Email is a wonderful thing. It costs next to nothing and can be sent almost anywhere in the world in a few minutes. When email is used properly, it can help move your business forward. When it is not used properly, it can hurt your business.
Here are a couple of ways that email can hurt your business
The first way that email can hurt your business is by sending unsolicited emails to every email address you can find. This is now commonly referred to as spam and it is an epidemic of major proportions. In fact, there has been talk that spam has made email almost useless as a form of communication. The average person gets so much junk email in their boxes every day that many people simply select all and delete without bothering to go through each message.
There is a second way that an email may be hurting you online. If you are conducting business online and your principal email account is from a free email service like hotmail.com or yahoo.com, you are practically shouting to people that you don't take your business seriously. Asking someone to fork over money on the internet is already difficult without giving off signals that people shouldn't trust you or your business. Getting an email account with your own domain at the end of it does not have to be expensive.
Web hosting can provide you with an email account
With most hosting companies out there you can register a domain name of your choice, sign up for a hosting account, and then create your own email account with your domain name at the end of it. It doesn't have to be a complicated process. A good web hosting provider will even help you by walking you through it. The result is an email that let's people know you are serious about your business and are ready to be taken seriously.
Start a weekly or monthly newsletter
Start a newsletter to build trust in you and your company. Use email to keep in touch with your customers and prospects. Provide valuable content. Don't bombard your customers will ads or sales letters. People like to buy from people they know, like, and trust. A newsletter could help you move in that direction. Newsletters are also excellent for cross selling other related products and services to the ones your customer has already purchased. Remember to keep the content quality high and the information as useful as possible. Make it easy for people to get themselves removed from your newsletters if they so choose. Using a newsletter can be a great tool for increasing sales.
Use email as a troubleshooting tool
Because email is so fast and easy to use, it can be a great way to provide sales support to your customers helping you to keep your phone costs down. When we use the phone, we usually feel that we need to engage in chit chat, and other banter besides the purpose of the call. Using email, you can quickly answer your customers' or prospects' questions and be right back working on whatever you were doing before the interruption.
Overall, email can be a very useful tool if not abused. Cheap, easy to use and quick, it can really help to boost your productivity when used properly.
This article was written by Joe Duchesne, president of http://www.yowling.com/, a web hosting company that will answer the phone when you call. Copyright 2004 Yowling. Reprint Freely as long as you link back to my website from this resource box.