When one thinks of marketing, they often neglect or forget about their email list. Surprisingly, email is still relevant, despite all the negative talk about people being too busy and not using email.
With email, you have a direct communication opportunity with your potential clientele that doesn’t happen with social media or pay-per-click advertising. If you use email right, you can grow your business and sell more products, like nobody’s business.
Create the Bait
Marketing is a lot like fishing. If you want someone to bite on your offer, you must first begin with creating quality bait. The bait for email marketing is typically an offer to your guest that they can’t refuse. The offer can be something free you give away, an educational video, or a well-written document that will help them accomplish something.
Now for the rules:
Rule 1: Create a download that relates directly to what you are selling. If you are selling vitamins, create a download on the benefits of ingesting natural foods and their vitamin value. Don’t sell a download on how to work out and feel better.
Rule 2: Your first email is the one that matters most. Title the email the same as the name as your download. Keep the email short and include a link to the download if not the download itself. Also thank them.
Rule 3: In that same first email mention what the reader can expect from you in future emails. You can say something like “in the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing with you the different types of vitamins people take and which work and which don’t. This newsletter is where I share my best research and we look forward to having you along and hearing about your success.”
Rule 4: Your first two to three emails after contact are mostly introductory and for trust building and occur before direct sales happens. But…. always include an option for them to buy something such as a link at the bottom of the email that links to your website or blog and it’s purchase action.
Rule 5: When creating Calls to Action within your email, emphasize why someone should click. Don’t just say Click Here for more information. Write up a compelling reason – “If you are ready to feel better and aren’t sure you are taking the right vitamins, then Read More”
Split Testing Campaigns
Always test two types of emails against each other if you have that capacity with your email software. Test factors can include:
- Short vs long form emails
- Call to-action links and button
- Subject lines
- Education vs sales
Design Your Email Sequencing Ahead of Time
Autoresponders and sequencing are emails that go out automatically based on If/And rules. To begin laying out your email campaign, first decide how far apart you want each campaign to run. Again, if you are comparing two campaigns against each other for best results, design two types of sequences. See below:
Message 1 (wait 2 days) Message 2 (wait 2 days) Message 3 (wait 2 days) etc.
Message 1 (wait 1 day) Message 2 (wait 1 day) Message 3 (wait 1 day) etc
Next, you will lay out a series of conditions that decide what action occurs depending on another action. For instance, an action could be:
If person opens Message 1, automatically send to them Message 2. Another action is, if person opens Message 1 and clicks download, automatically send them Message 3.
It is best to do this on paper so that you can visualize how the sequencing will go. The questions you will ask yourself is, “If” this action is taken, “What” happens next or “If” this action is not taken “What” happens next. There can even be some segments that depend on “If” this action is taken “And” this other action is taken, “What” happens next.
If you are using an email software such as Mailchimp, you can take advantage of their new dashboard that helps you put these campaigns together.
In Mailchimp, sequencing is called “Workflow”. As you can see from the image, you may choose any of the applicable workflows to start your sequencing strategy. I like to use Website Activity but you can set up a number of campaigns and subcampaigns.
Once you click on the Workflow icon, Mailchimp will walk you through a series of questions to determine how you want your emails to flow and based on what types of conditions. After these parameters are set up, you will then begin designing each email within the campaign.
Workflow campaign can be designed around Segmentation (see below) or rules such as
- Sending a downloaded item to somebody
- A purchase
- A visit to your website
- People who live within a certain distance from your office
You may also edit the delay between emails from the Mailchimp dashboard.
As your email list grow, you will then want to begin segmenting your email lists. Yes, putting all your people into different buckets before the email sequencing goes out will help you fine tune your marketing message.
Segmentation lists can look like this:
-Signed Up For Newsletter on Website
-Made a Purchase
-Visited Shopping Cart and Left
-People Met At Conference
The lists could be endless as you can see each would require their own unique message. If somebody already made a purchase from you, maybe you want to upsell them on another product. If somebody visited your shopping cart and left, you would tailor a different message to them maybe even with the addition of a free shipping coupon or incentive to entice them to complete the transaction.
Imagine the whole process like a story being told. What story would you tell someone who came to your store and left? What story would you tell another person who bought five items from you? The story told to the person who left may be to convince them to come back and how they can now receive a great offer from you for a limited time if they do come back. The story told to the loyal buyer is that you will give them free shipping on their next purchase (something Zappos is famous for and why they built such strong customer loyalty)
Again with Mailchimp, segmenting your lists can be done through boxes like the one below.
Designing Your Email
Last you have to think out how each email will look based on where it falls within your campaign and sequencing.
A basic campaign will look something like this:
Somebody sees that you offer a free download and they sign up for it. Your email messages mail look somewhat like the following.
Message 1 (The Free Download)
Message 2 (A video of yourself or more information about you)
Message 3 – An offer for a product
Message 4 – If no response from 3, message 4 goes out with another offer that is less expensive.
Message 5 – If no response to 3 or 4, another offer with a service.
Building a strong email list often means going deep with each person who has signed up with you. By segmenting and tailoring messages to each person based on their needs and preferences, you will keep people longer who will respond more often to your messages.