Monthly Archives: May 2013

You Have an Email List, Now What? 10 Tips to Start Email Marketing

When you are starting out with email marketing it can be difficult to quickly build your internal email database. Although growing your list organically is the best option, buying email lists is a practical way to jumpstart your marketing efforts. Just find a list that fits your target – looking for new dental patients? By a dental email list. Stick with reputable companies and you will be good to go!

So now that you’ve purchased your email address database (from a reputable company, right?), now what?

There are many ways to utilize a curated address database, but the most common is direct email marketing. Here are ten tips to keep in mind while you plan out your email marketing campaign.

1)      The structure of your emails is important. Subject lines should be concise and links should be evident and direct.

2)      Make sure your emails are coming from a reputable account. Oftentimes it’s a bad idea to use marketing@yourcompany.com or something of the like. Try using a person’s name, whether he or she is a real person or you create a persona is up to you. It is less likely that your emails will be confused with spam if you are using a pseudonym instead of a “black-hole” address.

3)      Keep images to a minimum. Many times email providers will see a large file size email (or one with several images/attachments) and assume the worst. This is a good way to accidently get branded as spam.
4)      Along the same lines, it’s important to have your message front and center. You don’t want your potential client reading through a mess of images and text trying to figure out what you are trying to say. Less is more.
5)      It is important to have multiple “calls to action” in your email, but it is also important not to use things like, “CLICK HERE,” “BUY NOW,” etc. Sometimes overselling is a good way to dilute your message and make it hard to read.
6)      Timing is everything. Make sure that your marketing emails are coordinated and timed properly. Reminding your customers that you exist is OK, but it is best to time your marketing emails with promotions and campaigns to maximize conversion.
7)      Quality is always better than quantity. Fewer emails with real content and promotions are always a better choice than many, many emails with the same content.
8)      Spelling matters. This seems simple, but many email marketers throw together their emails quickly and sometimes let mistakes fall through the cracks. This is a good way to devalue your brand and is easy to fix: always proofread.
9)      Choose a consistent format. If possible, try and match the layout and coloring of your marketing emails with your website. Brand consistency goes a long way toward legitimacy in the eyes of a potential lead.
10)   Optimize your emails for mobile! Oftentimes, this is the one factor that will make a difference. Many of your potential leads will see these emails in passing on their phones or tablets. Make sure that they can follow up easily and efficiently.

By keeping these steps in mind, you will be able to begin start your first email marketing campaign on the right foot. Good luck!

By Alec Wilcox

 
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How to Use Email Lists to Increase Conversion Rate

In Internet marketing, conversion rate is defined as the amount of clicks or sales divided by the amount of visitors to your site. Getting your company name or product out there is only one part of the email marketing process. You also need to turn leads into clicks or sales. There are many ways to improve this statistic, but targeted email marketing using an email database is a great way to bolster the rate of conversion.

 
The first step in online lead generation is to make sure your company or product website has a landing page setup and ready to capture all of your new leads that will be coming in. A landing page is a specialize page on your website that is targeted to a specific campaign. If you are sending a special promotion  out to your email lists, then when someone clicks on the email you want them to go to a landing page that tells them all about the sale. If you just send the people from your email list to your homepage, they may be confused or frustrated that they can’t see any information about the sale and quickly leave.  Once you have a landing page setup, then you are ready to start sending traffic to your website using targeted email marketing.

Email marketing, especially if you’re using a specialized email database for your target market or industry, is a great way to drive traffic and convert leads and sales. A well-structured marketing email to promote a sale or event can do wonders to increase conversion.

If the email best practices below are are followed when using email marketing you should see a nice increase in conversion rates:

  • Use a reputable looking email address so as not to be accidentally labeled as a spammer (ajohnson@yourcompany.com is better than sales@yourcompany.com).
  • Make your offer front and center in the marketing email and easy to follow. This will increase the amount of leads visiting your site specifically to take advantage of the offer.
  • Experiment with different subject lines for each email list and keep track of conversions through Google Analytics to see what techniques work specifically for your customers.
  • Less is more. Welcome emails and repetitive offers are bound to decrease the amount of interest.
  • Emphasize offers or benefits rather than just features. Your customer knows why he’s coming to your site, it’s important to tell him what is special and why now is the time to buy.
  • Most importantly, use a “call to action” every time. A strong call to action is often the piece of the puzzle that can turn a marketing email from a good idea into a “must buy”.
 

Experiment with some of these tricks while monitoring conversion rate through Google Analytics.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution for email marketing, but it is possible to take this data and cater
your technique to your audience. As in all marketing, continue testing and you should have no
problem increasing conversion rate.

By Alec Wilcox


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5 Tips to Increase Email List Response Rate

If you’ve done a lot of online marketing, your tests probably show that email marketing is consistently one of the best ways to connect with your audience. If you haven’t tested your email list stop reading and focus on that instead. If you are looking for a bounce in response rates or just starting your email marketing campaign, I’ve put together a few tips that can help you easily make an impact. 

1. Subject Lines
Make sure that your subject lines are concise and do not look spammy. There are many factors that influence how people perceive your email queries, but without a doubt, making subject lines that look computer generated or automated is a surefire way to get your email sent to the spam folder. Using “free” in any way is a huge flag. Don’t use CAPS either they scream “PLEASE DELETE ME”. Typos are a definite deal breaker in many cases, but sometimes it entices readers to open your email – just don’t make it a habit. Make sure to proofread. Try to describe your product in a few words or even incorporate a call to action up front in the subject line. The idea is to get the reader’s attention and make him or her want to read more about the product. When it comes to subject lines, less is almost always more. Shorter subjects are proven to yield better results. 

2. Personalization
Personalizing emails whenever possible is another way to ensure that your marketing emails are at least viewed. Sending an email “to whom it may concern” is a good way to get your email disregarded when you could tailor each email to the names and titles in your database. Also, personalizing the subject line could give you additional opens. You can normally use a command like “FNAME” to insert someone’s first name in a subject like this: “FNAME, it’s time to register for your next event!” which will personalize your email subject to say “James, it’s time to register for your next event!” 

3. Multiple Calls to Actions
The point of sending a message to your email list is to get results – whether that’s a click, a lead, a forward, or a purchase, you need to give your recipients a change to click on your call to action. Make sure that you include not just one, but multiple links to you specific call to action in your marketing emails. Linking several different sections of text or including linked images are great ways to increase response rate. In many cases, marketing emails are likely to just be skimmed, so making it as easy as possible for the reader to follow links is a proven method to increase response percentages.

4. Segment Your Email List 
Conventional wisdom in marketing is to “know your market.” Studies show that smaller, more focused campaigns (to a region, profession, or any other subset of your complete list) are far more effective than generic mass-mailings. In email marketing, this is called “segmentation”. If you are sending an email list to doctors you should test sending a specific email to known doctors on the list and a specific email to staff. Or if you sell ecommerce, you can send a discount code to people who have never purchased and a sale email to your current customers. Make sure that your messages are tailored to your target audience to maximize response.

5. Be Creative..again and again
Finally, one more important factor in ensuring maximum response is to be creative with your mailings. The vast majority of your potential leads are going to be too busy to open all of their emails or they will get so many that they just delete them. Keeping all these tips in mind and frequently rephrasing, reimagining, and revamping your campaigns is a great way to stay relevant in their inboxes and a great way to begin converting these potential leads into sales. It is especially important to stand out from your competitors and to make sure that when your leads think of your product, they associate it with your business. Being creative in your marketing is the best way to do so. 

Good luck and remember to test the tips above to increase the results from your email lists!

By Alec Wilcox


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