Email Marketing

email Marketing. (C) Sam Hofman / Getty Images


The basic email marketing definition is the use of email to promote products and/or services. A better definition of email marketing is the use of email to develop relationships with potential customers and/or clients.

Much of the spam email we all get proclaiming 'deals' on this and that is a good example of email marketing at its worst; the mindless email barrage.

Someone somewhere buys an email list (or several!) and sends an email along the lines of “Get ___________ (the product name) for only $_____!

(the amount) to everyone on the list – sometimes repeatedly. All this does is annoy everyone and give email marketing a bad name.

At its best, email marketing allows businesses to keep their customers informed and tailor their marketing messages to their customers.

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. 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 one's 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).

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.

For more on email marketing and other online marketing strategies, see Online Marketing: Basic Strategies Any Business Can Use.


Also Known As: E-mail marketing, direct email marketing.

Common Misspellings: Emale marketing, email markiting, email markiteng

Examples: Philippe and Andre were able to increase their retail store's sales by 11 percent by using email marketing.

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