7 Tips To Grow Your Email List And Boost Sales

Email list is probably one of the most effective sales channels. It is therefore, imperative that you build your following as big and as relevant as possible.

By Sam Cyrus

It seems that with all the social media out there, people forgot the power of email marketing. Here is a simple fact: email is 40 times better at bringing in new clients than any social network. In fact, it’s number one marketing channel in any business field. When sending emails the ROI is strikingly lower than the amounts of money spent on social media marketing. But simply making a huge email list is not going to do the work. The goal is to convert your website visitors into email leads. Email leads are relevant recipients that have in some way expressed an interest in your business. Here are 7 tips on how to grow an email list loaded with relevant leads and boost your sales:

1. Create a lead magnet on your website

Many websites have lead magnets, it’s nothing new. But the way it’s presented will decide if you’re going to gather the desirable amount of leads. Just simply asking for emails with giving nothing in return won’t do the job. The key is to tempt your customers to give their email address for your free offer. There are different ways to create a lead magnet, depending on the type of your business. Creating a lead magnet on your website is only one of the elements which will help expand your email list, but it shouldn’t be neglected.

2. Get social followers to subscribe

As already mentioned, email subscribers will benefit your business more than social followers. A great way to expand your email list is to use your current following on social networks. Asking your social followers to subscribe can help you reach your goal, and the best thing is that it won’t cost you a dime. The most effective way is to ask your followers to subscribe on regular basis. A lot of the followers will spot only a part of the posts you share, so it’s important to be consistent.

3. Create Twitter lead generation cards

Promoting your business on Twitter can often be tricky. You need to pay attention to many different components if you want Twitter Lead Cards to work. With a great design you will more likely stand out from the huge amount of other tweets, and a call-to-action is necessary. Next, you need to increase your keyword list and personalized advertising. And of course don’t forget to measure the ROI, so you can keep track of the source of new leads.

4. Launch a giveaway

An amazing way to attract your audience and expand your email list is to host a giveaway. If done in the right way, giveaways are the go-to strategy. To make it work, you should follow the next few steps:

  • Offer a tempting reward your audience would actually like to win
  • Give bonus entries for referred entrants
  • Give bonus incentives for those who didn’t win the prize
  • Offer significant promotions for relevant audiences

With every giveaway you will attract subscribers that are not relevant, so make sure the prize will be of interest only to the targeted audience.

5. Run a contest to create engagement

Giveaways are fantastic for expanding your email list, but nothing will engage the audience with your brand like running a contest. Contests are great because they spark that ceaseless need within people to win. If you keep the entry barrier low, your email list will be loaded with new subscribers really fast. It’s a great opportunity to gain new subscribers who could potentially be your new brand evangelists. Maybe you won’t get as many emails like when there is a giveaway, but you will certainly win some new fans of your brand, and nothing is more valuable than that.

6. Apply pop-ups and slide-ins

Believe it or not, pop-ups and their slide-in counterparts are the most efficient way to score relevant email leads straight from your website. Over the years pop-ups gained a bad reputation, and the reason is that they were not used in the right way. To make pop-ups and slide-ins work, you must implement them in a non-intrusive manner, of course with the right targeting. You can use exit intent pop-ups that will open a message or use opt-in when someone is going to leave your website.

7. Paid advertising

At first, when you think about paying to have more subscribers, it doesn’t sound that appealing. But when you think about it, every strategy you use has a price. If you want to host a webinar, run a giveaway or a contest, have someone write a good article for you, or create a lead magnet on your website- you will need to pay for it. So why not use paid advertising to bring in new subscribers, if it turns out to be cheaper than other methods for growing your email list?

Conclusion

Hopefully, these tips will help you grow your email list and reach your sales goals. It doesn’t have to be hard. But what counts the most is what you do after gaining those subscribers. So try to provide quality in every aspect of your business to keep your clients happy and your business flourishing.

About the author
Sam Cyrus is CEO and co-founder of Agseosydney, a Digital Marketing agency from Australia. Sam is also a creative writer and likes to share his insights on entrepreneurship, business, and social media. He currently collaborates with Nirmal Web Design Sydney>.

How to make your email automatic

With Automatic Email you can save time and achieve things much more easily

Earlier today I became rather grumpy with Gmail. I had received a message which contained 14 attachments, all of which needed printing. However, the way Gmail works is, frankly, archaic. You have to select each attachment individually and then print them one at a time. This involves clicking on the attachment, which brings up a “preview” window. Then you click on the print button in that preview which opens up another tab in your browser. Then you click on the print button in that tab and then you can select the way you want it printed. Only then can you press “print”. Can you imagine doing this for 14 attachments…!

