Today marks the last day of our 30 Day Email Marketing Challenge. We looked at many aspects of our marketing habits, and hopefully discovered some areas for improvement.
I certainly did!
As I have delved into the many aspects of maximizing email success, I have learned – or relearned – bunches. It’s good to take an inventory – or audit – of our practices so that we can improve and continue to grow.
As a reminder, email marketing is the most effective marketing strategy to date. Even compared to social media marketing. Your industry or niche doesn’t really matter; you will see a high return on investment if you implement the proper email marketing tips and strategies in any niche.
As a recap: Here are the major areas you need to refine in order to maximize your process.
- Enhance your Opt-Ins and Freebies for Higher Subscription Rates
You must generate leads by strengthening your opt-in forms and your offers.
Small eBooks, discount codes, or simple newsletters are a great place to start. Make sure the opt-in offer you use is what your readers want or need, and be sure to execute on that promise as soon as possible. If you know your audience struggles in a certain area, then this is the best place to start when developing opt-in or lead magnet content.
2. Value Your Subject Lines
While subject lines are short and sweet, you should take the time to craft the most compelling ones. In fact, you should create at least two to three for every email you send and test them among different subscribers to pick the ones with the best return.
3. Perfect Your Calls-To-Action
Always include a call-to-action and be sure it is consistent between email and campaign.
Don’t add more than one type of call-to-action per email, or you will likely confuse your subscribers. Instead, pick one goal and then perfect the call-to-action to optimize your chances of accomplishing it.
4. Focus on Personalization and Quality Content
A huge benefit to email marketing is how powerfully it can increase your authority, credibility, and trust as a brand. The more personalized, engaging, and valuable the email content, the more likely you will convert your subscribers to paying customers.
Valuable and quality content is key to gaining the trust of your followers. They must believe in your word.
Your honesty, integrity, and high quality products allow your subscribers to get to know you and learn to trust you. As they know you better, they will trust you more with their time and money.
5. Create Multiple Landing Pages for Each Campaign
This one is a bonus. We really haven’t talked about landing pages much. Yet they add a new dimension to your marketing plan.
If boosting your sales is your email marketing goal, as it is for many, then you must create landing pages for each campaign you create. Landing pages are sales pages that further describe, entice or invite someone to join or purchase your products.
Your call-to-action should lead them right to the landing page. From that page they can purchase your products, join a group, or sign up for your next project.
Some themes and many email providers have landing pages available to make this step easy.
Some pages are pre-designed and all you have to do is change the pictures and text in order to have professional looking landing pages.
So there you have it. A wrap up of our challenge.
Each piece is an important piece of the email success puzzle. As you evaluate your practices, you will find some “aha” moments when you’ll see how to accomplish something better.
You’ll find that working on each part of the email marketing process will be your key to success.
If you’ve missed some posts, you can read back through them. I think you’ll find some great ideas or reminders which will boost your email success.
What do you do with your email clients after they sign on and receive your welcoming sequence?
What about the next months – years -as you go along? Not all of them even open your emails – let alone purchase from you. Don’t be offended by that. People are busy and they receive so many emails.
Yet there are ways to continue to nurture your list so that you will keep them coming back. And maybe even the open-less customers will wake up and respond.
When planning my approach, I always think about my reaction to others’ emails. There are some which I hadn’t opened ever. Maybe I was too busy. Or maybe the subject matter didn’t seem to blend with my projects. Then one day I was working on something and their email seemed to hit the spot. I opened, clicked, and bought – after many months of unopened emails.
I remember one marketer who had a temper tantrum one day and blasted his list for not opening his emails. Oops! That is not the approach you want to take. You must realize that your people are busy and respect their decision to open or not at any given moment.
There are better ways to encourage your clients to open, click, and buy from you.
So let’s look at a few of these ways to nurture your leads.
Lead nurturing is about keeping up with your leads or potential clients and ensuring they don’t go “cold” or unsubscribe. To do this, you must send information beyond sales or promotional content. You must give them information and encouragement to bolster their morale and their business.
