When it comes to email marketing, everyone wants to know how much is too much. Should my company send out quarterly e-newsletters, bi-monthly e-blasts, weekly informational emails, a steady stream of text e-mails, a certain number of lead nurturing e-mails? How can I make an impact on leads and prospects without inundating them with e-mails and information they don’t want or need? What are the magic numbers?
To become an email marketing guru, someone who has special knowledge of e-mail marketing that can be passed along to others and used to acquire leads and nurture them consistently, stop focusing on the numbers of e-mails you should be sending out, and instead, focus on your company’s sales cycle. Only by determining how long it takes to turn your prospects into leads and nurture those leads from point A to point B to point C, and so on, can you determine how you can best use email marketing to speed up your sales cycle in a manageable way that is in alignment with the needs of your customers and your company’s big-picture goals.
Becoming a wise, almighty master of email marketing isn’t always easy. To determine the length of your sales cycle, the time that elapses between each sales touch point, and how email marketing can fill certain gaps, you need to be able to use your customer relationship management (CRM) tool to run reports that reflect results at every sales touch point. If your CRM tool doesn’t meet your needs, or if each and every member of your sales team isn’t using the tool in the same way, the reports you generate can contain inaccuracies that render results meaningless. In order to generate accurate results, you may need to implement a different CRM tool or provide your team with more CRM tool training. If your CRM processes aren’t solid, you will have to make them solid and then wait until you obtain enough data to analyze the ins and outs of your current sales cycle appropriately.
Of course, a CRM tool isn’t going to be the be-all-end-all to your analytics needs. Depending upon the unique needs and characteristics of your company and its target markets, you may also need to implement better methods for tracking your inbound and outbound lead generation, marketing automation, and lead management functions. You may need to begin or ramp up closed-loop reporting processes as well.
Armed with accurate data and market intelligence, you can uncover the gaps in your sales cycle and then test out various e-mail marketing campaigns to find out which ones successfully fill the gaps and help move leads through your sales cycle at an optimal rate.
Keep in mind that as your company grows and changes, your email marketing needs will change, too. You will have to keep performing new analyses that reflect the need for changed email marketing campaigns. The good news is that once you have a thorough understanding of what it takes to analyze your sales cycle at each and every step, it becomes much easier to anticipate what your future email marketing needs will be.