There must be a better way, I thought. So I set off searching for a Chrome extension to print Gmail attachments. There isn’t one. So I looked for a Chrome App and found one that seemed to do the job, but in reality, all it does is save all the attachments to Google Drive. You then have to go to the saved documents and select them individually for printing.

Automatic Email Manager WebsitePresumably, no-one at Google ever gets multiple attachments, and if they do, then I assume they never print any of them. Otherwise, they would have solved this frustrating annoyance.

Then I found “Automatic Email Manager” which prints out the attachments – and much more besides. The program allows you to connect to your email account and then set up various “actions” and “filters”.

So, for instance, I was able to connect to my Gmail account and set up an action to print out all attachments. Then I created a filter so that it would only print attachments from specific email addresses.

You can choose how often Automatic Email Manager checks your inbox from every couple of minutes to just once a day. You can also manually trigger checks if you wish.

So, I set up the action and filter and then set off a check. A couple of moments later my printer whirred into action, and all 14 attachments were printed out.

Set up accounts in Automatic Email Manager

Once you have set up your account and added any actions and filters, you can let it work automatically in the background, checking and doing things that would otherwise take your time. The software has a full log of everything it does and also presents you with a list of emails and what actions have been taken. That way you can keep an eye on it and ensure it is operating correctly.

Messages are listed in automatic email manager

There are several different actions you can use. For instance, you can set up automatic forwarding of specific emails. Or you can print emails that meet particular requirements, such as being a certain number of days old. You can set up a variety of automatic replies, or you can save emails when they meet certain requirements. The mixture of actions and filters provides you with a broad range of things you can achieve.

However, the software does have one or two things that niggled me – in spite of immediately finding it excellent..! For a start, getting to the “actions” is awkward. You have to go back to the part where you set up a particular email address and then go through a couple of screens until you can create a new action for that account. It is only a couple of clicks, but it would be easier if you could just create an action from a menu option. You can do this for filters, so it seems odd not to be able to do it for actions. Also, some of the functions are not obvious, so you do have to check out the tutorials, which explain things well.

These minor quibbles aside, I am so glad I found Automatic Email Manager. It has already saved me time today, printing out the attachments I need from a variety of contacts. Indeed, it saved me so much time I was able to write this post about the software. One day of using it and I already love it.

Tips for better email collaboration for more productivity

In this article, we talk about a few simple, yet often overlooked emailing practices, which can help you collaborate better with your team and also, manage your time and emai

No matter what experts say, email is not going anywhere anytime soon.

Infact, 81% of  content marketers still use email marketing, and email, quite evidently, is still the major platform for communication among people in workplaces. Here is an interesting read which says email is not dead, but it’s changing, and as long as email is in the picture, email collaboration will be too.

We collaborate on email every single day for several tasks such as asking your virtual assistant to fix an appointment, delegate tasks, setting up team meetings and many more, even if we don’t realise it explicitly.

With email playing such a huge role in running a team workflow, it is necessary to ensure that we are collaborating efficiently and productively.

In this post, I put together some tips from personal experience to help you collaborate better on email:

1. Look beyond mail forwarding

While delegating tasks via email is nothing new, but many are not aware that there are efficient ways to delegate emails than simple mail forwarding.

Mail forwarding can help if you have to assign one or two tasks per day, but across several teams and over several tasks, it can be counter productive.

One efficient way to delegate tasks to emails would be to use tools and apps to do efficient email delegation, so as to save time and also not lose any information, or leave tasks unattended in the process.

You can use task management and collaboration tools like Hiver, Slack and more. These tools not only let you assign tasks, but also help you track and monitor them.

Although not efficient for collaboration across huge teams, giving multiple user access to your account is another alternative; especially when you are delegating tasks to your virtual assistant gmail allows you to give multiple user access to your account.

2. Consider using email routing

Email routing is another great option, especially on Gmail, that smoothens your workflow. Email routing allows you to direct some or all mails to another address the moment you receive them.

It’s an automated process, where all you have to do is type in the other email address and select the type of mails you want to automatically direct to them. Understand that messages are still delivered to you, but a copy of it is also sent to the other address.

For example, you can set email routing so that all support emails and requests you get are automatically re-routed to your support head.

Here’s what is great about this practice:

  • You are always in the loop, if you ever want to check in.
  • You can store all the routed emails in one place using filters and labels (more on this in the last point), hence de-cluttering your inbox.
  • You don’t have to comb through every single email and assign them, yourself.

