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6 Signs You May Need an Email Marketing Agency
Home Business Marketing & Advertising
By: Scott Hardigree Email Article
Word Count: 705 Digg it | it | Google it | StumbleUpon it


No matter if decide to work with an email marketing agency or a potpourri of in-house and outside resources; this guide will help you to reevaluate your current mail email marketing efforts and plot a new course of action.

Let Us Look at the Numbers:

Email has been the marketing workhorse for a decade, and that's unlikely to change in the near future. It allows targeting because it's data driven. It drives direct sales. It builds relationships, loyalty and trust. It also supports sales through other channels. Businesses engage in email marketing because it works and works well:

• According to the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing generated an ROI of $43.62 for every dollar spent on it in 2009, that’s twice that of the first runner up.
• A recent summary by MarketingSherpa states, "Those that see the effectiveness of their email programs diminishing are much more likely to have short-sighted organizational attitudes toward the tactic. Organizations with investment-oriented views of email reap the rewards."
• The CMO Council's Marketing Outlook '09 Report reviewed the plans and opinions of 650 marketers. Email marketing was the top target area for investment.
• In a 2009 survey of retailers, stated that "E-mail is the most mentioned successful tactic overall".
Convinced? The following sets questions will help you to further determine your direction.

Handle Email Marketing In-house?

1. If you don't have an existing agency relationship or have sufficient in-house talent, consider this:
2. You (meaning you or your team) know your business; are you also well-versed in email marketing?
3. If yes, do you have time and energy to optimize the effort?
4. How does your integrated marketing and CRM compare against your competitors?
5. Does your email marketing drive sales, build loyalty, and reduce costs?
6. Is your email program founded on research and/or historical data?
7. Does your in-house work really save or cost you money?

Already Have an Agency?

1. If you already have an agency contract, ask yourself:
2. Do they specialize in email or are they "full service"?
3. Do they generate an ROI that's in-line with the findings above?
4. Do they think about us without being prodded?
5. Do they understand our target market and business processes?
6. Have they explored all the options?
7. Is their work for us fresh, exciting, and reflective of best practices?

If the list above encompasses more than you're doing, this may be and strong indicator that you're under-utilizing this lucrative channel. Perhaps it's time for a fresh marketing partner or maybe you simply need to provide more direction and training to your in-house team? Let’s talk about what email marketing is, really.

What Services Does an Email Agency Offer?

The expression 'email marketing' is broad term which often gets abused and confused. Email marketing can involve customer acquisition, lead nurturing, client reactivation and retention, and of course direct sales, which means that a host of processes and services are potentially involved, including:

• Strategy & Research
• Editorial & Promotional Planning
• List Growth & Community Building
• Design & Coding
• Copy Writing & Content Development
• List Segmentation & List Enhancement
• Behavioral & Customer Profiling
• Direct & Social Media Integration
• Message Delivery & Deliverability Monitoring
• Media Buying & List Monetization
• Lead Nurturing & Direct/Up/Cross Sales
• Multivariate Testing & Program Optimization

Having been in email marketing for more than 12 years, I’ve learned that it only works (no matter which direction you take) when it’s managed properly with an eye on long-term value.

No matter if decide to work with an email marketing agency or a potpourri of in-house and outside resources; this guide will help you to reevaluate your current mail email marketing efforts and plot a new course of action.

Scott Hardigree is CEO at Indiemark (, a full-service email marketing agency and consultancy based in Orlando FL. Reach him at

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