Sunday, 21 September 2014 19:35

Build, Don't Buy: Email List Tips

Email marketing is one of the best ways to reach out to your target market. But it's a slippery slope that you need to tread. One mistake and you may lose a client. If it's worse, your email might even be classified as spam, which would then open up a different can of worms. You don't want to have to run around begging spam guards and what-not to get you off their black list, right?

Email marketing is necessary. You just have to be careful. And it all starts with your email list.

Build, Don't Buy – The First and Most Important Rule
The most important thing to remember when you want to start emailing people is that they have to want to hear from you. This then brings us to how you get your mailing list.

A quick search online and you'll find yourself in a market where email lists are available, sometimes for just the cost of a beer. It can get very tempting. But, no matter how good the offers seem to get, you have to say 'no.' Buying an email list is one of the worst things that you can do for your email marketing campaign.

Your email list should be made up of recipients who actually want to hear about what you have to say. They need to be people who'd actually consider buying your products or services. Purchased lists do not qualify in both cases.

Mailing lists sold online are typically made up of maliciously acquired email addresses. These are random email addresses, taken off mail server databases and public domain. This means that, if you use them, you will be sending your marketing emails to people who are connected only by one fact: they have email addresses. That's a waste of time.

The main point of doing email marketing is that you want to stay in touch with your target market. You want to tell them what's new about your business. You want to keep them engaged with information that they'd be interested in. Eventually, you want them to keep going back to your website, where you can do “real” business and sell to them.

An email designed to do all this is lost in recipients who aren't really interested. So, why do email campaigns at all if you will only waste it on purchased email addresses?

Build your email list through your website, social media, and other marketing venues. Never buy your email list.

Value for Value
Of course, building your email list is easier said than done. It will take you a couple of months or more before you get a sizable number of recipients. But you have to start somewhere.

One of the best ways to encourage your audience to sign up to receive emails from you is to offer something that they'd want. You need to offer value.

Through promotional offerings, free downloads and the like, you are not only giving your market a gift that they'll appreciate. You are also qualifying those who sign up as prospective buyers who would be interested in what you sell. This requires that you choose your offers carefully.

For instance, say you are a pop singer and you want to regularly touch base with your fans. You might want to offer them one of your songs as a free download when they sign up into your email list. Don't expect them to sign up if the only free download you're offering is by an operatic aria by an unknown diva. If that's the case, you might end up with a mailing list made up of people who live opera, not pop music.

Some ideas here are: white papers, e-books, audio files and discount coupons.

Craft Your Emails
Now that you've put together a list, it is imperative that you keep them interested. Otherwise, your email might just go into their trash bin. Or, worse, they could opt-out of your email list.

Craft your emails with your audience in mind. What are they interested in that's in line with your business? What can you offer them as enticement to buy more from you? What would amuse them, make them laugh?

Of course, don't give everything away in your email. Always link back to your website. Your email is just a way to encourage your target market to check into your website time and again. Tease your target, and get them to click!

Time Your Emails
It is important to time your emails too. If you email too much, you don't only get to see the trash bin often. You might also be labeled as spam. And, you don't want this because there is a lot of effort required just to get your domain name and IP off spam guard black lists.

The minimum that you can do is email once a month. You want to remain in the minds of your target market. If you're diligent enough in your email marketing, once a week is a good number. Anything over that is too risky. You might just end up turning your audience off.

Read 5009 times Last modified on Sunday, 21 September 2014 20:02