Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Unleash the Power of Email Marketing for Your Business











Introduction
You might have thought that email marketing was dead, and that you need to be marketing your business using more of the “latest” technology. Keeping up with new technology in marketing is important, but email marketing is far from dead. As a matter of fact, it’s growing at a blistering pace.

Consider a few facts about email marketing. (From the article, Is Email Marketing Dead? Here’s What the Statistics Show, from optinmonster.com.)

28% more emails were sent in 2016 over 2015.

And, the numbers just keep on growing. By the end of 2017, it’s projected that there will be over 3.7 billion email users worldwide, with an estimated 319.6 billion emails sent annually. Since there are currently about seven billion people on the planet, this means that approximately half of the world population uses email! Half!

In the US alone, over 90% of all adults use email, and close to 75% of teens!

Here are some more very pertinent facts.

How do most people check their email? Not on a computer! Most folks check their emails on a phone. Makes sense, doesn’t it? How did you check your email last? Me? Always on my phone!

People who dismiss email and tout platforms like SMS (text messaging) are always talking about deliverability. They must have missed this next stat! 98% of emails sent are actually delivered!

The good news about email goes on and on and on. Email is the dominant form of communication among professionals, according to 95% of professionals surveyed.

Finally, what about the only thing that really matters to business managers and owners…money? What about the ROI of email marketing?

Well, according to OptinMonster themselves, the ROI of email marketing is 28% higher than that of direct mail.

The bottom line is this. Other marketing channels absolutely have their pros. Email marketing, however, needs to be the mainstay of your online marketing efforts. In this short report, I’m going to talk about how you and your business can better leverage email marketing.

Before I do that, however, let me introduce myself, so you know who you’re talking to!

About Me
Hello my name is Steve Hodson and the proud Director of Email Marketing Roadmap. My passion is helping businesses market their services and goods, and  in turn help them to build long term relationships with new and existing clients. Its the same strategies I use to grow my own business  and one of the best ways is still and will be for a long time to come "Email Marketing"


Email Marketing Basics


Now that you know who I am, let’s break this whole thing down into the basics.
What exactly do you need to make email marketing begin to work well for you and your business?
Well, you need at least the following…
n  A way to send emails
n  A way to gather emails
n  A reason for someone to give you their email address
n  One or more consistent email campaigns
Let’s look at each of these in turn.

A Way to Send Emails
When you communicate with a client/customer/patient one on one, you probably use your business’s email client, or perhaps even a free email service like Gmail.
You type in the recipient’s email address, your message, and then hit Send, and your email is sent.
If you want to send another email, you do this all over again.
I’m sure you realize that email marketers don’t do this. Our goal is to create a large list of people who want to hear from you about your business (specials, coupons, sales, new products, etc.), and we want the ability to send the same, or virtually the same, message to everyone on our email list at the same time.
To do this, we use a piece of software called an autoresponder. I’m sure you’ve heard of some of the big autoresponder companies, Aweber, GetResponse, Mail Chimp, Constant Contact. There are more, surely. These particular ones are in the “cloud”. That is, you log in to a dashboard and use your account.
There are desktop autoresponders, too! Although, these are no longer recommended because of deliverability issues.
And, lately, there’s a new class of autoresponders called Marketing Automation Platforms. Examples would be Drip, Active Campaign, InfusionSoft, among many, many others.
In order to do email marketing right, you’ll need an account with one of these companies, or with a similar company. If you do not currently have such an account, please reach out to me. I’m happy to discuss your options in terms of cost, function, and usability with you.
Again, bottom line, you need an automated way to send out emails.

A Way to Gather Emails

Well, you’re not going to have anyone to send your email messages to, if you don’t have anyone on your list.
So, what’s a “list”?
A “list” in email marketing parlance is a collection of emails, which you have permission to send to. Normally, your list is stored in your autoresponder account. Although, since the list is so important, I recommend you back that up periodically, and store it somewhere else, like on your company’s computer or even better there AND on a thumb drive. The renowned marketing genius, Dan Kennedy, said that the biggest asset of any business isn’t their machines, logos, products, etc.…it’s their list of past customers! Your business can burn to the ground. (God forbid!) If you have your list, you can get up and running again fast. If you don’t have your list, you’ll be starting all over like you did when you first opened your door.
So, you need a list, which means that you need a way to gather emails and collect them on that list.
There are a lot of ways to do that, but the main ones break down into two categories.
   