In return, this improves your return on investment, your credibility, and your reputation as a business.
Interestingly, companies have reported that lead nurturing campaigns make them the most revenue. In other words, without nurturing their leads, they likely wouldn’t have a successful business today.
So let’s look at five strategies…
Send Out a Weekly Educational Series
Send about one to two weekly emails about how to use your products, services, or anything related to the industry or the problem you solve for your audience. This establishes your authority in the industry and shows your readers that your products or services are right for them.
Anyone doing business online is always looking for better ways to do business. When you provide this free information, your emails will increase in value for them.
Invite Your Customers to Other Platforms
Send a reminder to let your readers know that they can find you on other platforms as well. This allows you to engage more with your audience and opens more doors to market them. It also provides you more information on your audience behaviors to further improve your content and communication methods.
Send “Thank you” Emails
Don’t forget to recognize their participation or purchase. To establish a deeper connection, send a “thank you” message any time they join your campaign or purchase a product.
Ask Questions and Solicit Personalized Feedback
Encourage your readers to reply, ask questions or provide feedback to improve your process. Not only does this provide you direct areas to improve upon, but it also shows your readers that you value their options and are truly there to help.
Oh, and when they reply, read their responses. Be sure to follow through!
Segment By Buyer Stage or Persona
Be sure to segment your readers depending on what stage of the buying process they are in. Those throughout the funnel should be getting different material depending on their stage.
For example, those at the top of the funnel should receive a welcome email and onboarding sequence.
People in the middle should get educational materials and encouragement to continue.
Finally, your long-term customers receive more promotions along with the nurturing emails. The more you segment and refine your list, the better you will meet their needs, and the better your conversions will be.
The potential for you to increase your revenue is incredible if you pay close attention to lead nurturing.
Lead nurturing improves your relationships with your customers and can dramatically increase your return on investment. Sending thank-you’s, educational material, encouragement and answers to feedback can lead to a growing, prosperous list.
And that means more friends and more money!
They signed up for your email list. That’s terrific!
So what’s next?
Next is what is called the “Onboarding Sequence.” The sequence of emails you send out immediately. Obviously, this sequence should be on your autoresponder. So they will automatically receive these emails – immediately, then the next day or two, then a week later, etc.
Just signing up for your email doesn’t mean that the person will be a super customer. But then again, they may be the best customer you will ever have.
So you want to welcome them and give them a chance to see what you are all about. What you have to offer and if this is a good fit.
I would like to share some tips which will help you optimize your sequence
Always Start with A Confirmation
This is vital to ensure the deliverability of your email. Sometimes subscribers fill in the wrong information and they never receive the email. However, a double-opt-in form where the reader must confirm their address reduces this chance.
A confirmation is also a great way to personalize your introduction and further increase their interest.
Focus On Benefits Not Features
When subscribers first join, show them the benefits you promised in the opt-in. Don’t just list features.
This is probably the number one rule for sales anywhere.
You can list tons and tons of features. But what they want to hear is how it benefits them.
For instance, a feature might be: I will send you a daily scripture verse. The benefit: You can start your day full of faith with the impactful daily scripture verse I’ll send.
A feature: I have a huge selection of courses on how to write and publish your book. The benefit: You will have guidance every step of the way as you listen to my instruction on book publishing.
So you see the difference? The feature is what you have to offer. The benefit is how the feature will impact them.
To really understand this difference, think about automobile commercials. They don’t major on what’s under the hood. They display the dream that beautiful girls will flock to the guys who drive this car. Or that if you have this car, you can get away from all of the city hustle and enjoy the beauty and adventure of a secluded trail in the mountains.
You can see what I’m saying. When you are introducing yourself, try to focus on what they will get out of hanging around you.
Also, provide real value. Give them instant satisfaction by joining your list with hardly anything in return.
Develop Inactive and Active Reader Sequences
Be sure to segment your list in terms of their behavior and how they respond to your emails. If they don’t click them, they should be moved into different sequences or emails to persuade their interest further. This way, you know every email you send can accomplish its goal more effectively.
