Two weeks ago, we shared a blog called How To Create A Website That Converts. The million dollar question is, if a conversion for you is getting people to sign up for your email list, what do you do once you acquire all of those email addresses?
Today we’re going to share some tips that will help you stay softly in front of your prospects without a lot of pressure and eventually, turn some into paying clients. If you think email marketing is all about pitching what you sell, think again. Email marketing helps people get to know, like and trust you. This happens because, over a series of emails, you’ll provide content that demonstrates you understand both your prospects’ needs and fears.
Before we get started, you’ll need to have an account with an email service provider. This will give you the ability to write and design professional-looking email campaigns using templates proven to convert. It will also allow you to automate your email campaigns so you can set them up once and then let them run on auto-pilot from that point forward. Finally, it will allow you to track performance. Instead of sending out emails directly from Outlook, Apple Mail or Gmail, you’ll send them through your email service provider. And thanks to their very smart engineers, you’ll be able to see who opened your emails and what they clicked on once they read it. This information alone is a goldmine when you use it correctly.
If you don’t already have an email service provider, here are three good options to consider:
Mail Chimp is good for beginners and for those with fewer than 500 subscribers. They offer an option that allows you to send beautiful, trackable emails absolutely free and many of their fans say their tutorials make it fairly easy to use; however, we’d be remiss if we didn’t share that we think this is the least-friendly of the three options we’re sharing with you.
Constant Contact is great if you have a larger list (500 or more subscribers) or if you plan on growing your list quickly. You can always get a free 60-day trial and if you like it and want a paid account after that, you can usually get a steep discount from one of their independent partners. Constant Contact is always improving upon their already awesome product and is recognized globally as a leader in the email marketing industry.
Infusionsoft is another option you may want to consider. It’s what we use here at Certified Tax Coach. It offers all of the functionality you’ll find with Mail Chimp or Constant Contact and a lot, a lot, more. The pricing is quite a bit higher than the alternatives; however, it’s a very robust CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool that includes e-commerce functionality, lead scoring, and so much more. If you’ve got a list of at list 1,000 people, it may be worth looking into. Just keep in mind that you’re likely going to want to hire a consultant to set up and run your campaigns for you. There’s a steep learning curve with Infusionsoft and your time is probably better spent doing other things than learning this CRM.
Keep in mind, there are a ton of other CRM options out there, so be sure and do your research before making a decision about which one you’ll use.
Alright, let’s jump into why email marketing is so important and talk about how to turn your email subscribers into paying clients.
When a person visits your website for the first time, they may or may not be ready to actually buy. If they are, great! But if not, you need a way to capture their info so you can nurture a relationship with them until they are ready to buy. This is what an opt-in offer is for.
A benefits-driven opt-in offer will make people want to give you their info in exchange for the value you provide in your offer. Opt-in offers come in all shapes and sizes but some of the most popular choices are product discounts, free gifts, or downloadable resources related to what you sell.
Once you get people signing up for your list to get your opt-in offer, it’s time to strategize ways that you can keep your readers engaged after they get the free opt-in—after all, that’s the goal we’re going for. To keep your list alive and turn more subscribers into paying clients, consider the following:
Share Valuable Content
- Your audience doesn’t only want to hear about taxes, taxes and more taxes. While it may be a fascinating topic to you, it’s probably not really very fascinating to them. Yes, you’ll want to send some tax-related emails, but if you take the time to send emails that answer the questions or solve the problems that keep them up at night, they’ll be much more eager to stay on your list.
Don’t send too little. And don’t send too much
- Commit to an email schedule. This ensures consistency and consistency always strengthens conversions. If your audience doesn’t hear from you consistently, they will be less engaged and eventually less responsive to any calls-to-action that you share.
- The general rule of thumb is to send 2-3 emails per month to start. Then adjust as needed based on your open and click through rates.
Write strong subject lines
- Your readers will decide whether they want to open your emails based on the subject line. If your emails aren’t opened, you won’t be able to convert anyone.
- Shorter subject lines have been shown to increase open rates.
- Whenever possible, use a number in your subject line (this will make it stand out more in your subscribers’ inboxes.)
Test your send day and time
- Some audiences are more likely to check their email first thing in the morning so early morning emails work best.
- Other audiences might be more likely to read your email just before going to bed.
- Take the time to figure out what time of day works best for your audience. And don’t forget to test the day of the week, too. Thursday afternoon is traditionally a great day and time to send emails. Monday morning is almost always the worst day and time. What works for your audience may be different so be sure to test.
Use an email template that works flawlessly on mobile
- About 47% of all email opens occur on a mobile phone.
- If your email is not easy to read on mobile, your subscribers simply won’t read it or click your links.
- The larger fonts are easier to read on mobile.
Put yourself in the reader’s shoes
- Set clear expectations and then make sure your messaging is always consistent with those expectations
- Keep e-mails short. You’re busy. Your readers are busy. Don’t make them read through huge blocks of text to get to the point! They’re much more likely to buy in if they know you respect them and that includes respecting their time.
- Provide a clear call to action. Your customers want you to tell them what to do! Make it easy for them to say yes.
Don’t send the same content to everyone.
- You probably have an extremely diverse list of subscribers (or if you don’t, you will).
- Any email software provider will give you the ability to segment your list. This allows you to easily ad quickly clarify who your most ideal prospects are. It also allows you to send targeted content to specific lists that have specific problems you can solve with your service.
- Separate subscribers by an event, which opt-in they signed up for, job title, etc.
- Separate your list into two categories: prospects and paying customers.
- This makes it much easier to personalize your emails to what different groups of subscribers need in order to get from the level they’re at to the next level (whether this is making their first purchase or buying in at a higher level)
Email marketing is still the most cost-effective ways to market your business. It will take a significant time investment to get this aspect of your marketing off the ground and then get it automated so that it mostly runs on its own. But in the end, the pay off will be well worth it.
If you missed last week’s post, be sure and check it out now 10 Things You Must Do On Social Media Now.
Next week we’re jumping into the video marketing world. Remember to come back and read more then!