1.       Past customers
2.       People potentially interested in your business

Gathering Emails of Past Customers
You absolutely must be gathering the emails of past customers! These people bought from you, and as long as they enjoyed the experience, they’ll buy from you again and again and again! Selling to an existing customer/client/patient is so much more cost effective than getting a new one! 
You need some way in your customer onboarding (how you complete the sales process) of getting the customer’s email address and either manually or hopefully automatically putting it on an autoresponder account. Most of the payment processors that businesses now use can be configured to do this.
People Potentially Interested
If you’re doing things right with your online marketing, you’ve got a lot of people looking at your website, clicking your Facebook ads and your YouTube ads, and generally running into your content online. You absolutely must be getting as many of these people as you can to subscribe to your mailing list. They’ll do so if you offer them a big enough incentive. A coupon, a trial run of something, extra value added, all of this can be used to ethically “bribe” people to surrender their emails in order to get something valuable in return.
This sets you up to be able to market to them over time via email!
And, in case you missed it, I also just covered the third item… A reason for someone to give you their email address.   


 

Once you get someone on your list, you need to start sending them emails. Not just any email, however. You need emails that they will perceive as valuable so that they 1) stay on your list and continue opening emails and 2) actually become buyers, or if they already were buyers, buy more!


There are two types of emails that we send out when email marketing.

Emails that are time sensitive. These are anchored to something happening right now or in the near future…a discount period, a new product that will sell out, a limited time offer.

The other types of emails that we send out are not time sensitive. They can (and should) be queued up in advance, and whenever someone new subscribes to your list, this email sequence starts rolling. So, you’d send them an email on day 0, day 7, day 14, like that. However often you feel is appropriate for your business!

Now that we’ve covered the basics of email marketing, let’s talk a little more about the tools you need.
  
The Right Tool for The Right Job!

By “tools” I mean what type of autoresponder do you need.

In broad terms there are three types.

·         Self-hosted

·         Autoresponders

·         Marketing Automation Platforms

You might already have an autoresponder that you’re using, and that’s fine. If you’re not really hip to email marketing, though, pay close attention to this section.

Self-Hosted Email Software

Self-hosted means that you’re not using an account on some other business’s platform. Aweber is not self-hosted, for instance.

Unless you’re a larger business and you actually have someone on staff who really knows the ins and outs of the technical aspects of email marketing, you need to avoid using a self-hosted solution. Without going in to too much detail, over time (and more quickly that you might wish) your deliverability will drop.

People opting out of your emails, doing things like marking them as spam, and abandoning their own emails addresses and not even reading your emails all tend to negatively impact the deliverability of ALL of the emails you send out. Big companies like Aweber understand this issue and are working behind the scenes to mitigate the effects of all of this. Unless you can hire a bona fide email expert, you don’t have the time to become one. There’s an incredible about of behind the scenes detail to all of this.

You’ll be better off letting a larger, more experienced company handle your email sending for you.

Autoresponders

By “autoresponders” I mean specifically companies like Aweber and GetResponse, among many, many others.
Having at least an autoresponder account is a must for any business serious about email marketing. The autoresponder takes care of issues like deliverability, unsubscribes, and also make sure that you have all
the necessary verbiage on your emails that are required by law. (Like unsubscribe links.) You can keep your list of emails on the autoresponder account. You can have more then one list. For many businesses, an autoresponder is all you need. Unless, you want to get more sophisticated in your marketing efforts. 


Marketing Automation

Where autoresponders send the same email to everyone on your list, marketing automation platforms (MAPS) are capable of treating different subscribers differently according to their past history.

