From a marketing perspective, the past couple years have been marked by an irrational compulsion to get more likes. NO MORE! Facebook changed the rules of the game and made their likes less valuable than before. Alas, there is a silver lining: now you can focus on getting more email addresses, which are infinitely better than likes. Here's why email is awesome...and why you should be irrationally obsessed with collecting more email addresses:
1. Email gives you more control over your content
Want to include an image? Great. An offer? Super! How about a long form poem on how great your brand it. Awesome. You can do almost anything you want. And, you can control the subject line, explaining to the recipient why they should read your message. Do you know how to stand out in social media? Pictures of kittens. That's not brand specific...emails can be both brand specific and valuable to the consumer in a way that directly stands out. The more emails you have, the more customized content you can share.
2. You can segment your lists and personalize your messages
When you create a Facebook post, Facebook decides which of your fans or friends of fans sees your content. Therefore, it has to be generic and interesting to everyone. That's really hard. With email, you are in control of the list, so you can create smaller segments and change the message for each of those segments. This means the message is more relevant to the recipient and you'll get higher engagement. Then, as if that wasn't good enough, you can actually personalize each specific email. So, you can send an email to the list of recent spenders and call them out by name in your message. The more emails you have, the more people you can deliver this experience to.
3. Email Performs Better
A recent article noted that great engagement for a Facebook page is 1%. In email, a 20% open rate is solid and often, at least half of those people actually read your article. So, Email performs 10x better than Facebook in terms of engagement. So, the more emails you have, the more engagement you'll get.
4. Email is Direct
When you send an email, it's like mailing a letter - the recipient, and only the recipient, receives whatever you sent them. There's a sense of intimacy in email that doesn't exist in social media; it is one to one communication. Social media, on the other hand, is about broadcasting. It's about sharing a piece of content to as many people as possible. It's much more like TV or Radio. So, think of traditional media, which option delivers the best engagement and direct results? The more email addresses you have, the more you can directly reach consumers.
5. Email is MOBILE (Cross-Platform)
Are you "doing mobile"? Do you even know what that means? Guess what: if you're sending emails, you're "doing mobile". Everyone seems to think that having an app is the best option to "do mobile" when in reality it's one of the worst. It's really hard to get people to download your app...it's really easy to get someone to open an email on their phone. So, the more emails you have, the more you can engage people on their phones.