This is a guest post by Sara Woods @ Coupon Croc:
Marketing is a numbers game; there’s no doubt about it. You can work from before the sun rises until after the moon sets on building your list, but unless you build the right kind of numbers, your sales will never reach their full potential, and your business will suffer. The most effective email marketing campaigns have certain principles and approaches in common, and those that fail do not fully explore and exploit these common success traits.
Quality over Quantity
You can have over 100,000 people receiving your regularly schedule emails and newsletters, but if you don’t give them reason to visit your site—your storefront—or your physical location, you will never sell to them. You may have a “list,” but you’ve lost “relationship” customers.
That’s key number 1: Your business is far better off building relationships with, for example, 10,000 readers who engage, visit and buy than it is to send to that massive 100,000 recipients who barely bother to open your emails.
Engage your readers. Encourage their participation. Announce contests, surveys, product ideas—a great tool, that one is—and get them involved, not just reading. For instance, ask your readers periodically what they want to read regarding your ezine and/or website focus topic. Then give it to them. Mention them by name in the response ezine. “Three weeks ago, we asked for your input regarding specific topics or questions you had, and you responded! For instance, John Q. of Anywhere, MN, wrote, ‘Dear List owner, I’ve always wanted to know what the difference between a ‘widget’ and a ‘thingamajig’ is. Can you explain?’ Well, John, a widget is _____, and a thingamajig is ______. They work at opposite ends of the whatchamacallit, and both are crucial.”
When John Q. gets an email where he is mentioned-by name, mind you, don’t you think he’s going to send that email to just about everyone he knows? He might even print it out and post it near the cash register in his hardware store or in the main entry of his home for everyone to see and read. It’s a major bragging point, you know.
Personal v Personable
Next, remember you don’t need to keep every ezine you sent business-oriented. You are “allowed” to relax things once in a while. Just keep it focused to whatever topic the list engages, and occasionally send a “newsy” type of message—if your target audience profile allows the deviation. Keep it away from dates or events, but general information is fine. However, if you start the ezine with “Topic 1-Z” as your focus, don’t deviate from some aspect of that too often or you will lose your target audience. However, if your ezine is a business-to-business or B2B transmission, rarely will that business be interested in how your dog ate your sales report. Anecdotal entries can be included; just keep them to a “rarely” status and at the end of your email.
That’s key #2: Personable messages are fine; just don’t forget your focus. Keep at least 90 to 95 percent of your ezine messages, depending on your market audience, aligned with your ezine mission. If you do include sales language in your ezines, keep them to one entry per email.
Key #3 is rather simple: If someone does cancel enrollment, don’t add them to another list, simply because you know the email address. This happens too often, and it’s called spamming. Spamming is illegal, and it gives every ezine marketer a bad reputation. It could also cause you to be at least fined by authorities and put everything you own at risk. Spamming is never worth that kind of risk.
Avoid using lists from data miners: They’re rarely accurate; they waste money, and you could be reported for spamming. See above.
Article written by Sara Woods @ Coupon Croc, the resource businesses trust to find savings on electronics, appliances, and office equipment with a Currys discount code.