No eCommerce? Email Marketing Still Works!

I was in the process of planning a post discussing email marketing for companies who do not sell their products or services on the web. I had read a couple articles and posts in the last month which focused on email marketing as a tool only to drive eCommerce transactions. Sure, emails are great for that, but I think there are many more uses to email marketing – especially in a B to B environment.

Well, Karen Talavera of Synchronicity Marketing stole my thunder. I was researching some content for the post and came across an excellent article written by her for BtoB’s eMail Marketing Insight. She outlined my main points! So, let’s read what SHE has to say:

“Many organizations can’t or don’t sell products and services online. For them, the concept of driving sales conversions via e-mail to an e-commerce-enabled Web site makes about as much sense as leading a horse to a well instead of a river. These companies instead rely on their Web sites to educate interested prospects, cultivate inquiries and accelerate leads—and their best application of e-mail marketing is to do the same. Here’s how:

  • Answer inquiries. A non-e-commerce Web site is ideal for gathering and fielding inquiries. E-mail is used to respond to those inquiries with customized information, answer specific questions or, better yet, the all-important invitation to begin the sales process in the company’s channels of choice. For b-to-b marketers, that may mean setting phone appointments or initial meetings, or referring to a distributor or reseller.
  • Educate. What are the steps prospects must take in order to buy from you? Do they know what those steps are? What are the typical objections to a purchase decision? In the often complex and lengthy b-to-b buying cycles that involve group consensus-building or decision-making, it pays to address and overcome known objections early through proactive e-mail campaigns.
  • Accelerate. Once a prospect (or even a returning customer) is well into the sales funnel, there’s a special role for e-mail marketing and the premise is simple: Multiple communications channels increase response. E-mail regularly scheduled in conjunction with individual account exec or sales team contact will accelerate qualified prospects into customers. E-mail is also a route for conveying exclusive offers, incentives or limited-time deadlines that prompt open opportunities to close rather than linger indefinitely.
  • Build and sustain customer communication. Do you proactively reach out to customers to share news, announcements, and information of interest to them rather than you? E-mail is ideal for distributing information, yet too often that information is irrelevant to the audience; either it isn’t customized enough or is manufactured simply to fill yet another e-newsletter. Don’t push content solely for the sake of maintaining a particular contact frequency once a prospect converts to a customer if it isn’t useful, relevant, and engaging.”

Email marketing is a powerful way to educate, drive traffic, and generate leads even if you don’t sell through your website. The harder you work to refine your email strategy, the bigger the pay-off.

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5 Responses to No eCommerce? Email Marketing Still Works!

  1. CJ Boston says:

    Welcome to Web 2.0. Email marketing can enhance the sales process and enrich the education experience. The constant interaction is non invasive and welcomed. The world seems so small now.
    Thanks for the info,
    CJ Boston
    http://www.ArticleCash.net

  2. Richard Carenton says:

    Email marketing can be perceived as spam, though. I use article marketing instead. It’s much more permanent and not likely to be deleted. I use Artemis Pro to submit articles and it’s actually a lot easier than some of the email marketing I used to do.

  3. Adulterate says:

    Somehow i missed the point. Probably lost in translation 🙂 Anyway … nice blog to visit.

    cheers, Adulterate.

  4. Dan says:

    Yes, I think email is the best for marketing. I used the phone for years…had upwards of $2000 to $2500 in annual phone costs…I’m a single person business but now you can buy alot of opt-in addresses and thousands at a time. The ease-factor is so much better with this kind of technology nowadays. Keep up the great work.

  5. Dan says:

    Yes, I think email is the best for marketing. I used the phone for years….I had upwards of $2000 to $2500 in annual phone costs…I’m a single person business but now you can buy alot of opt-in addresses and thousands at a time. The ease-factor is so much better with this kind of technology nowadays. Keep up the great work.

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