Create a Successful Email Marketing Campaign

Like any campaign or marketing effort, there are certain ways you can maximize your ROI. Follow these tips to ensure your email marketing campaign is engaging your audience and providing successful marketing results.

PART I: DESIGN

The design of your email campaign affects your consumer perception as well as the potential engagement from recipients. Some key areas to focus on are:

Theme: The overall look & feel should match your brand image. Any fonts, PMS colors, or graphic elements used in your logo or other marketing pieces should be carried over into your email design.

Style: Use images and ample white space to break up copy and make the message easy on the eye. Images should support content by providing a visual representation of your message. If you’re using a colored background, be sure the contrast between the background color & the copy is dramatic enough to provide clear legibility.

Format: The layout of your email can impact the comprehension of the over all message. The format should be clean, simple, and easy understand.

* Header: You may be inclined to place your logo or an event logo at the top of your email, however, some email clients auto disable images or the reader may be viewing your message on a smart phone that does not enable images. If you’re logo or event title is an image file, it will be lost on these readers. To avoid this problem, write your message title and business name in text at the top.

* Body: Using a side bar menu or too many additional links will clutter your message and confuse your reader about the call to action. Keep the body of your message clean and clear. If you’re creating a newsletter, define different articles or events with graphic dividers and bold title fonts.

* Footer: This is a good place for your logo image as well as contact, subscriber info, and disclaimer.

PART II: CONTENT

The most important goal of your campaign content is to create a message your target audience wants to read about. Your message should be worth saving and or sharing with others. Follow these steps in order to create clear & valuable content.

Determine the Objective: In general there are 3 types of objectives with email marketing-

* Promote: motivate purchases or increase event attendance

* Inform: increase awareness among potential or current customers or for differentiating your brand among competitors

* Relate: build relationships, loyalty, & referrals

Determine the Form: Again, there are 3 types of forms used in email marketing and each has it’s own frequency, content focus, and call to action.

* Newsletters: Regular intervals (weekly/monthly), education info provided in bullets or summary, soft CTA (learn/read more).

* Promotions/Invites/Surveys: Frequency follows sales cycle, limited & direct content, hard CTA (call/sign up now)

* Announcements: Event driven, news, holiday, or thank you oriented, soft CTA.

Valuable Content: The key to a successful campaign ultimately lies in how worthwhile the content is to the audience. Be sure the immediate benefit is clearly defined for your reader. Some ideas for valuable content include:

* Knowledge: Sharing your expertise, use facts & testimonials, give guidance & direction

* Advantage: Discounts & coupons, exclusivity or VIP status, contests & giveaways

* Attention: Acknowledge and response to audience

Keep it Concise: This goes along with ease on the eye- Presenting too much information at once will overwhelm your reader. To prevent burn out and ensure the reader can easily access the information s/he is interested in, follow these guidelines:

* Host large bodies of content elsewhere- link to website or blog, PDF attachment

* Limit to essential info- use bullets, summaries, or links to more info elsewhere

Structure: Getting people just to open, let alone read your emails can be strongly impacted by the external appearance of your message. Key areas to focus on are:

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* From line: Use a name your audience will recognize. For more targeted lists, this could be a personal name. For broad lists use the brand for both the name & email address, i.e. “[email protected]”.

Subject line: Keep it short and simple, limit to 30-40 characters (including spaces) or 5-8 words. Identify the immediate value/benefit of reading the content. Avoid “spammy” grammar such as all caps and multiple punctuation marks.

Permissions: Always be sure to ask people before you send them your campaign. This can be done with a sign-up sheet on location or an opt-in on your website. You can also verbally confirm permission. Be as specific as possible about the content your reader can expect to receive. It’s generally helpful to provide a preview or past email. Also provide an unsubscribe option; this will prevent you from unnecessary aggravation should a reader no longer wish to receive your emails, as well as show your respect for privacy.

PART III: ANALYTICS/TOOLS

Whether your using your own service provider or a marketing agency to develop your campaigns, reviewing the analytics is an important part of measuring success as well as using the information to grow and improve future campaigns. These are some areas to check regularly to optimize your campaign.

Bounce Rates: A bounce rate is the immediate return of your email. There are two types of bounces which can occur. The first is a hard bounce which indicates a permanent error with the email address, i.e. a spelling error or deleted address. If the address no longer exists, the contact is most likely no longer there. This provides an opportunity for you to create a new contact with that company as well as find the old contact and acquire business with his/her new company. Alternatively, a soft bounce is a temporary server issue, i.e. recipients inbox is full or the message was identified as spam & blocked. Generally if the email is re-sent at a later time the message will get through.

Open Rates: Open rates track the interaction with your email, not the delivery. It’s tracked by two codes hidden in your email. One is placed in the body, the other is in the embedded image you might have (i.e. logo). A key note here is if images are not enabled by the user- whether the function has been turned off by the email provider or the reader is viewing the email on a text only phone- the email will be marked as unopened.

Click-Through Rates: Click through rates identify how many people have clicked a link provided in your email and arrived at the designated page. You can use this information to determine which article or topics are of the greatest interest and which you may want to eliminate in the future. You can also create a list of contacts interested in a particular topic, so that you can direct future emails on that subject toward them in the future.

