Email marketing is easily one of the most effective, most easily measured, and least expensive marketing methods for any type of business today.
Whether your business is completely online or you sell goods and services directly to the public or even if you only sell products to other businesses, email can be the most effective method for increasing sales. However, first you need someone to send your emails to.
Here are some tips to help you build an opt-in email marketing list quickly
1- Don’t let a customer get away from you without signing them up for your email marketing list
Of course you won’t refer to it as a “marketing list” when you’re asking them for their email address, but make sure you ask all of your customers for their email address at the time they make a purchase. At that moment they are usually the most happy and satisfied they will ever be and getting their permission to follow up by email is easy at that point.
All you need to do is offer to keep them up to date on sales or special deals, or updates to your website if you are just “selling” information. Most customers will be happy to get those updates.
2 – Be sure to include an email opt-in form on every page of your business’ website
If a customer is looking at your website, they have proven they are at least slightly interested in whatever it is you are selling. Offer them a valuable coupon or a free research report in exchange for their email address. Make sure that the form opt in is very prominent on your website.
3 – Create a Facebook Page with an email opt-form
Nearly everyone is on Facebook now. Create a Facebook Page for your business and make sure to promote it just as you would your regular website. Facebook Pages and traditional websites complement each other very well. You can get all of your customers to “like” your page and this will promote your page to their friends, family and acquaintances as well.
You can also use Facebook ads as an inexpensive way to bring more people to your page. Have an opt-in form on your Page and offer people some additional incentive to not only “like” your Facebook page, but to also sign up for your email list. This can be something available only to those who sign up for the email list in addition to “liking” your Facebook page.
With a little research you can also find ways that they can sign on to your email list through Facebook without even having to enter an email address.
4 – In your advertising, direct customers to a “landing page” instead of straight to your regular website
A “landing page” is very different from your normal business website. On a landing page, a visitor has only two options: to sign up for your email list or to leave. This is not as risky as it may seem.
In order to make a landing page effective, you must offer visitors a valuable incentive to get them to visit the page and sign up. This can be either a substantial discount or maybe a detailed report that gives the new customer all the information they need in order to make a decision. If they came to the landing page looking for this, entering their email address is not such a huge imposition.
Leaving them with fewer choices has been proven to increase response. You can always send them to your regular website after confirming their email address.
Many businesses today fail because the owner is very good at handling the day to day details of their business, but there is not enough time or money to spend on marketing. Without a stream of new customers and a way to make sure old customers return frequently, a business just doesn’t have a chance.
In today’s constantly “online” world, building an email list is a great method for putting necessary marketing on auto pilot.
Author: Kent Allen
Kent Allen is an entrepreneur in Richmond Virginia. One of his latest projects is a directory of Richmond businesses, with a special interest towards the locally owned.