“Is email content?” Shocking to think you would have to even ask that question, but the reality is that most marketers don’t view their email with the same salivation as Dr. Pavlov’s dogs responded to the bell.
Just to prove my point, the following is verbatim from an email I just sent today in response to an email from someone who made the point about “permission” to use unsolicited inbound “love letter” type email. Below is exactly what I wrote back in Outlook to him (name changed):
Excellent point, Max. For most “love letters,” you would want to depersonalize at least. However, asking permission when you get a love letter to use actual names is working really well in our testing.
Consider the following scenario:
1.) An email comes in.
2.) An email goes out thanking them and asking if we can use it for marketing.
3.) Permission is almost always granted.
4.) Email goes out after content is posted, inviting the writer to see the content and SHARE it to their Facebook.
5.) Writer almost always does.
6.) New traffic comes in from both Organic Search and from Facebook Referrals.
7.) Email subscriber list grows.
So, from one email that would have simply died (or, at best, been printed out and put on a bulletin board), you now get search traffic from Google and lots of referral traffic from Facebook.
But the real, more common use-case is with outbound emails from your organization. Think about customer service, account management, investor relations, and sales. All of these folks are writing lots of emails every day. In 100 outbound emails, wouldn’t you think that 10 are blog-worthy? The reality is that it’s a lot higher percentage than that.
And you can start promoting other peoples’ email content while you’re at it. I put up a post yesterday about a MarketingProfs’ education program that I thought was interesting.
I simply pushed the entire email marketing message into my blog with a small intro paragraph. I checked first that it wasn’t indexed (it wasn’t) and bingo … I’ve got great content that helps our SEO and gives more exposure for what I genuinely think will be a good program. This then goes from my blog to the other social channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, where it can be picked up and shared some more.
Now, frankly, organizations should be doing this with their own email marketing programs. Most email marketing content is never indexed. It simply dies. Consider digging through or importing all of your old legacy email into your blogs, and give that content new life.
Bottom line is that content can’t be wasted. Most email, whether it’s from outlook or an ESP, is single-use … gone forever soon after it’s created. If you think about SEO from the content side, it’s about building authority content-brick by content-brick over time.