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Email Marketing Basics: How to Develop an Email Marketing Strategy

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For those who are excited to launch an email marketing campaign, this is the best place to start. Starting an email marketing campaign takes more than just having a great idea.

Just like managing any other project, to ensure success, there are many questions to answer.

In this post, we're going to tackle what you need to address even before you start designing your launch email. Of course these tips are by no means law.

You certainly don't have to address each and every question or even stick to these general suggestions, but this ought to act as a guide to ensure that you're on the right track.

This exercise will be challenging, so go into it with an open mind.

Business

This topic is crucial to the foundation of your email marketing strategy. Without fundamentally understanding what your business is all about, how can you expect to convey that message? If you're unclear, then your customers are unclear.

1. What Is Your Business?

Or, what is your specialty? What drove you to start (or join!) this business? Essentially, this question defines where you want to go with your email marketing campaign based on what your business does.

Out of any question you're addressing to help you establish your email marketing campaign, this is the big one. This question is the most difficult to answer, but also acts as a guiding light through this process.

2. What Is the Identity of Your Business?

In essence, answering this question gets down to the core of your business, right to what values are important to you and your company. What you instill into your company is reflected in your products.

So, understanding what drives your business plays a huge part in how you develop your overall email marketing strategy.

Financials

3. What Is Your Marketing Budget?

Okay, talking about what is set aside to promote your business is never an easy conversation to have. Launching any marketing stratagem without addressing the fundamental issue of money will lead to immediate failure.

Beyond the initial physical investment (software or promotions), you must consider the investment in staffing (salary), whether you're going to outsource design or writing (contractors) and the overall time investment.

4. What Percentage of Your Marketing Budget Is For Email Marketing?

Let's assume that you already have a strong marketing budget. First, you have to identify what is your current breakdown.

What's the percentage you spend on print or TV? Are you going to increase your marketing budget to include your new email marketing? If you're unable to increase your budget, what are you going to cut back on?

Customers

5. Who Are Your Existing Customers?

Understanding who you already serve is a marketer's bread and butter. If you don't already know who your existing customers are, then it makes it all the more difficult to target who you'd like as new customers.

Identify who are not only your existing customers are but prioritize them. Who are your top customers? Who are your repeat customers?

6. Who Do You Want As Your New Customers?

After looking at who are your existing customers, use that data to see if you want to target the same sort of demographics or whether you see an untapped market. Try to develop a full picture of what these potential customers "look" like.

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