What is email marketing? Basically the use of email to promote products and/or services. But a better email marketing definition is the use of email to develop relationships with potential customers and/or clients. Email marketing is one segment of internet marketing, which encompasses online marketing via websites, social media, blogs, etc. It is essentially the same as direct mail except that instead of sending mail through the postal service, messages are sent electronically via email.
The two big advantages of email marketing are price and ease. Emailing is an inexpensive way to advertise your company and its products and/or services compared to many other types of marketing. It's also extremely easy to set up and track an email marketing campaign, making it a very accessible type of marketing for small businesses.
Particular groups of customers can be targeted or even individuals. Offering individual customers special deals on merchandise and/or services on the customer's birthday, for instance, is one example of email marketing personalization. ( A restaurant might send an email to customers on their birthday offering 50% off an entree,) Email marketing helps a business develop and maintain a relationship with a customer over time that hopefully results in increased sales and increased customer loyalty.
Email marketing best practices include developing your own email list rather than buying an email list(s) and making participation in your email list opt-in rather than opt-out (using permission-based email marketing). Email should also be optimized for mobile usage as according to statistics over half of emails are opened on mobile devices.