It's an old business adage: About 20 percent of your customers produce 80 percent of your sales. With that said I really wanted to discuss the topic "Why You Should Email Your Base and How to Do it" because quite often we hear from a business owner all the reasons they don’t bother emailing their customer base. The reasons vary but generally include:
- We don’t have a relationship after the sale. (And you won’t if you don’t communicate - people can still refer others to you)
- We are a service business and they only contact us when they need us. (You assume too much)
- We don’t collect email data from online visitors. (This Can be Fixed)
- We don’t collect email data from our customers. (Really? Why not?)
You get the idea.
So why email to your base if not for direct sales?
Well by definition you have an existing relationship with your customers, so they know you. The cost to acquire and use their contact information is almost ZERO and they already match your buyer persona and found you through their own buyer’s journey. THAT MEANS they are the most qualified to engage with (please notice that I said engage and not sell to) since they have been sold to already. Finally, and most importantly, they can refer other business owners to you that they socialize with and trust. Referral business is huge and in our case, makes up 98% of our new sales!
YOUR MISSION…if you choose to except it, is to re-engage your base and tell them about something that may impact them in some VALUABLE way and OFFER to help them assess whether there is an opportunity to engage. It’s all about them and not about YOU.
Time to Engage
So now you know the “Why” - the next question is “How” do you go about engaging? What we usually ask a client for is a CUSTOMER LIST already in a .csv format – which is a comma separated data format in Excel, that includes a least the customers FIRST NAME, LAST NAME and EMAIL address in separate columns. Data presented this way is easily uploaded to most CRM systems (in my case HubSpot CRM which you can contact us about) or email blast tools such as MailChimp.
Since we already use HubSpot CRM and have our customers in that system, we will create an email template that will be used and modified for each email we send out. Yes, we will send out individual emails to each contact because we probably want to personalize each email (a nice touch and a good idea).
IMPORTANT NOTE: We won’t be “blasting” a generic email - that is common practice among some businesses. We are using HubSpot CRM because all of our actions are recorded and the recipients activity is logged in the HubSpot CRM tool so that we can see the actions that our recipients take when they get our email. We strongly believe that what gets measured gets managed!
Format and Structure
So what does this really look like? How is an effective email structured? Here are the 6 areas we look at carefully before sending any email:
- Subject Line
- Opening greeting
- Reason for emailing
- Closing greeting
We show examples below of possible a email Subject Line. The subject line is very important, the format we suggest is shown using samples that we would use to communicate to our base, your subject matter may vary but the idea is to have some meat on them without being too wordy or too short.
- "Question about email marketing to your customers"
- "New data: 83% of consumers want helpful information"
- "Inbound sales information for Monday, 6/14"
To help keep this post short and to the point we have an example shown below of what we might send to our base and the language we would use.
Subject: New Data: 85% of businesses want site statistics
Hi Contact First Name,
Why are you receiving this email? As promised in our 2017 Online Marketing Needs Assessment email, we learned valuable information from our online client survey and one of things we learned is that businesses want site statistics such as Google Analytics statistics.
Almost 85% of our customers, people just like you, said site traffic reports were important to them in order to understand their visitor experience and to track how they are being found online, crucial information to enhance the visitors experience.
If having such information is important to you, please let us know so that we can assist you in obtaining and understanding this information. Our records indicate the you actually already have Google Analytics code installed on your site, so the process would be quick and straight forward in getting this information to you.
Please respond back to me today or tomorrow to help you access and understand this important information.
Barry Orlando, Owner
Orlando Web Services
As you can see, the 6 areas that we talked about previously are covered and we really don't try to sell anything. What we seek is engagement regarding a particular topic that is beneficial to them and can help us start related discussions regarding items such as: copy edits, optimization, landing pages, social media traffic and much more. All of these have an impact on the Google Analytics statistics and can be modified to improve web traffic measured by Google Analytics.
Hopefully this information will give you a feel for how to engage your existing base and how to email them successfully (and profitably). Remember to always proof read over and over again, and have others proof read your work as well before sending any email. Happy engaging!