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Email Marketing in its broadest term basically means whatever form(s) of email you send to your customers or prospects. It might be sending promotional emails to try and gain new customers, persuade current customers to buy again or take some action – like read a free report. Emails are also a great method in building customer loyalty and strengthening the relationship.
Why Is Email Marketing So Popular
It’s effective! You may have been using email to communicate periodically with your customers but may not have realized email marketing has distinct advantages over other marketing methods?
- Email and e-newsletter marketing are the second most effective tool (SEO is first) for generating conversions according to the “Ad Effectiveness Survey”.
- Regular email marketing to existing customers generates a 15 – 50% increase in total online business.
Why Is Building An Email List So Important
- Typically 70% of your site visitors are NEW visitors and may not ever come back to your site
- Email traffic can account for 1/3 of your overall traffic
- Email is a powerful sales tool
- Done Right it can build a relationship
Why Use An Email Service Provider?
First let’s understand the importance and value of an email service provider as compared to having a basic email contact form on your website.
Traditional Email contact forms serve as a quick method to get in touch with the website owner or the company to inquire about services or products. You can, of course, save the emails that you receive via your contact form(s) and enter them (manually) into your own list of some form. However, this is time consuming and when you decide to send out an email to all clients using your own email account you may get flagged down by your Internet Service provider or personal email provider. You may also be violating the Can-Spam Act. Which will likely reflect negatively on your business.
What You Need For A Good List Building Program
Email Provider- One that offers superior deliver-ability, analytics, double opt-in, sign up forms, manage subscriptions, etc.There are many providers to choose from. For example: MailChimp (EasyWeb Business’s provider of choice), Aweber, Constant Contact, iContact, GetResponse and many more. Pricing is relatively consistent with all providers once you reach a certain amount of subscribers and services with the top ones are fairly close. However, we prefer MailChimp for ease of use, good customer service, and their commitment to providing the latest technology and market advancement.
A Word of Caution: Make your decision and plan to stay with that provider. Once you begin building a list, transferring your list to another provider can be difficult and often the new provider will require your existing list to “reopt in” which can often cause a severe drop in the number of subscribers you have.
Compelling Offer – A PDF eBook, MP3s, Videos or combination of these and a Sign Up Form
You definitely need a “compelling offer” to get people to subscribe to your list. An eBook, video or podcast series that delivers real value to them helps them to decide to enter their email address, and allows you to follow up with them over the next several weeks with a planned auto responder series.
The type of data that you want to collect in your sign-up form largely depends on your business. But in general you want to keep is as short and easy as possible. Name and Email is sufficient in most cases.
Don’t let the term “Ebook” scare you. An Ebook is usually nothing else then a PDF document. If you decide to offer an eBoo, don’t overdo it – nobody will read your 80 page PDF. Instead keep it short ( 5 – 15 Pages) and informative. Give away tips and provide value – but don’t create the “definitive” guide. The idea is that the reader comes back to you for more because he trusts you and wants to learn more. EasyWeb Business can help you if you need content creation – whether it’s an eBook or Free Report, our writers can develop what you need. Or if you have some content already. our writers can rewrite the content “in your voice”.
Videos are a great way to build your list and if you have a new model Smartphone, you can even use your Smartphone to create a good video that provides compelling information. Example: A short video on one of the Top 5 questions you get asked repeatedly by your patients, customers, clients, etc. Or a video showing a “How To” or “Time Saving Tip” that a prospect would like to know. Your video can then be part of the Email Opt In process. It’s not hard and MailChimp has some helpful resources on this or EasyWeb Business can help you.
Thank You Page, Opt-in Email and Confirmation Page – All Email Service providers will use double opt-in to be compliant with the Can-Spam Act mentioned above. What that means is that the website visitor will have to go through a few steps in order to be added to your list.
Many Providers offer pre-built pages, however we strongly recommend creating your own pages. This will keep the experience for your visitor more consistent with “your” message and your website. This is one element of our service that we focus on – keeping the message, look and feel consistent for your customers and prospects.
The Pages and Steps usually include:
- “Thank You Page” – which is displayed after the visitor fills out the form. This page instructs to check his/her email to confirm the submission.
- “Confirmation Email” – this email is sent by the Email Service Provider such as MailChimp with a click-able opt-in link.
- “Delivery and Download Page” – after clicking the link in the Confirmation Email from the visitor is sent to the final page that includes the download of the eBook, video, coupon or whatever has been developed as your compelling offer.
Autoresponders – Following up with your new subscribers automatically is a key component in building a relationship! You’ll want to continue the relationship once the prospect has opted in to your list and received the compelling offer. And this is the “backbone” of your email marketing. Continuing to send information to your prospects on a regular basis so they stay informed and “connected” to you. And this method has proven to work for any business, from Oil Change for a local mechanic’s website to Tooth Cleaning for Dentists. You no doubt have a follow up idea for your business. We’ll be glad to assist you in the creation and/or setup of your Autoresponder Series.