An email list is a professional’s most important tool to keep in contact with current clients while nurturing new prospects. Typically your email list will include both clients who have already used your service and individuals who are interested in what you offer and want to learn more.
In essence, there are two fundamental ways in which email marketing is an excellent promotional tool for service-based businesses, no matter what type of service you provide.
1. Keep in touch with clients
No matter how often or how infrequently a client uses your service, adding them to an email list is an essential way to maintain a strong client relationship. When you send your client timely and relevant information related to your area of expertise – or details of your new and updated services – you remain at the forefront of your clients’ minds.
Your email marketing gives you the opportunity to support your clients in their use of your products or services, demonstrating your commitment to their continued success. It also allows you to introduce them to new services or demonstrate different ways in which you can aid their business.
Let’s look at a few specific examples:
- During the holiday season a carpet cleaning company might provide industry tricks for removing wine stains along with a coupon for discounted pre- or post-party carpet cleaning.
- An accountant could remind its clients of upcoming GST and income tax filing deadlines and include advice on tax deductions often overlooked by small business owners.
- A coach or trainer can spread the word – to people with a proven interest in their services – about the launch of a group program or a new self-guided training package.
2. Generate new sales leads
Email marketing is also an excellent way for professionals to cultivate new sales leads. Often a website visitor has an interest in your services but isn’t ready to buy immediately. Adding them to your email list lets you stay in contact with those warm prospects. You build a relationship with them as you share your expertise and compelling offers for your service.
In addition, your emails are an easy way for your clients and fans to spread the word about your services.
Continuing with our carpet cleaning example, your email on wine removal tips is easily forwarded to a friend who is having problems removing a wine stain from their rug. Because your information was sent to them by someone they trust, it acts as an informal referral.
If your tip helps them remove the wine stain, you’ll have earned their respect and good will and likely their business the next time they need their carpets cleaned. And if the tip helps but doesn’t fully solve the problem, your company will already be top of mind and likely their first call based on their friend’s recommendation.
Building a list takes time so don’t put it off. Start your list with your existing clients and allow prospects to join directly from your website (or Facebook page).
Upcoming posts will review my favourite tools for managing your email marketing list and the guidelines you need to be aware of to make sure you don’t send out unwanted spam. Along the way, we’ll explore email marketing ideas for a variety of service professionals, from author to zen master so stay tuned!
Not sure how to get started building an email list? I’m happy to answer questions about all things email marketing. Just leave a comment below or contact me directly.