Email marketing is dead and Facebook is king, right? Wrong! Many small business owners and newbie digital marketers mistakenly believe that email marketing has fallen to the wayside. However, email marketing can still be very effective. Meanwhile, Facebook recently changed up the way its display algorithm, making it much harder to connect with your audience (unless, of course, you pay.)
This isn’t to say you should abandon your Facebook marketing. Yet it’s important to diversify your efforts. Social media can most certainly drive traffic, build trust, and produce conversions. At the same time, email marketing can do all of the same and in some cases it may even be more effective.
Let’s look at 8 reasons why email marketing is still effective for restaurants and other small businesses.
1. Email still produces results
Let’s get this out of the way first: email marketing still works. Open rates have held steady over the past few years, as have click-through-rates and other metrics. This is assuming, of course, that your emails are well written and optimized. Open and CTR rates vary from industry to industry, however with the right strategies and promotions, restaurants and SME’s can produce a lot of bang for their buck.
2. Email marketing can be cheaper than social media
The most popular social media websites have grown more expensive in recent years. As more advertisers have crowded onto the platform, Facebook and others have been able to charge more. That’s how supply and demand works. However, email marketing remains cheap. Email automation tools are affordable, and with savvy email harvesting methods, you can acquire emails for free.
3. Email is Easy to Manage
Email marketing has never been easier. There are a variety of email marketing platforms and tools, such as Sendgrid and Mailchimp, you can use to easily manage email marketing campaigns. You can now send emails to thousands of people with just a few clicks.
4. You take ownership
With Facebook and other social media platforms, you are at the whim of the platform itself. While you can set certain things, such as posting times, many of the processes, such as ads, will largely be shown at the discretion of Facebook. So too will the specific people chosen as part of the audience.
Yes, you will have some input but not like with email. When it comes to email, you’re the boss. You choose when to send and who to send it to, with no questions asked.
5. You control the message
With social media platforms, you are often limited in what you can say, do, or post. For example, with Twitter, you get just 280 characters to write your message. With Facebook, you have to follow certain guidelines while writing posts, and you are also restricted in the types of promotions you can offer. With email, you can write pretty much anything you want.
6. You will (almost) certainly be seen
With social media, even if you promote a post you can’t be certain that specific members of your audience will see it. You just have to wait and hope. With email, you can be certain that most of your audience will see the message, even if they only read the subject line. Exceptions might include dead email accounts, but those risks are present on social media as well.
7. Email can be even more interactive than social media
Social media is great because it allows people to interact with your brand and company. Likes, shares, comments, you know the drill. With email marketing, you can still be very interactive, arguably even more so. You can control the content, run surveys, use interactive promotions and other things to actively engage your potential customers.
8. Easy to measure
Email automation tools and other platforms offer a tremendous array of ways to measure how your email messages are performing. Open rates and click through rates are perhaps the most common measures but there are other metrics you can use to improve performance as well.
Conclusion: Email is great for restaurateurs and small business owners
The takeaway should be pretty obvious: email is an effective way for restaurant owners and other small business owners/managers to reach out to their customers. Diversified marketing efforts usually produce the best results. However, email marketing should absolutely be part of those efforts.