Emails can easily be ignored, probably even easier than fast forwarding though commercials while trying to catch up on your 100 hours of DVR back log. However the power of email marketing cannot be ignored if there is a perceived value in its content or purpose. Informative, beneficial, concise, simple but useful, are just a few of the adjectives that should describe what you are or should be sending out to your consumer base.
Here are a few powerful reasons what and/or why you should be effectively using an email marketing campaign.
Targetization - Yes, that is a made up word similar to George Bush's "strategery". But that doesn't detract from its effectiveness. Not only can you simply target your respective customer base but you can segment your market into different demographics whether it be age, sex, interest, etc. Most quality email campaign service providers, such as Constant Contact or Campaign Monitor, allow you to create different mailing lists. Thus you can customize different campaigns to the needs of those various demographics.
Personalization - Most effective marketing strategies today given the rise of social media are about personalization. Have your email campaigns be more than a few lines of text from a email@example.com address that people cannot identify with. Whether it is from your CEO, PR Manager or someone else within your company, give it personification and a direct message. This will only increase the effectiveness and likewise show that there is a person behind the curtain and not just a sterile company.
Consistency - Whether its annual (not recommended), weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc. You need to do it consistently. If its an information based email campaign, then consistency is even more important so readers can begin to look forward when they will receive your interesting piece of email magic. Sales/Ad campaigns need to be done regularly but are not quite as necessary to be on a rigid schedule.
Action - Any effective email should involve some type of action. Even if you are just providing information what is the call to action to get someone to take the next step. Depending upon your type of business this can either be subtle or very obvious.
As a final thought always remember that no one wants to be sold therefore you must always show value in what you are sending to people. Determine what your "email value" is and stick to or find ways to tweak until you see the ROI you are looking for. Always remember that it will never be perfect.