A recent statistic from Visible notes that “59 percent of B2B marketers say their top revenue channel is email.” Companies who have active email marketing campaigns, built using a smart B2B email marketing strategy, help to nurture existing leads and maintain customer connections. If your organization has let its email frequencies fade, or if you haven’t run active initiatives at all, now is the time to brush off your lists.
For those who are looking for ways to improve your B2B email marketing strategy, here are five considerations that can help you create a successful campaign:
1. Find the Right Messaging Mix
Email marketing for B2B companies should not be a “hard sell” pitch. While emails can deliver timely news and information customers may want to act on, the real value is in building brand awareness and keeping your contacts engaged. Finding the right mix of content that educates the reader, presents technical innovations, and offers tips and news helps to show your brand respects the reader’s time. Remember that even segmented email lists typically reach a mix of readers – prospects, existing customers, expert pros, new hires, etc. Delivering value to the entire group is key. Email campaigns certainly can highlight news and offerings from your company– but at the core you need to think “why would someone want to read this” before hitting send.
2. Be Clear, Engage the Reader & Incorporate Clear Calls-to-Action
Statistics show a drop off in email readership after 20 lines, or about 200 words, so it is critical that your content is succinct and clear. Hard to read phrasing, content that seems irrelevant, and emails that lack a design “hook” that drives the reader throughout the full layout simply will not perform with today’s digitally-savvy customers.
After you’ve found the right messaging mix, deliver well-crafted content that engages your reader – that makes them want to keep reading. Finally, be sure you incorporate clear call-to-action links or buttons to move that reader to the next step in your marketing funnel – often via a link to your website. Tracking software in both your email application and your website analytics will help you monitor engagement and trends to optimize future campaigns.
3. Get Your Entire Team Involved
A successful B2B email marketing strategy requires the support of a cross-functional team. Engineering, sales, HR, customer service, management, marketing and more should collaborate to develop effective content. Understanding customer concerns, the meaning behind technical information and how each department in your company views current business considerations helps to create diverse content that customers will value.
After you’ve hit send on that campaign, keep your team in the loop. Consider adding employee emails to your distribution lists, so team members can forward news to their contacts, and team members who weren’t involved in the content development process are informed on corporate communications. Additionally, most email campaign providers provide a URL link to an email once it has been launched. Consider posting this link on your social media channels to help grow your readership.
4. Categorize Contacts & Messaging
Contact lists can be organized and segmented, which can allow you to send different email content to different audiences. This can be especially beneficial for companies that serve a diverse variety of industries or customer personas, each likely to have unique concerns, questions and motivators. Similarly, with automated response-based emails, which can be sent based on where a customer is in your sales funnel, categorizing the content and messaging may be valuable – connecting with prospects in one department differently than prospects in another. By segmenting your contact lists, you can improve your overall relevancy, keeping contacts engaged, and also obtain a more detailed perspective of results and insights.
5. Managing Frequency & Timing
In a time when readers have become increasingly bombarded with digital noise, you want to make your voice heard with the right impact. It’s important to evaluate not only the frequency of your sends, but the value your emails provide to your current customer and/or leads. Finding the “right” email frequency for your business requires testing and optimization. What works for one company won’t necessarily work best for another. A recent study from CoSchedule recommends that for B2B organization, 1-5 emails per month is ideal, but of course this is a guide that should be adjusted accordingly when evaluating your metrics, like open and click through rates.
Additionally, be mindful of day and time an email is sent. Typically, sending mid-week after lunch or mid-morning, especially on a Tuesday or Wednesday, yields better results. For companies that serve customers in multiple time zones, one can find the “sweet spot” in that mix, or again leverage list categories to segment contact locations, reaching each group at the optimal time.
We Deliver Communications that Drive B2B Results
Don’t let your business fall behind on your client retention marketing efforts. Our experienced team of B2B marketing experts can help you develop a cohesive B2B email marketing strategy to maximize email as part of your digital mix. Learn more about our email marketing services or contact us today.
Stifel Marcin – The B2B Marketing Agency
Unlike many advertising and marketing agencies, B2B isn’t just something that we do, it’s all we do. We’ll work to help your brand achieve its goals through the strategic combination of creativity, communication and technology. Our focused client intake processes give us the ability to thoroughly understand your business, products and objectives, working to identify the competitive advantages and opportunities that will grow awareness, leads and sales. We develop innovative marketing plans with strategic, data-driven processes, presenting complex ideas and compelling messages that position your business ahead of the competition. As your cooperative partner, our integrated B2B marketing agency is dedicated to your success. Our B2B email marketing strategy services can take your campaign to the next level. Let’s get started.