Is your email marketing feeling stale and boring? Are your open rates falling and your click through rates beginning to look embarrassing? If so, then now is the time to roll your sleeves up and get to work improving and upgrading your email marketing. Here are 9 quick tips for doing just that:
1. Personalize every email.
It can be tempting to think that you should use heavy graphics and design to make your emails look like they’re coming from a company just as important as Starbucks. I hate to break it to you, but your brand is not as big/recognizable/important as Starbucks or the like. These massive conglomerates need to spend a lot of time and money making their emails look like sexy polished pieces of art. Not you. For most small businesses, the focus should be on personalization and making the emails feel like they’re coming from a single human being.
2. Read a copywriting book.
I know it sounds crazy — reading a book and all — but it really can help. If you’ve never read a good copywriting book, this is a great time to do exactly that. Copywriting is a subject you should be learning a lot about at every turn. But at the very least, you should read one good book cover-to-cover and absorb as many of the tips and ideas as possible. I recommend Bob Bly’s book and Dan Kennedy’s book to get started.
3. Learn the techy stuff.
Everybody wants a “one and done” email marketing platform. Most people want it to be easy and “point and click” style. Unfortunately, if you get stuck in that mindset for too long, you lose out on some major advantages to really understanding the tech-side of sending emails. Personally, I use Infusionsoft. It’s the best damn email marketing platform for small business out there. It’s got a pretty big learning curve, but mastering the tool yields major results.
4. Stay in touch.
Be sure you’re emailing your prospects at least every month or two. You should segment your list, of course, so you know whom to email more and whom to email less. But keep a hard-and-fast rule about when an email address is considered “cold” — Infusionsoft’s rule is 4 months. I think that’s a bit too long. Try 60 days.
5. Focus your messages.
This is Direct Response Marketing 101 stuff here. Be sure every email you send has ONE very specific purpose. Avoid complicating your messages and crowding them with multiple banners, graphics, headlines, etc. I do think there’s a time-and-place for that style of email (maybe 1x per 30 or 60 days). But 90% of your messages should be singular in focus.
6. Be responsive.
The future of marketing is behavioral. That means you should be sending messages to specific contacts based on specific actions (or non-actions). That’s what I mean by being responsive! Your messages should be TRIGGERED, not broadcasted.
7. Stop broadcasting.
…which brings me to this point. Stop broadcasting. It’s really unnecessary to send everyone the exact same email. And it’s really a sign that you’re doing bad (or no) marketing planning. Your messages should be crafted and your contacts should be going down specific paths at specific intervals.
8. Use Infusionsoft.
I can’t hide it. I adore Infusionsoft. It transformed my business, and I believe it can do the same for your business. Warning: this is not for the average small business owner. 🙂
9. Create a swipe file.
I keep a folder in my email called “SWIPE.” Anytime I read a subject line or see something extra noteworthy that someone else is doing, I add it to my swipe file for future review. This is a great way to keep your mind sharp and new ideas flowing in.
I hope these tips are helpful. Implement just a few, and you’ll have UPGRADED email marketing overnight.
Anything you would add to the list? Please leave a comment below to share with us.