Email is a lucrative, efficient, immediate marketing method. It is increasingly proving to be superior to traditional methods of customer contact. It could be argued that no other marketing method – offline or online – provides organisations with such direct, personal, interactive and measurable customer communication. According to “eMarketer” an e-commerce research company, 94 percent of all Internet users have emails. Business 2.0 recently reported that permission-based marketing messages enjoy a response rate of 11.5 percent, compared to a mere 0.55 percent for advertising banner click throughs. Therefore, it is no riddle as to why email marketing has grown hugely in the past year as the online marketing tool of choice for large conglomerates to small start-ups alike. Here is the “Nourishment Start Up 10 Step Guide” to help you ensure your email marketing is as effective as it can be.
2. Never Spam
Only ever, send emails to people who have specifically asked for your information. Never send out newsletters or product offers to people who did not opt-in to your list, no matter how appealing your offer may be or "targeted" the recipients may be. The rule is simple and clear: if the person did not agree to receive your communication, then it is spam.
3. Allow People To Unsubscribe From Your List.
People's needs and circumstances change. Your email newsletters, at one time helpful to the subscriber, may no longer interest him or her. Or, perhaps the person is receiving too many regular emails that he or she feels forced to reduce the amount of emails received. In every email newsletter sent out, incorporate clear instructions on how to unsubscribe from your list. If the person wants to removed from your list, make it easy. Upon receipt of the request to unsubscribe, respond that you have removed the person's email from your list, otherwise you could easily damage your reputation.
4. Acknowledge A User’s Subscription
Send out an acknowledgement email to new subscribers. Some subscribers forget what they subscribed to, and a few may even complain of spam upon receipt of your first email. Double-checking guarantees that your subscriber really does want to receive your email messages. This also goes some way to safeguard you against bogus subscriptions and helps keep your mailing list clean of bounce-backs.
5. Respond Promptly To Email Inquiries.
The trademark of good customer service on the Internet is the quick response time to email inquiries. Respond to emails from your subscribers promptly to reassure the person that you are taking care of his or her concerns.
6. Keep A Complete Record Of All Subscriptions.
Keep a record of all requests for subscription to your newsletter or product offerings, even years afterward. Having a record of requests for subscription will protect you in case the recipient forgets about his or her subscription and complains. If the person sends you (or worse, your web host and ISP) an email complaining, "I never agreed to receive your emails," you can prove the original registration. It is also advantageous if you can include the IP address and remote host information of all registrants, should the person complain that his or her email was abused.
7. Use The Power Of Personalisation
People respond more favourably to emails that start with their names, or personalised greetings such as "Dear Terry." However, personalise your emails only if you have information on the first names of your subscribers or opt-in list. If you have partial details, do not attempt to personalise your emails and have your emails start with "Dear Unknown." This guarantees the rapid deletion of your email message, no matter how attractive your offer may be.
8. Build Your List
On average, it takes between five and seven exposures to you for a prospect to think about buying. This is because first-time buyers have not built up a level of trust with you yet. If you can get someone who visits your website to give you his or her name and email address with permission to contact then again, you have a potentially valuable prospect. Therefore, building a high quality, robust and responsive mailing list is very lucrative. The biggest pay off is using your list to promote live events where you can charge admission and of course sell other products.
9. Write Great Copy
“Written material” or “copy” is where the rubber meets the road. Outstanding web copy will engage readers and entice them to click a link and buy. A picture is worth a thousand words, but only words can convey the benefits you offer your customer.
10. Test And Measure Your Efforts
If you can’t measure your email marketing then you can’t effectively manage your email marketing. One of the key benefits of email is the fact that it offers immediate, highly measurable results. Results can be analysed to assess many aspects of your campaign offering the opportunity to test alternatives, highlight potential issues and improve the Return On Investment of your email communications.
Thank very much for taking the time to read this guide – it is hugely appreciated.