Function Scan: This is a great preventative tool to use before you send out your campaign. It scans your message to test for link and image functionality, as well as evaluate your subject & content for “spam-like” properties, so you can prevent errors which may deteriorate your message.

The Differences Between Traditional MLM and Top Tier Direct Marketing

The traditional network marketing model is usually some form of multi-level marketing, or the MLM. Unfortunately, most home business opportunities based on this model require the consultant to actively market to family and friends, purchase and cold call for leads for which there is a high rejection rate, and produce small upfront and residual checks. Because of the high turnover, the residual income often shrinks considerably or even disappears. Additionally, the burden of attending constant meetings causes many to become discouraged and quit.

There is, however, a home-based business alternative which has been coined “Top Tier” Direct Sales. Because the product line is high-quality and high-dollar, it is necessary to sponsor fewer people who recognize the quality of the products and who have the money to invest.

– Top Tier home-Based business opportunities provide more upfront commissions on your sales.

Because of the high price tags on the products, a high commission is generated.

– Top Tier home-Based business opportunities provide multiple streams of residual income.

In addition to the sizeable up-front commissions, you will also get higher streams of residual income! This is the perfect combination of income possibilities, and it is possible to generate high amounts of reliable recurring income!

– Top Tier home-Based business opportunities exhibit greater retention.

How many times have you clicked on a link for an MLM-based business that was broken? When this happens often for the same business, you can see that attrition is high. Top Tier home-based business opportunities allow you to generate impressive incomes, and you will see that consultants are eager to remain plugged into the system.

– A Great home-based business opportunity will provide you with the skills and training to succeed.

These opportunities are designed to train you, and they have systems to help you get ‘up and running’ as quickly as possible. Your upline is motivated to ensure that you have the skills to produce. When you succeed, they succeed as well, and to a much greater degree than the traditional MLM model.

If you are serious about replacing your current income and even making significant amounts of money, as well as creating a lifestyle for yourself and your family that is beyond your wildest dreams, you need to consider investing in a Top Tier Home-based business.

Mimi Ward is a seasoned IT professional who made the decision to harness the power of the Internet in a business venture. After investigation of the home-based business opportunities, it became clear that a Top Tier business was the answer. Ward quickly became a very successful direct sales consultant.

Direct-Mail Copywriting – Finding the Gold

When it comes to direct mail copywriting, finding quality marketing examples is like finding a needle inside the proverbial haystack.

Here, check this out: I’m a perpetual student. I have piles of books and papers all over the house. Courses, magazines, books, letters, and hundreds of pages of material I’ve printed from things I stumble across online.

And they’re everywhere.

Some small piles towards the back of the dinner table where no one really sits… another medium-sized stash on the chair in the dining room where no one notices too much… on top of every desk in my office… on the floor in the bathrooms next to the toilet (But not in my teenaged sons bathrooms – even I won’t venture into that place.)… and scattered around my desk on the floor in my office, I have several piles as well.

Occasionally I get through one or two of the piles, or if I take a long plane flight I’ll scoop them up and stuff ‘em in my briefcase and they’ll tend to disappear for a while, but then… within a few weeks, they magically reappear like some sort of weed in your garden you could swear you just pulled out last week, and the last week before that.

The thing is, while most of the stuff in these piles contains good information, most of the direct mail I receive, is pure crap. No matter how hard I try and find even one good idea I could use and run with, I just keep turning up empty-handed.

The other day, however, I received a very interesting piece in the mail, which I can use and actually improve on.

It was a crumpled up piece of paper, that was a cover letter to a sales piece. The letter had scrawled across it, in handwriting, something to the effect of, “I figured since you threw out the last two pieces of mail I sent you, I’d give you a head start on this one.”

This was pretty clever as a lift letter for a follow-up piece, I thought.

The copy itself wasn’t very compelling, but the concept worked. The piece was supposed to get me to stop and pay attention and I did.

Unfortunately, the actual selling piece was awful. They could have sent me the Hope Diamond as a free gift, and I still wouldn’t have been able to read through it. But the point is, at least I found an idea to run with.

The truth is, looking for exact models, in anything, is rarely productive. But searching for good ideas, finding them and then adapting them to your specific needs, is incredibly productive.

There are a few changes I would have made, to the lift note, and if you use direct mail, pay close attention to them: I would have used yellow paper, and I probably would have written the note in blue ink instead of black. I also would have included my picture on this lift note as well. Photos always get more attention and boost your response rates.

Since the transaction value was high, which means the vendor could afford to spend money to acquire customers, I also would have sent the entire thing in a garbage can mailer, instead of just crumpling the note up.

The garbage cans I’m talking about are small garbage cans you can mail out – several of my clients have used them successfully. I’m sure you’ll agree, it is virtually impossible to ignore something like this when you receive it in your mailbox.

The big problem with all this, is you typically can’t find good ideas like this in even 1 out of every 100 pieces of mail you might get. But that’s O.K., because… when it comes to direct-mail copywriting, even one good idea… is worth it’s weight… in gold.