Email marketing tools and service providers for small business, startups
Today I will share some experience about email marketing, no, this is not an article, this is exactly what I experienced during my entrepreneurship so far, so may be some of the information will be relevant to your startup or product promotion , and may be beneficial to you.
And after reading this experience you can define your own email marketing strategy.
As an entrepreneur following question came in my mind for email marketing of my startups !
But before I answer any of the above question, let me tell you , No one love to see irrelevant email in their inbox, more specifically people dislike emails, they simply call it spamming.
So often what you call "email marketing for your product or services", is just irritating things for others , that's the truth.
Before I clarify email marketing works or not, or how to quantify the success of email marketing
, let me tell you email marketing is the most cost effective way to promote your product and services, there is no other alternate in terms of cost per result, if done correctly.
Emаil marketing can be a great way for increasing your sales specially for small business and startups, and only cost effective way to reach out to huge number of people.
It’s more like knocking the door and saying "Hey, I have some beautiful products for you"!
In most of the cases people may not buy your product, but at the end of this approach you will get highest number of products sold within short span of time.
So, you can say that email marketing works very well
Now, you may think whether email marketing will work for your product or not!
That will completely depend on nature of your product you have.
First question should be whether potential user of your product or service use email for communication or not?
If the answer is No, then email marketing is not correct for your business! think of some other way!
But if your answer is yes! (Your potential buyers use email for communication), then should definitely go for email marketing
This is really a tricky part of email marketing; we can have different opinion about how the email content should be designed, what graphic will look good etc. but here I will talk about what will get you the best success rate!
Now think of receiver point of view, what kind of email you would read from you your inbox, what you delete straight away.
Anything look like promotional or marketing email people simply delete them, you probably do the same thing right?
So, the point is marketing email should not actually look like marketing email, it should look like a personal message you want to convey to potential buyer.
here is an example..
Now if you notice in above message, marketer has conveyed the discount of his product , but it looks like just a simple message.
So, here are few things
- Keep the message very short!
- Don’t insert any image in message
- Use one external hyper link, where you want user to click (ex: my new collection)
- Don't try to explain your all offers in email... no one wants to know
- No multicolor fonts... that look funny and kiddies
- Don't use border in email body to make it look like a template
- Subject line is very important, avoid using promotional word
Yes, this type of email may not look fancy to you, but will get you maximum success in email marketing
Most of the business owner purchase email database from third-party for email marketing, question is not whether to buy email database or not, the question what you do after you buy the email database?
So here are few facts you need to know about email marketing with purchased database
- More than 40-50% data are useless (either backdated, not in use, email box full, incorrect email id, dead email provider etc), so you need to clean / remove them from mailing list .
And huge percentages of data are completely irrelevant for your products and service.
- Many reputed SMTP provider will deny you to rent out their SMTP, because purchased database may spoil their SMTP reputation.
- If you use your own SMTP for sending email, very soon most of email end up landing in spam folder for bad emails and high bouncing rate, or it may get blacklisted soon.
So after purchasing email database if you don’t have technical expertise to clean the data,
and to deal with SMTP, then I would say don’t purchase database, that will be waste of money.
And even if you get some local SMTP provider who is willing to allow you to send email with your purchased database
(after knowing the all above facts), Result will be same as explained above; in addition, they can keep the all good email ids after sending the email (which may not be good for your business, if those ids goes to your competitors)
And specially if you have any expensive products like software products , for example some products like Applicant Tracking System
for HR, think what will happen after all your hard work, the potential lead will generate will go to your competitors at the same time, that’s really bad for your business.
So be very careful, while using Free SMTP or email service, if your business is in very initial stage or you just want to create awareness for your brand or service, then you can use free email marketing service
If you have one or two products or service then you may not have much different things to write every time you send email, but you can add some seasonal essence or current festive essence, for example if you are sending the email in summer or winter, you can add one line that will relate your product for that particular season, or if you are sending email in Christmas or New year, you can relate your discount for that festival etc. keep consistency.
You also can add some short story telling type in email, reader really enjoy reading such emails (success rate can be much higher), but make sure that piece of writing is really creative, otherwise that will look bad or irrelevant.
Now we talk about email marketing service providers and SMTP service providers, because many of you might have your own email sending software, so just configuring any SMTP and sending customize email will be easy for them.
So, here are some good service providers.
I have used their service, easy to use interface, high success delivery rate, nice reporting format, check TurboSMTP SMTP service provider
. they will not allow you to send email using purchased database.
Mailjet is a email marketing service provider, you can start sending customized email using their online interface and they also provide API with all SMTP info, so you can integrate in your system to send email,
Check mailjet email service
Mailchimp provide many automation with email marketing service, they will ask you question like "Do you have a list of email subscribers" while creating the account, but they say "they can help you build your subscriber list" for your business. provide nice user friendly interface for email marketing Check mailchimp email marketing service
Sendinblue has nice custom email marketing workflow for email marketing service, at the time of registration they will ask you to agree with "I confirm that my email list is 100% opt-in and that I have not bought
nor gathered it online.".
and if you plan to send email campaigns (newsletters, emails, email marketing, etc.), they will ask you question like "How many contacts do you have now?"
Check Sendinblue email marketing service