email marketingEven with all of the tools available to marketers for reaching customers online, perhaps none have the sales potential of the good, old-fashioned email. Email remains an attractive marketing tool because it is a direct line to customers (even more so with the growing adoption of mobile email) that can be highly targeted and personal.

But, how do you know that the email you’ve crafted will bring in the additional sales you’re hoping for? You can A/B test, of course. You can (and should) measure actions taken by the customers on your email list, and refine your message over time.

However, another incredible resource for learning what your email subscribers may respond to are your social media accounts. The everyday interaction occurring here provides a wealth of information that can be used to greatly improve email communication.  Here are 5 ways you can leverage your social media accounts to produce emails that drive more purchases from your existing customers:

1. Status Updates – Which of your social media updates get the best response from your followers? Repurpose this text to craft compelling email subject lines that increase open rates.

2. Ad Headlines – Do you advertise on social networks? If you do, you most likely A/B test these to see which perform best, and then focus your budget where it belongs. Take this knowledge a step further by using the copy that’s working for clicks on social to bring attention to your email too.

3. Positive Comments – Your social media fans may leave great thoughts and testimonials on your page from time to time. Leverage these by adding them into the mix in your emails, offering subscribers a few more reasons to believe in you and your business.

4. Test Images – Great visuals are key to a successful social media strategy. The same is true of email marketing. Which of your shared images are your followers responding to? Make sure you’re using these same images in your emails as well to get a similar response.

5. Add Subscribers – Social media is great for interacting with customers and keeping them aware of, and up to date on your brand. Making it easy to subscribe, and even incentivizing the action on social media is a good way to move fans along to this more direct line of communication where you can more easily close a sale.

Have more great ways to use social media to help email marketing? Share your ideas in the comments.