Early last month, Visit Jersey & Jersey Business held a workshop event for the Jersey hospitality industry. Recognising that email marketing can be a quick win for many of the stakeholders, we shared our knowledge of how to get started with email marketing in the tourism industry.
I spent 9 years working in the tourism industry and as Mailchimp is our preferred email platform, I was looking forward to sharing best practices for email marketing and sharing my success stories from the past. If you missed the workshop, that's ok as I'm now going to show you here, how you can get started with email marketing.
Introduction to Mailchimp
Email is an inexpensive communication tool with many online providers claiming that they are the bees knees.
Mailchimp is a free tool for creating beautiful mobile responsive emails. Within a very short time, you can pick up the necessary skills required to make this a part of your marketing strategy.
Mailchimp isn't the market leader in email marketing (yet) but in my experience of using various providers, they're the most user-friendly and comprehensive free service.
There are many benefits to Mailchimp including a free signup tool to place on your website that allows you to collect your customer email addresses and automatically place them in a pre-defined list that’s stored in Mailchimp.
So you have no website. That’s also not a problem… Email addresses collected offline can be uploaded directly into one of your ‘Lists’ in your Mailchimp account allowing you to grow your database quickly. So, essentially, all you need is an internet connection and time.
Signing up and getting started
The free service allows you to add up to 12000 emails a month to 2000 subscribers. If your database is already larger than this cap of 2000 then you have a couple of options.
Firstly, you can set up as many accounts as you like. If your database can be easily segmented and you can split out different customer types or customers that are interested in specific products then this could really work for you. This is a great free way of sending targeted email campaigns.
Alternatively a paid service is available which gives you access to all features including as many subscribers as you like (the cost does go up depending on how many many emails you have in your total number of lists) and email automation which for most professionals in busy roles is a must, especially when dealing with multiple client accounts.
These are just a few of the features you can get for free - click on the monkey above for more on how to get started.
Speak to your customers
An email campaign is not always about the sell, this is easily forgotten. This can lead to undesired effects such as people unsubscribing from your email. The point is, your email inbox isn’t a fun place to be and it’s usually filled up with spam, bills, invoices and formal correspondence (boring)!
By creating clever and thoughtful emails you can (at least for a minute or two) attempt to change that, the first and most important opportunity you have is in your subject line. Make it stand out from the other junk. You want to make the person receiving it compelled to open your email.
Lots to think about when planning your first campaign so here is an example email from our archive. The tone of the Quadra Digital monthly email is fun and professional. Take a look at our Digital Monthly email from April here
A few parting pointers
The content of your email is completely up to you but it should be (somehow) related to your business.
Speak to your customers - you know them best!
Create a recognisable format and tone and try and keep to it.
Don't be scared off by what appear to be poor open and even worse click rates. It's probably not as bad as it looks.
Mailchimp is also great for Automation (with a paid account), reporting and multi-variant testing. Find out about the latest from Mailchimp and how to use product recommendations in email. Read more here.
Need more help? Contact us and we'll be happy to help with your email marketing strategy