Tag Archives: Marketing

Capturing email addresses the old-fashioned way!

Are you asking potential clients for their email addresses?

You would think that it is standard practice nowadays that most companies ask for your email address over your telephone number.

Email Marketing is still the fastest method and cheapest method of online marketing and communication, even above Social Media marketing. Done properly, Email Marketing will enable you to easily start to build a concise list of email addresses for free. You most probably pay for advertising your website and store so this can only be a bonus (Right?)

Even before that however, you should be asking all of your existing and potential prospects for their email addresses and the time and effort invested will result in an impressively quickly built profitable and responsive email list.

You may well experience resistance from some customers, who are bound to ask: Why do you want my email address?  Will I receive Spam? What’s in it for me? And other such questions.

Make it clear from the outset how they will benefit from disclosing their email address – employing vocabulary such as ‘Free Subscription’ ‘Special Offers’ ‘Exclusive’ ‘Club’ or ‘Customer Only Offers’, usually helps!

It’s also vital that everybody in your business who deals directly with customers knows follows this practice and is fully briefed on what you want them to say and ask your customers when requesting their email addresses. Do not take it for granted that they will all say it the same way.

There is always the option of a purchased email list however these are invariably expensive and out of date.  An incentive scheme is a far more effective way of motivation your staff and colleagues to collect email addresses. This will help to ensure that everybody is asking consistently and regularly.

Having enticed them to subscribe, you now have to continue to capture their interest and retain them! Send relevant and valuable information regularly to build anticipation, so that your Email Newsletter subscribers keep an eye out for your email. Keep it consistent and see how fast you can build a profitable and responsive email list and whichever method you choose, be it via offline or online sign-ups or both, make it as easy a process as possible for your customer.

Eight Etiquette Tips for Newsletter Sign-Ups

1. Make Sign Up Valuable

Most people want reassurance that if they sign up for a Newsletter, it will provide them with valuable information, not simply clutter their inbox with irrelevant content. Most are also wary of what information is delivered to their inboxes and fear being inundated with emails that are not relevant to them and also sent too frequently.

2. Make Sign Up Easy

Subscription to a website’s newsletter should be a two-click process in essence – enter your email address, click subscribe, receive an email and confirm sign up. Don’t make it unnecessarily laborious for your potential subscribers if you want them to sign up.

3. Make Sign-Up Prominent

This could be done via a sign-up box in your site’s sidebar (ideally at the top) which is then visible on every page of your website. On Soci@lite’s website I have provided the user with the ability to view a sample Newsletter so that they can see for themselves the type of content they will typically receive via email. This link also opens in a new window so that they don’t navigate away from the sign-up page.

4. Calls To Action & Ethical Bribes

Offer users with an incentive for signing up to your Newsletter, be it a free e-Book, download, Tips & Tricks on a certain topic each month, etc.

5. State How Often You Send Out

You should indicate exactly what they will receive by registering and how often they will receive those updates, i.e. at a set time each month, periodic updates with interesting topical news, how-to tips, links to resources, etc.? Or will they receive promotional emails that alert them of special offers and new products? Or are they receiving short messages that alert them of upcoming events, recent community activity, company news, etc.?

6. Provide A Link To Back Issues

On Soci@lite’s website I have provided the user with the ability to view all the Newsletter Back Issues so that they can see for themselves exactly the type of content they will typically receive. This link also opens in a new window so that they don’t navigate away from the sign-up page.

7. Consider your Target Audience

Technically, email Newsletter registration should purely function as a mechanism for collecting subscriber email addresses. Many organisations however see this as an opportunity to capture information about their target audiences and ask more questions than the potential subscriber may be comfortable with. As with every web form it is important for you to consider what you are going to do with the information you have collected from your subscribers. If you do not have a clear requirement or plan for the information requested then it does not belong in a registration form and should only be requested from your Captive Audience (see below).

8. Leverage Your Captive Audience

Also dd a newsletter signup link to any thank you page on your site, i.e. where visitors are sent after purchasing a product, completing a form, etc. They have already trusted the site for some form of transaction and are therefore your Captive Audience – they may well therefore be interested in receiving more information from you.

Regardless of how you decide to capture information and from whom, always ensure that you clearly state what you intend to do with that information.

A/B Split Testing – Does it Help Email Marketing – MailChimp Guest Post

Ever since we launched our automatic email optimizer, we’ve been tracking all this wonderful A/B testing data on our system.

We analyzed 1,720 A/B tested campaigns, sent to 6,226,331 inboxes (we only included campaigns sent to over 500 recipients).

Overall, we found that A/B split winners did better than non-tested campaigns. By how much?

Before we give you the exact numbers, test your email marketing aptitude and pick the winning subject line from these real life A/B email tests conducted by our customers:

Winning Subject Lines by Open Rate
Test Group “A” Test Group “B”
Don’t Forget Mom… Gifts Mom Will Love!
Protect Yourself From the Sun This Summer… The Best Sunscreen, Hats, Rash Guards and More…
[COMPANY]: March [COMPANY] Mail Spring Update from [COMPANY]
[COMPANY] March Newsletter March is National Crochet Month
[COMPANY]: France River Cruise & Golf – Last Call [COMPANY]: Last Call for France River Cruise & Golf
Computer Security Quarterly – Spring ’08 2007 Record Year For Data Breaches
Coupon Enclosed – Save on Printer Ink, Toner, Paper, Storage Media Now – HP, Xerox, Canon, Brother, Dell & More News & Discounts from [COMPANY] – Savings on Printer Supplies from HP, Xerox, Brother, Canon and More
[COMPANY] Easter Newsletter – Free Shipping [COMPANY] Easter Newsletter

Think you know which ones were the winners? They’re all the subject lines in the first (A) column. In general, we found that:

  • Subject lines with company names in them did better, and they did better when the company name was near the beginning of the subject line (perhaps it was the increased recognition factor)
  • Shorter subject lines seemed to work better than long subject lines (the difference in open rate was more noticeable when they differed by 30 characters)

How Much Better Are A/B Tested Email Campaigns?

