No, email marketing is not spam. No, it's not intrusive. Yes, it should be part of your lead generation strategies, and yes, it does generate leads and create new business-to-business (B2B) opportunities. However, you can't just wing it. You can't just inundate your market with useless information. There are some guidelines and common-sense approaches you must follow. Therefore, here are 5 best practices for B2B email lead generation marketing.
1. Make Each Campaign an Event
You can use your email marketing campaigns to provide new content, advise customers of future product launches and product upgrades, give them updates on their accounts, keep them up-to-date on recent news and emerging market trends and anything else you feel is important to their business. However, you can't have a stale message. Make every email campaign an event with attention-grabbing headlines, well-written content pieces and exclusive offers.
2. Don't Force the Issue
Your customers must want to receive your emails. It's about opting-in and not opting-out. It's about buying into your message and not being force-fed something they're not interested in. The days of gathering business cards, email address and contact details and then putting them on an email blast, without their permission are long gone. Don't do this. Create emails your customers will want to read and then track conversion rates, click-through-rates (CTR) and the overall performance of each campaign.
3. Checking Your Campaigns Prior to Launch
Check each email campaign prior to launch by sending them to different email addresses and servers. Make sure all the links work properly by checking whether they send users to the right landing pages and offers. Next, check to make sure that images are clearly visible and that your fonts don't appear differently on different servers. Checking prior to launch ensures you're never caught off-guard and your customers are never let down. This helps ensure that email marketing is always among your top lead generation strategies.
4. Create Anticipation
Do you want to increase your email open rates? Do you want to increase the conversion rates on your campaigns? If so, then you need to create anticipation and excitement amongst your customers by giving them the opportunity to join a rewards program. Give your customers an incentive to click. It's one thing to have a great call-to-action (CTA), but it's another thing entirely to compensate them for being loyal. Make sure each of your B2B email marketing campaigns include the option of being included in a reward program. Give your customers a reason to be loyal.
5. Customized Messages for Different Buyer Personas
There's nothing that says you can't run different email marketing campaigns for each of your buyer personas. Don't worry if you have too many of them. Focus on grouping buyer personas into common interests and try to group them into two or three categories. You can have one email campaign addressed to business owners and executives, one for engineers, designers, and technicians, and one for purchasing, accounting, and finance. Try to make your campaigns as specific as possible. Use it as an opportunity to produce focused content for each persona.
B2B companies rely upon email marketing within their lead generation strategies because email consistently produces results. It's not just about a well-written content piece or a call-to-action that incentivizes customers. It's ultimately about putting everything you have into your email campaign and making it an event every time.
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