Traci Weaver was a marketing executive at a Silicon Valley startup and now runs her own marketing company in San Francisco.

Related Blog Posts

[Webinar] Master Google Ads and SEO for maximum bottom-line impact. Sign Up
A person works on a laptop with a graphic representing email marketing on the screen.

6 Ways to Build Customer Relationships with Email Marketing

6 Ways to Build Customer Relationships with Email Marketing

Traci Weaver • January 13, 2021

A person works on a laptop with a graphic representing email marketing on the screen.

Email can be a great way for businesses to grow and achieve their content marketing goals. In fact, it brings in about $44 for every dollar spent. Even in this social media era, email is still a prevalent form of communication for any industry.

To help you refine your email marketing strategy, here are six ways to build strong customer relationships through email:

1. Be honest.

When people sign up to receive emails from you, they’re entrusting you with their personal information. Earn that trust by being honest about what your email communications will include. For example, when they sign up for your email newsletter, tell them what to expect, such as topics you’ll be covering and how frequently you’ll be emailing them. Don’t try to lure potential customers by making false promises.

To take it one step further, be sure to do what you said you’d do. Once you’ve described what email subscribers can expect, always stick to those guidelines. Whatever your niche, keep all of your communications within that category. Building trust with email subscribers is key to turning those subscribers into paying customers.

2. Always offer high-quality content.

No matter what industry you’re in or what types of emails you send, you have to offer high-quality content. The type of content you share can vary, but it’s essential that your subscribers will find the content engaging and relevant. For example, if your newsletter is a letter from your company’s CEO, make sure that letter covers information that subscribers can actually benefit from or use in their day-to-day. Or if your newsletter is a roundup of your latest content, make sure each email shares a variety of content types that cover information your subscriber audience might be searching for in order to learn more about your industry or do their jobs better.

3. Get to know your subscribers.

To build a relationship with another person, you have to know something about them. And guess what? That same principle applies to your email subscribers.

SproutSocial found that 64% of consumers want brands to connect with them. An email newsletter shouldn’t be a one-way street. Try out some of these ways to get to know your subscribers and engage with them on a personal level:

  • Survey subscribers. By asking your audience what they want to learn from you, you allow subscribers to interact with your brand directly and help you make your email marketing efforts more targeted and effective. Connecting with your audience isn’t the only benefit, though — you can also reduce unsubscribes because you’ll actually be sending the kinds of emails your audience wants to receive.
  • Send emails from a real person. Make it easy for subscribers to get in touch with you and avoid using a do-not-reply email address. It’s off-putting when a business persuades you to sign up for their emails but then makes it impossible to contact a real, live person. Personalizing your emails by including the contact person’s name will help subscribers feel more at ease communicating with you.
  • Make it easy to unsubscribe. Don’t hide the unsubscribe button. This shady practice can put a bad taste in subscribers’ mouths because they feel like you’re tricking them into receiving your emails. Treat them with respect, and make it easy for them to opt out of receiving your emails if they so choose.

4. Provide value right away.

An opt-in email gift, or lead magnet, is a free perk you offer to anyone who subscribes to your list as a thank-you for sharing their email address with you. This lead magnet could be an e-book, a downloadable checklist, or a mini version of a course, for example.

Whatever freebie you select, make sure it’s related to your business and is relevant to your audience. Ideally, you want that gift to start building a great relationship with your subscribers so they’ll be dying to continue to engage with you and then (hopefully) sign on for your services or purchase your products.

5. Share plenty of non-sales content.

To build rapport with email subscribers, don’t be overly “salesy,” because let’s be honest: Nobody likes being sold to. If all of your emails are sales pitches, you’ll turn off your audience.

This goes back to tip two: Always provide high-quality content. Your goal is not to pelt your subscribers with nonstop promotional emails; it’s to build a relationship with them and cultivate trust and engagement. Try to balance your heavy marketing messages with others that tell a story or offer advice. That way, when you get around to talking up a product or service, subscribers will be more likely to listen because they’ve derived so much value from your brand.

6. Get personal.

As society grows more and more virtual, people crave connection with others more than ever. They’re happy to buy from someone they know. That’s why it’s helpful to build customer relationships and get personal in your email communications.

You don’t have to share your entire life story, but you can tell them a little bit about your personal life, as long as it connects somehow to your business and the stated purpose of your email newsletter.

For example, you could open up about a professional failure or how a loved one’s perspective shaped your business philosophy. Any kind of personal anecdote that gives the reader a small window into your life just might motivate them to trust you more.

While most of us dislike being marketed to, we enjoy building connections and relationships. So it’s vital for brands to make their email marketing efforts subscriber-focused and personalized. Give these six tips a try to strengthen your email marketing strategy and see tangible results.

Send effective emails that generate results with our email outreach guide.

Traci Weaver was a marketing executive at a Silicon Valley startup and now runs her own marketing company in San Francisco.

Related Blog Posts