If you were to discover a marketing channel that would allow your business to earn back $38 for every $1 invested in it, what would you do? The reality is that you probably don’t have to imagine. Chances are that your business already uses it. Email marketing has an average ROI of 3,800%, firmly setting it apart as the single most sound marketing-investment channel available. That doesn’t necessarily mean that every business is using it as effectively as it could be. After all, if the average ROI for email campaigns is 3,800%, then that leaves a lot of room for businesses to outperform and underperform, which means that the competition, when it comes to email marketing, is decidedly fierce.

 
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Gaining the advantage in such a competitive market requires the use of email marketing tools. And in order to retain that advantage requires an in-depth understanding of what these tools can accomplish, and in which areas the best email marketing tools can assist your organization.

  • Tracking
    If you simply send out your emails and then forget about them, you’ll never be able to know how effective they are. Email tracking tools tell you whether or not an email has been opened. This will give you a better feel for how your emails are being received. Of course, certain tools offer even more when it comes to email tracking.

  • Composition
    Various email tools provide a range of composition-enhancing advantages. Some of the more tech-heavy are even able to produce automated messages and responses that retain a personal, targeted feel.

  • Testing
    One of the advantages of email marketing is that it can be used to connect with a varied selection of individuals and audiences. On the other hand, because it is so versatile, there really isn’t any single set of best practices that always result in effective campaigns. Therefore, the ability to test email campaigns with built-in testing tools can help you determine what is effective, and what belongs in the spam folder.

  • Design
    Modern email allows for rich visuals to be shared as easily as text, which means that the most effective email campaigns often rely on images, graphics, and even videos. Email marketing tools that include design options make it easy to create an enticing email that looks the part.

Email marketing is particularly useful for small businesses, because it provides such an impressive return for very little investment. At the same time, small businesses can add the personal touches that customers prefer. Email marketing tools for small business also give decision makers the freedom that comes from having full control over the platform. This is not the case with certain other channels, such as social media marketing, where businesses are forced to operate within the confines of whatever platform (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and so on) is being used.

 

You can make an effective comparison of email marketing tools by understanding how each would benefit your business in different ways. The following are among the most advantageous features available:

  • Content Tools
    Capturing the attention of your customers depends on the ability to give them email content that they care about. In fact, 50% of companies feel they can increase interaction within email by increasing personalization. That said, the time and effort it takes to personalize each email can be prohibitive — particularly when you’ve got an email list that numbers in the thousands (or higher). Email marketing options that offer drag-and-drop content tools make it much more feasible to personalize content for every client in your system.

  • Event Triggers
    While knowing what kind of an email to send is certainly important, it can be just as critical to know when to send an email. By using email marketing automation tools, in the form of advanced event triggers, you’ll be able to depend on the right emails being sent out to the right customers, at the right time. When a new customer subscribes to your newsletter, a client makes a purchase, a shopper abandons an online shopping cart mid-transaction, or any of a number of other events occur, your system will be capable of creating and delivering an appropriate email.

  • Built-in Analytics
    Email marketing analytics tools can do more than tracking and testing. When an email tool is designed to integrate with existing CRM systems, it can be used to gather, analyze, and extrapolate actionable conclusions from customer data. This means more focused campaigns, and a more informed business.

  • Live Content
    Once an email is sent out, it’s generally beyond your control. However, some email marketing tools offer the ability to dynamically update email while they are in a client's inbox. This means that you won’t have to worry about the potential damage that outdated emails could be doing.

  • Customization and Scalability
    At the end of the day, the right email marketing tool is one that will always be able to fit the changing needs of your business. Email tools that can be configured, customized, and adapted mean that no matter what form your organization takes, or where it might be headed, you’ll always have the right tools to keep your email marketing campaigns achieving results.

 
See insights on successful email strategies from Marketing Cloud customers.

76% of marketers see active growth in their number of email subscribers, and that 77% of ROI comes from segmented, targeted, and triggered email campaigns. There’s no denying that email marketing is worth the effort — as long as it’s done correctly. With a variety of advanced email marketing campaign tools at your disposal, you’ll be able to reach out and make contact with an audience that is both widespread and targeted. This means higher conversion rates, improved customer responses, and better results across the board. After all, personalized, effective, and timely email content tells your customers will know that you’re in business to help them. And in the world of marketing, everything else is just spam.

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