Internet communication has become so popular nowadays that it seems as if the more traditional forms of correspondence like the written letter are in danger of dying out. Needless to say, there will always be a place in society for the postal system but emailing is a very quick and convenient way of communicating whether it is for business or personal reasons. Given that email is such a handy form of communication it is not surprising that marketing by email has become a viable avenue for marketers to pursue.
What is more, people are so resistant to the plethora of so-called ‘junk’ mail they receive in their post boxes nowadays that most of it goes straight into the waste paper bin which is not good news for companies trying to advertise their products. Marketing by email, along with cellphone text-messaging, web display ads like banners and pop-ups, and websites that consumers are able to interact with, is a direct form of advertising just like the junk mail mentioned above. Unfortunately, because many forms of direct e-advertising are unsolicited they are in danger of falling into the category of spam and filtered out.
On the flip side, a direct advertising method like marketing by email has the advantage of being a form of communication that can be disseminated quickly and in bulk with the potential of reaching a very wide audience. Moreover, the marketer is able to measure how effective an email advertisement is by looking at the response rate, in other words, how many people responded to the email whereas with traditional methods of advertising like print ads it is a lot more difficult to determine the consumer response. With benefits such as this it is not surprising that marketers do not want their email marketing messages to be marked as spam.
One way to overcome the issues associated with unsolicited marketing by email being rejected as spam is to operate on a consensual basis. This is when the marketer asks for permission from the recipient to send them emails. That being said, the marketer does not simply want the consumer to agree to receive marketing by email but to actually read and respond to it, preferably with a purchase.
The email newsletter is one way of getting and keeping the attention of an email marketing recipient but there is a particular way to go about using an email newsletter for direct marketing purposes. The underlying concept of the newsletter, regardless of its format, is to impart not only news but lasting information as well. Now, this may sound like a contradiction in terms because news by its very nature tends to be current and implies a time restriction of some sort, especially when the news relates to advertising promotions. The concept of ‘lasting information’, on the other hand, suggests that the data needs to be valid for an indefinite period of time.
While it is very easy to adopt the same ‘selling’ stance in an email newsletter that is used in other forms of email marketing, the temptation to do so should be resisted in favour of imparting useful and lasting information as the primary aim of the email marketing newsletter is to build a relationship with a consumer by holding their interest as opposed to the blatant ‘push’ mentality of direct sales.