How successful is tech B2B e-mail marketing today in the context of its competitor lead nurturing tools?
In today’s multi-dimensional digital technical B2B media landscape, filled with rafts of technical content and information, the fight for your customer‘s attention has never been more challenging. Armed with many tactics –from IP targeting and PPC to programmatic ad buying and social media, B2B marketers now have multiple, trackable means of reaching their B2B buyer helping to ensure their marketing initiatives are a success.
But one tactic, that has been around for “a while” and has proven to be incredibly successful in the past, is email marketing. With so many new tactics available to help us nurture our leads and customers, do you ever consider how successful is B2B e-mail marketing today in the context of its competitor tools? New research answers the question:
- Email receives 30 times return on investment on average - DMA Insight: Marketer Email tracking study 2017
- 95% of respondents rated it as 'important' or 'very important' to their organisation - DMA Insight: Marketer Email tracking study 2017
- 77% of B2B marketers are using email marketing as a tactic for content marketing - CMI and Marketing Profs: B2B Content Marketing 2018 benchmarks
Source: CMI and Marketing Profs: B2B Content Marketing 2018
Don’t treat email as an afterthought
Email is probably one of the only mediums where potential buyers have actually given you permission and said “market to me”. Yet, somehow, B2B marketers still continue sending out emails pushing their service offerings –products, events etc.
If this is the only content that is being featured on your emails - it’s no wonder your email marketing initiatives are not getting the results you had hoped.
When executed properly, email marketing is one of the most effective ways to:
- Interact with both customers and prospects
- Remember they are a technical audience with huge responsibilities who are looking for answers and solutions to technical issues
- Promote your blogs and whitepapers, share your case studies, videos
- Build relationships
- Upsell customers or drive repeat business
Ensure email marketing success
Email marketing has many benefits but in order to maximise these benefits, B2B marketers must keep the format of their email marketing simple.
To remain uncomplicated and grab attention, B2B marketing emails need to contain the following:
- 25 lines of text or less
- Key content on top (above the scroll)
- 3 links or less
- One column only
And it goes without saying that emails MUST be mobile friendly since email open rates from mobile devices have grown by 180% in three years.
Additionally, here are a few tips to make sure your email marketing is and remains effective:
- Use Buyer Personas – as with any piece of content you produce, your content featured on your emails must be written for specific personas. Think about their pain points (these will vary from technology to technology) and how you can help answer them. These will help define your segments as well.
- Segment your audiences – there are several ways you can do this. The key here is to make sure that each one of your prospects is receiving messages that resonated with them, instead of general messaging going out to a mass audience.
The Email Marketing Industry Census 2017, by Econsultancy in association with Adestra, shows that segmentation (80%) remains the highest priority and technique used in email marketing campaigns in 2017.
Source: Econsultancy - Email Marketing Industry Census 2017
- Always test your emails – test subject lines, your hero content etc. Just don’t do it all at the same time. Testing will help you fine-tune your email program, and deliver the right messages to the right personas.
- Include social sharing - this makes it easier for your user to share content on their social platforms.
- Finally, don’t get too promotional – remember engineers and technology experts want helpful information and want to be kept up to date with the latest trends/practices in your industry. Don’t push your products at every opportunity – give them the content they want, and you’ll see increased engagement.
Final thoughts from a Tech B2B marketer
Even though your next big potential customer has given you permission to market to them, if you don’t get your content, design and style right, your emails will continue to be ignored and you will miss a massive marketing opportunity.
Don’t lose them!
And most importantly, make sure you are GDPR compliant. Tips on how to best overcome GDPR and comply with the new regulations can be found here.
Sylvia Laws, Managing Director, Technical Associates Group (TAG)