Category: Email Marketing
This myth is quite common in marketing departments, but it's more of an excuse to avoid starting email marketing. Having a list with few subscribers can be demoralizing initially; there is distrust in the results that will be achieved, and other actions end up taking priority. Is it better to wait until you have more than 1,000 subscribers? False! A newsletter received by 20 people can be just as interesting and effective as one sent to 20,000.
The best approach in email marketing is not to think in terms of quantity but quality. So, there are no small or large lists because the volume of subscribers doesn't matter as much as their interactions. If they are engaged, meaning they open and click on campaigns and end up making a purchase or booking an appointment with a sales representative, it can be profitable to send, even to a few people.
If you have a database with a few records, chances are you know them all, and they have a high willingness to pay attention to your communications because they also know who you are and what you can offer. This is positive for your email marketing strategy because you will know exactly what kind of message to send. This way, you'll achieve good results and can analyze how they react, for example, to images or calls to action.
You'll keep improving as subscriptions increase, allowing you to experiment with formats, style, and frequency. It's easier to test when you know who the audience is, and if the list has a few people, they are more trusting and can forgive mistakes more easily because they know you're just starting.
Another advantage is that if, after trying, you find that email marketing is not your thing, you can stop sending without remorse because it won't affect many people. However, we recommend against it because you would miss out on the lessons you've surely learned about your subscribers' preferences.
The first email address in your database will be yours; then, you'll add others from your department and eventually expand to the rest of your company. This is the most common path, first because someone has to receive the tests, and second because once passed, any employee may be interested in knowing the company's updates.
To grow the list, the closest resource is current clients and suppliers. Every business is different but consider including those who stopped being clients if they could still be recovered. Of course, you must respect GDPR, so don't act lightly. This option may have been considered in the service contract, but make sure you have their consent to include them in the database for commercial communications.
Once you've reached the closest circles, you need to seek subscribers just like any other company: placing the signup form where there is already a potentially interested audience.
It's also possible to create specific campaigns to increase the database with promotions, such as lead magnets or contests, offering incentives to users. But whatever you do, never buy contact lists: while it may seem like the best way to increase the number of subscribers, it's an illegal practice.
Following the same criteria for getting the first subscribers, you can adapt your mailings to the composition of the list:
Quickly, the list will be a mix of all these audiences, which in practice means that it will be most interesting to achieve good results by segmenting it to send targeted campaigns to a group with similar tastes or needs. From this perspective, we can say that segmenting is creating small lists from a larger one.
So, even when you have thousands of subscribers, you end up running campaigns for smaller groups. That's why you can do email marketing with large or small lists because the key is in the quality of your data.
Download the ebook "Myths of Email Marketing" to learn about others you should stop believing.
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