3. Cut on email tos and fros

When collaborating on email, having too many mails going to and fro will certainly cause confusion and chaos, slowing down your work process. Lucky for us, there are ways to avoid this problem; Shared notes is one such solution which allows you to leave updates and other notes on an email and share these notes with the concerned members, for them to see.

Another way is to use external task management tools, like Wrike, that partially integrate with your inbox, allowing you to create a task from your email on the tool interface and you can do further communication, add notes etc from the tool.

Here are the advantages of using such interactive tools and shared notes:

  • Every time there is a new development or update, you don’t have to send an email, you could just leave a note (or use an interactive Gantt chart/tracker in tools like Wrike)
  • If your assignees have questions and doubts, they can leave a note for you.
  • All the notes and trackers stay on record, so you can track the conversation if ever needed in the future.
  • It is almost like a chat box, making the communication instant and effortless.

4. Use filters and rules to prioritize work

Another important tip which can not only make your collaboration process easy, but also help you manage your own time more efficiently, getting more done in a given time.

Gmail and most other mailing platforms, allow you to create rules and filters to sort your inbox.

For example, an email from the client will fall in the priority category and an email regarding an office lunch will fall under social category.

You can create labels ‘Priority’ and ‘Social’ and set a rule so that any mail from client will fall under priority and so on.

An organised inbox can help you sort, delegate, monitor and track tasks faster and easier. Plus, creating labels, folders and filters, is a one time effort and after that everything is an automated process.

On the other hand if you and your team have disorganized and chaotic inboxes, collaboration can be a slow and laborious process – combing through all emails, wasting time searching for client emails when needed, losing or neglecting a priority email in the confusion etc.

5. Design email templates for your team to use, for consistency

Did you know that humans make literally, thousands of decisions everyday? More so for working professionals. The less decisions we have to make as a team, in a team, the easier it gets to collaborate smoothly.

Hence, it is best to take a few decisions of their plate, simple ones like, what to write in an email, how to structure it, what font to follow, what to put in the signature etc.

What do we generally do? We ask a senior employee to help out a junior employee to write reply mails to clients. A more time and effort saving idea is to create standard templates, which anyone can use without questions or second thoughts.

Designing and standardizing email templates to be used by all team members when replying to clients etc, especially in sales and customer service departments can help smoothen the workflow by removing unnecessary work and effort and can avoid the chances of making mistakes like forgetting to include signature etc

Also, standardizing your email format will show consistency in your emails to your clients/customers, no matter who replies to the email.

From personal experience, I have learnt that ignoring simple email collaboration and management practices like these, can chew away your time, without you even noticing it. Plus, unnecessarily spending a huge part of the day squinting at emails and bent over your inbox can do no good to your work efficiency as well your personal well being.

Tips For Ecommerce Businesses Using Transactional Emails

Transactional email optimization offers a totally new level of potential returns on investment

By Matt Zajechowski

If you’re serious about your internet marketing strategy, you need to incorporate transactional emails as part of your promotion chain. This is because, while bulk mail campaigns are a powerful stable of serious email marketing, transactional email optimization offers a totally new level of potential returns on investment.

Why? Because transactional emails enjoy some of the best open rates, clicks and conversions of any kind of business email any company sends out. You simply can’t afford to take advantage of this.

So, just to be sure, what exactly are transactional emails? Quite simply, they’re all those numerous subscriber specific one-at-a-time messages that get triggered whenever individual users interact with your website or web application in some way.

We’re talking about notification emails, shipping confirmations, shopping cart abandonment emails and sales receipts among others like these.

The most basic definition of transactional emails is that they’re sent out on an individual basis instead of in bulk and that they have to primarily relate to a transaction instead of just raw product/service promotion.

Now that you have a bit more definition of what kinds of emails we’re talking about, let’s cover some tips for optimizing them for maximum campaign returns.

Also, before we begin, if you want more information on these unique email marketing tools, then check out this infographic from the people at Easy SMTP. It covers even more details on transactionals and their value.

How to Optimize your Transactional Emails for Maximum ROI: broken down by email type

Welcome Emails

Welcome emails are what you send when a user subscribes to your service or product and they can generate some really awesome returns if you design them correctly. We’re talking about returns as high as $5.83 per email sent, which is way above the 53 cent average for a typical bulk email.

Optimize your welcome emails by first breaking them down into two or more serialized messages that increase your exposure to a subscribers eyes. Then, with each email, include promotional offers for new products and special deals. Doing this can double revenue per email sent.

