Odds are, we don't need to convince you to get on board with email marketing: A whopping 93% of B2B marketers use email to distribute content, according to HubSpot. And it's no wonder: HubSpot also found that email marketing generates an average of $38 for $1 spent, which makes for an unmatched ROI.
That said, ROIs that high are accessible only to marketers who really get the most out of their email marketing platforms and email marketing strategy. And if your strategy consists of just sending newsletters—no matter how frequently—you're probably not seeing such astronomical returns.
What Else Email Is Good For
Getting the most bang for your email marketing buck requires a little creativity. So think outside the newsletter, and try out these 14 email marketing tactics:
1. Remarketing. If and when a potential customer visits your site and drops off before converting, you can use email marketing to remarket to them. Remarketing is the act of marketing to the same prospect multiple times. Send these would-be customers a strategic email to follow up on their visit. Getting onto their screen with a smart email will remind them of your brand and likely get them back onto your site, perhaps at a time that's more convenient for them to convert.
2. Cart abandonment. Another, more specific form of remarketing is the cart-abandonment follow-up. Email marketing is an extremely useful way to contact customers who were one click away from converting. Follow up with customers who abandoned their cart at the last moment, and remind them why they had filled their cart in the first place.
3. Surveys. Sending surveys through your email marketing platform is a means to multiple ends. Of course, you'll gain valuable feedback from customers and potential customers. You'll also get your business in front of the eyes of key demographics—and do so in a way that signals your brand cares about what they want and need.
4. Event invites. Throw a party! Whether it's for a new location, a business anniversary, a holiday, or a new product launch, hosting an event is a valuable way to engage customers. Look to your subscribers list for a probable guest list of engaged customers, and send them an evite.
5. Almost-out-of-stock alerts. Do you have a product that's flying off the shelves? Or are appointments filling up for a specific season? Let your customers know with a cleverly worded email alert. Odds are, they'll be glad to know before the product or service in question is no longer available.
6. New-shipment notifications. Similarly, customers will be excited to know about a new product or service you're offering. Have you launched an update to your newest SaaS? Are you offering a new bundle of your products? Send your subscribers an update to let them know.
7. Customer anniversaries. Show your customers that your business cares: Send them a thank-you note on the anniversary of the day they first became a customer. Thank them for their business with a customized note. Consider including an anniversary coupon as a more concrete gesture of your appreciation: Even the most loyal customers love a deal.
8. Holidays. Most brands these days send holiday emails to their subscribers, so make sure your holiday email marketing stands out. Personalize your messages, throw in a picture of your team, and be sure to be inclusive to all communities. Again, throwing in a holiday coupon or even a free-shipping offer will make your customers feel the love even more.
9. Seasonal switches. Do shifts occur with your business from season to season? Let your subscribers know. If you have different hours during summer than you do during fall, send out an email to notify your subscribers. If you have a seasonal menu, send that out, too. You'll not only remind them of your existence but also provide valuable information.
10. Referral programs. Offer referral discounts to your customers—and also to the people the new customers successfully refer. Make it easy for customers to refer their friends to your business: Provide a pop-up in which they can enter emails and names of friends they think might be interested in your business, and send a templated email to each of those referrals. Address the outreach email as if from the referrer, and word it in a casual, friendly tone.
11. Drip campaigns. If your business has a funnel of any kind, you should absolutely use your email marketing platform for drip campaigns. Drip campaigns are longer-term email marketing campaigns that nurture users through the funnel. Based on where a given subscriber is in your funnel, you can send them customized emails that gently encourage them to take the next step toward converting.
12. Sweepstakes. Hosting a sweepstakes is an excellent email marketing tactic. Sweepstakes emails have sky-high open rates: A subject line offering the possibility of winning something free can really get subscribers to click through to your promotional email. Moreover, you can capture a lot of emails by offering sweepstakes: Ask contestants to provide their email to register for the sweepstakes, and you'll have a whole new host of subscribers.
13. Early-access offers. Another way to get new subscribers to your email marketing campaigns is to provide early access to deals, events, and new offerings through email invitations. Subscribers old and new will be excited to get exclusive sneak peeks and presales from your business.
14. Customer testimonials. Do you have a slew of happy customers who are willing to speak on your behalf? Interview them and write it all down. Sending on the words of your happy customers will help establish trust with subscribers who haven't converted yet, as well as help remind existing customers of your business.
Email Marketing Beyond Newsletters: Takeaways
Long story short, if you're just using your email marketing platform to send out only newsletters, you're not getting the best return possible. High ROI comes only from optimizing your email marketing strategy. Get creative with your email marketing, and find the perfect balance of tactics for your business by testing these 14 ways to reach your customers through email.