3 Things to Know to Find the Best Email Marketing Consulting Services
Finding a marketing consulting firm is hard!
I get it! As a small business owner, I know the stress of the everyday time crunch. I know the fear of missing a deadline as you juggle your brand’s need to expand! You already have so much on your plate, and finding the perfect email marketing consulting services can’t be further from the top of your agenda.
Fortunately, there are ways to simplify your search!
Keep reading to learn my top 10 “must-know” points to make your search for email marketing consultants a breeze!
Why You Need an Email Marketing Strategy
I’ll start with the basics.
First, let me dispel two myths:
- Email marketing is not “dying” — nor is it anywhere close to doing so! In fact, rapid e-commerce business growth has led to a boom in email marketing consulting services.
- Secondly, email marketing works, and it excels at its job. As of 2022, email marketing has a 4,400% average ROI. There are many reasons for this, although the incredible reach of the internet is one of its many perks.
And — with that out of the way — allow me to demonstrate why so many businesses are turning to email marketing.
People Prefer Email Marketing
As business owners, one of our top goals is service. We deliver results, providing customers with whatever they may need. And — as of 2022 — 72% of consumers prefer email marketing to comparable digital marketing channels, including social media platforms! Needless to say, this makes your marketing emails a big deal.
Convenience, Communication, and Customer Engagement
While no-reply email addresses are common, they’re far from the gold standard of digital marketing. Indeed, an experienced email marketing consultant will often advise against this surprisingly commonplace setup.
The most successful businesses use the convenience of email marketing to their advantage. These brands understand the utility of this ubiquitous communication channel, and most are acting on advice from an experienced email marketing specialist.
“But!” many a client has said, ”that’s expensive! How can I possibly afford to maintain an open line of communication and deliver engaging content?”
Well, here’s the secret: Great email marketing consultants take full advantage of advanced marketing automation tools. Combined with clever email templates and well-designed flows, these automated email chains act as the customer service version of a sales funnel, carefully guiding users to the desired destination.
And no marketing campaign is complete without data!
As nice as it is to design personalized messages, those ideas won’t go anywhere without data-driven email campaigns. Fortunately, email marketing platforms have easy-to-use dashboards from which a business can get an at-a-glance overview of its campaign performance. These dashboards are often customizable, giving strategists a direct way to prioritize information.
It doesn’t end there, either!
A skilled email marketing consulting team handles everything, including your business objectives and data analysis. The right email marketing consultant takes it a step further, offering your team the ability to take a stress-free, hands-off approach to your email campaign performance. All you need to do is show up to those update meetings and sit back; the email pros will grow your business!
What to Expect From Email Marketing Consulting Services
The extent of your consulting services varies. Generally, you’ll pay more for extensive campaigning; conversely, less involved marketing has a lower price tag. (And I’ll elaborate on this point in a moment!) Regardless of your vision for your marketing strategy, you’ll receive a few “basic” services from any digital marketing agency.
The consulting services tend to be situated at the beginning of your professional relationship. You can expect a meeting with an experienced email marketing consultant as part of your onboarding; some brands also include a consulting session as part of their sales funnel.
Think of our first consultation as a professional icebreaker. You’ll meet your specialist and discuss your brand story, vision, and ideals. These concepts form the basis of every email marketing campaign. Once you’ve established these goalposts, you’ll move to the strategic side of marketing. Common topics of discussion with your email marketing consultants include:
- Business Goals: Every marketing campaign begins with a goal. While the specifics are near-limitless, an experienced email marketing consultant always begins with a goal.
- Design: Your prospective consultant will also ask about your visual preferences. Aside from your logo and assets, clients should have an “aesthetic” ready; know the basics of your branding — particularly your signature colors and motifs.
- Lead Generation: Where will your customers start their journey? Some brands attract organic traffic; others rely upon less conventional methods, opting to use cold emails or outsider marketing.
- Preferred Services: Many businesses have established email marketing services. Naturally, your marketing partner will need to know about your existing email marketing software. Most firms work with established systems, although migration may be necessary for outdated or mismanaged marketing setups.
The Email Marketing Services
Once you’ve established yourself with an agency, you’ll begin the creation process.
Most email marketing consulting services strive for a balance of control and oversight, as this is the most effective use of your resources. A hands-off approach (from the business’ perspective) frees workers to manage pressing issues. However, a lack of oversight can lead to undesirable or otherwise out-of-touch marketing campaigns.
Conversely, being aggressively hands-on with your marketing consulting services leads to frustration on both sides. You’re wasting time managing campaigns that should be part of your marketing team’s duties while your email marketing agency is investing disproportionate resources into delivering satisfactory results.
That being said, you can expect a sizable array of marketing tools from your email marketing agency of choice. These services — from marketing strategy and planning to design and implementation — support your email marketing campaigns, ensuring your business goals are met!
What to Know Before You Go (Looking for Email Marketing Consultants)
Expectations are only half the battle!