Also, make sure the subject lines of your welcome emails are branded, concise and attention grabbing. Ensuring this can increase open rates by 80% or more.

Sales Receipt Emails

Sales emails offer enormous promise among transactionals in that they enjoy open rates of over 100%! This is because they often get opened more than once by the same reader and each opening is an opportunity for optimization.

You can optimize these emails by doing things as simple as adding a “thank you” to their subject heading, which can increase open rates by a hefty 35%. Or you can also include social sharing buttons inside them emails themselves. This has been shown to boost click rates by as much as 35%.

Also, as with any sales related transactional, use your sales receipts to cross-promote additional product and services.

Shopping cart abandonment Emails

According to the research done by Easy SMTP, some 67% of your potentials buyers will simply abandon their shopping cart before actually buying something. So you might as well work towards saving what you can from these potentially lost sales by making sure you send out clearly stated notifications that name the products abandoned and even go as far as to offer helpful additional accessory purchases.

While this may seem like a recipe for failure, Easy SMTP’s research shows that it can actually reduce final abandonment by as much as 40%.

The above-mentioned act of reminding customers of the products they’ve abandoned can actually increase open rates by 10% and throwing in further product recommendations can improve click rates by 50% and also boost sales.

Shipping Confirmations

Shipping Confirmations are another great opportunity for recommending additional purchases to customers. They enjoy open and click rates of 20.8% and each of those percentage points gives you a chance to cross-promote accessory products to customers waiting for their shipments. Doing this can grow new transactions by 20% or better.

You should also add plenty of useful information such as tracking details, order numbers and links to package tracking pages to your shipping notifications. This will drop your overall customer service costs.

Product Reviews

Product Reviews are known to be far more effective than generic product descriptions when it comes to encouraging more buying. So make sure you put together some authentic third party product reviews on your website or a third party review page and include links to them in all of your optimized transactional emails wherever you’re promoting a specific product that’s been reviewed by a previous user.

Making this effort can create a whopping 12-fold increase in sales! Also make sure people know that specific transactional emails include product reviews by adding the word “review” to your email subject lines.

 

About the author
Matt Zajechowski is an outreach manager at Digital Third Coast.  Connect with him on Twitter and Google+.

Email is the best revenue generator

New research finds 7 in 10 marketers rate email as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ for ROI

For guaranteed ROI, there is no better digital communications channel than email finds The Adestra/Econsultancy Email Marketing Industry Census 2014. Furthermore, email is also the best channel in which to focus the budget as it’s proven to bring in the sales – one third of marketers now enjoy 20-50% of sales directly attributable to this channel. Yet most marketers rate their own campaigns results a lowly ‘poor’ or ‘average’.

Email marketing was ranked as the best channel in terms of return on investment, with 68% of companies rating the channel as good or excellent. This marks a 3% increase since last year, while the previously highest ranked digital marketing channel, search engine optimisation, dropped 8%.

Graph showing that email is siuccessful

Marketers are also deriving more revenue from their email marketing efforts. On average, companies are attributing 23% of their total sales to the email marketing channel, compared to 18% in 2013 – equivalent to a proportionate rise of 28% in just one year. However, companies are spending just 16% of their marketing budget on email.

The report also finds that email send volumes have risen, despite previous census results that pointed towards a slowing of growth. The proportion of companies sending more than one million emails per month has doubled since 2007, while the proportion of companies sending more than 100,000 emails has risen from 32% in 2007 to 50% this year. This shows that as more emails are sent through targeted, personalized and automated programs, they become more relevant – and increased relevance equates to more revenue.

Steve Denner, director at Adestra, says: Yet again we can see that email is an extraordinary channel for delivering ROI. The danger for buyers of marketing technology is that they increase spend on email assuming continued growth in return. The danger for vendors is that they attempt to capture a greater proportion of the budgets available without providing real return.

Email clearly generates fantastic results for those who are making the time to adapt their marketing practice to the changing expectations of their customers. Marketers who are taking the time to plan and execute email campaigns with personalization in mind are seeing the highest returns on their programs. Among marketers who have built campaigns incorporating advanced segmentation, 33% of those would rate their email ROI as “excellent” as opposed to just 13% of those not doing it.

One proven way to boost ROI is to make use of functions such as personalization, automation, dynamic content and mobile optimization. The report shows that there is a trend where email ROI increases markedly with increased use of email platform functionality.

Yet the report does show things aren’t all rosy. Email marketers rate their own campaign performance poorly – 58% said their own campaign results were ‘average’ or ‘poor’. So there are still huge areas for improvement in this mature communications channel.

