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E-mail Newsletter Marketing

If you’re not into E-mail Newsletter Marketing - sending out e-mail newsletters on a regular basis - it’s very likely that your visitors soon forget about your web site. The web is a crowded place and everyone is fighting for attention. Unless you rank #1 in Google for your most important keywords you need to make sure you reconnect with former clients and visitors to bring them back for more sales/conversions.

It is a well known fact in basically any business that it’s easier to sell to someone who’s already a client than to try to convert just any encounter into a sale. Most offline businesses know about this and good marketing and sales departments never let go of an existing client. The easier conversion comes down to your knowing some very important things about your clients:

  1. they’re interested in what you’re selling (unless you disappointed them the first time)
  2. they have money to spend
  3. they already know what you’re selling, so no introductions are necessary
  4. they trust you because you have history and they know about your business

Second-best to clients are the people who have visited your web site without buying something. They’re technically not clients, but they have shown an interest and that goes a long way. Compare it to someone walking into a real-world store – they wouldn’t be in there unless they were interested one way or other, and even if you don’t convert them the first time, the second or third might be the charm. Sometimes people have to visit you a few times before you can convert them to clients – bringing them back builds familiarity, which is close to trust (this is one of the reasons why you see the same ads on TV hundreds of times, especially for new products).

Purely online businesses most easily reconnect with existing clients through professionally-looking newsletters. But make sure that visitors and existing clients voluntarily sign up for the newsletter – people who don’t sign up aren’t that interested in your business anyway, so don’t worry about them. Sending newsletters to people who don’t want them creates frustration and it will tarnish your brand.

In short – when you don’t follow an initial encounter with additional information later on, you let a valuable prospect slip from your grasp. In order to be effective, you need to design a follow-up system, and stick to it.

Consistent E-mail Newsletter Campaigns Get Results

When most people start out online they might build a list of newsletter subscribers and then use that list whenever there are “big news” or special promotions related to their business. This simple technique is a lot better than not using newsletters at all, but has the following shortcomings:

  • The List Technique isn’t consistent. Proponents of the List Technique tend to only send out follow up messages when their companies have “big news”.
  • List Technique messages convey a “big list” mentality to your potential customers. Every receiver gets the exact same message, even though we might know from previous purchases what each individual is more exactly interested in.

Following up with each lead individually, multiple times, but at set intervals, and with pre-written messages, will dramatically increase sales. Some who use this same technique confirm that they have all at least doubled the sales of various products. In order to set this system up, though, you need to do some planning.

Developing Your E-mail Newsletter

First, you’ll need to develop your follow up messages. If you’ve been marketing on the Internet for any length of time, then you should already have a first informative letter. Your second letter marks the beginning of the follow up process, and should go into more detail than the first letter. Fill this letter with details that you didn’t have the space to add to the first letter. Stress the benefits of your products or services.

Your next 2-3 follow up messages should be rather short. Include lists of the benefits and potential uses of your products and services. Write each letter so that your prospects can skim the contents, and still see the full force of your message.

The next couple of follow up messages should create a sense of urgency in your prospect’s mind. Make a special offer, giving him a reason to order NOW instead of waiting any longer. After reading these follow up messages, your prospect should want to order immediately.

Phrase each of your final 1 or 2 follow up messages in the form of a question. Ask your prospect why he hasn’t yet placed an order? Try to get him to actually respond. Ask if the price is to high, the product isn’t the right color or doesn’t have the right features, or if he is looking for something else entirely. (By this time, it’s unlikely that this person will order from you. However, his feedback can help you modify your follow up letters or products, so that other prospects will order from you.)

When to Send E-mail Newsletters

The timing of your follow up letters is just as important as their content. You don’t want one prospect to receive a follow up the day after he gets your initial informative letter, while another prospect waits weeks for a follow up.

Always send an initial, informative letter as soon as it is requested, and send the first follow up 24 hours afterwards. You want your hot prospects to have information quickly, so that they can make informed buying decisions.

Send the next 2-3 follow up messages between 1 and 3 days apart. Your prospect is still hot, and is probably still shopping around. Tell him about the benefits of your products and services, as opposed to your competitors’.

Send the final follow up messages later on. You certainly don’t want to annoy your prospect. Make sure that these last letters are at least 4 days apart.

Following up effectively seems complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. So many potential customers are lost because of poor follow up – be one of the online businesses that get it right.

Tools for E-mail Newsletter Campaign Management

If  you want help dealing with newsletter campaigns, timing and follow-up we recommend these companies:

  • AWeber.com – has an excellent online newsletter campaign management product that can make you a newsletter champion. Highly recommended.

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