6 min read
B2B email marketing has tremendous potential to drive sales, revenue, and growth.
Any company serious about digital marketing, particularly inbound marketing, should make lots of time for B2B email marketing. It is fast, efficient, and effective. With some of the lowest overhead of any digital marketing campaign, it can produce ROI of 5X or even more.
Of course, there’s a caveat: it has lots of moving parts.
If your email marketing is intrusive, buggy, or tone deaf, it will most likely have the opposite of the effect you intended. That, in turn, will leave you running on a treadmill as you struggle to grow your audience. In the worst case scenario, you can end up going nowhere fast.
So, there is a lot at stake with B2B email marketing – but it can be highly lucrative and even fun.
10 Tips For A Successful B2B Email Marketing Campaign
1. Agonize Over Your Subject Lines
Your subject line may be the most important part of any email. Why? Quite simply, it’s the part that determines whether or not the rest gets read. Every subject line needs to be crafted to produce the intended result by making a clear, worthwhile promise to readers. Then, the email itself must acknowledge and deliver on that promise, or else readers will get frustrated.
2. Keep Your Message Clear and Brief
Remember: On the Web, people skim – they don’t read. This is especially true if they just got your email on their smartphone and need to fumble around with tiny controls and squint on a small display. Measure your whole email in sentences, not paragraphs, and definitely not pages! Your prospects will thank you in the form of more prompt action and a far higher conversion rate.
3. Eliminate All Messaging Distractions
Like a landing page, each message should have a single conversion action the reader is driven to. If you add other, less valuable actions, you increase distraction and reduce attention ratio, the ability of the reader to zoom in on the most important outcome. This is especially important in B2B email marketing, where most products are high ticket, long-term solutions.
4. Relentlessly Segment Your Customers
Customer segmentation is where the rubber meets the road on your knowledge about your own customers. Before you even think about a campaign, make sure you know enough about your leads and their use cases to send them only relevant, timely messages. Otherwise, you may get some interest, but you are bound to alienate those who can’t use your content.
5. Craft Your Email’s Content, Too
Once you’re done planning, optimizing, analyzing, and hammering out the perfect subject line, it’s all too easy for the actual content of your email to become an afterthought. Just as with any page on your site or piece of your marketing collateral, empower your email with actionable language. If readers don’t have a good call-to-action, they’ll simply forget to take the next step.
6. Have Spot-On Landing Pages
So, your leads are intrigued by your email. Where are they going now? In rare cases, they may be headed to video content or a social media page. For the most part, though, you should be driving email traffic to a customized landing page 100% aligned with your campaign’s offer. A simple, straightforward form on an optimized landing page can help you capture vital data.
7. Optimize for Mobile Experience
Smartphones aren’t just for teens anymore. These days, executives at all levels are using them – along with tablets, laptops, and all the newest gear. More B2B decision-makers are using their commutes and other downtime to do online research, too. With that in mind, your site needs to be fully responsive: Adjusting on the fly to offer clarity and convenience for mobile users.
8. Track All Your Relevant Metrics
Once the architecture of your campaign is put together, be sure it is connected to your analytics suite. Your solutions should cover both your email analytics – like open rates and clickthrough – as well as activity on associated landing pages. This is especially helpful for optimizing your campaigns over the weeks and months, because you can see if a disconnect is taking place.
9. Follow Up with Warm Prospects
If you’re doing everything you can on tracking, then you’ll also have the opportunity to keep the ball rolling with prospects who don’t quite take action. Remarketing can help you remind these folks of the opportunity they left behind when they navigated away from your landing page. You also have the opportunity to respond to them directly by email – don’t pass it up.
10. Take Time for Lessons Learned
No matter if you win, lose, or draw, your B2B email marketing campaign is a great way to build your chops for the future. What did you do right? What can you do better? Often, giving things a try – and being unafraid to fail – is the best way to build knowledge capital in your team. It only works, however, if you take time to really evaluate, draw the right lessons, and share them.
B2B Email Lets You Exercise All the Best Elements of Inbound Marketing
Let’s face it: Your prospects are savvy business leaders. They know your campaign isn’t made up of fresh email messages directly from you to them every single day. If they believed that, they wouldn’t be in business (they’d already have bought that bridge in New York.)
And yet, good email marketing builds real rapport anyway. How is that?
It’s simple. At every step in your campaign, you have the opportunity to take the time and make the effort to build an experience that’s all about your would-be customer. When you keep their needs, pains, and interests at the center, you can generate real value – and real trust.
That’s the heart of inbound marketing. It combines the natural need of your business to scale up with the undeniable human need for authentic, genuine, one-to-one communication. And that, in turn, is the beating heart of what makes email marketing so valuable, in both B2B and B2C.
In the B2B sector in particular, your sales team will need to be on high alert to capture the opportunity from your email marketing campaign. They will bring the customer relationship to the next level. But your campaign can empower them by inspiring prospects to lower their guard and open their ears to the unique value you have to offer them – and that’s no small feat.
If you’ve followed all the steps and still feel like your campaign isn’t connecting, it’s time to back up and take the 50,000-foot view. Ask yourself: What value is the prospect getting from this? Is it relevant, timely, useful, helpful, and interesting for them?
A well-orchestrated B2B email campaign is second to none in building the foundation for prospects to become customers. Once the learning curve is mastered, it’s one of the easiest and most lucrative ways to enhance any corporate initiative.
Start with our ten tips and you could be on the road to email marketing success faster than anyone on your team thought possible.
Published on October 2, 2017