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Email marketing works. It might not apply to every segment of the marketplace. But, if you want middle-aged people to buy your goods or services, send them an email. Here’s why.

I’m trying to add more fun back into my marriage, which is going about as well as “forced fun” always goes. I can’t shake my inner HR lady and ask my husband to do random excursions I find on the internet. Weekend trip to a civil rights monument and a cat cafe? Dinner at the art museum? He goes along for the ride. I think it might be helping. At the very least, we’re watching less TV.

Earlier in January, I received an email from my local blow-dry bar. They offered a last-minute discounted appointment for hair, make-up, and a portrait snapped by a local photographer. The combined price alone was less than a day at the spa. I thought, “I’ll look nice, and we can go to dinner on a weekday night.”

The bar for mid-week fun is low. 

I ran over and made myself look pretty for dinner. My hair appointment was great, but the make-up artist did a massive upsell for her services outside of the salon. I don’t blame her — email marketing is a form of business development for local retailers — and I swear she made me look like a forty-five-year-old anchorwoman on purpose. 

The photo captures the essence of wearing your kid’s birthday cake as a primer and foundation. My husband took one look at me and was like, whoa, what’s going on here? Did I miss something?

I’m like, nevermind, let’s get Chinese.

So, while parts of this experience weren’t super-awesome, I’m telling you that email still works. Your agency isn’t lying to you when they recommend list-building and segmenting exercises as best practices. It’s an essential component of a plan to separate your buyers from their money. 

Email works beyond the B2B and B2C realm, too. If you’re a content creator like me, email offers you an opportunity to say hello to your fans and champions. People who believe in your artistry and creativity want to hear from you. Email is the best way to do it.

And if this blow-dry bar emails me with another blow-out deal minus the make-up and photo, I’ll still buy it. Do you know how difficult it is to dry your hair when it’s long? It’s not worth it. I mostly walk around with towel-dried hair in a bun. 

But I’ll skip the makeup. When I received my photo, my husband had no recollection of the random weekday night we ate Chinese food. 

“Did I take that photo of you? What’s up with the makeup?”

Dammit, not every experience on the internet is a winner. But I’m still opening email messages with discount codes and catchy titles. Even if you’re lamenting over a spammy in-box, you are, too.

2 Responses to Email Marketing Works
  1. beckbee

    OMG your non-verbal communication in that photo is stellar.

  2. Jennifer Coyne

    Preach, Gen-Xer, PREACH!