We compared the email marketing stats of A/B testers against the average email marketing stats across all MailChimp customers.

Average open rate across all lists: 21.7%
Average open rate for winning A/B groups: 24.1%

Average click rate across all the lists: 4.7%
Average click rate for winning A/B groups: 5.5%

*We analyzed 1,720 A/B tested campaigns, sent to 6,226,331 inboxes (we filtered down to emails sent to over 500 recipients).

As you can see, those who take the time to A/B split test their email campaigns get better overall results than those who don’t. For some extremely large lists, those few percentage points can make a huge difference in eyeballs, clicks and conversions.

Top Tips for a great About Us page

1) State who you are and how you help your clients

2) Write from the you/your and WIIFM (what’s in it for me) perspective. Remember, it’s about them, not you. No one cares about your background, experience.  What they care about is how you can help them

3) Tell them what to do next – this is called your ‘Call to Action‘, e.g. Find out more about how we can help you in your business by visiting our website

4) Offer an Ethical Bribe, e.g. “Sign up to our Newsletter to receive your free e-book”, “Subscribe to our Monthly Social Media Tips at….”, etc.

Email Marketing – Seven Savvy Sweeteners!

Newsletters are a quick, easy and FREE way to drive traffic back to your website and keep your customers and target audience returning regularly.

1. Communicate

Email newsletters are fast and inexpensive to create. So you can send them more regularly than paper ones. And email marketing puts you in customers’ inboxes more accurately than regular email. So you’ll avoid spam filters and be seen by more people. And you’ll stay top of mind with people who want to hear from you.

2. Targeted Messaging

Create different lists for different types of contacts based on their interests, etc. They are then more likely to respond and act on your email because it is more impactful.

Continue reading

Facebook – the nation’s Social Media Sweetheart

Love it or hate it, Facebook is well and truly ingrained in the National Consciousness and is the UK’s most popular social network with industry experts predicting a monthly spend of 500 million hours online in 2012. Facebook has also captured the hearts and minds of the business community and continues to dominate Social Media with over 50% market share of visits to all social networks.

A Facebook business page is an online marketing tool which should be used as a messaging service to build your community and establish your business online as an authority on your industry. Facebook filters what appears in a user’s news feed based on comments, shared friends and recent interactions so the more active you are the more likely it is users are seeing your brand and content.

Whether you are considering setting up a Facebook fanpage or looking to enhance your existing page, here are 10 great tips for a great business page:

  1. Nurture your relationships via sharing content and notifications about fun things that you are doing on and offline. Don’t let too much time go by before connecting with your audience – if a prospect hasn’t heard from you in a while they may be confused as to why they’re receiving an email from you
  2. Deliver value in your posts and use creative ways to get visitors to come to you with offers such as free webinars, 15-minute consultations and bonus discounts
  3. Use Facebook as a customer service channel to engage on a personal level with both loyal and new customers
  4. Treat your Facebook fanpage as a stand-alone website and build it through participating on it and inviting your friends to join which will also drive traffic to your website
  5. Measure your ROI – use the FREE analytics on Facebook to analyse how your followers engage with you. These will help you to disseminate your content simply and identify the right delivery tools to make the best use of your time
  6. Fresh content not only engages your Facebook fans but has the potential to increase your search engine ranking. Google loves fresh posts and will display them higher in the search results
  7. Sync your Blog to Facebook and your other social media channels – blog regularly to give fans a reason to visit your website regularly
  8. Testimonials are the most powerful form of marketing – whenever you do business with somebody, request a testimonial and post it your page (or better still, ask them to!)
  9. Email Marketing is a powerful medium through which to convert your prospects into paying customers. Programs such as Constant Contact enable you to collect your fan’s email addresses and establish a deeper relationship and build a list of people who you already know are interested in your expertise, product or services
  10. Webinars that teach your audience something valuable are a fantastic way to capture leads and are a popular content form within the Facebook community. People love sharing free and educational resources and if they think your webinar is valuable, they won’t hesitate to spread the word across the web.
Social Media should never be used as stand-alone marketing; rather it should always be used in conjunction with your existing offline marketing and networking activity.  Contact me today (01202 798270 or katherine@social-ite.co.uk) to discuss setting a Facebook page for your business.

Email Marketing vs. Direct Marketing

Did you know…..?

  • 96% of internet users’ main reason for being online is email
  • 53% of business users check their email six or more times during the working day
  • 42% of business users check their business email while on holiday
  • 34% of internet users check their email continuously throughout the day

Given that e-mails are now the most common method of communication for businesses, email marketing plays a vital role and according to some communications industry forecasts, total budget spend is predicted to reach $27.8 billion by 2013.

What are the benefits of Email Marketing?

  • The return on investment of opt-in email is 40 times greater than direct mail
  • Increased awareness and profile of your business/brand
  • More visitors to your website, and all importantly more sales or bookings
  • Generates immediate call to action, e.g. sales, downloads, inquiries, registrations, etc.
  • Encourage people send people to offline stores and events, prepare the way for catalogues, build awareness, contribute to Strengthen relationships, encourage trust and cement loyalty
  • It allows targeting and drives direct sales
  • Builds relationships, loyalty and trust
  • Targeted campaigns deliver maximum results

If your business uses its website to communicate with customers and target them online, it’s vital that you also take advantage of Email Marketing. Contact Soci@lite today to find out how we can help you achieve this.