Email marketing is a very powerful way to approach selling online.
Getting “up close and personal” with your prospects through email has been proven, time and again, to be one of the most effective communication tools in the online marketing arsenal for many online business owners if done correctly.
But email can also be the source of spam and unending irritation to people that don’t want to be contacted by companies and marketers that hit them cold with paid offer after paid offer.
The technical options that are available today make possible personalized emails from your autoresponder that can make every message seem like a personal recommendation from your best friend. And you know how powerful person-to-person advertising can be.
Not every buyer knows about autoresponders, so your emails can be sent to large audiences and still be perceived by the receiver as a personal message directly to him.
When you write your emails, start with the name of a trusted friend and write as if the message was specific and unique for that one person. Then edit out the friend’s name and set up the message so that your autoresponder takes over and inserts the prospect’s name. This is known as “merging” recipients personal info into the email. The recipients’ information is typically contained in a data base stored by the autoresponder service.
Personalization isn’t just for emails, however, it can also be used as an intro to your ezine or newsletter. “Hi, Susan, here’s some great new ideas for using the XYZ Information system that I know you’ll appreciate.” Use the name that the prospect gives in the sign-up or subscriber form.
Add the name naturally as it would occur in conversation. But a word of caution: Internet marketers can make the mistake of over-using the recipient’s name just because it’s so easy to insert electronically.
Here’s a hint: read the message aloud. Does it sound natural – like one friend talking over the back fence to another? If not, be sure to revise the message so that it sounds genuine, real, and natural.
Would you use the name as often as you have (in your email) in a private conversation or does it sound phony? Yes, people love the sound of their own name, but when it’s over used, the reaction is that you’re being a fake, even conniving, and that can make potential readers suspicious of your motives.
Don’t let spell check defeat you. Be extremely careful when you type a name into the autoresponder list. If the name was automatically added to a list, don’t change it. Some names are spelled differently than other same-sounding names on purpose.
Here’s an example: there is an ongoing debate between Teresa and Theresa as to which is the accurate spelling of the name. Of course, the answer is … whatever way she wants to spell it when she subscribes to your list! Also, be careful that the name isn’t changed in the final spell check.
Avoid the marital status question in your emails if you can. Don’t add Ms, Miss or Mrs to any correspondence unless it’s a one-time personal note to someone familiar. Besides, email language is normally fairly casual … just like personal conversation.
While the generic “Dear Friend” or “Dear Internet Marketing Colleague” seems impersonal, at least it doesn’t make obvious mistakes that are humorous to some people and blatantly offensive to others.
Use the prospect’s name when you ask for the order. Remember to be personal when you make the final sales pitch.
Think about this: what’s more appealing to you?
- “Everyone needs this marketing package to increase sales,” or
- “I want to see you enjoy the kind of success I’ve had with this product – so, are you ready to make serious money online? If you are then click here . . . but wait, Randy, I’ve got one more bonus that’s designed just for you!”
That’s a personal close using the prospect’s name and showing interest in his success. So keep it real, keep it personal and keep making contact with your list so that the first sale isn’t the last one.
Emailing prospects often will help them get to know you, like you, and trust you. And people buy from those they know, like, and trust!
How often should the marketer email his subscriber list? There is no industry standard or “best practice.” Some email once a week, others email daily (and sometimes more often)! The deciding factor is twofold: (1) How often can you send value to your customers? (2) What expectation of frequency have you set with your list subscribers?
If you have a stock market advisory service, you have a potential reason to email even more frequent than once a day. Your subscribers want the alerts as soon as possible for their stock trading. But for other businesses, more than one email a day could be seen as way too much. Be respectful of people’s time.
I think the best approach is to determine how often subscriber’s would like to hear from you. Ask them! Poll your subscribers and get a feel for their preferences. Then, when you have decided upon a particular frequency, let the subscribers know what you plan to do and stick to that schedule. You might send emails every Tuesday and Friday, or every Monday, it’s really up to you. But don’t just send emails with endless offers or “chit-chat” that wastes time. Be sure every email you send contains something of value for the recipient!
To your online business success!