Email blasts have been a topic of debate for at least a few years now.
Some are even saying that email blasts are dead and that everyone with a lick of sense should be putting together personalized email campaigns to smaller pockets of people.
However, even though email blasts might have been around for a long time, they still offer tangible benefits and are successfully used by a wide range of marketers.
In fact, email blasts can be personalized just as the more recent email marketing campaign styles, producing excellent results in a wide range of industries.
So, in this article, let’s explore how you can create a comprehensive, personalized email blast strategy that engages your audience and gets them to take action.
Create a Buyer Persona
The effectiveness of your email marketing strategy usually comes down to one thing:
How well you know the target audience.
That’s why, before you can start thinking about the specific strategies and approaches for crafting an email, you need to make sure that you know as much as possible about the people that it’s going to reach.
One of the primary reasons why email blasts get a bad rep is because many marketers don’t know how to use them properly. Instead of performing thorough research and using legitimate ways to grow an email list, they use black-hat techniques like email scraping or list buying.
And when you’re sending out an email to a large group of random people, it’s hard to expect good results.
Meanwhile, companies that understand who they’re catering to and what they are likely to respond to can break through the clutter in people’s inboxes and reach them with a relevant, timely, and engaging message that instantly grabs attention and gets them to click through to the landing page.
But how can you create a buyer persona that you can rely on?
Well, the good news is that the process of creating a customer profile doesn’t have to be complicated and can be broken down into actionable steps.
You need to start by looking at your current best customers or the people on your list and then identifying the ones you feel are your best group of buyers.
Then, ask specific questions, like:
- Who are they?
- What is their job title?
- Where do they hang out online?
- What are the most pressing problems they are facing in relation to your products or services?
This way, you will start to get a much better idea of how to not only offer them a relevant solution but how to grab their attention with something that they are already thinking about.
Think about what their day looks and what types of messages they usually ignore, and then consider how you could make your email stand out and offer a well-needed alternative that actually speaks to their core needs.
Even when generating newsletter ideas for a large mailing list, you can still usually identify a common strain or idea that will resonate with a large part of the list, which is when you can realize the full potential of what email blasts can offer.
Consider the Timing
An important thing to remember when building email marketing campaigns is that no email is sent and received in a vacuum. The world is constantly changing, with both local and global events shaping people’s lives, opinions, and needs.
Because of that, an email that might have worked perfectly just a couple of months or even weeks ago might be tone-deaf or irrelevant, which can cause damage to a company’s reputation or at least hurt their campaign performance.
Businesses need to keep their finger on the pulse of not only their industry but also on the world in general. This is essential for making timely adjustments to the email marketing campaigns and ensuring that the messages are on point and engaging.
In fact, if you manage to tap into a recent event that’s grabbed the attention of your audience, you can actually leverage it to your advantage.
Some of the most successful email marketing examples revolve around incorporating news, updates, or opinions about subjects that can sometimes stretch beyond the company or the industry that they operate in.
A good example is a recent unrest in the United States. Companies are finding it hard to navigate the delicate issues, but some manage to tap into the thoughts and opinions of their audience and build a much more loyal following than before.
Now, that doesn’t mean that your campaigns should get political. That’s usually not a very good idea.
But at the same time, you should know what types of messages are better suited for different situations. If you spot an opportunity to gain attention by using a recent development as a talking point, that could be a very useful tool for boosting your open rates and click-throughs.
Use the Right Tools
When it comes to sending emails, there’s an abundance of tools and platforms to choose from. But while that’s mostly a good thing, it can also mean that the choice of a way to deliver emails has become more complicated.
Many novice marketers are feeling overwhelmed by the technical aspects of sending out emails to their list, which can sometimes even put the entire email campaign on hold for months at a time.
That’s why you should make the technical side as straightforward as possible.
There are certainly a lot of great options at all price points and levels of sophistication. But if you’re unsure of exactly what you need and just want a simple solution that you can set up as soon as today, going with the option that will require the least effort might be the best bet.
That being said, what mail merge can do for you is it can help you import your email list from a spreadsheet and send out an email blast in a matter of minutes. It will only take you a few clicks to accomplish something that would normally take you hours and even days if you manually sent emails to each of your targets.
Using a simple and straightforward approach like this, you don’t have to familiarize yourself with a new platform and can rely on the interface of your preferred email service that you are already familiar with and accustomed to.
Even though it may seem simple, the available possibilities are actually quite similar to what you’d find in other platforms. You can automate a lot of the process, sending out automated follow-ups or emails as replies to the last thread with the person, and even setting up follow-ups until a response is received.
You can even use the data that you have available to personalize the emails with first and last name, including an auto-detect feature when you don’t have that data available.
The bottom line is this:
Sending out emails has a lot of moving parts, and you will need to spend time tweaking your campaigns until you find an approach that’s working in your industry and with your audience.
Therefore, having a simple method that allows you to avoid the technical challenges is a great first step into ensuring that you give yourself the best chance of success.
Email marketing is a complicated process. Even though the actual steps can be listed and executed by almost anyone, that usually doesn’t guarantee results.
What works in one industry won’t necessarily translate into another, and even the same company running almost identical campaigns might find that one simply performed better than the other. And the reason won’t always be entirely clear.
That’s why testing your email campaigns is probably the most critical step of the entire process.
You need to have a reliable process for tracking the performance of each of your emails, as well as a way to split-test different variables to see which decisions bring the best results.
At first, the process can seem painstaking. But as you compile more data and get valuable insights, you will notice a steady improvement in your performance and can build on the discoveries that you make to maximize the potential of every single email that you send out.
You should test everything from your subject lines, your email body, your call-to-action, and your landing pages, breaking down the tests to small variables that are easy to distinguish.
Over time, the insights and proven outcomes will allow you to get to know your audience better and gain a significant advantage over the competition.
You may find that the common assumptions in your industry are actually not correct and that your audience has surprising preferences that aren’t catered to by anyone else.
Once you have that knowledge, you can use it as a basis for your email blast strategy, making your emails more personalized, more relevant, and more engaging to your audience.
And that can give you a critical advantage over the competition, even if they have larger marketing budgets, bigger lists, or a more established brand.
Email blasts may not be as popular as they once were, but sending out a mass email to your list can still produce excellent results, especially if you know how to make the emails more personalized and relevant to your audience.
With the steps listed above, you will be well on your way to putting together an effective email blast strategy that will allow you to boost your brand awareness, engage your audience, and make more sales in the process.