Email Marketing: Give To Get

By Mike Munter on June 28, 2011  

Email Marketing:  Give To Get

Four tips to help your email marketing take off!

I’m a big fan of building databases.  A rich database, full of people interested in your product or service, can be a gold mine – if you use it correctly.

I think when a lot of us business owners sit down to write an email to our customer base, we treat it like it’s the only one our customers are getting.  It’s not!

The email marketing message we send is probably just 1 of 10 or more our clients receive each day.

As an SEO specialist, I’m signed up to a lot of different email marketing lists.  (Usually my vendors will let me test out a new product for free, if I share my email address with them.)

The problem is, most of what I get is useless, a waste of my time.  They are constantly trying to sell me something new (they don’t even know me) and they barrage me with emails almost daily.  And a lot of them are lonnnnnng.

I don’t have time for that, so I’ve been conditioned to delete many of them as soon as they come into my inbox.  Sound familiar?

Here Are 4 Effective Email Marketing Tips:

#1 Give To Get

What we all want to do in business is build relationships.  If you just met a new potential client, you wouldn’t jump right into your sales pitch, would you?  That would turn me off right away.  I want to know who you are first.  I want to know I can trust you.  I want to know you are good at what you do and that you are knowledgeable.  I want you to prove yourself to me BEFORE I buy from you.

The way to do this in email marketing is to make yourself valuable to your reader.  What can you provide your new reader with that will be useful to them?

My girlfriend is a realtor and she does some email marketing and sometimes finds it challenging to come up with new topics for her emails.  We were at lunch one day when she got a phone call from a former client who was getting ready to do a remodel on their kitchen.  They wanted to know if my girlfriend could recommend anyone.  Of course, she could!  Being in the business for over 5 years, she had first hand experience with several area contractors for whom she could give a recommendation.  Then it occurred to her – not only did she know contractors, but she also knew handymen, landscapers, plumbers, electricians, and drywallers.

The light bulb went off.  Now, there was a great way for her to make herself useful to her client base.  As a realtor, she could be a reliable referral source on all these related services that her clients might need.

She sent the email to her clients, announcing herself as such.  Was she selling?  No.  Was she building relationships?  You bet.

Make yourself a useful resource to your clients and you’ll have them begging to do business with you later on.

#2 K.I.S.S.

Keep it simple, stupid.  As marketers, we have all seen this acronym, but do we use it?  Keep your message simple, short, and sweet.  (Emphasis on the short).

I have a short attention span.  I don’t want to read a long message.  Just give me the facts, jack.

The key here is to get in and get out.  Give some useful information and make it quick.  Provide a link, so if the reader wants more they can go get it themselves.

What you are doing here is conditioning your reader.  You are showing them that the emails you send them are going to be short, sweet, and to the point.

#3 Don’t Beat Them Over The Head

I think this one is fairly obvious, but I do not send my email blasts more than once per month.  In fact, I lean more toward sending one every 2-3 months.

Can you imagine getting an email from me with an SEO tip every day?  I mean, maybe you would, since I write such great content!  But, I am guessing after a week or so of tips, you’d be overwhelmed with SEO tips.  You’d be saying outloud, “Enough already.”  And then, even though you like what I’m sending you, you might start deleting them.  It’s just too much.

And – it’s a lot of pressure on us writers to keep churning out quality blurbs each and every day.

Relax.  Remember we are building relationships.  It takes time.  Give your reader a chance to get to know you.  A gentle reminder every month or two is good enough to let them know you’re still in business and you remember them.

#4 To Add Graphics or Not To Add Graphics?

I’m a big fan of telling your story with pictures.

What I’m not a big fan of is receiving fancy emails that take a long time to load or that have broken icons where I know pictures should be.

So, I generally do not send pictures.  I find that 3 or 4 sentences of text is much more effective.  I don’t have to worry about long load times and I don’t have to worry about pictures (or video) not loading correctly.

If I want to share a picture, I’ll put it in the link.  That way, if my reader clicks through to the web page, it will load just fine.

Email marketing can be a useful tool if you use it correctly.

If you want an objective look at your email marketing strategy, just give me a call or shoot me an email.



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