MarketingSherpa – Social Email Marketing: How to encourage sharing wisely, not randomly
You have likely experimented with social sharing buttons in your emails. You know, they’re the buttons readers click to share your emails on Facebook, Twitter or another social network.
And how’s that working for you?
All kidding aside, many email marketers struggle to get the audience to use these buttons. As you can see in the chart below from the MarketingSherpa 2011 Email Marketing Benchmark Report, “social sharing buttons” are one of the least effective tactics you can use to build your list.
Despite this data, encouraging your audience to share a link to a webpage version of your email can be effective — if you execute a good strategy. Simply adding the buttons and hoping they are clicked will not work. You must be more strategic and less random in your tactics.
Focused campaigns for sharing
One example of a successful social media email campaign comes from KFC with its Double Down launch email. The company spring-boarded one of its most successful product launches in 2010 with an email that encouraged recipients to share a link to a product image on a social network.
KFC did not toss sharing buttons onto its emails and hope for success. Its team sent an email that focused solely on getting its audience to share the link (see a copy of the email).
Most of the email marketers I’ve spoken with who’ve tried using sharing buttons did so much more randomly. Most often:
- The team’s ESP offered the buttons
- Finding it easy, the team added them to their usual emails
- A tiny fraction of the audience responded
This approach, I believe, is the main reason why social sharing buttons have dismal results in email marketing. You need a focused approach like KFC to get a strong response.
Want to check out the who’s who and what’s what of email marketing?
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