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Improving Business Potential Through Email Marketing

ophisticated and modern marketing techniques are slowly weaving their way into Myanmar, as a market of over 55 million people offers promise of growth and enhanced profits to both domestic and international companies. Marketing strategies have to be used by all businesses in this highly competitive world and is the only way customers can discern differences be- tween products on offer and make informed decisions about selecting the product that suits their requirements perfectly. In the last three years, the change in Myanmar has been phenomenal and even the traditionally used marketing tools like media and hoardings have undergone a sea change. Western influences are evident and mindsets about spend- ing on advertising, publicity, awareness and brand building, are evolving. The battle of brands is picking up, and as dis- posable incomes go up, so also will the scramble for the latest popular brands.

For the present, the manufacturing sector is growing gradually and local brands are limited. Cheap imports from countries like China sell faster than the dearer ones from Thailand, Europe, Singapore and the US. Exclusive boutiques, and large outlets in shopping malls have pushed prices higher, and change in tastes, preferences and shopping habits is becoming evident. All this of course, is a very urban phenomenon since rural areas have yet to see proper markets for basic essentials.

It is only natural then, that businesses find ways of improving their sales through newer marketing strategies, and cloning the success models of other countries, especially taking a cue from neighboring Thailand, seems the easiest option. With easy access to the internet, and the entire Myanmar urban crowd becoming internet savvy, businesses are beginning to use it for promoting their products. This method of direct marketing has been found to be successful and highly cost effective in other countries, and is bound to be successful in Myanmar as well.

What is Email

Marketing Direct marketing strategies like email marketing use electronic mail to communicate with potential clients and customers. Known as one of the successful online marketing strategies, email marketing has yielded excellent results for brands like GAP, Dell, Kayak.com and hundreds of others, with the personalised interaction and business specific information reaching a highly targeted audience.

Email marketing involves sharing of information with prospective and existing customers and generating business through the list of emailing contacts established through sign ups. However, it meets with success only if the people on the mailing list develop a trust and are convinced about getting a good bargain, which requires a relationship building initiative.

Email marketing has a proven track record of promoting businesses online and ensuring higher sales and profits. Small businesses using email marketing as a technique to promote sales have found that their increase in sales combined with lower costs helps to raise profits substantially. It is a direct marketing technique which enables personalized communication with potential customers and helps to share information they may be looking for. Emails sent to a targeted audience are more successful in increasing sales.

Email marketing is one of the most inexpensive methods of business promotion in a much larger audience. It makes perfect sense for a small business with a limited budget. However, newer challenges like spamming prevent mails from reaching the targeted clientele, and therefore it is important to use the right techniques for sales promotion through emails, and putting safeguards in place at the out- set, is a big help.

Tips for a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

• Get started with a list of contacts- This is the toughest part of email marketing since getting started with a list of pro- spective clients who would be interested is not easy. Send- ing random emails is useless since they will get spammed. Therefore it is preferable to ask customers or a targeted au- dience to join their list to get their emails of the following types:

  1. Customized promotion emails- This involves collecting information about the shopping pattern of the existing customers and coming up with special promotions that would appeal to them. Since the promotions are based on consumer preferences these meet with a high degree of success. Online shopping websites like Amazon use this strategy regularly.
  2. Email newsletters- This is an effective way to share information with customers while adding some promotional news to keep them informed about new products and services. By creating awareness for these products, email newsletters yield positive results.
  3. Discount coupons- Many companies tie up with businesses to send out a set of coupons on a daily or weekly basis, with a specific discount being offered for a particular day. The business benefits by getting clients, the company earns a commission and the customers save money. This email marketing strategy has proved to be highly successful.
  • The best tools- Email marketing requires some online tools like a good auto responder that will deal with subscriber requests, send out previously prepared emails on specific dates and so on.
  • Make the emails attractive, gripping and personalised- No one wants to waste time reading an automated mail. A personalized mail containing some useful news updates and other information presented well and in an interesting manner will yield positive results. The reader has to find something useful, and it should stick in his mind for longer than te time taken to browse through the mail. It must not be forgotten by the time he or she sign out of their email account.
  1. This will require time and effort, or the skills of a qualified person who can handle this well for the business, and has thorough understanding of this marketing tool. Tips for Successful Email Marketing for Small businesses 1. Send mails that people want to open, read and act uponWith spamming and loads of junk mail found in inboxes, chances are that the email sent to introduce a product or service, may not even be opened and be deleted. The biggest challenge is to create an email with a title that people will wish to open, read and take action subsequently. An email will stand out among others if its subject line is short and informative about something that interests the reader, and holds some appeal for him.
  2. Make an impact in a few seconds- The attention span of most people online is short and they will click away if the content is not interesting and beneficial in some way. Therefore before starting on the email marketing path, the emails that are written, must have content that will make an impact in those few seconds.
  3. Simple and elegant design and highly legible font- The email must be designed well to look elegant rather than loud and the font should be easy to read. Many people try to reduce font size to pack more information and the reader loses interest since he has to strain his eyes to read the fine print.
  4. Mobile device friendly- Most people nowadays read their mails on their smart phones. Therefore emails must look appealing even on the small screens, with less width.
  5. Content must be rich with information- The most crucial element of an email is the content, which has to be rich in information without being boring and adding to the reader’s knowledge in some small way. If it adds value, the targeted audience will look forward to getting more emails.
  6. Avoid the frills- Adding audio or video clips can be avoided, though some pictures may be added if necessary. Eloquent use of language, long introductions etc are all avoidable.
  7. No sales pitch since the email is not an advertisement- Soliciting customers subtly is better than making emails sound like advertisements which make a direct sales pitch.
  8. Send emails only to those who subscribe to them- emails must reach a targeted audience to be effective. Subscribers obviously have an interest in the products and services offered by the business and probability of their buying on the basis of the email is higher than a random person receiving an email out of the blue. Small businesses using email marketing techniques stand to gain immensely since they earn customers with minimal expense, and an effective email marketing campaign can ensure that they keep returning for more. A successful email marketing campaign survives on quality and the readers’ trust that must never be lost. The internet craze in Myanmar is just a couple of years old, and everything that reaches customers through this medium, is taken seriously. As of now, email marketing has not reached the scale of other countries, but is holds promise of yielding quick results with minimal expense, and being able to approach customers directly, gives businesses an edge.