Most business owners overlook email marketing as a way to boost their lead gen. They believe email is “dead,” and a lost cause. They’ll chase Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and all the social media bunnies around, while ignoring the beast that’s right in front of them every single morning: email.
Here’s how the pros do it.
Picking The Right Email Provider
Picking the right email provider isn’t easy. There are so many out there that promise you the world and can’t deliver on those promises. You should pick a provider with a simpler user interface and with high deliverability. After all, if your email messages don’t get delivered, what’s the point?
Solid services include Aweber, Mailchimp, Infusionsoft, GetResponse, and ConvertKit.
Market Your Email List Offline
Most online “gurus” today advocate using the Internet to generate leads. This is usually a bad idea if you’re just starting out. Lots of time and money can be saved if you just do it the old fashioned way, which still works very well. In other words, use a service like American Business Lists and get a direct mailing list. Physically mail your prospects and tell them to come to your website and get on your email list.
Include an offer that can only be delivered via email (like an email course or a special time-sensitive offer that’s best delivered via email) to entice people to sign up.
You will find opt-in rates will double (typically) when you do this.
Start small. You only need to send out 500 to 1,000 snail mail letters at a time. When you find your email list and sales growing, you can ramp up those numbers significantly with profits from the sale of your goods or services.
Over time, you’ll find that you can tweak your mailings and that it becomes nearly an exact science so that when you mail out a certain number of letters, you get a certain response rate from those mailings. This becomes your “control piece.” And, you can test against this control to try to increase opt-ins to your email.
Structure Your Emails Properly
You want your emails to be structured in a certain way. Basically, use plain text emails or HTML emails that look like plain text. Make them appear to be from a friend or normal person, at the very least. Use subject lines that look like normal subject lines.
When you get an email from someone you know, do you capitalize the first letter of every word in the “sentence,” or do you just write a normal subject headline? Odds are, you either don’t use capitalized letters at all, or you just capitalize the first letter of the first word in the sentence of your subject line.
Do the same in your emails.
A Word About Frequency
Even some of the brightest minds in email get this wrong. Most people are afraid to send emails every single day, and yet the leading expert in email marketing, Ben Settle, does exactly this. But, it’s not just Settle, “Doberman Dan,” John McIntyre, and many others use this same technique to boost sales.
Their secret? They make their emails entertaining. By writing entertaining emails, called “infotainment,” they’re able to hold their prospect’s attention without boring them or making them angry.
If you send content-heavy emails that contain a lot of “hard teaching,” don’t be surprised when your prospects complain, unsubscribe, or ask for more and more of your time.
And, one thing email marketers tend not to do, which you need to overcome, is pitch every single day. There’s a right way and a wrong way to to do this. When you pitch every day, you need to keep in mind that you don’t need to make “hard pitches.” You only need to drop a link to your sales page in the email and ask the prospect if they’re ready to take action, then they should go read your offer.
Most of the time, this is enough to get them to take action. Now, why does this work? Well, if you think about it, it makes perfect sense that someone would want to hear from you every day if you’re saying something relevant and interesting to them.
Think about the people closest to you in your life. Do you only hear from them once in a blue moon? No way. You hear from them all the time.
In fact, the people closest to you, you probably hear from them on a daily basis. And, it’s not annoying. It’s comforting. It’s the same with email. If you can develop that kind of relationship with your prospects and customers, you will be “in their lives” on a deep and meaningful level.
Michael Price has been with American Profiles & AmericanBusinessLists.com since 1997, a New Jersey company that provides business mailing lists to companies nationwide and abroad. Their targeted marketing lists help companies build their customer base and increase their sales. Michael was a partner at a flooring company for 23 years, and elected to leave the retail industry to pursue a business-to-business career to have the weekends to spend more time with his family. He currently resides in Dover Delaware with his wife and son.