Why your mailing list is still crucial for small business success

mail-1454732_640By Henry Brown

You might think that in this day and age, mailing lists aren’t all that important. I mean – there’s social media now. There are SEO and Internet video marketing services now. Why do we continue to rely on a technique that is seemingly outdated? There are many good reasons why we do it. So, if you’re still not sure whether you need a good mailing list, let us educate you further.

Social media will only get you so far

Let’s start with social media – the marketing solution du jour. Sure, Facebook and Twitter are fantastic ways to get your message across to others. However, there are plenty of downsides to the social media experience. You’re going to encounter people who simply don’t partake in social media. Email is a much more accessible field. Everyone uses it! It allows you to build a dedicated list of followers – whether they’re a tech whizz or not.

You make the rules

Another big factor of a mailing list is that you own it. You could spend months building a loyal following on Twitter, only to find that the rules get changed. Now, you can’t promote in the way you used to. Facebook might limit the amount of people who get access to your content. In theory, any social media platform could do anything to jeopardize your community at any time. Email is different – it’s yours. It’s a much more intimate experience that allows you to dictate the rules and proceed at your own discretion.

Opportunities to improve customer service

It’s always beneficial to get an idea of how successful your customer service operations are proving to be. Customers aren’t always willing to provide instant feedback after a sale or at the end of a phone call, though. Your mailing list provides you with a way of sending out surveys that your followers can complete at their leisure. That information can then be used to improve future operations.

Raising awareness of new products

Mailing lists work in tandem with social media when you’re getting ready for a product launch. The advantage with a mailing list is that you’ve already got an established base of customers. Heck – those customers might have subscribed to your list before Facebook was even born! Also investing in attractive e-commerce web design can often help to generate a vast number of sales.

A simple reminder

And you know what? Mailing lists sometimes act as nothing more than a simple reminder that your company exists. Between product launches, there often isn’t a whole lot to say. So, throwing out the odd email about your latest sales might just put your company back in the minds of your customers. Alternatively, it could be the extra push that someone needs to finally invest in your company’s services. The power of a mailing list is that strong!

So, the next time you’re told that mailing lists are dying out, it’s time to put that myth to rest. They’re an incredibly valuable sales technique for small businesses around the world. Better get started on your list, then!

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Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

 

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