Combining the targeting and reporting capabilities of email marketing tools with the reach of social networks enables companies to build marketing programs that change their relationships with customers in very real and dramatic ways. To help ensure effective outreach, take a customer‐centric approach to your messaging.

Email marketing

Email marketing

As part of yoour Internet Marketing strategy you should have a listening process, either manual or better yet, through an online reputation management system. Begin by listening to your customers, monitoring and measuring the way they currently interact with your messaging. Start with those recipients most connected to your brand as indicated by their behavior. Those who open your messages most and click on links frequently are already in line to serve as brand ambassadors. Give them a good reason to share your promotional emails with their friends (for example, if you have an e-commerce site that includes an affiliate marketing function, then have them refer your site to others and offer them an affiliate commission in return) , and make it easy for them to connect by including links within the email and landing pages to their social site.

Utilizing brand enthusiasts to post your emails onto their social sites signifies their endorsement—they posted them for others to see. But better yet, social emails can even result in the poster adding an influential comment or two, such as, “This is a cool watch, and it’s on sale. Did I mention my birthday is coming up soon?”

Such postings add strong word‐of‐mouth marketing that helps sell products. Studies by Bazaarvoice found that customer accolades can make Web site visitors who browse for highest‐rated products 49 percent more likely to make a purchase. And sharing opinions is at the very essence of social networking, where consumers are frequently influenced by the thoughts of peers.

… Check back tomorrow for: Email Marketing Strategy: measuring emails and campaigns will help you improve. …To be on top of frequent email marketing info, follow @3emailmarketing in Twitter.