While face-to-face interactions with clients declined during 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, email marketing is alive and well. Email marketing trends indicate that this is still a reliable way for small businesses to reach out to their clients and even build a new sales base moving forward. In this article, we will break down some of the most effective ways to use this marketing tool to benefit your small business in 2021 and beyond.
Email Marketing is Growing
With an estimated 3.7 billion people worldwide using email, it is still the best way to reach a large number of prospects and customers with your business’s basic information, new promotions, or changing hours and services. While social media marketing is a valuable tool for reaching a new customer base, email marketing reaches your most engaged prospects and customers who have already expressed an interest in your products or services. This is why email marketing has a proven track record of a higher return on investment compared to social media marketing.
In fact, the number of sent emails skyrocketed in 2020, increasing by about 45% according to some measures. Reaching both new and repeat customers via email will continue to be the cornerstone of a solid digital marketing strategy.
One of the strongest email marketing trends affecting small business owners is the shift to mobile-optimized marketing. Viewing email on a smartphone or tablet is now more common than logging in on a desktop or laptop-especially as more people work remotely.
In fact, mobile browsing receives a higher amount of traffic than desktop browsing. 53% of consumer browsing now happens on a mobile device, compared to 37% on a desktop and 10% on a tablet. For now, people still tend to make more actual purchases from a desktop, but that could change moving forward.
Research indicates that a sub-par mobile experience frustrates customers and makes them less likely to purchase. In 2021, make sure that your marketing emails are optimized for mobile viewing with strong call-to-action messages to convert your readers into customers.
Email segmentation – grouping subscribers together based upon shared interests – is foundational to good email marketing. Trends suggest that customers appreciate even more personalization going into 2021. If you’re just beginning to increase your business’s online presence, email personalization can be as simple as ensuring good segmentation and using marketing tools that let you include the recipient’s name in the subject line and email body. You can up your game with more sophisticated strategies that include tailoring email content to customers’ past purchases or offering specific discounts tied to their browsing history.
Finally, positivity may be the most significant email marketing trend to arise from the pandemic. In 2020, businesses from Mcdonald’s to Shopify incorporated their customers’ social media posts and personal stories into their email marketing campaigns. Readers increasingly appreciate the tone of authenticity and connection that positive messaging conveys, especially when in-person connections have been put on hold. Including your business’s backstory, the client’s authentic success stories, and even lighthearted videos and snapshots is a great way to warm the tone of your email marketing while remaining professional.
Businesses that were able to increase their digital presence during the Covid-19 pandemic were better positioned to maintain existing customers by offering creative ways to access products and services as well as keeping clients up to date on availability and safety changes. Staying on top of trends in email marketing is one way to ensure that your customers know what you have to offer.