Amid cries that email is on its deathbed comes new data reinforcing the notion that email is indeed alive and well. According to a recent study from Constant Contact®, Inc. (NASDAQ: CTCT) building email marketing subscriber lists shines through as a consistent priority for small business owners. In the survey of more than 700 small businesses and nonprofit organizations, almost 60 percent of respondents said they are trying to grow their email subscriber list “at all times.” When ranking the reasons why, 44 percent cited bolstering repeat business or donations as the primary reason, while 39 percent said customer relationship building and 12 percent said engaging customers for referrals.
“There are a host of ways that small businesses can grow their contact lists, both online and offline”
“List growth, and the business benefits that come with it, are clearly on the minds of small business owners today. They realize that engaging customers is a key aspect of both maintaining relationships and finding new ones – and one of the best ways to do that is through email marketing,” said Christopher M. Litster, senior vice president, sales and marketing at Constant Contact. “More than two-thirds of the survey respondents said that they train employees to request customer contact information at points of interaction. As email maintains its central position in small business marketing, list growth is becoming a company-wide initiative that small business owners are passing down to all their other employees, from marketers to cashiers to servers.”
Additional survey results indicate that the manner in which customer information is collected remains varied. Sixty-four percent of respondents indicated that they actively ask customers for their contact information directly, but only 35 percent use a sign-up sheet at the point of sale. Additionally, of those using online list growth tools, 92 percent of respondents collect email addresses via sign-up forms on their website, and 46 percent offer similar capabilities on their Facebook business pages.
“There are a host of ways that small businesses can grow their contact lists, both online and offline,” said Litster. “From Join My Mailing List forms on websites and social media pages to simply asking for business cards at events, the more willing you are to ask customers to stay in touch, the better relationships you will build, and the chance for repeat business increases.”
Key findings include:
- 57 percent of small businesses actively try to grow their email lists at all times.
- 44 percent of small businesses say repeat business is the primary reason for email list building.
- 39 percent of small businesses say relationship building is the main reason for email list growth.
- More than two-thirds of small businesses train their employees to request customer contact info.
- 92 percent of small businesses gathering email addresses online use sign-up forms on their website.
- 46 percent of small businesses using online sign-up tools collect email addresses on Facebook.
- 64 percent of small businesses ask customers for contact information directly.
- Only 35 percent of small businesses use an email sign-up sheet at point of sale.
- 42 percent of small businesses collect business cards for contact list-growth purposes.
- Almost six in ten small businesses collect contact information at events via sign-up sheets.