Communicate effectively with email

August 25, 2022 By    

Email is the preferred business communication method because it’s trackable and creates records, says Brian Basilico, who spoke earlier this year during the Propane Education & Research Council’s Energy for Everyone Marketing Conference in Minneapolis.

Email marketing is a form of digital direct marketing used to promote your propane business’s offerings, according to Mailchimp, an email marketing service for managing mailing lists and creating email marketing campaigns. Email marketing can provide lead generation and brand awareness for your propane company while helping build relationships or keep customers engaged.

Email is not going away

Photo: PonyWang/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Photo: PonyWang/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Every day, 4 billion people use email, and that number is expected to climb, according to HubSpot’s “Ultimate List of Email Marketing Stats for 2022.” Social media is perceived as fun, engaging and interactive, but email can have these attributes as well.

You need to consider email marketing to reach customers and prospects for your propane business. According to Basilico, email:

  • Is used by business professionals more.
  • Is perceived as work.
  • Can be more passive.
  • Has a high click-through rate.
  • Is more measurable.

The average business professional has more than 200 emails in their inbox, and they receive an average of 120 new emails every day, according to an article in the Harvard Business Review.

To sort through the large volume of emails, users typically spend nearly three hours per day on email.

The problem

The perceived problem with email marketing is that email doesn’t communicate well with customers, and social media might be the answer instead, Basilico says.

The real problem is actually delivering the right message to the right audience, Basilico says. To succeed, you need to convey your message about propane to the right customers or prospects. Meet your audience where they are, and deliver your message to them there.

The solution

The most effective strategies for email marketing campaigns are using subscriber list segmentation, personalization and automation campaigns, according to HubSpot Research.

List segments: A targeted email delivers the right message. Using segmented lists, you can deliver quality email messages about propane that your customers need to hear, Basilico says. Segmented lists can be created by market segments or other categorizations of your customer base. Market-specific lists might include agriculture, construction, education or transportation.

Personalized communication: When sending email messages, make them personal. Relationships matter more than ever before. Avoid sending emails from your propane company as a whole since those won’t seem as personal, Basilico says. Send emails from someone at your company – the owner, a sales representative, an office staff member or the technician.

Personalizing email messages will increase open rates, according to Basilico. People first look at who the email message is from before deciding to open it. Priority emails get attention first. Those usually include clients and vendors, which include your propane company.

Send frequency: If you only send an email once per month, you only communicate with your customers 12 times a year – that’s not enough, Basilico says. Consider increasing communications based on relevant messages you have for the audience. Basilico suggests biweekly emails to get in front of customers and prospects at least 52 times per year.

That might seem like a lot, but it’s important to send tailored messages that cut through the noise. Thirty-three percent of marketing teams send weekly emails, and 26 percent send emails multiple times per month, according to HubSpot’s “Ultimate List of Email Marketing Stats for 2022.”

Successful messaging

Now that you plan to send email messages, it’s time to determine the content.

If you already have content to work with, Basilico suggests these different formats to convert information:

  • Webinar -> video
  • Video -> audio
  • Audio -> text
  • Text -> e-book
  • E-book -> blogs
  • Blogs -> emails

Consider emails that have a call-to-action to prompt your customers to act. Once per week, your company could send an email with a webinar registration, a webinar replay, information about a product or service, videos to watch, an e-book to download or a new blog post.

About the Author:

Danielle Pesta is the senior digital media manager for North Coast Media, the parent company of LP Gas. She can be reached at

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