If you’ve been thinking about up-levelling your email marketing, you’re in the right place.
Today, we’re diving into the benefits of email marketing for small business and explaining why email should be an essential part of your business’s marketing mix.
If you’ve never entered the realms of email marketing before, or maybe you got started, but lost motivation or couldn’t find the time. Or maybe you’re super invested in your email marketing, but you know there’s still more you could be doing. This blog is for you.
It’s no secret that I’m more than a little bit obsessed with email marketing. But why? What are the business benefits of email marketing?
It all really comes down to the three P’s – popularity, purpose, and performance.
Let’s kick things off with popularity.
Email Marketing Benefit 1 – Popularity
I’m willing to bet that your audience more than likely spends a good chunk of their time on email.
Market research company, The Radicati Group estimates there will be 4.3 billion email users by the end of 2023.
To provide a comparison. Instagram is projected to reach 1.2 billion users by the end of 2023. That’s barely over a quarter of email’s popularity.
Now there’s no doubt that both of those numbers are overinflated by things like fake and inactive accounts. But when it comes to understanding the benefits of email marketing – in particular, the channel’s popularity – look at volume of users alone isn’t painting the full picture.
Another important element and benefit of email marketing is just how much the channel is used. *drum roll*
A 2017 survey found 75% of respondents check their email every day before they start work. And a further 80% of respondents said they would go on to check their emails randomly throughout the day.
And guess what? Randomly throughout the day is a hell of a lot more frequent than you probably think.
A 2019 Adobe study found that, on average, respondents spend over three hours per day checking their work emails and over two hours per day checking their personal emails. That’s a lot of email time!
And it also makes a lot of sense. I don’t know about you, but I personally would not want someone standing over my shoulder all day looking at how often I check my emails.
So in terms of both volume of users and usage behaviour, the benefits of email marketing for your business are pretty clear. Email is darn popular and that means there’s a good chance you can reach your audience there.
So let’s bring in the second P – Purpose.
Email Marketing Benefit 2 – Purpose
Popularity shows us that you can more than likely reach your audience via email. Purpose shows us that they actually want you to reach them there.
That same 2017 survey found that 77% of respondents selected email as their preferred channel to receive communications from a business. Further research also shows that 60% of consumers subscribed to a brand’s mailing list because they wanted to receive promotional messages from that brand.
The same survey found that just 20% of consumers said that they followed brands on social media to see deals and get promotional messages.
So, what does this tell us? Well, it tells us that a good chunk of people actually want to be marketed to via email. It’s the preferred channel for sales messages for the majority, according to this study.
Now sending salesy emails to your audience might feel uncomfortable. You might be worried about coming across as spammy or pestering your audience by sending them something they don’t want.
And those are all good concerns to have. But what I hope some of this research is showing you is that often that’s really far from the truth.
Because that same study found that 86% of respondents would like to receive promotional emails, at least monthly, from the brands they had subscribed to. And 15% said they’d like to receive promotional emails daily.
Now I’m not suggesting that you should start emailing your mailing list every single day. If you haven’t set that expectation with your audience, I don’t think that would go down very well.
What I am saying is that conventional wisdom might lead you to believe that emails are inherently perceived as annoying. In actuality though, it couldn’t be further from the truth.
And that brings us around nicely to our third P – performance. Because if all of that research didn’t convince you that emails aren’t inherently a bother to your audience, this sure should.
Email Marketing Benefit 3 – Performance
If you were to stop reading this blog right now and Google “marketing return on investment”, you’d see it’s pretty well documented that email as a marketing channel delivers a very impressive return.
What does that mean? Basically, it means, compared to other channels, you’re spending less and making more.
Email has recorded an average return on investment of up to $42 for every dollar spent. That is literally spending a dollar and getting $42 back!
And this is supported by research that shows 60% of customers have made a purchase as the result of a marketing email in comparison to 12.5% that have made a purchase as a result of social media.
Looking at engagement stats is another great way to gauge email’s performance as a channel.
The Asia Pacific region has an average open rate of 22.4% and an average click-to-open rate (that’s of the people that opened your email, how many of them clicked through) of 13.4%.
Compare these stats to the typical engagement rates you’d see from social media and again, email looks pretty damn good.
So, what have these three P’s shown us about the benefits of email marketing?
Popularity has shown us that you can more than likely reach your audience via email. Coming up to 4.3 billion email users and hours of average inbox time per day? I’d say you’ve got a good chance.
Purpose has shown us that your customers actually want to hear from you via email. If they have subscribed to your mailing list, the vast majority are looking for at least a monthly promotional email.
And performance shows us that email can be a really cost-effective channel for your business. Average engagement rates and consumer purchasing behaviour shows this.
Now, if you’re thinking, “hang on Sam, this all sounds way too good to be true…”, I’m here to tell you that… it’s not.
That doesn’t mean it’s going to be as simple as sending an email and watching the results roll in. But I truly believe that too many business owners don’t realise the potential benefits of email marketing in their business.