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Can email marketing help companies increase sales?

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At a business meeting recently, a colleague of mine asked me a great question, “Is email marketing still effective?”

The short answer is yes. Email marketing is very much a relevant marketing tool and can be a very useful and effective way to deliver your marketing content to your best target prospects for your business or organization. The goal being to convert the prospect into a customer with the effective use of words, stories, videos and information along their buyer’s journey.

The long answer though, is that the effectiveness really depends on several factors that go into a successful strategic email marketing campaign.

Typically, my marketing firm does not utilize the concept of “Email Blasts.” Email Blasts are an old-fashioned method of email marketing and are no longer very effective.

Today, we recommend building out segmented, lead nurturing email automation campaigns.

These types of campaigns are designed to continue the conversation with a “lead” that has been generated by an interested consumer coming through a landing page on a website.

The consumer may have found the landing page via a PPC digital ad, organic Google search result, social media ad, a print ad with a URL link, or a variety of other media channels.

Once the consumer “opts-in” to our sales funnel, that’s when the email automation takes over and the real work begins.

Some key components of an effective email marketing campaign include:

— having a plan (strategy)

— developing well-performing subject lines

— personalization

— database segmentation

— data-driven if/then scenarios

— Metric analysis

— Marketing automation email system such as HubSpot

— Video (a personal favorite tactic of mine!)

Once a campaign is initiated, measuring benchmarks such as open rate (20-25% typically is a good open rate benchmark — depending on your industry), average click rate (2-3% typically is a good click-through benchmark — depending on your industry), hard bounce rate and unsubscribe rate all can be tracked with each email that is sent.

That data can be used to evaluate the relative efficiency of the campaign. Based on the data collected per email incident, best-practices can be documented and the messaging, call-to-action and other intents of the email can be refined, tweaked and improved upon. In essence, you can do more of what works and less of what doesn’t work.

As you can see, email can be very effective to continue to nurture the valuable consumer leads you have in your marketing funnel. It’s not easy and certainly takes careful planning. But email marketing works!

As I continue on my mission to help people with their marketing and advertising across the Mountain State, I want to thank you for reading. If you have questions on this topic, I’d love to talk to you. Please email me: [email protected]

Until next time…

Jim Matuga is the founder and President of InnerAction Media, a marketing agency in Morgantown, WV. His new book available on AMAZON — Marketing Matters was inspired by his regular column here in the State Journal. You can listen to his weekly podcast “Positively West Virginia” on iTunes, Spotify and Google Play. He has extensive experience in leadership positions with West Virginia media companies, including newspapers, TV, cable, direct mail, radio, agency and digital.

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MARKETING

What Is a White Paper? [FAQs]

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What Is a White Paper? [FAQs]

The definition of a whitepaper varies heavily from industry to industry, which can be a little confusing for marketers looking to create one for their business.

The old-school definition comes from politics, where it means a legislative document explaining and supporting a particular political solution.

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HubSpot to cut around 7% of workforce by end of Q1

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HubSpot to cut around 7% of workforce by end of Q1

This afternoon, HubSpot announced it would be making cuts in its workforce during Q1 2023. In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing it put the scale of the cuts at 7%. This would mean losing around 500 employees from its workforce of over 7,000.

The reasons cited were a downward trend in business and a “faster deceleration” than expected following positive growth during the pandemic.

Layoffs follow swift growth. Indeed, the layoffs need to be seen against the background of very rapid growth at the company. The size of the workforce at HubSpot grew over 40% between the end of 2020 and today.

In 2022 it announced a major expansion of its international presence with new operations in Spain and the Netherlands and a plan to expand its Canadian presence in 2023.

Why we care. The current cool down in the martech space, and in tech generally, does need to be seen in the context of startling leaps forward made under pandemic conditions. As the importance of digital marketing and the digital environment in general grew at an unprecedented rate, vendors saw opportunities for growth.

The world is re-adjusting. We may not be seeing a bubble burst, but we are seeing a bubble undergoing some slight but predictable deflation.


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About the author

Kim Davis

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.

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Advocate | DigitalMarketer

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Advocate | DigitalMarketer

Happy customers love to share their experience, but sometimes they need some encouragement to do so. The cool thing is, once they do, they become even more loyal to your brand.

So, at this stage of the Customer Value Journey, ask people to share their positive experience with your brand by writing a review or sharing a social media post.

Once you get to stage seven, the Customer Value Journey is going to get a whole lot easier for you. This stage is all about learning your customer’s experience, and building up your testimonial database. 

The most important part of this step is asking these four questions. 

What Was Your Life Like Before Finding Our Solutions? What Challenges Were You Facing That Caused You to Consider Us? 

These questions are great not only because it gives you some really good stories, but because it gives you some insight on how you can provide similar prospects with that AHA moment. Understanding the average day of your clients is important in reflecting on your Customer Value Journey, and helps you understand what really set you apart from your competitors.

What Key Features Had the Biggest and/or Fastest Impact?

Not only is this going to get you to really specific stories, you will understand the specific things you provided that gave the biggest impact. The answers to these questions will not only give you great insight and testimonials, it will provide you with ideas for new lead magnets. This part is a new Entry Point Offer goldmine! 

What Has Been the Impact or Results in Your Life or Business Since Using Our Product or Service? 

This is a fairly broad question, and that’s why we put it after the others. You will have already gotten all of the specifics out of the way with #1 & #2. But when you ask this question, this is where you get the most valuable stories. You can use this part as testimonials, as an order form, as a sales page, this part is testimonial gold. 

If You Were Asked to Justify this Purchase to Your Boss or a Friend, What Would You Say? 

This is our favorite question by far. If you had to go back in time and justify this purchase, what would you say? I promise you what we’re going to find is a lot of great ideas for the jobs that your product or service has done. You’ll get a lot of great ideas for your core message canvas. This question is about backfilling all of the assets that you may not have. Here you’re going directly to the customer who are already happy, and using their justifications to help you sell to new customers. 

Hopefully you now understand just how valuable the Advocate stage could be, as well as the key questions you need to ask to get your customers talking. Here’s how it works for our example companies.

When it comes to fashion we all love to show off our outfits. So a good example for Hazel & Hems would be to have customers write reviews for a discount code or points towards their next purchase. 

Better yet, follow up with the customers to ask them to share and tag themselves wearing the items in a social media post and providing them with something valuable as a reward.

For Cyrus & Clark Media, hopping on zoom meetings or a streaming service for live talks about them and their business could generate valuable awareness for them, and a live case study for the agency. They can use the questions Ryan provided during this lesson to conduct the interview.



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