Ask any well-established company and they will tell you the same thing: the brand is the lifeblood of any business. It is the company’s identity, and the way customers distinguish one business from another.
As a budding entrepreneur, you may still be swimming in brand ideas: logo, color scheme, fonts, a couple of promotional materials. Or you may have built a name in your industry or niche over the years.
Wherever you are in your company journey, email marketing can help propel your brand in the right direction. It’s also the most cost-effective way to promote your business.
Wondering how it works? Throughout this post, we’ll show you how businesses are using email marketing to show off their brands, drive conversions, and make themselves even more memorable in the minds of consumers.
1.) Bring something new to the table.
Today’s customers are flooded with messages and notifications left and right, and the only way you can stand out is if you have something unique to tell them.
Don’t use email marketing to notify your mailing list about everything that happens in your company. Select the best messages, design them with your brand in mind, and identify the right timing to click ‘send’.
In the example below, Bose includes messaging newest innovation: sunglasses fitted with an audio feature. It’s an exciting product, especially for customers who are both fashion-forward and tech-savvy.
2.) Personalize your offers.
Unlike most forms of online advertising, email marketing has the ability to reach specific groups of customers with curated and data-driven content. Emails are also easier to access and don’t have the transitory nature of many web and social media ads.
Customers who receive highly-personalized offers in their inbox are more likely to remember your brand than customers who see generic newsletters week after week.
To start personalizing your emails, we’ve listed some important tips:
Call your customers by their name. Gone are the days of using “Dear customer” or “Hi there!” to start your emails. Subscribers notice if you use or don’t use their names, and will likely engage with emails that do.
Create buyer personas. These caricatures help you understand your customers better, so you can send them emails that they really need.
Use marketing automation. It’s the easiest way to segment your mailing lists and personalize emails for each customer segment.
Here’s how Spotify not only personalizes its emails but also the products that it features on the content:
3.) Stay true to your brand.
Design consistency always works, unless you’re doing a major branding overhaul that your customers already know.
Use your email marketing campaign to establish your brand’s key design and language principles. It also makes the job easier for your copywriters and designers, so they don’t need to start from scratch every single time.
When it comes to design, “less is more” has become a mantra for many companies. Check out how these two emails from Airbnb maintain the use of simple content, clear and descriptive text, and high-quality photographs:
4.) Come up with a campaign.
To further cement your brand’s design and language, think of a campaign that your competitors do not have. From being the only expert in a certain product to having a social justice bent, many companies are using campaigns around their brands.
However, it’s not that easy. You have to be loyal to your campaign, or your customers will not believe you.
For instance, you may be promoting yourself as an eco-friendly fruit store, but if your products are wrapped in layers of plastic packaging, your customers might call you out on being inconsistent.
See how shoe company Red Wing Work Boots welcomes its new subscribers. Their campaign? Products that result from “a century of experience.” It’s backed up by information they present in their email:
Here’s another campaign from KonMari, which is one of the most unique brands to come out recently. As you can see, you can use your welcome email to introduce your business and make a mark in your subscribers’ memory.
5.) Reward loyal customers.
Successful brands have huge followings, and a significant following comes from expert branding campaigns.
Once you have finally established your name and gained loyal subscribers, take it to the next level by introducing a VIP or rewards program. Don’t underestimate the value of customer referrals, and encourage your subscribers to pass your message on. If they do, don’t forget to reward them generously.
DAVIDsTEA leveraged customer data when they sent their anniversary email below. They thanked their loyal customers and rewarded them with discounts and free shipping for their next orders.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that brand building stops once you’ve set up a logo and a slogan. Brand building is a process that grows and evolves with your business, and major business decisions can introduce drastic changes to your overall branding identity.
Whatever scenario you are in, it pays to be generous with your customers and prioritize their overall experience. Use email marketing to show them that they are the reason you chose your brand and the campaigns that you launch around it. Should you decide to change your brand, it’s also because it’s what’s best for them.
Ash Salleh is the Director of SEO at Campaign Monitor, where he works closely with content, copy, and analytics teams to improve site-wide optimization. Prior to his time at Campaign Monitor, he also provided SEO and digital marketing expertise at Zappos and Axiata Digital.