How to nail email marketing when you are a nobody

There are about 4.9 billion of email accounts around the world, but it’s not so easy to reach them, what is it? These are email addresses that we all have, which are the basis for any account on the Internet, by which we communicate every day, but they are still very inaccessible for you as an advertiser. Of course, the situation is such because this is one of the most effective internet marketing solutions.

Because there are so many email accounts, many companies and individuals are intensively engaged in email marketing. Of course, their big number isn’t the only reason, but a great success that could be achieved through this marketing channel. Also, it’s very attractive because this method can be free. Anyone can send a promotional email message and sell a product or a service.

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Click on image for full size.

As you can see, this sounds very simple, but since this branch of marketing has been very developed through the years, there is a big “BUT“. You can easily send an email to sell something, but it’s very likely that you will end up in the spam folder. No one will open it, either because of a bad title or because the receiver of the email doesn’t know who you are.

In email marketing, there are two main areas that need to be involved: collecting of email addresses and creating email messages.

There are some basic rules

A lot of people think that when collecting email addresses, you don’t have to think about anything and don’t have to follow any rules. That is the cause why your spam folder is full. As CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 says in the first place, you must have permission to send someone an email message. As you can see, a message can’t be sent to a harvested email address, which means that you can’t send mail to the account that you have obtained without the owners’ knowledge.

One of the ways that you can get an email address is that the users fill out a form on your website. You mustn’t have a predefined value in any field, in order to user can’t submit some value from fields that are not filled by himself. It’s recommended to send a welcome email with a confirmation after the subscription form is filled. AWeber offers a variety of options for creating these forms and they are linked with your lists. Also, AWeber offers a lot more features, such as a mobile app, HTML email templates, analytics etc. Of course, if you don’t like AWeber, there is one good alternative named Drip. It has an ability for integration with a lot of other online tools, so maybe just that change your decision.

Of course, no one will give you email address to receive only promotional material. So you have to offer something in return. If you have a website, portal, blog, you can offer good content, which is regularly updated, or some free recourses such as tutorials, code snippets, design templates.

One trick, which has very good results, is to set a checkbox “sign up for newsletter” under the text area for commenting on your posts. If someone decides to comment on your post, he is obviously more interested in you and he probably wants to subscribe to your email list. Also, you can set the button for newsletter subscription on your page on Facebook.

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When creating the email, which will be sent to people from your list, there are some important things to consider:

Write a good title

It’s the first thing recipient will see and completely determine whether or not to open that email. Try to present the content of the email in the shortest text possible, while at the same time be interesting and compelling to your target audience. Personalize your title by using the recipient’s name in it. Also, a good technique could be the intriguing title, to cause the recipient to open the mail, something in the sense of “I am smarter than you“.  Just be careful not to overdo this.

Create relevant content

Let it be in relation to what your subscribers are expecting.
Nobody likes to be fooled – if people have signed up to your list because they want to receive news from you regarding the content you create or want to first find out when you add new functionality to your website, then it’s not good to send only some promotional material. As you can see in the Act mentioned above, you are required to leave a link for unsubscribing at the end of the email. If you send content that isn’t relevant to your list, many will click on that link. Think about this emails as you do about your website: insert ads somewhere on the side, not pushy, not in the foreground, nobody likes that.

Let it looks nice

Create email template with the help of HTML and CSS to looks similarly to your website, to be recognizable. There are many differences between creating web pages and email templates. If you aren’t good enough in this, you can use MailGet. Another good thing about using MailGet is that your email template will be visible in Outlook. Although the number of people who use Outlook is small (only 6.7%) this number is not insignificant and wouldn’t be good if you dismiss these people because your email message looks unprofessional in their email client. Here are some alternatives for MailGet:

Last but not least, your mail template should be readable on all devices. The first thing most of us do when wake up is to check mail inbox on the mobile phone. You get all notifications on the phone that is always with you. Mobile email opens have grown by 180% in the last three years! Do you want to ignore this? Here is a nice tutorial if you’re not so good in this: Creating a Simple Responsive HTML Email

Here are some facts about mobile marketing. Click on image for full size.

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In email marketing, you have to invest a lot of time, effort and knowledge, but in return, you’ll get a good, targeted audience which choice is to be in contact with you and which no one can take away from you. You’ll need a lot of work to collect the first few hundreds, a few thousand people, but, if you create good content and follow basic rules, these people will stay on your list and this list will only be able to grow. This is still the most direct way of advertising on the Internet, and therefore very effective. However, keep in mind that no one will just let you in their inbox easily.

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