The Power Of Email
One day, while scrolling through a popular social media website, I saw a video advertisement from an online education company that really illustrated the power of email marketing. They posed the question, “What do these two people have in common?” while pictures of President Obama and President Trump appeared on the screen. The answer? They both use email, and so do more than 3.8 billion others around the world. The point here is that email is an extremely effective distribution method, and can give people who use it correctly access that is nearly unlimited in scope.
Building A List
To the average person, email is a one-to-one communication method that allows the user to communicate with another individual, very similar to text messaging. To the smart business person, however, email can be a powerful tool for content distribution, marketing, and sales. When you begin to consider email marketing as a marketing strategy for your business, the first thing you will need to do is build a list that you can market to.
This can be done in a couple of ways depending on what kind of content you are going to be sending this list. Many people have a simple name and email collection box on their website that allows their visitors to subscribe for a weekly or monthly newsletter, and then send them helpful articles or videos related to their business or website. This method is typically used to create fans and loyal readers who will keep returning to the website every time they get an email. It’s very effective in making sure that visitors keep coming back to your site and you maintain a line of communication with your readers. You can see examples of an email newsletter list opt-in form below.
The Free Gift
Another method used to collect emails for your list is offering a free gift in exchange for contact information, usually email, but can be used for getting phone numbers as well. This method is widely used by sales-based businesses, and whereas the email newsletter is great for attracting people back to your site for readership purposes, the free gift method is typically one of the first steps in a sales process.
Whatever your business is, you can probably offer a free gift, consultation, or discount of some kind in exchange for an email address. For example, a chiropractor may offer a free or discounted initial consultation or adjustment. A retail clothing store could offer a special discount coupon or free piece of apparel. The consultant or B2B business could offer a free evaluation or strategy call. Just remember that this method works better when you are giving away something perceived to be of high value, and free is always better than discounted.
If you are worried about the economics of giving away something for free, I don’t blame you. At first glance giving something away in exchange for an email address doesn’t seem like a fair exchange of value, however, once you learn how to cultivate a list properly and see the numbers, you will be blown away.
Here are some examples of what a free gift email opt-in can look like.
How Email Marketing Works
Imagine you have a list of 10,000 emails. Maybe they are interested in your newsletter, or perhaps they took you up on your free gift. In any case, these emails were given to you by people who are interested in your business, and they actually want to hear from you!
By using an email autoresponder software, you can then set a schedule of pre-written emails to go out every so often, or write an email and send it to everyone at once. If you are sending quality content, and not just spam, you will be able to drive a certain amount of these people back to your website, offer, or even encourage them to take action in a specific way.
As an example, let’s say that you send an email once a month to your list, and in it, you give a short description of a recent blog post that you just put up on your website. Using industry average numbers, you can expect something like the following every time you send out an email. Roughly 40% will open your email which translates into 4,000 people in this example. Of that number, you will typically see that around 20% will click on the link, which equals 800 people who will see whatever it is that you link to every time you send an email. At the very least you just got 800 more views on your article by sending one email. Even more exciting, however; is the prospect of getting a percentage to go on and do business with you. For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $38 over time.
These numbers are obviously estimates and can be lower or much higher if you cultivate your list correctly by sending interesting and helpful information. As time goes on, your list will grow, and open rates and click-through rates will increase as well.
This has been an introduction article to email marketing and the importance of building a distribution list. Once you are collecting email addresses, growing your list and sending emails, you will soon find out there is a lot more that goes into it. I’ve mentioned cultivating your list, well, what does that really mean? How can you manage to give something away for free that either costs you money to make or time to fulfill, and still make such a huge return on investment?
My next article will answer these questions and more. I will go into the value ladder, what it is and how it works, and why you should be using this strategy in your business. I’ll break down how hugely successful companies like McDonald’s are able to spend so much money to acquire a customer, even if it means a loss up front. Also, I will show you how email marketing plays a pivotal role in the value ladder strategy, and how you can continue to profit from it for years to come.
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