As savvy email marketers move away from old-school “batch and blast” strategies, they’re looking for better ways to extend their conversations with customers. In our blog post “Social Media & Email Marketing Integration Part I: The Business Case,” we showed you why social media presents the perfect opportunity to expand your email results by listening to customers, adding value and engaging in meaningful communication. Now let’s look at some on-the-ground strategies to get you started:
Discover Where Your Audience Is
Social media is an enormous category, covering everything from the Big Three (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter) to social bookmarking sites like Digg and Reddit to smaller, industry-specific online communities. Rather than wasting time and effort, it’s immensely helpful to know which social media networks will get you the most results.
A good place to start is your web analytics. Are any social networks driving traffic to your site?
You can also go straight to your customers to find out. In the “Definitive Guide to Integrating Social Media and Email Marketing,” HubSpot suggests you survey your social media fans and ask whether they also subscribe to your emails, and then survey your email subscribers and ask whether they also follow your social networks or share your email content with their peers.
Use Social Networks to Grow Your Email List
There are as many ways to leverage your social network as there are social networks: Add an email opt-in widget to your Facebook page. Tweet occasional requests for followers to join your email list. Post requests in your LinkedIn groups.
Additionally, you can tweet or post teasers of your email content-particularly email-only promotions-along with a link to your email sign-up page. Or consider tweeting or posting links to registration-only content, such as white papers or on-demand webinars.
To sweeten the deal, consider offering a small incentive, such as a coupon or special content, to encourage opt-ins.
Use Email to Grow Your Social Reach
Be sure your email template includes “Follow Us” buttons somewhere highly visible in the sidebar, header or footer. But don’t just expect the button to do all the work. Loren McDonald of Silverpop recommends you educate your subscribers by reminding them regularly of the value of following you on social media. Will they see special social-media-only promotions? Special content? Let subscribers know what’s in it for them!
Subscribe to the TowerData blog today to make sure you don’t miss Part 3 of this serious where we’ll continue to detail on-the-ground strategies to integrate email marketing and social media.
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