The #1 mistake I see businesses making is not building an email list.
Many businesses focus on Google AdWords or Facebook Ads, which cost money and don’t convert as well as an email list which you can start building for free.
A 2013 study by Monetate’s E-Commerce Quarterly showed that email marketing converted 4.5 times better than social media and 1.6 times better than search.
Email Has Greater Reach
Email also wins because of sheer numbers. There are over 3 times as many email accounts as there are Facebook and Twitter accounts combined. Social media is important — but it is not foundational.
Email is more likely to be seen than social media messages. The busiest people never get more than a few hundred emails per day (most people far less than this). A Facebook or Twitter timeline has thousands of messages vying for split-second attention before they disappear into the ether.
Email Is Personal
The Digital Marketing Association reports that email has the largest return on investment of any marketing platform, outperforming social by a large amount.
Email lists are also a great way to reach people on mobile. A Q4 2013 report by Moveable Ink shows that 65% of all email gets opened on a mobile device first.
Arguments Against Email Lists?
Truthfully, thee arguments I’ve heard against email lists are illogical. Some people avoid starting an email list because they don’t want to be seen a spammer. Fact: Email subscribers have to double opt-in — meaning they have to sign up and confirm they want to subscribe to your list. They can unsubscribe at any time, from any email. The fear of being seen as a spammer is in only your mind.
The other argument against starting an email list is that you don’t have time to manage one more thing. But if that’s truly the case, it’s a chicken and egg problem. You need to grow larger so you can offload some of your work by delegating. To do that, you’ll need to invest just a bit of time into marketing.
So to summarize: advertising and social media are good, but email lists are even better. Email lists convert at a higher rate, lead to more sales, establish a personal relationship with your subscribers, and you can start one for free.
In the next few posts, I’ll show you how to get started building your email list.
More from this series:
Part Two: Using MailChimp To Build An Email List.
Part Three: Plugins That Integrate MailChimp With WordPress.