Web StrategyFriday, 30 September 2011 15:52
How email and social media work together
Email is the original social media. It’s a communication tool, it’s personal, it’s real-time, it’s shared between friends and it can go viral.
It’s actually the original form of social media even though in recent years it has been overshadowed by its more popular cousins Facebook, Twitter, blogs and YouTube.
Despite typically being divided into separate camps email marketing and social media are a match made in heaven. So how can you marry the two?
Each to their own
There’s no doubt about it, some people prefer email, especially the people who say “Twitter is inane and Facebook is for teenage girls”.
Some of us prefer to keep our inbox lean and mean, saving social media tools like Facebook for online interactions.
Regardless of your personal choice you can be sure that you’ll have potential buyers in each of the email and social media camps. So why would you want to alienate either of them?
Being active on both is advisable and the beauty is that the sum is greater than the parts.
Getting social media and email to work together is simple because the same principles apply to both.
Make valuable deposits first
At a bank you must make a deposit before you can make a withdrawal. On the web you must provide something of value before you can expect to receive something valuable, like someone’s attention.
The more you invest the more you can withdraw. The rich are wealthy because they deposit more than they withdraw and it is exactly the same on the web.
Likewise, organisations with a committed community of fans become that way by earning trust, one person at a time – by investing more in those people than they seek in return.
With social media or email marketing you’ve got to ask: “Are you tipping the scales of value in favour of your fans or yourself?”
Investing in content
Remarkable content is the key ingredient for investing in relationships with your followers and subscribers.
You earn and build that trust by publishing something free and valuable, like an e-book, market report or app and nurturing the relationship from there.
Share knowledge on Twitter, Facebook or via email, but give it away freely.
If you’ve made no deposits at your bank you can’t possibly withdraw a thousand dollars. It’s the same with email and social media.
But if you’ve been investing in the relationship by publishing remarkable content for years you may have earned the trust required to offer something for sale. When you do, congratulations.
But even when you reach that level, still withdraw cautiously and infrequently or you’ll erode that hard earned trust.
No trust, no deal
Buying email lists is an absolute DISASTER.
Spam is any email you send to someone you don’t know or who hasn’t requested it. Unanticipated, unsolicited email eradicates any hope of ever building trust. Why do it?
What percentage of email in your inbox do you open? Some of it.
Would open an unsolicited email from someone you don’t know? Unlikely.
Would you read it? No.
Would you pull out your credit card to buy from it? Never.
Stick to earning attention, not interrupting people you don’t know and you’ll be fine.
Tweet your emails and email your blogs
If you’re an avid publisher you can easily re-purpose your remarkable content. If you write a blog, include those posts in an email newsletter.
Once you send the email newsletter post it on Facebook and tweet it.
Sharing the same content via different channels is highly recommended. Don’t worry, you won’t bug people.
They know you and trust you so it’s perfectly OK to hear about the same news via a tweet, a wall post, in a news article, on a blog or from a friend.
Get your email marketing and social media working in tandem and use them to share your remarkable content with the world.
Adam Franklin is a social media speaker and Marketing Manager of Bluewire Media. Adam is running a Social Media Full Day Interactive Workshop in Sydney (8th Nov) and Brisbane (10th Nov). He’d also love you to take part in a 60 sec Social Media Survey. You can follow @Franklin_Adam.
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