Marketers want it. Email delivery companies have it.
Email as a marketing tool continues to grow in popularity, and any company that is not using email to contact customers and prospective customers has missed the boat (though it's never too late to get started). It is a quick and easy way to get in touch with a large group of people to let them know about anything.
A restaurant can get a list of patrons and email them about specials or new dishes. A pet supplies chain can email customers about new locations, promotions, and discounts. An accountant can create an email newsletter for people to sign up for in order to receive tax and investing tips.
It has many different uses, and any company should be able to find at least one. We've all seen how Groupon has used email to amass huge lists of potential customers which receive daily deals from companies in their area.
The key to email marketing is to do it in a way that does not anger people. Spam rules being what they are, there are things that you must do in order to keep your lists current and active, and to ensure that your message gets read and clicked on by more people. Find easy to follow tips for email marketing here.
I recommend finding an email delivery company that can help you. They already know what it takes to get into peoples' inboxes, and they're doing it full time for all of their clients. There are many of them out there, and the number keeps growing.
iContact, founded in 2003, is one that I personally recommend. You'll notice them in my featured marketing services on the right hand side of my blog.
iContact is fairly inexpensive compared to some other providers, and make managing email as simple as can be. You can create, upload, and edit lists easily. You can manage the content of your emails without any knowledge of HTML or programming. And they have excellent support which can answer your questions or assist you in anything that you need.
They have the key to the inbox, so borrow it from them instead of trying to fashion it yourself. And get started communicating with consumers the way that they want to communicate.