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Email Marketing Basics For South Africa

Cover: Email Marketing Basics For South Africa

Email marketing is a prevalent form of marketing. If you have bought anything online or signed up for any list or freebie on a website, you more than likely have been exposed to email marketing. But you may be curious about what exactly email marketing is, what it entails and whether it is a viable marketing tool in South Africa (particularly with POPI in mind). What are some Email Marketing Basics For South Africa

What is Email Marketing

Email marketing is (to be very obvious about it) marketing that uses email as its primary channel to reach customers. It is a great tool for businesses within the South African market. This is because within the South African context there is a great divide between the upper, middle and lower classes. This is a big reason that email marketing is a good tool for South African businesses as it accesses any audience provided they have access to email. 

While email marketing may seem a little archaic, given that it has been around for almost 50 years, it is actually a really useful way to reach and interact with your customers. 

In fact, email marketing has been a dominating factor in digital marketing and it consistently brings in results. The only catch with email marketing is that users have to opt in. 

Why Email Marketing is Effective

Email marketing is an effective tool for communicating with your customers as it goes directly to their inbox. Your inbox is a space where many users spend up to 1.5 hours a day with a large number of these users checking their inbox multiple times a day. 

Email marketing is an effective tool as it is direct, affordable, easy to use and easily measurable. Additionally, all of the users on your email list have chosen to be there. This gives you an opportunity to communicate with customers in an effective way that has a high return on investment. When your email strategy is connected with and in line with your social media presence you can expand your reach and audience. 

Email also is a great way to drive conversation with your customers and – even more so, between your customers and potential customers. This is because emails are easy to share, and a part of everyday communication. 

Some Great ways to Use Email Marketing in South Africa

There are many different forms of email marketing. Each and every business is different and will find that its audience is receptive to one or more types of email marketing. 

Your business can use email marketing for: 


These allow you to communicate updates, news and information to customers regularly and in a direct way. 

Offers and Promotions:

This form of email marketing allows you to show your customers new offers and what items are on sale or promotion. This can drive sales in a quick and effective way. 

Important Announcements:

Do you have a new product or service, opportunity or even a new staff member (if your staff are very client-facing)? You can use an announcement email to share this exciting information with your customers. 

Upcoming Events :

If you are running an event, attending an expo or even running a stall at that hip new market, let your customers know by sending them an email.  

Surveys and Opinion Polls:

This is a great way to keep track of what your customers think and feel about your business. If you are doing great work, it is always nice to hear it. Even better (with permission of course) you can use compliments and testimonials on your website. 

With any kind of email marketing, it’s important to consider the value proposition from your client’s side. So don’t send them a million ads or promotions in a row. Try to break it up with a few useful informational pieces of exclusive discounts. Else, you might find them unsubscribing. 


Email marketing is not only a cost-effective tool, it is also an accessible tool. It is easy to use, provides direct communication with customers and has a great return on investment. This is because of the divide within the South African economic classes. This makes email marketing is a great tool for reaching all customers, as a large majority of them have email. 

This article was brought to you by Syte.

We’re e-commerce digital marketing specialists with a passion for driving up your bottom line.

If you need any help setting up your digital marketing strategy, feel free to reach out with the form below. 

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