Ok, so I’m pretty sure most of the folks reading this aren’t naive enough to think that email marketing is going away anytime soon, but it is always good to remember that it’s a weapon we have in our holsters that we sometimes forget to use. In my opinion there are still several reasons that we should look to email marketing to boost SEO results and to engage customers on a whole new level. For the sake of organization I’ve condensed my email evangelism down into five little reasons that I think it’s killer. Read onward…
1. Email has the largest online presence
According to a study done by eMarketer in October 2010 email was far and away the number one preferred way for people to share content online. The survey showed that 86% of internet users used email as a regular way of sharing. The second ranked service was Facebook with 49%. Following Facebook, other services such as Twitter, Google Buzz, and more came in with dramatically lower numbers. While this is not a prediction of future trends in terms of sharing, it does provide a good snapshot of where internet users are still getting the bulk of their shared information.
2. Email is the most direct route to the online consumer
Email is a way to get in direct contact with your consumers. Having a customer’s personal email address allows you to send them specifically tailored messages/offers as opposed to the typical social media marketing route, which is to blast it out and see if people pick up on it. While there is certainly a place for these methods, there are times when you’re going to want to get a message to the consumer directly with assurance that they will receive it.
3. Email can bump up your SEO goals
Email can play a vital role in your SEO strategy. Sure emails themselves don’t change your rankings one iota, but an email blast can be used to promote a new white paper or blog on your website. Placing quality links in an email to consumers with an incentive to click on them will likely bring them to your site or whatever you’re promoting. Things such as newsletter emails can be useful in this area as well as long as they link out to the articles on your site (or the site you’re promoting). The traffic that can be generated through an email campaign is certainly not to be ignored.
4. Email guarantees an exposure unlike most social media
An email is guaranteed to land in the inbox of a valid email address. This is obvious, but it is something of incredible value. You are guaranteed to get some exposure. Even if they don’t open the email, they see the subject/sent from heading and you get placed in their mind. Using things like Twitter and Facebook are great and can also provide quality contact between the business and consumer, but it’s easy to miss a Tweet or for something not to show up in a Facebook news feed. The message can be missed like this.
5. Email is capable of rich content
Finally, email is capable of not only delivering information directly to the consumer, but providing them with rich, quality, visually pleasing content. I know there are certain emails that I always look at from companies because I know it is going to provide me with relevant content and quality images of their products. This is more info that I can get from a Tweet from them or a Facebook post. Really it is the most information I will get short of visiting their website directly, and, as discussed previously, it should entice me to follow up to the website anyway.
While I know no one here thought email was actually completely dead, I hope these five reasons serve as a brief reminder as to how email can still bump up our SEO goals. It really is indispensable as an avenue to push out your content, message, and deals to your interested consumers. It should and probably will always remain a valued tool on our SEO utility belts.