For small businesses in Wyoming, email marketing can be an effective way to secure potential customers and re-engage your current clientele. Unlike in days past, the strength of email marketing now lies in its ability to target your customers on a more personal level. This requires your target audience to be properly segmented — something your local Wyoming Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network advisor can assist you with. There are plenty of email marketing programs available online — some at no cost — but the aspects that make an effective message are the same.

Get to the Point with Your Subject Line

Think about how you browse your own email. Most email clients limits the visible portion of a subject line to around 41 characters. If your audience doesn’t trust the sender and the subject line isn’t relevant to them, then your email will likely get deleted right away.

You may also have the option to enter preview text that can be seen before an email is opened. Again, make sure you use this space to quickly show the recipient that the contents of this email can offer a benefit to them.

Choose a Specific Topic for Your Headline

Congratulations! Your recipient has opened or previewed your email. That is the biggest hurdle with email marketing. The first thing your potential customer will now see is the headline of the email. Make sure your headline is only addressing one topic. This isn’t the time to educate the reader on all of your products or services — just the one that is most relevant to them.

Keep Your Content Brief

If the reader has generously decided to move past your headline, then you don’t want to scare them away with a large block of text that promises to take up several minutes of their valuable time. Break up text with relevant pictures, graphics, and subheadings. Also, make sure any text that you use is on point and expresses at least one benefit to the reader.

Again, this is where email marketing can shine. Create as many marketing personas as you can based on their demographics, psychographics, and your business’ previous interactions with them. If you can identify a target audience segment that buys a certain product at regular intervals, then you can easily craft a timely, relevant message that will almost certainly bring you measurable results. The Wyoming SBDC Network’s market researchers can help you identify these segments. You can get your no-cost market research report started by signing up here.

This is also a good opportunity to try creating lookalike audiences from your target audience segments for use with digital advertisements.

Don’t Forget the Call to Action

If the reader has made it this far, then the biggest mistake you can make is not giving a clear call to action. This can take the form of a button or link that directs the recipient to your website to learn more or to take advantage of an offer. For example: Click here to get started with no-cost, confidential assistance with email marketing for small businesses.

You can also place a call to action higher up in your email, but make sure it is repeated at the bottom.

Personally, I try to make sure a call to action is visible on the screen at all times. For lengthy emails, this may require three or more calls to action. You may have noticed that there have been three direct calls to action on this page already (and there are two more to go)!

Bonus Tip: If Your Reader Wants to Unsubscribe, Let Them.

The CAN-SPAM Act gives commercial email recipients the right to have you stop emailing them and spells out tough penalties for violations. That means all emails from your business to your customers must comply with the following:

  • Don’t use false or misleading header information.
  • Don’t use deceptive subject lines.
  • Tell recipients where you’re located.
  • Tell recipients how to opt out of receiving future email from you.
  • Honor opt-out requests promptly.
  • Monitor what others are doing on your behalf.

Make sure the link to unsubscribe is clear and obvious on your email. If you try to use fine print or make the unsubscribing process convoluted, not only could you potentially be violating the law, but you could force the recipient mark your email as spam. Too many spam markings and email clients will automatically send your email to the junk folder for all your recipients. This would amount to a death sentence for your email marketing campaign.

Help is Available

There is plenty of assistance available to get started with email marketing for your small business. Whether it’s obtaining market research to segment your audience, fine-tuning your branding, or developing a strategy to capture email addresses, your Wyoming SBDC Network advisor is here to help. Get started with no-cost confidential assistance today by clicking here.

About the Author: Jake spent 12 years working in television news before crossing to the other side of media as Director of Public Relations for Idaho State University’s health care programs — which make up one third of the university. In his current role, he oversees the statewide marketing efforts for the Wyoming SBDC Network. When he’s not in the office, Jake enjoys road trips, going to the movies, and tackling new home renovation projects with his wife.

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