Isn't e-mail dead?

Even in this age of Twitter, Facebook and Blog Feeds, e-mail is still a power player in marketing tactics. In 2009 e-mail returned over 43 dollars for every dollar spent. As other tools continue to emerge, e-mail may lose some of its luster, but for now it is a channel that should not be overlooked.

Where to start

Here are a few things to keep in mind when starting out on the trail to implement your e-mail marketing strategy.

Don't buy names. Build you list slowly, using your current customers as a starting point as well as prospects that you have interacted with. Remember e-mail marketing is often not about the size of you list but the power of your message resonating with your audience. Don't turn every business card you receive into a recipient - only the ones who have indicated that they are interested in hearing from you.

As time goes on, your campaigns can get sophisticated enough to become much more customized for the recipients.

Who to use

The one we like best is and have chosen as our email marketing partner is MadMimi. The interface is very clean and they are laser focused at helping people create emails that don't look spammy or clunky as many tend to do. Instead, you design a theme (not a template) and take it from there. I also love the level of analytics that they provide. Founders Gary and Leah Larson have hit one out of the park with MadMimi. What really sold me was that Seth Godin and 37Signals use it too and we respect their work a whole lot.

Here are a few other services that we have used as well as some more that you might be interested in checking out.

A few that are a bit more sophisticated and pricier, but it's about the value.

All of the services we have tried provide great content to help you with your marketing.

The key is to start building your list and don't pass up the opportunity to communicate with your customers.