An effective, targeted email-marketing campaign can drive traffic to your site, get your name in front of qualified prospects and turn leads into sales — for much less than what you'd spend on a traditional direct-marketing campaign.
Once you have developed your email list, how do you turn those devoted subscribers into sales? No matter what strategies you used to get your subscribers to opt-in on your emailing list, many of them are already pre-sold to your product. Now, you just have to close the deal.
In this lesson, I’m going to show you why your site needs a newsletter and how to maximize your sales by using this powerful incentive. Offering a free newsletter is the best way to collect loyal subscribers who are actively looking for answers to their problems. If you offer to provide potential subscribers with information they need, they’ll be glad to subscribe to your newsletter.
But obviously the secret is out, and most online businesses are taking full advantage of the powerful capabilities of this marketing tool. And as a result, there has been a mass of newsletters on the Internet full of nonsense and spam – leaving Internet visitors with a wary concern about handing over their email addresses to just anyone.
This doesn’t, however, mean that you shouldn’t start your own newsletter. And it doesn’t mean that you’ve missed the boat. All it means is that you are going to have to work at providing your subscribers with quality information that they deem worthy enough to entrust their email address with you. Not a problem! Just create a newsletter that people read faithfully, that is considered to be a reliable source of quality information, and that attracts a consistent number of opt-in subscribers.
The best part about newsletters is that you can produce them with little to no cost at all! Of course you can hire a ghost writer to compose your newsletter, but the best way to truly acquire a lasting relationship with your customer is by simply “talking” to them.
Nowadays, it’s easy to get away with informal conversations with someone you don’t know all that well. In fact, many people actually feel more comfortable with the fact that you’re talking to them like a friend. Don’t underestimate the power of this kind of relationship!
If you are communicating on a regular basis with your subscribers, giving them valuable information, and allowing them to get to know and trust you, you shouldn’t be too surprised about how many of them will actually become devoted customers. Email newsletters are one of the great bargains in marketing. They keep your company in front of your customers on a regular basis for very little cost.
Newsletters aren't right for every audience – I wouldn’t recommend them if you’re targeting the local B-I-N-G-O crowd – but if you're in the web hosting business, there's a good chance that 100% of your customers and prospects use email, making newsletters a great tool!
Email newsletters are proven to increase sales, if used properly. It has been reported by rigorous research and testing that up to 50% in sales can be generated from newsletter autoresponder follow-ups! And I’m sure you’ll also be glad to hear that if used properly, up to 10% of opt-in subscribers will purchase the product being sold. In case you didn't get that – it’s been reported that...
There’s no doubt about it – a free newsletter is your best source of generating a list of subscribers you can send promotions to in the future! But how should you go about delivering your message to your potential customers without coming off as a huge advertisement billboard? Because so many of us are already overwhelmed by the daily flood of email, your newsletter will need to be much more than just ads for your products. Including informative articles, interviews, or other information may help entice your subscribers to actually open and read your newsletter. Light “plugs” in the body of your newsletter aren’t a bad idea, but remember that your subscribers are looking for quality information – not a salesletter…that’s what your webpage is for.
To increase your sales and get the most out of your newsletter, we highly recommend following the tips listed on the next chapter.
Registering New Subscribers
When asking visitors to sign up, ask only for the information you need – perhaps just the email address. Remember, that every additional bit of info you collect is another deterrent to customer signup. People don’t like to give away their private information, so don’t ask for anything more than what is needed.
Make it easy for subscribers to share your newsletter with others. They can simply forward the message, of course, but if you include an explicit send-to-a-friend link you are giving your customers and subscribers a gentle “nudge” to recommend your material to their friends and colleagues.
Check out your competition
Every business has competition. Find out what they are doing by researching their product or service. Sign up for their newsletters, and then make yours better than theirs. What could you do better? Is there a gap in their service you can fill?
The first thing I want to tell you is that “Newsletters must be simple.” You do not want to be the next “delete” button in your subscribers email account. People get a lot of email. They don't have time to read a lot of text. Newsletters must be designed to facilitate scanning, but then again you want to give them the opportunity to get a “full dose” of what you have to offer.
So the best recommendation is to provide links like “Click Here for the Full Report”, or
Discover the Answers To Your Problem by "Clicking Here”
Above all, deliver content with real value. We're all flooded by email, and if your users don't perceive your newsletter to be worthwhile, they'll just delete it and move to the next message in their inbox. That's why it's important to track your click-through rates: they're proof that your messages are being read – not just your message views. Also, if you have a newsletter that covers a ton of topics and starts to get too long, be sure break it into separate newsletters.
Write a Good Subject Line
Writing good subject lines is especially important, both to encourage users to open the newsletter, and to distinguish the newsletter from spam. I recommend including some actual content from the individual newsletter in each subject line, even though it's a difficult job to write good content within the 50-60 character limit that is imposed by many email services.
HTML or plain text?
It's really a matter of what you think will most appeal to your readers. There really hasn’t been much difference as far as which one sells the best. It truly depends on your target audience. So if in doubt, offer two lists: one in plain text and the other in HTML. Then let your subscribers decide which one they want to receive.
Let’s Make a Profit! Selling to Your Audience
Many people try and sell their product or service directly from their emails. However this is really the job of your web site, not your newsletter. The purpose of your email campaigns should be purely to get people to click to your web site. Two of the most successful ways to do this are
Never send your newsletter to anyone who hasn't specifically requested to receive it. Remember, new anti-spam regulations require every marketing email to include an opt-out condition and a valid physical address.
Email newsletters are a blessing to small businesses. They are a great way to generate a credible relationship with your customer, drive subscribers to your site, create demand for your product, and thus skyrocket your sales!
Establishing your credibility is the key to making your product or service attractive to potential customers. But once you’ve done that, your loyal subscribers will WANT to know more about what you have to say. They’ll be extremely receptive to your offers. The most valuable customer is the one you already have – right there in your email list.