Tuesday, July 13, 2010

7 Tips To More Effective Email Marketing

Email marketing has the highest ROI of any direct sell tool available. You have an interested audience that is waiting for you to give them a reason to buy from you. So is it that easy to get your customer to take action? If you avoid some of the more common mistakes many email marketers make, you will increase the number of customers that take action and buy from you and not the competition.

1. Get permission - All email marketing campaigns should use permission based email lists. The customer has given you permission to send them emails about a particular topic. If they gave you permission to send them information about helpful tips only, don't send them a sales piece without asking first. I delete many emails without opening them if I have not given permission.

2. Use an Email Service Provider (ESP) - You think you can do this without an ESP? It is possible, however; it is alot less expensive and less risky to use an ESP. They provide many benefits in design and format, but the most valuable benefit is keeping you off blacklists. If you try to place all the email addresses in the 'To:' line - there is a very good chance you will end up on several blacklists. It also violates the CAN SPAM Act and will get you blocked by many ISP's.

3. Links to all your inbound marketing - Providing links to all your inbound marketing; blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and all others; gives the customer the opportunity to be a part of all your conversations and information. The more you interact with a customer, the more they buy. Obviously you have a link to your website. Your website should be the foundation to all marketing.

4. Always provide an unsubscribe option - Very simple - it is the law. Don't make it an inviting link, but always have it on each and every email.

5. Don't use too many pictures - The pictures should compliment the text, not dominate the email. Many individuals have images blocked on emails. You do not want your email showing up blank on someones screen. In order to have a call to action, you must have good text.

6. Know the recipients name and gender - You do not want to send a women's accessory ad to men. In order to personalize the email, you must know the individuals name. So, when asking for a customers email address, also get their first and last name and gender. Remember this when you are developing your sign up page.

7. Don't just sell, sell, sell - Yes your main objective is to have the customer take action and buy. However, you must earn the customers trust in the process. Providing 'useful' information and 'value' to the customer - what the customer perceives useful and valuable - will increase the customers trust in you and your product. This will lead to buying from YOU.

These 7 tips seem to be common sense - you would be surprised at the emails I receive that break at least one of these points. With the right information and message - your emails can produce lead generation and purchases.