You’ve got mail!
Do you remember hearing that? Those 3 words will forever live in online folklore from back when the internet was in its infancy; still trying to gain the world wide exposure that it has today.
Although the days of using dial up and receiving discs from AOL in the mail are long gone, we can thank them for introducing us to one of the most important, and oddly addictive, methods of communication…the email.
Although other forms of online communication have surfaced, such as text messaging and social media, email still remains the internet marketers weapon of choice; our Excalibur if you will.
This is why investing the time and effort into creating a successful email marketing campaign is such a rewarding and bankable endeavor that every internet marketer, no matter how new to the game they are, should undertake.
Unfortunately, for every internet marketer that creates a successful email marketing campaign, there are a hundred others that go about it the entirely wrong way. When used correctly, you will be able to create a bankable stream of income worth writing home about.
This is why over the next 2 weeks, I will be showing you various methods that can be employed from day 1 in order to drive profits like you’ve never seen before. Today’s post will focus on the basics steps that need to be taken in order to undertake the task of email marketing. Are you as excited as I am?
You Are Their Guest
Before we get down to business, it’s important to remember, that people are bombarded by ads, sales pitches, and promotions everywhere they go. If you treat your subscribers simply as numbers or dollar signs, you will lose their good graces. Manners and certain level etiquette is required if you plan to launch a successful campaign.
Being provided an email address is like being invited into the home of your potential consumer. They have given you the privilege of allowing you with the ability to contact them at any time, so don’t abuse it! As a guest, you should treat your host with the utmost respect. Provide them with information that is worthwhile or they may ask you to leave (i.e. unsubscribe).
Step 1: Asking Permission
No email campaign can properly begin without gaining access to your potential consumer’s email address, right? There are numerous methods for capturing an email address, but the most popular are the use of a squeeze page or providing a sign up box somewhere on your site.
Of course there also needs to be an offer that entices viewers to sign up such as the promise of a newsletter, updates, or access to additional information. However, an enticing offer isn’t all that is required. The average person has been exposed to sign up boxes and squeeze pages since the dawn of the internet age.
There’s a good possibility that they’ve even signed up for a number of lists. There is also a good possibility that the lists they have signed up to have spammed the heck out of their inbox in the past, causing them to be on the alert.
You can bet that everyone that views your sign up form has a brief moment where they all ask themselves the same few questions;
- What’s in it for me?
- Will you send me something worthwhile or more crap?
- How often will you send me emails?
- Am I going to receive spam?
- Is the risk worth the reward?
This is why a powerful call to action coupled with some enticing copywriting, and oh yeah….an alluring offer that your potential consumer MUST get their hands on.
Some of the above questions need to be addressed in order to entice your viewers to subscribe. Simply adding a box with a bland message isn’t going to cut it. Here’s an opt in that you DON’T want to mimic.
There is absolutely nothing provided in that opt in that suggests that there is ANY benefit to subscribing.
Below is an opt in that that has a solid message.
I found this on Brian Dean’s website, Backlinko. Dean’s site provides information for site owners that want to improve backlink profiles in order to attract more traffic.
Notice his call to action addresses the exact issue that his target audience has; they want MORE traffic. Additionally, he provides check marks of what his emails entail. He then provides what is possibly the most powerful method for gaining the trust of his audience; social proof from a well known name within the niche.
There are countless reputable email services that you can choose to help build your list. Unfortunately, none of them can guarantee whether your emails will hit the subscriber’s inbox or spam folder. An email that gets listed as spam is completely useless to you.
Of course, these providers offer general suggestions and basic guidelines to follow in order to stay in the good graces of email providers everywhere. Here are the suggestions from some of the most popular email services…
The best possible way to ensure that your emails appear in the subscribers inbox EVERY time, simply ask them to add your email to their contacts list in your initial email or follow up email.
Step #2 Meeting Expectations
Email marketing is about providing value and meeting the expectations that you set when you provided your original call to action. If your call to action is enticing and your follow up is powerful, then you will have a successful email marketing campaign.
If your call to action is enticing, but your follow up isn’t as expected, then your conversion rates will suffer significantly. For instance, if your original call to action said that you would provide daily newsletters that offer additional insight into X,Y,and Z, and you’ve only sent out bi-weekly emails, then you are not living up to expectations.
Additionally, if you’re sending emails daily, but aren’t providing additional information on X,Y,and Z that can’t be found on your site already, then you are not meeting expectations.
After all, they signed up with a preconceived notion of what kind of value they would receive. They weighed the pros and cons and decided to trust you enough to provide you with their precious email address. For you to not follow through with what you promised in your call to action will not only kill your profit, but the trust of your subscribers may begin to wane (which is way worse).
Step #3 Automation Helps Meet Expectations
You’d be crazy to sit and send out email after email for every subscriber that signs up. This is why the addition of an autoresponder is absolutely crucial to your email marketing endeavors. Almost all email services offer the option to set up an automated email sequence.
This will allow you to set up a series of emails (providing your best information) with a powerful message or lesson. Every time a new person subscribes, they will receive the first email in the series, followed by the additional emails at pre set intervals. This is a method that allows you to provide value to EVERY subscriber.
An initial email should be sent immediately, if only to introduce yourself and to thank them for signing up. It’s also an intelligent idea to inform your subscriber of what you have in store for them in the coming days (or weeks) so they know to keep an eye out for your incoming emails.
Step #4 Analytics
Every high performing email service should provide its clients with access to custom analytics. Though there are countless aspects of an email that need to be taken into consideration, the most important are; open rate, click through rate (CTR), and unsubscribes.
Your open rate will inform you of how well you’ve built your relationship with your subscribers. If it’s relatively low, then it means subscribers are simply glossing over it. In a perfect world, you want your subscribers to trust that you enough to open every email.
However, we don’t live in the perfect world, so the two main factors that could be affecting your open rate are the title and the amount of valuable information provided. If the title doesn’t pique the interest of the subscriber, then they aren’t going to open your email. If the subscriber was not impressed by the information provided in previous emails, then they aren’t going to open future emails, causing future open rates to suffer.
Once the email is opened, the subscriber has 3 possible options. They can click away from the email and focus their attention somewhere else, click through the links that you’ve provided to your money offer, or unsubscribe. What do you think would be the most beneficial action for your business?
The obvious answer would be to have the subscriber click through to your money offer. This comes down to the copy and call to action that you provide in your emails. They need to instill a sense of urgency or a proposition that is so attractive, that they simply need to check out your offer.
Lastly, if your audience is unsubscribing at a significant rate, then you have some serious work to do. The issue may be that you are sending emails too frequently, your titles aren’t enticing anyone, or your copy isn’t providing value or convincing enough to receive a click through.
Step #5 Segmentation
Segmenting your list into separate, more targeted categories, is one of the most effective ways to leverage every subscriber in your list. For example;
- Customer List (in comparison to leads)
- Product Updates (in comparison to a customer list)
- Daily Email List (in comparison to weekly, bi-weekly, monthly)
Every email subscriber has different preferences and habits. Based on the analytics you receive, you can separate your list in a manner that allows you to deduce the best possible method to market to each individual subscriber.
Unfortunately, you can’t please everyone. With that in mind, you may be chasing away subscribers and potential sales by treating every subscriber the same.
These are only the basics of email marketing. In the coming 2 weeks, we will delve deep into some of the more technical aspects of your email marketing campaigns. Believe me when I say that email marketing is your best friend. Aside from being a multi-billion dollar corporation that has a budget large enough to have your products sitting on the shelves of Walmart, there may be no better way for achieving success than email marketing.