As someone who strongly believes in the benefits of email marketing I’m very excited about Google’s plans to integrate Gmail into personal search results (you can read more about this here).
Email has largely been overlooked by online marketers in favor of social media (though in many cases it has yielded a much higher result than social) but now, thanks to Google, email marketing may be making a comeback.
All of those emails and newsletters that have been piling up in your inbox (or folders, if you’re the anal type) will be reappearing in your search results alongside your Google search. And marketers will now have to focus on getting their own emails into your inbox to compete for your attention.
The good news is that if you have been faithful to email all of these years, then you already have your foot in the door. When Google rolls out this new search feature, the emails you’ve sent will already be in your customers’ mailboxes… assuming they’ve been archived and have not deleted. If they’re still in there, they’ll be ready to pop up when those on your list search for topics related to your schtick.
But if you’ve been spending all of your time on LinkedIn and Facebook only, then you might want to start preparing for the return of email marketing and how it will change the way you reach out to customers.
1. Start by learning some of the basics about email marketing:
- Research mailing platforms (I use Mad Mimi).
- Learn about email analytics.
- Study successful email marketing campaigns.
These articles on email marketing should help you get started:
The #1 Email Service Provider + 6 Reasons You Need One
Social vs. Email, and Forget Film School
What’s the Best Subject for an Email?
3 Simple Things You Can Do Right Now to Improve The Open Rate in Your Email Campaign
2. Dust off your keywords:
Since Google searches will be pulling emails based on keywords, you want to make sure that the emails you send your customers include your SEO keywords. If you are a business with a website then you probably have already researched your keywords, so now make sure to include them when writing your emails.
3. Create a mailing list:
If you don’t already have a mailing list, now would be a good time to start one. Add a sign-up form to your website and Facebook page (like this one) and encourage your visitors and fans to fill it out. Reach out to current customers and get them to sign up as well.
4. Write your email newsletter:
As with the articles that you write for your blog or website, your emails should contain valuable content that links your name to a positive experience for the reader. Don’t be spammy or markety in the way you write, but also don’t forget the purpose of sending the email in the first place.
I do two things in my emails:
a) I direct people to new articles I’ve written on our blog.
b) I release Shmuel’s videos via email so that people on our list get the breaking news first.
Don’t wait until Google has already implemented their new search feature before starting your email campaign. You want to already be in your customer’s mailboxes – and a trusted source whose emails they open – when that happens.
And please don’t spend too long making your email just right. As my wise father says, “The wrong decision is better than no decision.” Applied here, in translation: “It’s better to get an email with a mistake out there than no email at all.”
6. Focus less on your graphics and more on your content:
Catchy pictures won’t be as helpful in getting your email noticed as will the right keywords and tone. (The right tone will keep you in the “archived” pile, rather than in the “deleted” folder.)
7. Email your customers more often, using a variety of keywords:
This will increase your chances of coming up in your customers’ search results. Yours will be near the top if it’s recent, and it will come up under a variety of searches if you’ve got a plethora of appropriate keywords in there.
8. Include links in your emails to your products, your articles and your social sharing accounts.
Make it easy for people to contact you and get what they’re looking for once your email is in their search results.
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