Content marketing has become increasingly essential for any company to thrive online.
No one likes being talked at, and content marketing is the best way to talk to your target audience. With the right strategy, your visitors will feel less like they’re hearing a sales pitch and more like they’re being given something worthwhile.
Getting your audience’s attention through content marketing builds relationships, which makes visitors more likely to come back and convert. And you can make your strategy even more effective by integrating it into your email marketing campaigns.
Why email marketing matters to content marketing
Email marketing has produced the highest ROI of any marketing channel for the past ten years. In fact, for every $1 you spend on email marketing, you have the potential to earn $40. This is because email has a higher conversion rate per session than both search and social combined.
Some marketers have shifted their focus to newer channels like social media, but when it comes to returns, email still consistently outperforms other options.
Most adults with Internet access already use email, which means that it should be part of every marketing campaign you create.
There are 3x more email accounts than Facebook and Twitter combined. And on top of that, the messages you send via email are 45 times more likely to be seen than your content on social media platforms.
Email marketing also helps you build the relationship that content marketing sets out to achieve. Your subscribers have told you they want to hear what you have to say by opting into communication, unlike the majority of other channels. Plus, email marketing helps you remind your customers of what your company brings to the table, without being too pushy.
As a result, email marketing is widely considered one of the most effective online marketing tactics. So when you combine it with your content marketing strategy, you can be even more successful in showing potential customers what sets your company apart, and why they should choose you over your competitors.
How to use email marketing to improve your content marketing strategy
Using email marketing to promote your content marketing is a worthwhile strategy, but only if you know how to do it effectively. Follow this step-by-step guide to give you the insight you need to successfully drive traffic to your site and increase sales!
1. Determine which content you want to promote
Your list of subscribers is made up of people who have actively signed up to hear from you, meaning that they want more information about your company – but choosing the right content to send them is extremely important.
You have a small window of time to prove to your audience they made the right choice by opening your email, and this means that presenting the right content is crucial.
The content you choose should grab their attention and be relevant to their interests. No one will take time out of their day to read your content if it isn’t interesting to them.
One tip to keep in mind when selecting your content is to choose something your subscribers will feel they’re benefiting from. Your content should express to the subscriber the direct impact it will have, so they know why they should care about the content.
For example, Apartment Therapy presents their content in a way that suggests it will make subscribers’ lives easier if they choose to click and read.
That’s the goal. Each of articles listed are about topics that aim to make the readers lives simpler and more convenient, like, “4 Wardrobe Staples that Will Get You Through the ‘Springtime.”
The type of content you include needs to be engaging and allow customers to connect with your brand. And don’t be afraid to think outside the box in order to set yourself apart from competitors! You want your brand to be memorable for the content you present.
2. Include links in email newsletters
Once you’ve chosen the content you want to promote in your emails, you should link to pages on your site in a way that’s engaging for your subscribers.
You can link to your additional content using calls to action. Your calls to action should be specific, appealing, and strategic. Use language that can be easily understood and a design that is aesthetically pleasing to direct them to the pages you are trying to target.
Frame your content as helpful resources that will provide readers with more valuable information, and incorporate it throughout your emails in a way that guides them to take action.
Subscribers should be able to easily make the connection between the content in your email and the pages you link to. If they have to work hard to find the connection, you’ve most likely lost them.
Your links should be easy to identify, and make it clear what type of content they lead to.
For example, Everygirl drives traffic to their site by sending a weekly roundup of their most popular articles. They also use calls to action by including buttons that say, “Read More.”
By sending this content to their email subscribers, they make sure their target audience isn’t missing out on articles that may interest them, provide relevant material, and maximize their traffic for each page.
3. Make your links visually interesting
If you received an email with a list of text-only links, would you click on any of them?
I didn’t think so.
When creating your emails, focus on a few key pieces of content – or maybe even just one – that you want to drive traffic to, and make your links to them as interesting and eye-catching as possible.
Nobody is going to take the time to click on your link if it doesn’t grab their attention. Spend the time to write out a brief summary of what they can expect to learn by clicking each link, and make the links themselves visually interesting.
Campaign Monitor reported a 28% increase in click through rates when they changed text links into buttons. This means that improving your results could be as easy as adding a few simple buttons to your emails.
4. Tailor your emails to your subscribers
If people have signed up to receive your emails, they’re expecting you to deliver worthwhile content.
Your content can only succeed if it helps your potential customers, so make sure the content you promote is truly beneficial. They won’t read what you send them if it isn’t relevant to their needs or interests, and sending content that no one reads isn’t worth your time.
Most email marketing platforms allow for advanced targeting, meaning that you can tailor your emails based on the audience that will be receiving them. You can tailor your emails based on demographics like age and location, as well as lead status, previous site behavior, and more.
An example of this strategy would be BMI sending information to their subscribers, based on prior events they have attended and enjoyed. The email is specific to them and aligned with their interests.
This works to your advantage because the more you customize your emails, the more likely they’ll be to connect with their recipients.
5. Use A/B testing
Email marketing gives you the unique capability to measure what works to your advantage and what doesn’t.
You can measure open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates, among other metrics. And monitoring what your subscribers respond to positively can determine which strategies are worth replicating.
One way you might do A/B testing is by sending two variations of an email subject line or different wording for the call to action to your subscribers. After you’ve done so, you can monitor which version generates more clicks and then send that version to the rest of your subscribers.
6. Analyze your results
A/B testing isn’t the only way to find out what’s working for you.
Monitoring certain metrics allows you to see the impact your campaign has on subscribers. By monitoring metrics like open and clickthrough rates, you can track how effective certain content is at connecting with your audience. You can check results after each email campaign to determine which links and topics generated the most clicks.
Most email marketing platforms (including MyEmailFX) include tools that can track and analyze this information for you.
Once you have collected the information, you can determine which content is best for your next email campaign.
You can also use links to determine which information was successful in getting your customers’ attention. Once you know what captures their attention, you can incorporate it more for your next email newsletter. This enables you to constantly improve your campaigns.
Email marketing is a great way to determine which content resonates with your reader. It eliminates the guessing games and digs down to the successful content so you can get results faster! Still unsure about your email marketing strategy? Take this email marketing quiz to determine where you have room to improve!
7. Consider setting up an RSS email feed
Another way to drive traffic to your latest content is to let blog readers subscribe to your updates automatically.
Enabling RSS allows you to automatically send updates to your subscribers every time you publish a new blog post. This way, they can easily stay informed about your latest content – without any extra effort on your part.
This doesn’t have to be a complicated process, either – for example, MailChimp offers its users a straightforward way to set up a customizable RSS email feed.
By giving your readers this option, you also extend convenience and incentive. Rather than having to check your site on a regular basis to see if there’s anything new, they can simply check their inboxes and be sure that they aren’t missing a thing.
Do you use email as part of your content marketing strategy?
Do you have any helpful tips of your own about incorporating content marketing into your email campaigns? Comment below and share them with us!