field service business, service business marketing, small business marketing

Service Business Marketing: What Your Emails Must Have

Dec 13, 2013

service business marketingEmails are a great form of communication.  They can be opened at the receiver’s leisure, it does not take up time like a phone call, and it is one of the simplest, not to mention cheapest, forms of service business marketing.

It is one of the most widely used forms of communication and yet how many of us scroll through our inbox, deleting at random to help clean it up?  And if we do it, how many of our customers are doing it to our emails?

The issue faced with writing an email, is ensuring you can capture and keep the reader’s attention.  We work so hard to make things quick and simple, that getting our message read can be a difficult undertaking.  But don’t get discouraged quite yet.  There are some key things you can include in every email that will help to raise the number of people reading, and hopefully acting on whatever it is your email may be offering.

The Absolute Musts

  • Contact Information
    Whether you are reminding a customer of an appointment or are offering a new service to all of your customers, you need to include a way they can reach you.

    When a person makes the decision to buy, they are usually ready instantly.  Don’t make them search for your contact information on the web or make it difficult to reply to your email.  Make the process as simple as possible so your customer can get what they want sooner, and you can get paid faster.

    Bonus Tip: Don’t supply an email address that you check once every other week as the contact information.  This benefits no one and could in fact lose you a customer or two for slow response times.

  • A Subject Line That Catches The Eye
    If you can’t keep your viewers eye long enough to stop them from scrolling through their emails, what hope does your email have of keeping them intrigued?

    If the email entails a discount, highlight that in the subject.  People are always looking to save.  If the email contains crucial information customers need to know, make that bold and known in the subject, so they understand its importance.

    Bonus Tip: You can also set emails to send as “High” importance. This marks the email so it catches the reader’s eye.  Just don’t abuse this power, or the customer may catch on and realize your holiday greeting isn’t really a crucial email to open.

  • Appropriate Email Address
    Please do not continue to use your email address from high school.  Yes and were really super awesome back then.  Not so much now.

    Provide a “From” email address that the customer can recognize, such as one with your company’s name in it.  Not only do those emails stated above make you look immature, a lot of the time they look similar to spam email addresses and could be getting skipped over or deleted.  You’re an adult now with a job at a professional field service business.  It’s time to have a professional email address.

    Bonus Tip:  Generic email names are good things for businesses to set up.  Names that start with info@, support@, or marketing@ can be set up to go to different groups or departments within your company, and don’t appear as personal as having a first name in the email address.

  • Benefits
    An email needs to benefit a customer in some way, shape or form.  Whether it offers them a deal on a service, promotes something new your company is doing, or provides valuable information the customer needs or can use, your email needs something.  Especially since in this day and age everyone is receiving five emails daily from Bath and Body Works for 20 cents off their soaps.

    Don't be afraid to put the benefit in the subject line, too.  People very rarely turn down something that can help them out and by catching their attention right away with a benefit, you have a better chance of them reading your email.

    Bonus Tip: Turn the benefit into a call to action.  Embed the deal in a link that customers or potential customer must click to access.  You can lead them to your website or just a web address that talks more about what you do as a company and what you can offer them, the reader.

  • Content Appropriateness
    You want to be sure you are providing the correct amount of content and information for those you are emailing.  Too much information can overload the person.  It is meant as a quicker form of communication, so to bog someone down with multiple pages of content can make them fear opening any more of your emails.  If information overload is unavoidable, it’s best to offer your phone number to discuss the details further.

    On the other hand, when responding to emails one word answer responses such aqs "Ok" or "Sounds good" could leave your reader feeling like they weren't completely heard.  Replying to emails should follow the same rules as replying in person.  To be a good listener, you should attempt to repeat what the customer said back to them so they know you heard them.  I understand this isn’t always a possibility as most days are filled with nonstop action.  But when you can, write out a full response to the customer answering their questions with details and even asking a few of your own.

    Also be aware of your audience.  Just because you find something to be funny, does not mean everyone else will.  Be very careful with what you choose to send customers.  Images, jokes, quotes, and the like can all be misconstrued, especially if the customer does not know your personality that well.

    Ages in audience can affect the readability of an email as well.  Younger audiences understand abbreviations and slang, whereas those in older generations may not be up to date on their ROFL's, LOL's, and NP's.  Be sure you write in a format that is reader friendly for everyone.

    Bonus Tip: Try reading through the email once yourself.  Would you have any questions after reading it?  Did you actually skip parts of it because you lost interest?  If you can’t understand your email, chances are the customer will struggle.

Emails are awesome in that they are a quick and simple way to deliver your message.  Almost everyone has an email address, and it has been a go to source of information for a lot of people.  The issue can be ensuring your message really gets across to the customer.  By following the above steps, you are on the right track to delivering emails your customers will want to read from beginning to end.  

Looking for more marketing advice on how to send the right message?  Download our Mindful Marketing Worksheet today to understand the elements needed to create a successful message for customers and prospects alike.