How to use email marketing to grow sales

Effective email marketers use email as the medium to: 1) Generate new leads and turn potential buyers into buyers, and to 2) Keep existing buyers engaged so they are more likely to buy in future.

If you are having trouble doing either of these things you could be using tactics to market your products or services using email that are ineffective and in some cases damaging to your brand.

How to use email marketing to increase sales

To find out if what you are doing is an effective use of email marketing to grow sales, it’s important to decipher if you fall into one of two categories. Are you an email blaster? Or an email marketer?

It’s crucial you know the difference.  Bottom line is: Email marketers use email to develop connections and brand affinity and email blasters turn people off in the hopes of landing a few sales. They use brute force to blast their message.  Read these definitions to identify where you stand:

Definition of an email blaster: An email blaster uses email to try to get people to buy their stuff. They don’t consider that there are different groups of people with different needs on their list of contacts. The goal of an email blaster is to sell their stuff to whoever will buy it.  They send emails with no strategy and no direction.  Their email content is all about them. And they send email to anyone that they have an address for.

Definition of an email marketer: An email marketer creates a long-term sales strategy that has a specific end goal. They send emails to various groups of people.  The emails deliver valuable content that speaks to what the people want.  They build desire, trust, and loyalty. They ask people to buy when appropriate.  Their email content is all about their people and shares expertise that is of interest to them.

If you find yourself in the email blaster camp, don’t feel bad, that is where most people find themselves. Why? Email marketing is still a relatively new form of marketing. At least it is evolving. There are only a handful of highly effective email marketers. But the club is growing, thankfully. Here are five things they do to use email marketing to increase sales.

How to use email marketing to grow sales

1: Segment your list of contacts. Categorize your contacts based on what you want to send them.  You want to think about speaking to the group versus sending them stuff they don’t care about. Then need to create different email funnels for each group because the content you are sending them will (and should) be different.

 2: Establish a long-term email marketing strategy.  To do this you need to decide what the the end goal, is. This is the action you are driving your contacts towards. It could be different for each email funnel you create.  However, usually the end goal is to have the contact make a purchase. Or take a specific action that forwards your business.

3: Develop various email funnels and map them out.  Once you decide what the end goal for each funnel is you can work backwards to design a system that drives people to that end goal.  For example, if the end goal is getting a potential buyer to buy, your entire email strategy should be focused on sending them emails that primes them for that action. You want to build trust and delivery value during this process.

4: Create valuable emails. Emails should be used  to deliver valuable content to your contacts on a regular basis. Get them used to receiving emails from you. Make the emails good so they want to open them.  A good way to do this is to give stuff away.

5: Track your performance. Effective email marketers are constantly tracking their open rates and the actions of their subscribers and tweaking their strategy. If emails aren’t getting opened you need to make changes.

Kay Svela

Kay Svela

VP Business Development at Cyberwalker Digital LLC
Kay is the VP Business Development at Cyberwalker Digital and author of three books: Read This Before You Kill Yourself, Super You, and Digital Marketing Secrets Revealed. She is based in Tampa, Florida. Email her at kay@cyberwalker.com