Not everyone is going to read your blog regularly. You can send out a monthly newsletter to update email subscribers on the status of your business, as well as new projects, products, or upcoming sales.
  • Seasonal: If there’s a holiday coming up, it’s a good idea to check in on your email list. It gives you a chance to touch base and to inform them of upcoming promotions.
  • Abandoned cart: If you have an e-commerce website, it can be effective to send an email to those who’ve left something in their shopping cart without making a purchase. That nudge could encourage them to complete their journey through the sales funnel.
  • Post-purchase follow-up: You can also configure an autoresponder for a set time after someone makes a purchase. It’s an effective way to encourage repeat business and nurture leads. 

How to Write a Marketing Email

While the type of email you want to send will inform the email content you write, most emails you send will follow a similar structure. Use the following guidelines as you prepare to send an email to your email marketing leads for the first time:

  1. Write a great headline: Take time to write a snappy and compelling headline or subject line. It’s the first thing readers will see in their inbox, so make it count.
  2. Follow web copy rules: Break up text with bulleted lists, add images, use web-safe fonts, and keep your message concise.
  3. Speak to your customers: Keep language personable, light, and social. Use I/you/we. 
  4. Add personalization: Use automation to add the subscriber’s name to your emails to give the impression you’re speaking directly to them.
  5. Offer value: Give away e-books, guides, and checklists to attract attention and provide value to your subscribers.
  6. Always split-test: Most email marketing tools provide A/B testing tools. Use them to gauge the effectiveness of headlines, text, and images. 
  7. Set email marketing KPIs: Lastly, set email marketing KPIs (key performance indicators) to ensure your campaign is working. A few KPIs worth tracking include email open rate, click-throughs, and conversions.

Final Thoughts: Getting Started with Email Marketing Leads, Lists, and More

It takes a lot to generate email marketing leads but the effort is worth it to gain new and repeat customers, as well as a loyal following for your company. 
Once you’ve gained email marketing leads, ensure you’re sending them back to a well-hosted website. iPage prioritizes easy setup and security and plans start as low as $1.99/month.