Email marketing and social media are keys to online business success. This is true for both small and large businesses alike; the problem most have is effectively integrating the two.
Many use social media to drive traffic to landing pages and signup forms in order to build their email lists. From there, they start their email marketing campaigns. This is effective, but email can also be used to help fuel a social media campaign.
Here are five tactics to make email a driving force for successful social media campaigns.
Include Social Components In Email Newsletters
Elite Email allow social profiles to be included in each email template. When setting up a newsletter, including social profiles does two things:
- It allows the recipients of an email to share it with their friends on their preferred social networks.
- It also gives recipients an opportunity to connect with a brand on social media by following that brand’s account or page, opening an additional channel for communication and engagement.
As the online space becomes more crowded, competition for attention is fierce and brands need to take every opportunity available to them to get in front of their target customers. When someone who has already opted in to receive emails chooses to follow and engage with a brand on social media, it increases the chances that they will help to spread that brand’s messages to their social contacts.
This is the online equivalent to word-of-mouth advertising. People still trust the recommendations of their friends more than any other form of marketing.
The other way to make emails social is to include hash tags. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook all make use of the hash tag feature to keep up with a particular topic. If a brand is launching a new campaign with a heavy emphasis on social media, they should have a topic picked out that they will create a hash tag for.
It could be the topic itself, or a related word or term that fits that topic. Whatever it is, it should be included along with graphics and videos in emails to encourage sharing, the use of hash tags and further engagement.
Give An Idea Of What People Can Expect On Each Social Site
When sending an email with the intention of boosting a social media campaign, users may want to know what will be different from the normal email and website content they are used to.
Creative emails may include videos, images or gifs that show users what they can expect to find on social media. It may be a contest, special deals and offers only shared with followers on social media, or even non-promotional content meant to build a brand.
It doesn’t really matter what the campaign entails. The only thing that matters is that people know what they are about to see, and that it is interesting enough for them to engage with it.
For most people, choosing to engage with a brand on social media is a step lower in terms of commitment than giving their email address. They are most likely already getting a steady stream of emails on a daily basis and can get overwhelmed.
Taking the opportunity to lighten things up and provide some sort of incentive to engage socially is a great idea. Not only does it change the dynamic of the brand-customer relationship, it also gives brands an opportunity to get more personal feedback on what is working and what isn’t.
Tell People What You Want Them To Do
A strong call-to-action is often the missing element in getting a conversion of any type. People don’t always know it, but they need to be told what to do.
If a brand includes social sharing with their email newsletters, they should tell users exactly what to do. Including a call-to-action in the email with directions to like a brand on Facebook, tweet an email newsletter to their friends, use a hash tag for discussions or follow on Instagram is a surefire way to increase social activity between target customers and brands.
Don’t just include icons or use a short line like “This email can be shared” at the end of a paragraph or at the bottom of a newsletter. Use clear instructions like “This email can be shared with your friends, click the Twitter icon to tweet it now.”
While it would seem that most people online would know what to do, many don’t. And those that do will often look past the sharing icon and eventually close the email. Tell them what to do and they are more likely to do it.
Make Your Landing Pages Social
Since most email is sent with the intention of getting the recipient to click a link to take them to a landing page, those pages need to be social media friendly as well.
Instead of including the sharing icons at the top of each post or in a scrolling bar to the side, begin each page with a social call-to-action. There may be an incentive, such as unlocking content on a blog post or getting access to a discount code. Likewise, there may be no incentive and simply the direction to share with friends. By building your Facebook and social media profiles (there are many companies that help with this), and by optimizing your landing page call to actions, you will improve your conversion rate significantly.
Each campaign is different, but if the purpose of a particular email or sequence of emails is to fuel a social media campaign, then each action a user takes should reflect that.
Use Email To Test Headlines
Headlines are vital to attracting visitors, getting email opens and earning social shares. The best usually evoke some form of emotion or pique curiosity.
If a business already has a large email subscriber list in place, they may want to test a sequence of emails on a topic related to their social campaign with different types of headlines.
From here, they can track open and click-throughs to determine what works best for their audience. People in different markets will respond differently to each type of headline. Some will open and click-through for headlines that appear urgent. Others will respond best to headlines posing a question. Some may even respond favorably to controversial topics included in headlines.
The key is to set up a sequence of emails leading up to a campaign and to track which headline received the most action. Once that data has been gathered, more effective headlines can be written for a social media campaign.
Use email to hint at something new on the horizon. It is not important to tell people that a new social campaign is starting, but to hint at something new and fun to watch out for.
This curiosity builds suspense and interest. These help to keep a brand in the minds of their audience, helping to ensure that whatever it is they do, people will take action o it once that new thing that has been hinted at actually happens.
Integrate All Channels To Maximize Success
Instead of focusing on one area as the main marketing focus, brands need to know how to use each one to fuel the other. Effective email marketing can drive social, just as effective social marketing can help fuel email.