Let’s say that you send a video about a new product to your entire list. With an autoresponder, that’s the end of it. Everyone gets the same video, and each subscriber either watches or doesn’t, and there’s no real way for you to track this.

With a MAP account, you can treat different subscribers differently according to their behavior. If A sees the video you sent out, you can send him/her a different follow up email that you would for B, who didn’t. If Sarah buys a certain product, you can send her follow up emails based on that purchase, whereas Bob, who didn’t buy the product, wouldn’t get those emails. MAPs are intelligent, in that sense. (They can be programmed like computers.)

If you don’t have an autoresponder account at all, and you’re just getting started, I’d suggest you take the plunge into marketing automation. The learning curve is a little steeper, but in the end, you’ll make more sales and make more money! 

Now that we’ve talked about what kind of autoresponder to use, let’s talk about how to collect emails in the first place!

Getting the Emails

Of course, none of this is important if you don’t have emails to market to!

If you’re going to start marketing to your email list, you have to have a way to get those emails into your autoresponder/marketing automation platform. There are a number of ways to do this.

You can do this by hand, one by one. Retail businesses often do this. They run drawings where customers have to put their business cards into a fish bowl. Periodically a drawing is done, and someone wins something. The email addresses on those cards, however, get put on your list.

Some autoresponders/marketing automation platforms allow you to enter emails by hand. Others make it more difficult by sending that new email address an email that notifies them they’re being subscribed to a list, and making them click a link to agree to this. That process is called double opt-in. It’s not a bad idea, either. That way you make it less likely someone will complain that you’re emailing to them.

Another method is through your website. Just have a sign-up box in the sidebar of your website or a whole page devoted to this (called a squeeze page). Your visitors land on your website and sign up to receive your newsletter or some other valuable piece of information.

Forward thinking businesses, especially retail businesses, are now using apps for phones to build their lists. The idea is this. When you download the app, you have to enter an email address and agree to be put on a list to use the app. Of course, you have to incentivize this with app only specials to get the maximum effect.

Finally, in some cases when someone pays for your products or services, you can automatically take their information and add their name and email to your list. You do that via what’s called an IPN, Instant Payment Notification. This is basically a file sent from your payment processor back to you. Often this file contains the name and email address of the purchaser. This all, of course, depends on the details of how you accept payments.

You can, and should, be implementing all of these methods to build your list. As you build the list, start marketing to that list, and you’ll start reaping the benefits of email marketing sooner, rather than later.
Now that we’ve got your list building, in the last section, we’re going to talk about how to write emails that convert into sales.

What to Write, How to Write It, And How Often to Send It
Here’s where a lot of businesses just get it wrong! Although it’s important to build a relationship with the people on your list, you need to remember why they’re there! So…why are they there? What did you promise them when they signed up?

If you promised coupons, then you better be sending them list only coupons regularly. At least once a month. If you promised something free, or an upgrade of some kind, then you need to be letting them know about the freebies and the upgrades. KEEP YOUR PROMISES! If you’ll just do that, people will keep reading your emails, and fewer will unsubscribe from them.

Sure, you can tell them about your business. Educate them. That sort of thing. But, keep that to a minimum. These people want to spend money with you. Help them do that!

As far as how often to send emails, a lot of business owners are literally frightened of their lists! They think if they send emails more frequently, that everyone will unsubscribe and complain on Yelp. Here’s the deal about this. If you’re sending people emails they want to get, then fewer will unsubscribe. People really unsubscribe because they’re not receiving the kind of email they want to receive, not because they feel like you’re emailing them too much. As long as you have something valuable to send to them (that they think is valuable), then you’re fine. Email once a week! At least email once every two weeks! Once a month is just not nearly enough! 



Conclusion

Email marketing done right is one of the most powerful ways to grow sales, revenue, and profits! We are email marketing experts and for a very affordable monthly fee we can design email marketing funnels tailored for your business.  If I can help you with any of this, please let me know. Here’s my contact information again.

Steve Hodson.
Mobile  077230 29573
Email    steve@clickfunnelsconsultants.co.uk