The 3 Things You Must Do
The death knell for email marketing has been ringing for some time now. We hear how people are tired of overstuffed in-boxes and who hit the delete button even before skimming the subject.
There’s an alternative say the marketing gurus: social media. This is supposedly the best and brightest way to reach prospects and customers.
But how long before people get burned out on Twitter and Facebook? I know I’m getting close to the saturation point.
Technology may change but marketing principles DO NOT.
In order to experience success, an e-mail campaign must consist of three key steps. If one is missing, you’ve got a recipe for failure on your hands. Here they are:
1. Avoid the Hard Sell at All Costs
Your readers aren’t going to read e-mails that come from the shallow salesman in the tacky plaid jacket. You’ve got to build trust with your readers.
Intelligent consumers are wary of the hard sell. They use their e-mail to keep up with personal and professional contacts, read a few newsletters from valuable, informative sources, and go on with their day. They have no time for hype and sales pitches.
Most internet user experiences are so saturated with advertisements that their brains turn off the minute they even sense that you’re trying to sell them. That’s why it is vital that you offer something of value to your e-zine readers. It’s okay to promote your service or product, but do so in a way that’s informative.
2. Provide Real Value
If you aren’t providing value then you’re just contributing to the noise. Unfortunately, many business owners using e-mail marketing have become so hungry for the sale that they don’t even know how to provide value. Let me clue you in; it’s not by writing ten paragraphs that state the many reasons customers should buy from you or use your services.
Use your profession or expertise wisely. If you are an attorney promoting your firm, offer a newsletter that answers often asked legal questions instead of just sending out massive, generic e-blasts promoting your services.
Printable coupons or discount codes are also appropriate for certain types of businesses. Be sure that these are also realistically valuable. Offering a mere 10% off of a $5.00 purchase isn’t going to bring the masses to your door.
Whatever you do, the point is to remember that old adage, “give to get”. Give your readers something they can use, and they’ll remember you. They may even pass your content on to friends or colleagues, so you’ll get the added bonus of new referrals.
3. Compelling Content for the Subject Line Scanners
Most internet users are already busy people. You could be offering the best deal in town, but if you don’t grab your reader’s attention in your subject line…no sale. That is one of the main reasons why conversion rates of some email campaigns are so low. You’ve got to get in the game and grab your readers.
How do you write a compelling subject line that is ‘click-worthy?’ Try this experiment. The next time you are looking for something online, whether it’s on AOL, Google, or an online magazine, be aware of the titles YOU click on. Remember those days that you started off checking your mail and ended up ordering that new movie release? You ended up there somehow. Next time pay attention to what grabs YOU and try the same technique for your own subject lines.
Your subject line must do one of the following:
- Make an enticing offer
- Answer a real problem
- Give something away
- Spark extreme curiosity
If you’ve got one of those going on, you’ve got a good chance of being opened and read.
E-zines and newsletters are certainly not a dying breed, but your approach may need a little refreshing in order to capture the attention and loyalty of today’s savvy internet users. Engaging, useful and problem solving content is the key to getting noticed, and the key to increasing your bottom line.