Use Calls-To-Action to Accomplish Your Goals
Make sure that every email has a call-to-action. Show and tell your subscribers what you need them to do in exchange for all the valuable content you provide through email. Make them clear and straight to the point.
Actually clicking on your links and buttons helps solidify the loyalty of your customers.
Be Fun and Engaging
Personalize and humanize your content. Speak to them as if you were talking to a friend, not a business lead. You want to focus on growing their trust and show them that you are worth the time and effort.
Invite them to other platforms or ask them to reply to your email to get them to interact, engage and feel connected.
Keep It Short and To the Point
Your email copy length should be around 125 to 250 words or so. You don’t want to offer too much information all at once. Instead, each email should guide them along short and different journeys that all work together to share a similar message or goal.
Provide Generous Incentives
Make it even clearer to your new subscribers that you value their time by providing generous incentives that align with your call-to-action.
Free and low cost options. A chance to join a group.
These are a couple of ways that you can encourage your people to know that you are interested in them. It’s also a way that you can gain influence with your offers.
As you can see, the Onboarding experience is more than just acquiring new subscribers. It’s about showing them the value you have to offer and what your company is about.
Finally, it’s about exceeding their expectations and giving them a great experience to transition into a loyal subscriber and customer.
You want people to sign up for your email list, so you have a sign up box (or opt-in) on your website. You might also provide a chance for them to sign up when they make a purchase, on social media, or in ads.
Not everyone who sees your sign up offer will take the opportunity. Yet there are some proven techniques which will cause more people to do so.
One of your primary business aims is to increase the number of email sign ups. Just remember, those sign ups are new customers. And that’s the major way your business grows.
A savvy business person knows that their success is in watching the percentages. Not everyone who has the opportunity will sign up for your emails. And not everyone on your list will purchase from you. But a certain percentage will do each of these things.
So how can we increase the percentage of people signing up?
Let’s look at five tips for increasing the percentages on our opt-in rate.
- Be Sure to Provide Something of Value in Exchange for their Email Address.
Spend some time thinking about your customers’ needs and desires. What would really benefit them? Then start planning a response to those needs and desires. Your lead magnet.
You could send out a questionnaire asking for your customers’ wishes. Or you could check out the magazines in your niche. A lot of marketing savvy goes into magazine articles, so you can trust that the subject matter displayed on the covers is what the customers want.
For instance, every January many magazines feature articles on weight loss and organization. Why? Everybody’s New Years Resolution is to lose weight and get organized. This is the year!
So find what your people need or want and meet that need. It can be an E-book, a Tip Sheet, a One-on-One Call, or a Webinar.
Just make sure that you are offering them targeted value, and they will want to sign up for your offer.
2. Use Pop-Ups
For many years, I avoided pop-up opt-ins. It annoyed me when I was trying to read a page and these boxes kept popping up, so I didn’t want to use them.
However, many marketers insist that the opt-in rate is greater with pop-ups, so I installed a couple of them to see for myself. Now I have to agree that pop-ups can be a great reminder for your viewers as they are leaving or browsing your website.
However, I still say, don’t overuse them, as they can quickly become annoying. Most readers expect a few, but if they pop-up too frequently or make it too difficult to browse the site, the readers will simply get discouraged and leave.
3 .Make the Opt-In Process Obvious and Easy
Be sure to optimize the signup process for the devices your readers use the most. It’s a good idea to always plan for smartphone use, since many are using them for emails.
If the opt-ins or lead magnets are not optimized for their cell phones, they won’t be able to complete the process. Many readers will abandon a brand or business altogether if the business hasn’t adapted to their audience.
Then, keep the opt-ins organized and straight to the point. Don’t overload the reader with too much information. For the most part, the opt-in should be scannable and understood in a few seconds.
4. Add Prominent Testimonials
This is a great idea I heard just recently.
Even when you are attempting to sign up people for email, testimonials from other customers can validate your business.
If you do this, make these testimonials obvious and near the signup button to show your readers that you are trustworthy. If others are seeing the benefit you promised they will want to participate.
