The world of digital marketing is vast and ever changing. If you only have the resources for one type of effort, let me suggest an email newsletter. Email is the most effective marketing channel and an e-newsletter is a good place to start for a number of reasons.
An e-newsletter allows you to keep in regular contact with current and potential customers, as well as folks who have opted in to hearing from you. E-newsletters can include multiple messages, including industry news, business news, and product offers, all in one place. Email guarantees reach in a way that social no longer does; Facebook, and other social platforms increasingly require an ad spend for your followers to see your messages. Email just requires a witty subject line and an email address you probably already have. With the right email platform, you can learn more about your customers than ever before, just based on how your email performs.
Let’s discuss that last point a bit more in depth. Let’s say your laboratory creates an e-newsletter with links to a registration page for a CE event that you are offering next month, an implant torque specification guide, and a promotion for a fixed product.
With the right email tool, you can see which of your email recipients opened your email, registered to attend your event, checked out the torque guide, and clicked in to your promotion. Then if for some reason this dentist didn’t take advantage of the offer, your sales team can follow up. You’ve eliminated the cold call and still provided your customer with valuable information.
On that note, you may be wondering how to make your e-newsletter engaging, effective, and worthwhile for your business and customers.
• Follow the 80/20 or 90/10 rule. Try to keep 80 to 90% of the content educational or informational. Industry news, updates about turn times, links to Rx forms, or technical guides are all the types of content that position you as a resource to a dentist, not just a salesman. Always include a promotion, but don’t overdo it.
• Keep copy short, with links to the appropriate resources. People don’t read long copy blocks in email, and pushing them to click out allows you to track what your customers are reading or not reading.
• Create clever, interesting subject lines. Even if customers and subscribers have signed up for your email, there’s no guarantee that on a busy day they will open it. Get creative with your subject lines to increase the likelihood that your messages are opened.
• Make unsubscribing easy. You don’t want to see subscribers go, but making it difficult to unsubscribe may leave a bad taste in their mouth about your business overall.
E-newsletters allow you to track, over time, what topics are of interest to your customers, what promotions they use, and what content you can provide to them to ensure you remain their trusted laboratory.
Terry Fine is President of AMG Creative in Fort Collins, Colorado.