By Justin Delos Reyes and Bob Speyer – Web Success Team
Social media is the hottest buzz on the web today. But if you think email marketing is obsolete because of it, you might want to think again.
Email is just as valuable as an online marketing tool today as it was 10 years ago. The only difference between now and then, is that your subscribers want the opportunity to share your content with their friends on Facebook and Twitter.
That is why your email marketing campaign needs to be social ready. Here are some tips on how to give your subscribers the social opportunities they want.
Promote Your Profiles
Frequently promoting your brand without encouraging dialog between yourself and your followers is frowned upon in social media. Doing it through email is more acceptable because subscribers are accustom to the one-way conversations that email marketing lends itself to.
But you still have to encourage conversations with your brand elsewhere on the Web.
Therefore, do not hesitate to promote your brand’s social media profiles in your emails. The key to doing this (without being annoying) is to use buttons and links as design enhancements. Buttons can add more flair to an email template. They should be accompanied by a call-to-action (i.e. Follow us on Twitter), positioned at the top of your email, and should not interfere with the copy. Text links to your social profiles should definitely be included in the footer and integrated in the body when appropriate.
Offer Discounts to Subscribers
Everyone wants free or discounted items. One marketing strategy you can implement to raise the number of Likes on your Facebook page or followers on Twitter is to offer discounts exclusively to your subscribers. Here’s how: Place a numerical goal that your page has to reach (500 or 1,000 Likes, for instance) before the discount is activated. This will give your subscribers a reason to encourage their friends to follow your brand’s profiles.
Add Social Bookmarking Buttons
Aside from including buttons that link to your social profiles, make sure to include buttons that allow subscribes to share your content on a variety of social websites. Go beyond Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter by adding Digg, StumbleUpon, or other social bookmarking sites. This will help your brand maximize its reach beyond the most popular platforms.
Showcase Your Blog
If you post blogs on a regular basis, pick the best articles to include in your email. But do not showcase them in their entirety. Brevity and clarity is the key to getting your copy read. You want to lead subscribers to your blog (which should also be social ready) through your emails. And don’t forget to add a link or button to your blog’s RSS feed.
Don’t Waste the Unsubscribe Page
In a perfect world, your subscribers will never choose to opt-out of your emails. But the reality is that some will. This does not mean they want to stop engaging with your brand. If they choose to unsubscribe, don’t waste the the confirmation page by simply telling them thanks for unsubscribing. Use this as an opportunity to encourage them to follow your social media profiles. A message such as “You are no longer subscribed. Join us on Facebook for news and promotions,” is something you can say to lead them to your pages.
Opt-in with Your Ideas
How has your brand integrated social media into your email marketing campaign?
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