Do you chicken out when it comes to your email marketing efforts?
If so, there’s no reason for you to be shy about it because you’re definitely not the only one. Email marketing for any business can be tricky to master. But, email marketing for B2B?
Whew. Well, that can just feel like you’re trying to thread a needle with a haystack.
Why do I say that? Because B2C best practices flood the world wide web, yet the same thing can’t be said about B2B. And, do you think copying and pasting those “rules” into your B2B email strategy will cut it?
Absolutely not. Niche audiences, and different messaging and objectives are involved. Yes, on top of the fact that you’re up against overflowing inboxes and a seriously low tolerance for unsolicited emails.
That doesn’t, however, give you a free pass to settle for a so-so strategy. In fact, email happens to bring in the most leads and revenue for marketers like yourself.
If you weren’t sold on the idea before, you certainly are now! So, to save you some time and give you the courage you need to tackle a dreaded to-do on your list, I’m dishing out the seven tips that will help you improve your B2B email marketing today.
You’ll be able to stand out from the competition and win over subscribers in no time!
Before we get to the good stuff, what types of emails will make up your marketing efforts?
Just as we need a change of scenery from time to time, your subscribers need a change of scenery when it comes to the types of emails you send their way. And, if you want to stay relevant and continue providing value, you better believe you should switch things up in your email marketing.
Take a look at the following list from Brafton.com on the types of emails you should be using at some point as a B2B marketer:
- Prospecting emails: Consider these to be like your cold calls, only they’re sent to your audience’s inbox versus their phone. A solid prospecting email is customized and not something to be sent to the masses. And, it’s complete with relevant information. Customization + relevance = trust. That trust can then fuel your relationships with your ideal customers and lead to a sale!
- Promotional emails: Chances are, you receive tons of these in your inbox on any given day. And, I bet they work (given they come from a brand you like, and offer up a special on something you need and want). These emails are your chance to push a specific product or service of yours into the spotlight, using a discount or trial offer to reel in those potential customers who are hanging out on the fence.
- Newsletters: You could send these out every week, two times a month, or even once every month. But, no matter the frequency you choose, you need to ensure the content not only interests your audience, but also speaks directly to them and their current wants, needs, and potential headaches.
- Lead nurturing emails: These are also known as trigger campaigns, which are generated from a specific action on the subscriber’s end. For example, they might’ve exchanged their email address for something in return—let’s say a free eBook on a relevant topic. From there, you guide them through the funnel with your email content, with the hopes of closing them as a customer.
- Drip campaigns: These are automated email campaigns that are sent out based on the recipient’s action—or, otherwise, lack thereof. For example, a reader could receive an email containing a link to an eBook. Whether or not he or she clicks on the call to action button determines what email he or she will receive next, and so on and so forth.
So, now that you know all about the types of emails you should be using as part of your B2B marketing, it’s time to dish out those seven tips I mentioned earlier to help you revive your current efforts!
7 Important Tips You Need to Revive Your B2B Email Marketing
1. Laser in on your subject line.
Think about when you’re hurriedly scrolling through your inbox (with no end in sight might I add) to see if anything “important” has come your way. All of a sudden, a specific subject line captures your attention. You’re curious, so you click on the message and continue to read what the sender has to say.
Well, that subject line sure did its job, wouldn’t you agree?
Therefore, you need to make sure your email’s subject line does the same thing— creatively captures the recipient’s attention, without revealing too much information!
But, what all goes into the creation of a creative and captivating subject line? You must do any (and possibly all) of the following:
- Invoke a sense of urgency—hello, FOMO (fear of missing out) is real. Tell them they’ll be missing out if they don’t open to see what it is you have to say!
- Connect with the recipient—and, by connect, I mean that you need to make them feel as if you’ve read their mind. You know all about their current headache, need, or want, and you’re here to deliver what they’ve been searching long and hard for.
- Speak to a pain point of theirs—rub some salt in their wound and bring up something that’s been causing them some frustration. You can do this by using one of my favorite methods—the Problem-Agitate-Solve method.
- Drop some numbers—for some reason, it just captures their eye. Makes them slow their scroll. And, click to see what all the commotion is about.
And, please, whatever you do, keep your subject line brief. MailChimp.com elaborates on this by saying, “For most users, there is no statistical link between subject line length and open rate. But for subscribers reading your campaigns on mobile devices, shorter may be better.”
