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How to Integrate Email Marketing into Your Inbound Marketing Strategy

Written by Chris Kelley on Mon, Aug 26, 2013

integrate email marketingDigital marketers use many different tactics to market their products – search, social media, mobile, analytics and advertising to name a few. Be sure to include email in your digital marketing mix. In fact, email is most effective when it’s integrated with the rest of your marketing. Here are some ways you can integrate email marketing with your larger inbound marketing strategy.

Email & Social Media Integration

Numbers rarely lie.  In a recent study from Aberdeen Research, 65% of the top 20% of B2B marketers who use social media for lead generation choose to integrate email with social media.

The nice thing is that you can mimic the success of this group more easily than you think. Here are some tactics to get you started.

Add Social Media Sharing Buttons To Your Emails

If you are interested in extending the reach of your email and expand the visibility of your content and brand, try adding social media sharing and follow buttons to your emails. It’s simple, easy to do and effective.

Send Email Based On Social Media Insights

If you use integrated marketing analytics, or integrated marketing software like Hubspot, you can easily determine which leads or subscribers have mentioned you on Twitter. These are highly engaged leads and deserve targeted sends.

Grow Your Email List Through Social Media

We’ve found that those who engage with you on social media are excellent leads. So give them a reason to subscribe to your email list. Offer them a tantalizing call-to-action on your Facebook page, and be sure to make it clear why signing up for an email subscription will benefit them.

Email & Search Integration

You know that link at the top of many emails that offers people a chance to view the email on their web browser? Not only does this help people who have trouble viewing the email in their inbox, it can also help with your search optimization.

When you host an html version of your email on the web, you are creating an archive of that email that is accessible to search engines. With that in mind, make sure your email content follows SEO best practices such as:

  • Use your best keywords
  • Anchor text when constructing the body of the message
  • Ensure all images have alt-tags
  • Include social media sharing buttons to stretch the content further.

Integration With Mobile

More and more people open their emails through their mobile devices. Depending on the industry, that number can be as high as 50%. And once they’ve opened your email on their mobile, chances are they won’t reopen it on their computer.

So what do you need to do to make your email strategy mobile?

  • Start by testing your email templates to see how they look in different mobile devices.
  • Make sure your call-to-action buttons and links can be easily clicked by readers using touch screens.
  • Offer both plain text and HTML versions of your email.
  • Since your images may not display, pay attention to the descriptions of your alt text under the images.
  • Remember your email is just the beginning of the process. Make sure the landing pages and forms that your email links to are optimized for mobile as well.

Integrated Analytics

The online behavior of your customers and prospects is seamless. They go from social media to a website to opening an email to clicking through to a landing page to a download and back to Facebook. They don’t cover their tracks because they don’t have to. But in today’s world of analytics, you need to be able to see the integrated connection between all of these activities, and relying on individual analytics for each channel won’t help. You need a multichannel view that helps you find out information such as:

  • The number of people that clicked through but did not convert.
  • The number of people who converted on your website that came from social media, and, of those, the number that actually opened your last email campaign.
  • Which tactics result in more leads; PPC, organic search, email or social.

One of the real benefits to integrated analytics reports is that they help you create highly targeted email campaigns. With integrated marketing analytics, you can segment your mailing list and send communications based on the lead’s history of downloads and pages viewed.

With integrated analytic software like HubSpot’s, you can set up smart lists that automatically send an email to a contact when their activity matches your predetermined criteria.

You can see how email marketing fits into the inbound marketing puzzle and provides the context you need to make smart decisions on list segmentation and lead nurturing.

How to Create an Effective Inbound Marketing Campaign

Topics: Inbound Marketing, email marketing, Search Engine Optimization

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