We’re excited to be moved into our new home in Lakewood, CO, just outside Denver. Today we’re going to talk email marketing. But first, we want to thank everyone who provided feedback on how Market Your Craft could help craft beverage brands stand out versus blend in. Some of the highlights:
- Provide tools to build the brand and traffic
- Social media usage and reporting remain a hot topic, though ecommerce is a close second
- Email is preferred over social posts, with resources that can be put to immediate use
- Most are concerned with the marketing budget needed to remain competitive
Based on your comments, we’re trying a new format for our bi-weekly email newsletter. And what better topic to discuss than email best practices in the craft beverage space. Let us know what you think!
Don’t believe what you hear – email is not dead. It’s very much alive, with an estimated 333 billion emails sent each day by the year 2022. Email is an inexpensive, underutilized means of communicating with profitable current and new customers. We will review best practices to help your members get the most out of every email.
the basics >
getting crafty with it >
the basics of email marketing
- Don’t use a personal email address: it costs $50-$100/year to have a firstname.lastname@example.org email address. If you use a personal email address (i.e. email@example.com) for company newsletters, your personal as well as business email won’t be delivered if caught in SPAM filters.
- Use a compelling subject line: keep it short and simple, 4-7 words and 40 characters long. Show the reader in one line the value you’re going to provide, the need for urgency or evoke FOMO (fear of missing out).
- Create a calendar: at most send one (1) email per week unless there is something timely/topical that can’t wait. Follow a monthly calendar to space out your social media posts, email and press releases (i.e. product launch or distribution news).
- Watch your length: there’s no hard-and-fast rule here. Use common sense, balance your text and images and don’t make the reader scroll down more than three (3) times on their mobile phone to deliver what you promised in the subject line. You’ll lose them otherwise.
- Be a storyteller: easier said than done. We like emails that involve the reader in the story of the brand first, with events, announcements, new products, etc. second. Link to your website and social media for more detail, don’t include it all in the email.
getting crafty with email marketing
- Send a welcome email: when visitors to your social media or website register for your newsletter, shoot off an immediate thank you note and introduce them to what’s next. We’re not talking double-opt-ins or “please confirm your address” emails either. Something of substance.
- Build a clean list: be above-board getting the email list in the first place (don’t mess with CAN-SPAM and the GDPR). Once you have a list, respect list members’ communication preferences and privacy.
- Avoid promotion-heavy content: if it feels like a sales pitch, it probably is. There’s no faster way for your email to end up hidden in the Gmail promotional tab.
- Test to see what works: wondering why customers aren’t beating down your door after an email? Try a couple different versions, including variations in the subject line, imagery and actions in order to see what resonates best with your subscribers.
- Personalize your message: low-hanging fruit like “Dear Scott” goes a long way towards building trust in a relationship without looking like a stalker. Conversely, if they’re interested in the Sacramento area and you promote an event halfway across the country, that won’t sit well.
behind-the-curtain of successful email marketing
- Encourage action: the reason for sending email is to prompt action. Otherwise why send it? Content should offer value to the reader that pays off the subject line, focusing on one or at most two calls-to-action, i.e. “Register for this week’s event.” Don’t overcomplicate.
- Track email performance: service providers report who opened and followed links in your email. Take note of what’s working and not working to improve email response. Use data collected from email activity to create groups, or segments, of members with similar behaviors or attitudes to further cater your messages.
- Avoid excess code: most email acts like a webpage. But if you are editing emails at the code level, be careful. Too much code may work against you by displaying incorrectly.
- Mobile-friendly: imagine every one of your emails being read on a phone. How does it look? If you use a service like Mailchimp, generally their templates are bullet-proof if you don’t monkey around with them too much…
Want to go deeper? Next time we’ll look at leading email service providers for a possible fit for your craft beverage brand, including: