Email Marketing For Your Startup / SME — Part 1

Tags: email, marketing, SME, startup 27th October, 2015

In our ongoing series of Marketing blogs for the SME / Startup / Small Business community, this week we’re looking at Email Marketing as a channel.

The demise of email is a myth. Take your pick — RSS, Instant Messaging, Waves of Spam — killed emails as it’s now old and useless. There are still some startups that try to tell us that email is a dead art form and doesn’t have a place in their business or modern marketing. We tell it to them straight:

  • 122,500,453,020 emails are sent every hour. — MarketingProfs (2014)
  • 55% of companies generate more than 10 percent of sales from email — Econsultancy “Emailmarketing census”(2014)
  • Email is almost 40x better at acquiring new customers than Facebook and Twitter — McKinsey & Company (2014)

Source —

Yes it is HARD work to get a mailing program working and yes, it is hard to get the email addresses in the first place, but you know what, it’s ABSOLUTELY worth it to almost every startup we have worked with.

Let’s work backwards quickly. Emails were the first real digital marketing as, in essence, they were portable ads for the digital realm. When the smart cookies that invented email showed their invention to the world, there was an immediate connection with smarter cookies who saw it as an extension of the phone call for salesmen.

A way for a startup to get someone’s undivided attention? A way of getting personal interaction? And you can do this in bulk? Where do we sign up? Give us your email here(!)

Then a little further down the line SPAM arrived. It’s not just email that has this problem, everything in life has a little SPAM in it. SPAM is the easy, lazy way out of trying to tip the odds in your favour — deliver to a million people with no effort or creativity and get 10 takers. This laziness is (quite rightly) what people want protection from as it’s not personal, wanted, or of any use at all to anyone.

After SPAM came protection against it and as people got more liberal with giving out their emails, the SPAM filters got tighter and tighter, guarding against both the mundane and extreme versions (Phishing, &Email Scams are SPAM) Then the filters got so tight they are where we are now — even opted in emails can be binned (lots more on this later in the series)

Where are we now and how can emails help your Startup or small business? Ok, well in broad strokes, the same reasons email made sense before are still true now — a great way to reach a customer at a place where they are comfortable, and open to information. Sure you have to be cleverer and you have to be persistent and understand the medium, but there’s now more data about email to help you than ever (E.G. This type of info).

We say first off, it’s the same as our Social Media post — get a grip on what you want emails to do for your startup / SME and how much time and or money you can devote to them. Emails are generally used as a selling tool, either direct selling — ‘Buy this now *image’ — or as a soft sell — ‘Beyonce was pictured out wearing this item, have a look (then buy)’ — but they can also be traffic drivers, a notification and delivery service for subscriptions, brand builders, VIP communications — all sorts of things, depending on your creativity.

  • What do you want Emails to do for you?
  • Home much time and or money can you invest in them for the next six months?

Ok this sounds easy, but after you decide these crucial factors for your startup, then it will help you in the next stages as you’ll be heading towards a defined goal and you can measure using it as a yardstick.

Next in the Email marketing series we’ll be headed deeper into the channel, deciding who the best provider for you is and what the mails could look like and what they can do. All interesting stuff and good info — so keep it locked here and to make sure you never miss an article, simply sign up to our newsletter.

Originally published at on October 27, 2015.

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.