E-mails have been around and we’ve used it to asked tradesmen to forward on valuable information to their peers about our products or programs. It’s not easy and isn’t reliable because you’re asking the customer to do a lot of work on your behalf. E-mail is also a one-way street in that you don’t make it easy to respond back to the original source.
Joint research by Ball State University,Exact Target and e-mail networking association reveals that more than 46% of e-mail marketing campaigns this year will use social media and e-mail in tandem compared to just 13% in 2008.
E-mail combined with social media offerings like Linked-in, Facebook and Twitter allow you to get your message out quicker to more people and give them an easy way to reply. In other words you’re engaging them and that’s why social media is so important. By clicking a link, you are sharing content with influencers that you might not have had reached.
I read a post recently from Karen Bannan, Combining e-mail with social media,where she shared thoughts from Ryan Duetsch from StrongMail Systems on ways to get the most out of your efforts.
- Use ESPs. Most major ESPs (like StrongMail and Sliverpop) and e-mail providers are making it easy to send e-mails directly to your Facebook page for example.
- Create your own social network. Create your own community. If you’re targeting professional plumbers for example, the discussions that go on provide great resources for e-newsletters. You know what the hot topics are and can address them as an expert.
- Add opt-in links to all your marketing collateral. For example, if you post a new video on Facebook, make sure it contains a link at the end so viewers can opt-in. Once it’s shared, you’ll be reaching thousands of prospects making sure you give them a way to ask for more information.
- Use your status to publicize your e-mail newsletter. Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter give users the option to publish information. Take advantage of this and even send out a reminder before you actually send out the e-mail that it’s coming.
- Change your layout. If you’re sending people from a social media site to your web site, make sure your opt-in links are very visible.
- Use search functions. Follow your company and brand names on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter to gain market knowledge. Twitter search lets you follow everything that’s mentioned about your company.
- Be a Joiner. You need to get involved. You want to become a trusted source, and in order to do that, you need to join Linkedin groups, respond to questions and get involved in discussions.