5. Use the Fear of Missing Out
Urgency is a useful tactic to get your readers to act now. Discounts with deadlines or early bird tickets for hands-on classes are great examples of these.
Most people can’t pass up a good deal, nor do they want to miss out.
Creating this sense of urgency can make the difference in someone signing up -or not.
6. One More Thing…
Humans love to feel like they are important or part of a community. Whether you are inviting them to a short one-on-one call, a free webinar, or offering a Tip Sheet, be sure to make them feel valued. And that there is a real person who cares on the other side.
It shows that you are there for more than just monetary gain. Increasing their trust and loyalty to the business.
Overall, providing value is key to increasing your opt-in rate and achieving your email marketing goals. So spend time planning and developing what your customers will receive in exchange for their email address. Then try these techniques for increasing their response.
You’ll find that your results will be worth the extra effort.
Okay, you are sending out an impressive offer with your emails.
Did you know that, even with a terrific offer, only about two percent of sales are made on the first initial contact?
This means those who use email marketing successfully see most of their profits through their follow-up strategies. If you don’t follow up with your subscribers after the initial contact, you are not using email marketing correctly or to its fullest potential.
Every great sales person knows that you have to reach out and communicate with a person more than once to grab their attention and hook their interest.
Here is an interesting statistic: research shows that nearly eighty percent of sales come from the fifth contact, which jumps significantly compared to the two to ten percent of sales you see from the first to the fourth follow-up.
Meaning you shouldn’t be the one to opt-out or give up; leave that up to the readers and implement these four follow-up strategies to improve your email marketing sales:
Say Thank You and Ask for Feedback (more…)
I know. You don’t want to be pushy. Neither do I.
But if you don’t give them a nudge to click on your links or buy your stuff, they won’t get the benefit of what you are offering.
So that’s where Calls-to-action come in. They are vital to your email marketing campaigns.
Your call-to-action is the instruction you give your audience to do something in order to get their benefit. Click here. Go to this page. And so forth.
With good calls-to-action, your customers receive the benefits and you grow and build a sustainable business. If you don’t tell or show your audience what you need them to do, you are unlikely to succeed.
A call-to-action is like a guide that instructs your readers on where to go and what to do. In fact, you can increase your click-through rates by over 300% just by adding one single call-to-action, according to a WordStream report. This highlights the importance of adding them to your email copy if you want to run a successful email marketing campaign.
Here are four tips to enhance your email calls-to-action to increase your conversions and run a more profitable email marketing campaign. (Remember: your customers receive the benefits offered. It’s a win/win)
Use a Button and Colorful Graphics
Buttons are easy to see and obvious to most readers. They are eye-catching, clear, straight to the point, and easy to understand and use.
Buttons also can improve your results by nearly 28% more than calls-to-action without them. A big red “buy now” button or “read more” is more obvious and easier for your subscribers to understand. Making it more likely for them to follow through if your products and services are what they need.
Use Action-Oriented Words
“Get the discount here” or “Try your free trial today” are perfect examples of action-oriented words that should be used in your calls-to-action. These words inspire your readers to do something and grab their attention.
Keep it Short and Urgent
Too much information or crowded images only persuade your audience to click away instead of click-through.
Your readers prefer quick and easy – not confusing and overwhelming. Don’t make your readers second guess instead of making a quick decision.
Using a sense of urgency and clear and direct information increases your click-through rate because people fear missing out. However, be sure to use this appropriately and not take advantage or misuse your readers. Urgency should be to inspire, not to take advantage of your readers.
Highlight the Value They’ll Receive
When deciding on what copy to use, be quick and to the point by highlighting the most valuable part.
What are your readers getting out of doing the action you ask of them? Do they receive a discount, more education, a chance to participate with others, and a bigger community?
If you lead with such benefits, it will be easy to get your readers to take action.
You can see why call-to-action statements are so important.
Make sure your CTAs align with your goals and objectives, and include them in each and every email copy or campaign you create.
Keep it simple, direct, and obvious, and remember the power of call-to-action buttons.
More benefit for your customers! More success for you!