To find out what works best for your audience, we recommend looking up the top email clients for your list, and then A/B test subject lines of different lengths. From our experience, 50 characters seem to be the ideal length. Otherwise, the rest of your message will be axed.
2. Cut to the chase with your message.
Your B2B customers are busy enough as it is. That said, the last thing they want to read is what seems like a never-ending wall of text that could’ve been wrapped up into a few short paragraphs.
So, instead, just go ahead and cut to the chase with your message. When you cut all the fluff and filler, and make your email easy to digest (think bolded text for the skimmers out there, bulleted lists, etc.), your chances of getting the response you’ve envisioned will only continue to increase. Get ready to say hello to more clicks on that stand-out call to action of yours!
3. Don’t divert their attention with the design.
Ahh. Email design. If you’re no creative, it’s easy to take a shot in the dark and try tossing a bunch of randomness into your message—background and text colors, images, and so on. But, when that happens, you just end up diluting what it is you have to say to your people.
Therefore, I advise you to follow the KISS method—Keep It Simple, Stupid. Don’t try to be all flashy and in their face. Instead, use images sparingly (and, please, be sure they actually relate to your content), incorporate line breaks for white space, and if you’re going to use color, just be sure it’s in your call to action button.
Check out the example below, which features an email from a brand called Lumi—offering branded packaging for everyone from small Etsy shops to huge e-commerce companies.
See how easy on the eyes the design is? Yes, it’s simple. But, the images, bolded text, and line breaks make the content feel like a breeze to get through.
4. Be persistent in your segmentation efforts.
Just like how you shouldn’t write your sales copy with everyone in mind, your emails shouldn’t serve up a generic message to blanket all of your subscribers. After all, people only read what’s relevant to them, and on a topic they care about. Not to mention, your people are always at different stages of the funnel.
What does that mean for you? You need to be nothing but persistent in your audience segmentation efforts. It’s all about breaking apart your target customers based on specific criteria. Why? Because it helps you deliver tailored, personal sales messages to each of your audience segments.
The term “audience segmentation,” however, may sound pretty daunting. And, that’s why I wrote just the post for you on the four segmentation strategies that will help you strike sales gold. Check it out as soon as you’re done reading here!
5. Incentivize your audience with valuable content.
When you tell more versus sell more, you capture the interest of your B2B recipients. And, what exactly do I mean by “tell” more? You need to dish out valuable content and insight that aligns with where your subscribers are in the funnel. Hence, another good reason for you to segment your audience!
If you’re in need of some content ideas you can create to connect with your people at each step of the funnel, you’ll want to add this blog post to your reading list.
6. Keep a close eye on your results (& learn from them).
Yes, you can think you have a kick-ass B2B email marketing strategy. But, you are not your customer. I can’t reiterate that enough! For that reason alone, you need to keep a close watch on your email metrics as soon as you send a message out to your list.
So, what happens if you’re noticing a meager open rate? Don’t waste any time evaluating your audience selection and subject lines. If, on the other hand, your click-through rate is low, yet your open rate is okay, evaluate your content and readability. Then, adjust as needed, and continue learning and bettering your campaigns as you go.
7. Stay relevant.
Ideally, you want your audience to look forward to your emails versus think, “Oh no, not another one” and hit the dreaded Delete button (yes, even if they signed up for your list!).
But, it requires some work on your end to get to that point. You’ll need to stay disciplined and only provide content your subscribers want. Also, don’t fall into a routine of sending out your emails and drop off the face of the email earth without any notice. (If this does happen to you, because, well, life happens, check out “The List You Let Go” Email Sequence. You’ll fall back into the arms and inboxes of your people in no time!) Keep that momentum going!
Your B2B marketing efforts are incomplete without email marketing campaigns. These campaigns, however, require quite a bit more effort than batching and blasting a bunch of random mumbo-jumbo to your list. Implement these tips shared here today, and you’ll be well on your way to standing out from the competition and winning over your subscribers in a flash!
And, if you want a quick solution to give your email content the boost it needs to awaken sleepy readers from their annoyingly cramped inboxes and retain their attention, I have just the thing for you—a free copy of “The Ultimate Guide on How to Include Video in Your Email.” All you need to do is enter your email address in the box on the right side of the screen, and you’ll get it right away!
Have a question on today’s topic or a tip we missed sharing? Drop us a note in the comments section below. I’d love to hear from you!