Email Marketing has become one of the most popular, fastest growing ways for businesses to get their marketing messages out to a large audience in a very fast and cost effective way.

Put basically email marketing helps businesses enhance their relationship with new and existing clients.

Both email marketing and traditional marketing have their advantages and disadvantages. The main advantages of email marketing are that it can be tracked, is very cost effective and you can reach a huge audience in a matter of minutes. Some of the disadvantages include emails being flagged as 'Junk' and never reaching the desired person and with the volumes of email marketing now being used your message could get lost in the haystack. When sending a marketing email you will also need to insure you meet the mandatory legal requirements.

Is email marketing for your business? All businesses can potentially benefit from a good email marketing campaign.

Getting started is really easy. There are a number of service providers that will allow you to sign up and get started for free. The best one we have found and one we use ourselves is Mail Chimp (see ). Programs such as these enable you to build your database, use generic template designs and track your campaigns.

It is best to get a graphic designer to build you a personalised and professional template to use for your email campaigns. Sending out an unprofessional marketing email containing broken links, missing images and the like can have a negative effect on your business image. It doesn't cost a fortune to get it set up correctly initially and give it that 'wow factor'. A successful campaign and design will pay for itself over and over again.

Opt-in email marketing is the best way to market to your clients. It means the recipient has authorised you to send them emails and they will expect your emails. These results are usually much more successful.

If you can also personalise your messages by including the persons name or company details and ensure the information they contain is relevant and targeted you have an even higher chance at ensuring your email is read and gets results. This also will help eliminate the disadvantages associated with messages getting through spam or junk filters.

Ensure you meet legal requirements by including an op-out or unsubscribe", says Danielle. "This is mandatory as is the person agreeing to receive your email.

Sending out bulk emails to unsolicited recipients is a big no-no. Not only will you annoy people and have an un-successful campaign but also you risk the chance of being fined under the anti-spamming laws.

Following these fundamental basics tips you will start to build a legitimate database that will ensure your email campaigns are successful.