Email and social media marketing are powerful tools as separate channels, but when you use an integrated marketing strategy that brings them together, they act as force multipliers. Social media is a potent pull for your customers, encouraging them to enter a conversation with you and establish a closer business relationship. Email acts as a gentle push for prospects, nudging them into the sales funnel. With a combined push and pull effect, you amplify your message tremendously and improve your ability to reach current and new customers.
Cross-pollinating each customer base by making access to other channels easy for your prospects will pay off in more traffic, greater buzz and higher conversion rates.
1. Add Social Media Icons to Email
Social media channels welcome the increased traffic that email generates, so their designers make it simple to embed buttons in targeted email campaigns and newsletters. By including select social media icons as part of your email communication, you give customers the chance to see a different facet of your business and interact with you in new ways. Make it easy for readers to visit your Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn pages, and you'll increase overall click-through rates.
Be selective when adding buttons and focus on your top social media channels. Too many buttons can give readers analysis paralysis. With more than four or five choices, readers may tune out the wall of buttons and decide not to click one because they can't decide which to choose.
2. Build Your Email List With Subscriptions
If your newsletters and emails feature social media buttons, your social media channels should feed back into your email list. Subscriptions are an excellent way to convert casual Twitter and Facebook followers into high-value clients. When your social media readers subscribe, you gain valuable insight into who they are and what interests them most. Deliver your new subscriber to a preference page where they can select what types of content or products and services they are most interested in receiving.
3. Give Them Reasons to Participate
Incentives for subscriptions, Facebook "likes" and retweets are perennially popular for a reason: They work! Offering a free e-book or access to a members-only portion of your site can be a potent incentive for readers to participate fully in both your email campaigns and your social media conversations. Incentives for first-time subscribers are valuable customer acquisition tools, but they can also enhance your customer retention. Loyalty programs, coupons, birthday and first order date anniversary gifts for frequent and long-term customers will win you legions of fans.
4. Make Sharing Easy
Ease of use is a huge factor in whether your customers will share reviews, forward your emails and otherwise spread the word about your organization. Give your readers easy-to-find links or buttons to share your offer. As part of a lead generation strategy, encouraging happy clients to tell others about how great their experiences with you have been works wonders. People still rely on word of mouth to form opinions, so make it simple for your best customers to share with colleagues, friends and family.
Greg Grdodian is partner at Pearl River, NY-based integrated marketing solutions provider Reach Marketing. Reach him at Greg.email@example.com.