ReachTEL conducted a five-question survey of 616 residents in the Victorian Federal electorate of Maribyrnong during the day of 8th June 2013.
The First-time Email Campaign: Why, When and How to Start
Why an Email Campaign?
Although there is a lot of talk that mobile SMS marketing (or social media) is about to leave email marketing campaigns in the dust, the vast majority of Internet marketing experts say email is still king. Broadly speaking, it has the highest ROI of any direct response marketing. Email marketing isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
The distinction between email marketing and advertising is important. Email, like SMS, falls under permission-based marketing. That means that while you may initially entice readers with ads, you are able to continually market to them because they allow you to.
That means that each message is both a marketing message that increases the value of your brand AND something valuable to your email readers.
With an email campaign, you are no longer broadcasting, per se, but you are building relationships that provide long-term value both to you and to your customers.
When to Start
As the saying goes, "The best time to plant a tree is 10 years ago. The second best time is now." The same goes for building an email list. That being said, you will need a website first. At the very least, you will need a simple landing page to make an offer and collect email signups.
We also recommend integrating email marketing with a blog and social media for maximum effectiveness. Dozens of single-person businesses are making over $1 million a year in profit with this trifecta of web marketing methods alone. What could that kind of leverage do for your business?
How to Build an Email List
As the veteran web copywriters and email marketers over at Copyblogger Media prescribe: attract, engage, and convert.
1. Create your offer. This is a freebie or benefit that has real value to the people you want on your list. Give it to people who sign up to your list.
2. Create your auto responder. An auto responder is a message or series of messages that are automatically sent to each new subscriber. Note: “Automatic” doesn’t mean that your messages sound robotic or impersonal. To the contrary, it should be personal without pretending to be something it isn’t. It should, of course, be professional as well.
3. Create your sign-up form. This should let subscribers know exactly what to expect (including what you send in your auto responder); promise something of value, reassure them that you never spam and that you will safeguard their information.
4. Create your landing page. This is where you will send people, via a web-link. Give it a unique, memorable domain of its own so that people can find it with a Google search.
5. Send people to your landing page. There are a lot of ways to do this. The cheapest and most important is to place links at relevant places in your site and blog. Other advertising strategies also work.
6. Build your list. A list contains the emails of whoever signed up on the sign-up form. You can, and should, have multiple forms and multiple lists, in order to segment and effectively tailor your marketing communications. These lists become the lifeblood of your email campaigns. A message happens once, but your list is forever. Cultivate it accordingly.
1. Regularly deliver value. First, never, ever, ever spam your list: it is illegal, it can get you fined, and it doesn't work well. Likewise, hard sell tactics scare off your subscribers. Make sure the email is valuable in itself as well as being an ad for your brand/service/product, and you will do well.
o Make it easy to opt out in one click at the bottom of every email. This is a best practice for a very good reason. You want to be sure that everyone on your list wants to be there. You also don't want to make anyone regret signing up.
2. Monitor your analytics. Know your open rates (how many people open your email message) and your click-through rates (how many people click on a link to more information or a sales page from within the email). You will learn what works over time.
1. Ask for the sale. Yes, you are building relationships, but you are also running a business, and your subscribers expect you to sell stuff. Conversion means they buy from you and opt in to a premium list with still more benefits. If they say yes, GREAT; if not, that is fine too. They are still interested (or else they would opt out of your list), but not quite ready yet. As long as you continue to engage and provide value, they will still be there next time you ask. Remember these simple rules of thumb:
o Make it easy to say no
o Make it even easier to say yes
2. Make limited offers. “For the first X number of people…” or “Offer ends tomorrow.” We recommend this because limited offers work. Why do they work? Because they cut through indecision. Be sure to send them a friendly reminder right before the doors close. Most businesses will see a surge of activity within the last two hours of the deadline.
There are as many email campaign strategies as there are businesses that use them, but this framework should give you a clear picture of where to start and how to proceed. To guide you through the process, ReachTEL support is available from any page on our website.