While email has been around long enough that it has achieved relative maturity as a marketing channel, with proven best practices and countless technologies and tools that allow marketers to build and test every aspect of email marketing campaigns, it’s time to rethink our approach.
As marketers are becoming better and better at the “best practices” of email marketing, consumers are becoming smarter, too.
That’s why as a financial advisor and relationship manager, you have a choice for your approach to email: You can spend countless hours and dollars trying to get your emails to stand out from the hundreds of high-quality, marketing-driven emails your clients receive daily, or you can take another approach.
How many emails does your personal inbox receive a day? Many of us get 100-plus emails daily. According to Email Marketing Reports, there are an estimated 247 billion emails sent every day. According to MarketingSherpa, 72% of American adults indicate a preference for companies to communicate with them via email – but we need to do it better.
Here are six tips for changing the way you use email in order to get through to consumers and truly strengthen client relationships.
1. Make It Personal
The first thing you have to rethink in order to effectively use email to build stronger relationships is newsletters. As email technology became more accessible, most advisors and agents were advised to build email newsletter programs, much like the direct-mailers of yesteryear. (In fact, it’s even cheaper than traditional mail, because it often costs nothing to add another email address to the distribution list.)
In contrast, emails that truly strengthen relationships feel more like handwritten cards than newsletters. Personalization starts with a name – always address the recipient – but really hinges on content. The most effective emails mention something personal, such as “nice to see you last week” or “this reminded me of your daughter,” and include relevant content to the recipient.
One way to think about it: Would you send the same email to a friend? If not, think twice.
Personalization isn’t just about fitting the content to the recipient; your recipient also wants to know that they’re receiving emails from a person. Sending emails from an individual’s email address – [email protected], for example – instead of from a generic company account is the first step. Email signatures are another great opportunity to make a note feel personal, so be sure to include a signature with your contact information.
2. Use Email to Leverage Content
Does your company have a blog or publish articles that promote your products and services? Sure, your clients may be seeing those through social media or other online channels, but you can get even more mileage from your content by leveraging it through email as well.
An effective email program expands the visibility and, therefore, effectiveness of the content you already have at your fingertips. They key is using your relationship and client knowledge to get the right content, to the right person, at the right time. For example, if you ran into a client at the grocery store and he mentioned how expensive food prices are becoming, you might want to use email to pass along an article on tips for saving money on everyday grocery essentials.