How dare I address this topic! Because isn’t social media the way of the future!? But really, who cares about “Likes” when what you need is more email addresses.
Please don’t get me wrong social media is effective, and you should use it in your marketing tool box. However, don’t put it before email marketing. Because when you compare the two, email marketing continues to dominate social media marketing.
Here’s 5 reasons that explain my position:
1. The Numbers
Email has nearly three times as many users as Facebook and Twitter combined? That’s about 3 billion.
So if you imagine a full cup of sugar is the number of emails sent every single day and you compare that with all the daily Facebook posts it would be about a half teaspoon of sugar. And in Twitterland all the tweets posted per day would be merely just a pinch of sugar. In fact, between Facebook and Twitter they make up just 0.2% of the number of emails that are sent daily. Oh, and that doesn’t include spam.
Additionally, every web search… on every search engine (Google, Bing and others)… every single day is roughly just 1/100th of daily email traffic!
So many marketers are busy chasing down the latest trends that they miss what’s obvious. After all if it’s old it’s dead, right? So email is dead. WRONG! Smart marketers consider email not just an essential piece to their marketing, it’s a cornerstone to their marketing and sales.
2. Email Is Personal
I know what you’re thinking, Facebook is the most personal, I can keep updated on all my friends.
Well not really. First of all, refer back to # 1: The Numbers. You might be surprised while living in your Facebook bubble, but many people still don’t use Facebook. If your business is going after an older audience, you’re better off sending an email.
Second, in most cases, like minded business folks don’t go to Facebook for private messaging. They open their email, Outlook, Gmail, etc… and type out an email.
Email was the first, and still is the best social media channel. Use it for your business, don’t ignore it.
3. Email Is Built For Business
Yes, many businesses use Facebook, Twitter and more are adopting Google Plus for keeping in contact with their clients and customers. But when it comes to business relationships email is what the “grown ups” do.
So would you rather use a single marketing channel to talk to all your customers in the most professional way? Or do you prefer to divide your efforts between multiple channels to talk to only a certain segment of your customers each time?
That’s for you to answer, and remember I’m not saying you shouldn’t use social media marketing. I am simply saying email should be used first and foremost before social media.
4. Email Grabs Attention More Effectively
You’re much more likely to reach your customers with email. Not because your customers spend more time checking email than browsing Facebook, but it’s because email allows you to make continued contact with that customer. That contact is in their face. It’s in their mailbox, it’s more personal and special than their Facebook or Twitter account. It’s very different from posting an update or sending a tweet.
When you tweet or post an update on your Facebook wall it can easily get missed, never shown, or passed over. However when you send an email the customer is forced to see your message and then required to take action whether it be to open and read, or move it to their trash. Either way the message is sitting in their inbox until the customer takes one action or another.
5. Customers Expect It
Email is meant to be a channel for transactions. What exactly do I mean? Simply put your customers already expect to get specials, offers and deals through their inbox. So when they check their email it’s already a place that they’ve been trained to have a high tolerance for offers. They’ve been primed.
Lets face it on Facebook, your customers are really just there to chat with their friends, see the latest cute baby videos, and play Candy Crush Saga. Even if they like your page it means nothing, it’s a lousy environment for marketing.
And on Twitter people are tweeting new and interesting things, catching up with those they follow, but are they really looking to buy things?
Facebook and Twitter are channels used by far fewer consumers who are in the “shopping mood.” And your marketing messages will often fail to establish as personal connection.
With email marketing you have a far better chance to catch your customers at time when they’re ready to buy, and that my friends is one of the most important rules to sales.
I’m sure several people might disagree with my take on email marketing vs. social media marketing, but my experience spending 15+ years in online marketing and in the e-commerce industry I’ve watched hundreds of thousands of dollars get thrown into social media marketing with limited to no return on these investments.
Email marketing works.