Email consistently returns the highest ROI of any marketing you can do. Still, people tend to think that it's old-fashioned, or that people just don't open email anymore. Or, they feel like the time commitment is too much and the technology too complicated.
A few weeks back, I noticed my friend Dorien, who is a social media pro, had started an email newsletter. What really caught my attention was the way she freely admitted that this was something she should have done ages ago. Knowing the way she works, I also knew she would have done her research and it would be fresh in mind to share with you, our listener - saving you some time. So, when she agreed to be our guest, I knew it would be good!
If you have been putting off email marketing - or another proven marketing tool that you KNOW you should be using, have a listen - you'll be inspired.
What's the Value of Email Marketing?Right click to download the mp3 to your desktop.
Well, for Dorien, she had a past client contact her and two current clients contact her. It even generated more engagement on Facebook.
What's the Hangup? Finding an Email Tool That Works
When she first started, Dorien was a bit intimidated by her first choice in email provider. This time around, she looked at what friends and colleagues were using. She found the overwhelming favorite was MailChimp. She says it's nearly impossible to mess up. That sounds good. :)
How to Integrate Email with Social Media and Your Website
Dorien added a Facebook app for email signups. Consider changing your Facebook page cover photo that literally points to the app. Like this...
In your emails, you can mention that you have a contest on Facebook, a new board on Pinterest, etc.
Add a signup form to your website. Dorien used a sidebar signup form for four years. She found about one person a month signed up. Now, she has a popup on every page of her website. It appears about 7 seconds in to your visit. If you click out of it, it won't appear for another week. She got five new opt-ins in the first week of using the popup. She used the plugin MailMunch along with MailChimp. She assures us that it's easy to set up, so why not try it!
How to Get More Email Opens
Create a great subject line and provide your readers something that they need. If they need XYZ and they need A, that's not going to work.
Be consistent. Especially initially, send out your message at the same time every week.
Timing matters. Think about your readers and then test the time you think will work. Dorien chose Thursday at lunch time because her audience is business owners - and often business owners have a habit of checking email around noon. It always pays to experiment, too!
BONUS TIP: If you are using LinkedIn publisher, try publishing Thursday at noon.
How to Get More Clicks
Include a (Call to action) CTA! It sounds basic, but so often that is missing! Provide the same link several times in the same email so you aren't expecting people to go back to the link to find it.
What Numbers Should You Look at to Measure Success?
Look at open and click through rates.
How to Avoid Looking Like a Spammer
It needs to be personalized and provide value. Talk like a human talking to a human! Avoid the hard sell.
Consider the age of your list, too. If you haven't emailed your list in a year, realize that some of them will forget who you are and you could be get more spam reports. Another reason to be consistent!!
What About Email Segmentation?
It sounds a lot more complicated than it needs to be! You could divide people up into different lists based on industry, business size, job title - but you can also segment based on how engaged they are, or what made them sign up. That way you can keep them engaged with the type and frequency of content they want.
What About Personalization? Good or Creepy?
People love to see their own names, even when we all know that it's really easy to add that. Use it. Don't cross the "creepy" line. For example, if you collect a lot of data from people, be respectful of people's comfort levels.
Is it Time to Graduate?
Dorien finally decided it was time to grow her business and she knew what she had to do. There are other projects she wants to do, but they just couldn't happen without email. Sound familiar? Dorien decided to just sit down and learn it that day - and she did! So, all that procrastination and she did it in a day!!
So, what are your hangups? What's holding your business back? Can you just do it?
Listener Question: If you could have a super power, what would it be?
Kelly would like to be able to never sleep, but have all the benefits of sleep - to do more marketing.
I would like to fly so I could travel without hassle. Wearing the cape, I feel like I'm almost there. :)
Doreen would like to fly so she can visit her family in the Netherlands.
Resources and Handy Links:
Dorien is a social media professional, a runner, and a mother of four. Her eyecatching yellow specs are a nod to her Dutch heritage.