For a copy of the Adestra/Econsultancy Email Marketing Industry Census 2014 click here.

To get expert insight into the findings from the census organizers – register for the free webinar here.

5 Rules of Email Marketing

Email marketing can be considered to be a difficult subject to master and perform successfully. However there are a few very simple rules that can help you be successful.

By Kate Critchlow

Just like everything else on the internet email marketing has rules, if followed they can help to make your email marketing campaigns more successful and increase your revenue, if ignored you can find yourself marked as spam by your recipients, blacklisted by ISPs and revenue dropping considerably. Email is just one of the technologies that is incredibly useful when used correctly, making it easy for those who know what they’re doing and why to benefit from the use of marketing campaigns such as the commonly used monthly subscriptions for newsletters and offers.

There are five basic rules to follow, of course looking deeper into the subject would reveal a much greater number of rules and limitations that should or could be followed to increase the success rate, but in many cases these are more specific to your own audience or market, there are just five basics that should be clearly understood in order to ensure the positive impacts of your campaign.

Rule 1 – Stop talking about email marketing. Discussing things has never gotten them done, thinking about them and planning them only works as a first step, it’s not a plan of action its procrastination. Regardless of whether you’re a big or small company email marketing is something you could be implementing, there are plenty of little companies sitting there looking lost, perhaps planning to concentrate on social media and paid search campaigns, because those are the future, because those are new and fresh and useful. Wrong, they might help but they aren’t going to get you very far, no matter how old email might be (more than forty years old by the way) it remains one of the most effective, successful and efficient marketing method available to businesses. So yes, those among you who have figured it out probably think this is a bit mad, but the first rule of email marketing is to use email marketing. I told you they were basic.

Rule 2 – Get permission from your mailing list. It doesn’t really matter how many people you have on your mailing list, what matters is how they got there. If they ticked a box when they registered with your company that said ‘yes, I would like to receive emails from you with __’ then go for it, email them whatever it is you promised them as frequently as you promised it. However, don’t buy email addresses and start bombarding people who never agreed to receive your information with your emails – that is called spam and it is something you should be avoiding like a virtual plague. If you do have email addresses you have gathered, try a double opt in style welcome email; this is an email you send at the very beginning of their subscription and it gives you a chance to introduce yourself, inform your recipient as to what they are likely to be receiving from you and how frequently and most importantly gives them the chance to opt out. It might make your list a little smaller, but those left are going to open your emails and make purchases much more frequently.

Rule 3 – Be personal. Everyone knows you’re a company, everyone knows your emailing to sell something, but you don’t have to make your recipients feel that way. A friendly atmosphere, a little bit of personality to your emails; not only does it make them more fun to read it makes your customer relate to you more. Treating the recipients like names on a list is not going to help you establish a relationship with your targets, address them by name (I’m sure you gathered at least that much when you collected their email address, if not you’re doing it wrong), make a personal connection, send your emails from a person and not a company, if there is a name in the sender’s address instead of marketing@domain.com or something like that the chances are it will be opened by 20% more people.

Rule 4 – Don’t underestimate your content. Your email subject and email address might have been the reason your email was opened, but it certainly isn’t going to be the reason your recipient sits and reads it. That is down to your content to accomplish. Consistency is important, try to express the same sort of personality within all of your emails, this will help to ensure that your recipients continue to relate to you. Don’t write an essay or produce a website, just give them the information they want and give them just enough marketing to seduce their interests, your goal is to make them click a link and visit your website to make a purchase, not feel impressed with your writing skills at the end of a long essay that has successfully bored them into wandering off to look at cat videos. On average you have seven seconds to get their attention, it doesn’t sound like much but that’s hours in internet time so make use of it, separate your content into paragraphs and bullet points and use text styling to draw attention to key areas. Make the most of what you have.

Rule 5 – The subject is important. The email subject is a very important factor to getting people to open the email. Effective ways of doing this might vary depending on the content of your email, a brief summary of what the email concerns is a popular enough option, a little heading to evoke curiosity without giving away the content of the email is a particularly effective method, just remember that virtual plague; don’t make it look like spam. Words in upper came, over punctuation, grammar and spelling mistakes – these are often associated with spam emails and scam emails so avoid them. Think about the sort of emails you are likely to open and do your research into the matter, it is impossible to spend too much time finding the right subject for your emails.

About the Author
Kate Critchlow is a technology enthusiast with a quickly developing knowledge of topics from web development to email marketing. For more information on email marketing see http://www.rapidshot.co.uk/