eMail Marketing. Don’t waste your money.

This is another one for the email marketer who wants to try-it-once-and-see-if-it works. Don’t waste your money.

Like traditional marketing, you need a budget for an ongoing campaign, not for a once-off ad. eMarketing should be consistent and relevant, a process, not an event. Its success relates to the old sales truism… people buy from people they know. And people buy when they’re ready to buy. Not when you’re ready to sell. Like the billboard on the motorway it’s a focused what’s-in-it-for-me message, often seen at speed. And like the billboard on the motorway it should be there every month. It establishes an ongoing relationship with your target group by creating a consistent, relevant awareness of your brand. It says, when you are ready to buy.. here I am.

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eMail Marketing is not a quick fix

We are often approached by the new email marketer who wants to try-it-once-and-see-if-it works. On average a salesman has to connect with a prospect 6-10 times to reach a sale. How can a once-off email then do the job?

In “Long Tale” marketing (not a typo) the point is made that the long tale is the never-ending-story you tell your prospects and your customers. The difficult part is getting a targeted database of people who would be interested in what you have to sell. The overlooked part is where you waste all that effort and cost, because you forget to keep telling your story. Almost all the goodness of emarketing comes not from the big announcement, but from the long tale.

It’s a process, not an event. And if you do it well, your viewers will be happy to hear from you until they have made a buying decision, sometimes 12 – 18 months down the line. If you get it wrong, they will unsubscribe. It’s that simple.

It’s not a quick fix. And there are no shortcuts to the market.

Midyear marketing budgets… the winners and the losers

Interesting to note that 92% of marketers are increasing their adspend in spite of business still being tough. Makes sense. Without visibility you have no business, no matter how good your product. Here are the winners and the losers in terms of budget allocation.

No 1. eMail subscriber engagement. Quick-fix email blasts are replaced by more measured nurturing approaches – The Brand as Thought Leader. 60% plan to increase emarketing spend.

No 2. eMail list segmentation. 44% of marketers plan to develop more targeted databases. 32% plan to offer more opt-in services. “What does my customer truly consider valuable? “

No 3. Social media budgets increase by 54%. Surprising that this is not higher, but then again not every product is a perfect fit for social media.

No 4. Mobile and search spend up 37%.

… and the losers? The only losers in the budget spend seems to be Direct Mail [down 28%] and Tradeshows and Event spending [down 23%].

*ref 2012 Marketing Trends Survey. strongmail.com. Survey did not include traditional media.

3 reasons why your email marketing is not working.

no1. Your emails are not being read.
BIG FACT: Nothing happens until the email is opened. And with spam filling 90% of your inbox, your subject line needs to stand out with a what’s-in-it-for-me? subject line.

no2. You’re using a poor mailing list.
The better the match between your product/serviceand your target list, the better the response. Mail to shorter and better lists.

no3. Your emails are too long.
Short emails get higher click-through rates. 3-5 short paragraphs, 35-55 characters per line. Say one thing only. Ask, what does my customer consider valuable? And write your email aroundthat value.


5 points to consider before you re-design your website

1. Is your website really fast? According to a Nielsen (USA) report, it’s the no 1 criteria for websites. People want to get on, get the info, and get off quickly. So lose the flash and those gorgeous heavy pages that slow you down to a crawl.

2. Less is more. In our opinion, every page of a website should exist to create a sale. No more, no less. Period. Include only the content that encourages a visitor to buy.

3. Does the home page reflect “what’s in it for me?” for your viewer. Ruthlessly discard the PR, the corporate ego. If your product provides a solution to a pain-point, Voila… there’s your home page.

4. Whom are you trying to reach? Core target, lowest hanging fruit. And then, design your website to wear the style of your target market… colours, type, design and language style. NOT the style of your boardroom. It should feel like home for your viewer.

5. Is your offering clear, clear, clear? About benefits and solutions, not features.

How to market with minimum cash flow.

Minimum cash flow means you have no budget for marketing. No marketing equals no new clients. And minimum cash flow. And so you spiral downwards… So what can you do? How can you find new clients with minimum cash flow? The formula is so simple that you might not even give it credit. Use email, but use it like you’ve never used it before. Use a proven methodology that works for us, and works for our clients. Here it is: 
STEP 1. Select your perfect target base; use google and segment. STEP 2. Write the perfect subject line, using a template from The Secret  Formula of Subject Lines (see below). STEP 3. Write a simple, one-thought message of engagement using our  template for The Perfect eMail Structure (see below).STEP 4. Send your email to your target list. STEP 5. Repeat steps 2 – 4 every 2 weeks.

The Perfect eMail Structure.

1. Start your campaign with the subject line. Ask What’s-in-it-for-me? on  behalf of the viewer.
2. Repeat the subject line in the header of the email. Place at the top left  hand side of the email. NB Remember, your headline should be a simple,  one-thought message of engagement. No more.
3. Add a sticky-relevant picture. Note: The right picture increases understanding of your concept by up to 120%!
4. Write 1-3 short paragraphs of support wording, and place below the screen  fold line.
5. Call to action with an enquiry link. Tell the viewer exactly what you want to happen next.
6. Stay legal, if you are going to bulk mail, e.g. “This e-mail is sent to you  courtesy of the xxx company, http://www.xxxx.co.za. If you have received this in error, we apologise. Please unsubscribe.” (Note it should be a working  unsubscribe link).
7. AND of course: mail to the right, segmented database. Good luck!