Prefer to listen to this post? Play the audio here!
When you do business on the web you need at least two things; a user friendly website, and a way to get people there. This is where an e-mail campaign comes in. But you can’t just start sending out e-mails with no planning or forethought and expect to draw customers to your site. It takes planning and timing to get people to not only open your emails, but to act upon them. Successful e-mail campaigns have a few things in common, and here are some tips to make your first campaign a success.
Set up a separate e-mail account for your e-mail campaign. This not only helps your creditability, but makes it easier to manage your e-mail campaign. For example some e-mail servers send out auto-reply messages you must respond to in order to have your e-mails delivered. You also don’t want to use a personal e-mail because if the person quits or gets fired, you’ll have to transfer all of your addresses to another e-mail. Set up an account with an address like firstname.lastname@example.org. Make this e-mail the reply to address for all of your e-mail campaigns.
Let your system admin know what you’re up to. If you start sending out e-mails to co-workers to test the system your company’s spam filter may block them. Your system admin should whitelist your e-mail server so your e-mails will get through.
Collect more than just a name and e-mail address. While it might seem like enough just to collect names and e-mails, very soon in your e-mail campaign you will want to be able to target different segments of you opt-in list. For example you may want to segment your list by occupation, geographical location, age, and other factors. Be sure to include these important fields in your sign-up forms and database.
Plan your content, and plan your timing. Don’t expect to be able to send out emails on a regular basis right away if this is your first e-mail campaign. Many people find writer’s block, procrastination, and fear get in the way at first. Promise readers to deliver a “quarterish” newsletter if you are offering one.
Your content is another important factor which needs planning. If you’re wondering what to write there are many options.
- Offer how-to tips. Share your knowledge with your readers. This is one of the easiest types of content to write.
- Share company news. People like to hear what is going on, and you can use questions and polls to gather feedback.
- Offer special promotions. People also like to get something for free. Coupons, special offers, and promotion codes are just a few examples of how you can draw people to your website. Use these during holidays since this is when people are looking for a good deal.
Clear out old e-mail addresses before you start your e-mail campaign. Go through your address book and delete any e-mails that were automatically added such as ones from eBay or Amazon. Any e-mail older than six months is probably no good. If you’re using a company address book, be sure you’re not sending out e-mails to prospective clients. Only send e-mails to people who have opted-in to your e-mail campaign.
These are a few tips to help your first e-mail campaign succeed. As you develop your e-mail campaign you will find other tips and methods to stay on track. An effective e-mail campaign will help draw customers to your website and take advantage of what you are offering if you use some planning and follow through on this planning.