Your preparations should include some internal reflection and organization. Your search for the perfect email marketing consultant should never feel rushed. Yet, at the same time, your choices control each agency’s resources.
So, make it easier for yourself and your prospective email marketing consultants!
Use this blog post as an easy “must-know” checklist as you expand your email marketing strategy!
1. Look for an Experienced Marketing Agency
Your first question should always be about your potential email marketing consulting services. Always start the relationship with an established track record of the agency.
Look for the agency’s case studies and seek out client reviews. Remember: Your agency handles your marketing strategy; you need someone with experience.
Moreover, you’ll want experience within your industry; an agency specializing in lawyers is an unlikely match for your e-commerce brand. Summarily, mismatched email consulting services are unlikely to understand the client’s target audience. They waste more time researching your customers and designing an effective email marketing campaign, and you pay for those unnecessary hours!
Questions to Ask
What does this mean for you?
Well, it means a lot. Your email strategy depends on receptive email subscribers, marvelous digital marketing, and an experienced email marketing team. I can’t possibly condense every possible variable into a simple blog post. However, I can simplify the search by offering some insider tips on what you should ask your potential email agency.
When you’re dealing with experience, consider asking one (or more) of the following questions:
- Can I speak to past clients? It’s one thing to read client reviews; it’s another to talk to past clients! The best email marketing services understand that potential customers want validation and are more than happy to connect you with delighted business owners.
- Do you handle other marketing channels? While all-inclusive email marketing consulting services are convenient, they tend to have hefty price tags! You’re paying for your emails and targeted messages on other platforms, even if you don’t use those marketing channels personally.
- Do you specialize in serving certain industries? Most industry-specific marketing firms note this on their website, but asking for clarification is always helpful. Some agencies may be open to multiple industries but have more experience in certain areas. Similarly, a specialized agency may have unlisted expertise in your industry!
2. Know Where You Want to Go
Outside of the agency’s experience, you need to know your business. You can’t generate more sales with vague platitudes and inconsistent promotional emails. You must have goals, even if they’re vague! Even something as nonspecific as “I want to tell my brand story” is helpful.
While your email marketer is more than happy to adjust your email strategy, you can’t expect your data-driven campaigns to succeed without knowing your must-have data.
Key Things to Know
Overall, approach prospective email marketing consultants with clear goals. You’ll need a basic understanding of your brand’s…
- Branding: What is your identity? While you can ask your email marketing agency to handle your branding, many prefer to work with established brands. Consider using multiple sources to demonstrate your brand’s ideals and identity; social media platforms are a great source of marketing inspiration.
- Collaborative Style: Are you a hands-on strategist or a laid-back marketer? Email marketing agencies work with both leadership styles, but establishing expectations before you commit to an email marketing service helps everyone get along.
- Key Metrics: Your marketing strategy requires basic engagement metrics. Know what you’re tracking before you start. Common issues include click-throughs, conversions, engagement rates, and commercial goals.
- Target Audience: While some agencies are happy to handle your market research, many prefer to work with clearly defined marketing goals. Even a rough understanding of your target audience can garner more sales.
- Your Email Marketing Software: You obviously don’t need to worry about this if you’ve never sent an email campaign. However, any business with an established email marketing presence should tell prospective consultants about its preferred email software. You’ll also want to mention if you have existing email templates and established workflows.
3. Know Your Email Campaigns
You’ll also need to know what type of emails you need.
Plenty of email marketing agencies handle promotional campaigns. In fact, you’ll have a hard time finding an agency that doesn’t have an extensive portfolio of sales-driven drip campaigns. However, you’ll need an experienced email marketer to write unique marketing campaigns (e.g., newsletters and interactive content).
Questions to Ask
You can streamline the search for your dream email program director by asking these questions:
- Are your employees freelancers? There’s nothing wrong with a freelance email marketer, but hiring an agency to delegate a freelancer to your brand is somewhat disingenuous. Instead, consider working with brands that hire their marketing pros as employees!
- Have you produced complex email campaigns? Most marketing agencies have experience with basic marketing campaigns, but you may need more tools. Ask about the agency’s experience with advanced marketing techniques — such as interactive campaigns, personalized content, and in-depth email automation.
- How many email marketers work for your agency? Smaller agencies often have more responsive teams and short turnaround periods. However, a larger team is more likely to have experience with non-conventional content.
- Will I have a dedicated writer? Larger agencies often delegate a handful of writers and designers to each brand. This maximizes efficiency but negatively impacts consistency. Multiple writers may increase turnaround time and decrease the cohesiveness of your marketing strategy. However, having a single writer can be just as problematic.
Find the Perfect Email Marketing Consulting Services for You
Regardless of your needs, these concepts and questions will amplify your search for the perfect email marketing agency. If you’re in the market for a top-notch email marketing pro, you can also stop by my agency, The Email Marketers.
My team is packed with the best and brightest email marketing pros. Together, we understand the ins and outs of digital marketing. We strive to give our clients the best results possible and work with your email marketing tools to supercharge your business.