Too many small businesses have failed to unleash the power of email marketing as a tool for direct selling, relying mostly instead on their websites or Facebook fan page. But here’s one very good reason why email marketing for small businesses makes such good sense – emails are accessed by your customers every day (well almost). Your message sits in their inbox, glaring at them waiting to be opened. It’s a great opportunity for you to directly connect with your customers. Making your email communication fun and relevant will compel your prospects to read your email and perhaps even await the next in the series. It’s a fantastic way for a call-to-action and engaging your customers.
Ben Settle an email marketing aficionado who has been working on direct response campaigns for more than 10 years gives us an interesting take – “An email is internet text version of talk radio. People tune in every single day to hear that person as he/she reveals things about themselves and just get really personal with their audience. That’s kind of how it is with email. It’s very intimate. Do it right and people get to know you like they know their favorite radio talk show host”!
And here’s the good news – gone are the days of boring, bulk templates from email marketing platforms with a limited range of template-specific images per season or occasion. Small business owners without any design experience or HTML knowledge can now design their own custom email templates by combining elements from the company website and adding logos and other images. This is done with the help of custom email template creation software to maximize the results of the campaign. It also means that you don’t have to hire a graphic designer to create your custom template, thus saving your business some much-needed revenue. Importantly, visual branding that links up your advertising, website and email communications creates a consistent persona. This, in turn, can only improve top-of-mind recall by your customers and result in more sales.
VerticalResponse, which offers a suite of do-it-yourself marketing solutions for small businesses, has recently launched InstaEmail Template Machine. It allows users to create an email template that matches their website, by importing images, logos and color schemes.
As per Janine Popick, VerticalResponse CEO “Our InstaEmail app significantly simplifies the process and enables small businesses to create a great-looking, custom template quickly and easily.”
Once you have designed your template you can choose whether you want to save it to your Vertical Response account, or download it as a zip file, or copy the code to your email campaign program.While they are not the first company to do this, the InstaEmail Template Machine provides free access to more than 700 pre-designed email templates.
MailChimp and Constant Contact also have an extensive library of email templates as part of their overall email marketing services. Constant Contact gives you free access for a limited time only (2 months) and with Mail Chimp the free service is restricted to 2000 subscribers. Both Mail Chimp and Constant Contact have paid monthly plans costing as little as $10 to $15 a month.
Thanks to these easy- to- use email template design solutions, businesses with small budgets can now themselves create professional email campaigns and newsletters that are completely in sync with the rest of their visual branding.