Email Marketing Ideas For Small Business | 9 Creative Tips


One of the most effective digital marketing channels is email. The platform allows personalized communication with your audience. But as a small business, what strategies can you use to get the best out of email marketing?

Some of the best email marketing ideas for small businesses include personalizing the message, using catchy subject lines, optimizing the email for mobile, and offering incentives. Small businesses should also automate email marketing, celebrate subscribers’ milestones, and segment the audience.

This is an overview of email marketing tips to help your small business. Let’s elaborate on each idea to give you a deeper understanding.

9 Email Marketing Tips for Small Businesses

Because of its broad reach and value generation, email marketing stands out from other digital marketing techniques.

But do all email marketing strategies bear results for small businesses? Only sometimes. That is why we have curated this list of ideas to help you boost the performance of your campaigns.

1. Personalize the Email

One feature that sets emails apart from other digital marketing methods is personalization. You can address your prospects or customers by name and include further relevant details.

This technique creates an emotional connection with your audience. Therefore, you build trust because the audience feels you care about them.

You can do it differently in an era when most businesses are spamming inboxes. Generic emails can leave a sour taste in your prospects’ mouths, leading to low or no conversions.

A personalized subject line can boost the click-through rate by more than 26%. Therefore, you will not go wrong if you spend more time tailoring your message to your targets’ needs and details.

Personalize the Email

2. Ensure the Subject Line is Catchy

The first contact between your target and the email is the subject line. A good subject line should elicit emotions and show value to the receiver.

You should use catchy words like offer, coupon, exclusive discount, etc. Words that create a sense of urgency also increase CTR and encourage prompt action.

As a small business owner, you can use phrases like limited-time offer, while stocks last, or time counters to make your subject line more attractive.

It is advisable to keep your subject line short and precise. It should let the audience know what is in for them.

A/B testing can help you evaluate the performance of two or more subject lines and select the most effective.

3. Use Visuals (Skimmable Emails)

Who likes a block of words without a break?

Sprucing up a few images, buttons, bolds, italics, bullet points, and videos can be the difference between a successful and an unsuccessful email marketing campaign.

These elements also make your emails skimmable. Some receivers may not have the time to go through all the content in your email.

But when you highlight the important sections of the message, it is easier to take action.

Optimizing your visuals is also an essential part of designing a converting email. Most people use their smartphones to access emails.

4. Offer Incentives for Sign-ups

Before signing up for newsletters or subscriptions, one of the most common considerations is what the target is getting in return.

You should package your message to show the value the subscribers will get in exchange for their contact information.

Apart from that, calculating the monetary value of your offer can make the deal even better. This strategy creates fear of missing out (FOMO) when one doesn’t sign up for your updates.

Something like “claim your $350 worth of template” will be a good start.

If you want to increase leads for your small business, incentivizing your subscribers will help you expand and gain a loyal customer base. Some of the most typical incentives include:

  • Discounts
  • Templates
  • Cheat sheets
  • Exclusive content
  • Coupons

The objective of the offer should be clearly defined to avoid falling into losses. Although the client will derive value from the incentive, it should also have a return to your business in the long run.

Offer Incentives for Sign-ups

5. Celebrate Subscribers’ Milestones

We all like to be celebrated. Therefore, this email marketing strategy can be good for your small business. You can gift your customers or prospects on special days like birthdays, anniversaries, or graduations.

Recognizing achievements and milestones shows that you care for your customers beyond what you get from them. The psychological effect of this is a loyal customer base and more leads through referrals.

Apart from celebrating customers during special days, you can share gifts when marking different business milestones.

Making your customers feel part of the process is one of the best ways to increase your performance. You can also celebrate the journey with the customers by sending personalized messages.

For example: Thank you, John. It has been seven years since…

Such a message helps the customer reflect on the journey. It also appeals to emotions because it shows you value the person as your client.

6. Automate & Create an Email Template

Automation has gained popularity in email marketing because it makes work easier for small businesses. You can automate the process and tailor emails to different actions.

For example, when someone signs up for your newsletter, you can follow it up with a thank you note and the offers you are currently running. After that, you can set a condition for the following email.

The email triggers should lead the customers toward taking the desired action. Therefore, you should sequence the emails to address the prospects according to the phase they are in the purchase journey.

Automate & Create an Email Template

7. Segment Your Audience

The customer journey, demographics, and interests are some elements you can use to segment your audience.

At the top of the sales funnel, you should focus on creating awareness and interest in your business.

In case you don’t know what a sales funnel is and why it is useful for you, do read my article on the basic working mechanism of a sales funnel.

Your customers’ interests vary depending on gender, location, and other demographics. Therefore, matching each segment with the message that appeals to them can improve your conversion rate.

You can identify customer interests by how they interact with your email or website content. Apart from that, you can use questionnaires to get this information.

However, you should avoid bombarding your prospects with many requests, which can lead to unsubscriptions.

8. Test Your Email Before Broadcast

One of the most important checks for small business email marketing is to send a test email. The email gives you an idea of the format and appearance of your email.

If you’re an e-commerce business owner, then my article on e-commerce email marketing ideas will definitely help you out.

The approach prevents any “oops” moments after you have sent the message. You can adjust your email if you realize there are mistakes before mass sending.

Most email service providers offer the option of sending a test email to your address. A/B testing is also part of the process. You can send two emails to different segments and analyze the performance.

If one has a higher click-through rate, you should opt for it over the other. You can tweak different aspects of your message to know how they affect performance.

You can change the subject line, button locations, content format, and visuals.

9. Have a Clear Call to Action

The action you want your target audience to take should be explicit. Therefore, you should make any links and buttons conspicuous for visibility.

Having more than one CTA if the email is long can increase conversions for those who will not scroll to the bottom. Avoiding high-commitment call-to-action is also recommendable because prospects don’t want the responsibility.

The CTA should show them that it is about them. “Claim your free PDF” feels better than “Subscribe to Our Newsletter.” The former indicates that the subscriber is deriving value from acting.

9 Email Marketing Tips

Key Takeaways

Any small business that wants to succeed in digital marketing should leverage emails to increase conversions.

This channel has proven effective in helping startups create awareness, interest, and engagement with the target audience.

Some of the most effective email marketing tips for small businesses are segmentation, automation, clear CTA, and testing.

You should also appreciate your customers, offer incentives, use visuals, and have a catchy subject line. These ideas will set you apart from other small businesses.

Shailen Vandeyar

A proud Indian origin Kiwi who loves to plant trees and play with his pet bunny when not taking a plunge into the ocean of funnel development, conversions, and customer retention.

Recent Posts