Improving Your E-Mail Marketing Plan

Using direct mail marketing is really an effective way to advertise your business. Whether it is offline or online, direct mail has been a great way to communicate with your customers and prospective clients.

Sending out e-mails is an effective way of informing people about your business. If you are wondering on how you can come up with a more efficient way of using and sending e-mail newsletters to your prospects then this article might give you some online marketing tips:

Collect e-mails. Making sure that you have an e-mail field on your website is a great way to start your marketing plan. This is where they can simply type in their e-mails and click submit whenever they want to request more information regarding your site. You can also use descriptive words like “Click Here”, “Submit Now”, “Get More Information”, “Subscribe Now”, etc. that will encourage readers to keep on browsing your site. It is also important to include your own business e-mail address so visitors would know where to reach you if they have further questions or queries. Having an e-mail field on each page of your site is one way of opening the lines of communication between you and your customers.

Respond to e-mails right away. Having the time for checking and responding to e-mails is a good way of showing your customers that they are important to you. Remember not to open an e-mail if you don’t have any plans of answering them. Have a schedule for this task.

From who? Always put your company name in the “from” field of your e-mail. How will your recipients know that the e-mail is from you if you won’t include it in your letter? Keep in mind that you are aiming for your customers’ recognition.

HTML or text? The use of HTML codes is not really a problem. But be careful in using complicated ones that has too many files and images. Downloading time for these complicated HTML codes usually takes long that might irritate your customers especially if they are really in a hurry. Also, some e-mails block HTML versions. So it is better if you’re using text only. Just make sure that if you are just using text, the links and shortcut links to the appropriate web pages you direct them are all included in your e-mail. Links that are not properly working can be annoying to your customers for they will think that you did that intentionally so you’ll have to double-check them.

Which Browser? There are lots of different browsers and e-mail client that your recipients are using to open your e-mail newsletters. They can either use browsers such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, etc. And there are a few e-mail clients out there as well (Outlook, Lotus Notes, Gmail, Yahoo!). That’s why it is your responsibility to make sure that all your links will work once they open their e-mails regardless of the tools or browsers they’ll use.

Know their preferences. One of the things you should bear in mind is giving importance to what your customers would like. You must ask them of what they think is more convenient for them to receive and read their e-mails. Would they like a daily, a weekly or a monthly update? Which is more convenient for them, a newsletter with an HTML or plain text formatting? Giving them choices is one way of showing them that their preferences are your #1 priority. Providing check boxes that they’ll just have to tick will make it easier for them answer your questions. Make sure that all these chosen preferences would be granted or followed.

Proofread e-mails. Once you have finished making your e-mails, check it again to make sure there are no typographical or grammatical errors. It is very unprofessional if you’ll send an e-mail with lots of errors.

Additional Features. It will be great if you will provide a link that your customers can simply click when they suddenly decide to forward the e-mails to others. It is also important to provide a Print option to make it more convenient for the user to just print the mail whenever they want to.

There should also be a subscription button in all your e-mails to give the new recipients an easier way to subscribe to your site. In addition to this, when there is a subscription link, there should also be an unsubscribe link. It is a good way of assuring your customers that they can easily unsubscribe at any time to your e-mail newsletters if they want to.

Raiders of the Lost Network Marketer

About a month ago I received a call from a “top network marketer” that had just joined a new opportunity and wanted me to drop what I was doing and join them.

Now as you get more successful in the industry, these calls will become more frequent and on the surface can be flattering.

However, on this occasion, the last thing I would use to describe this call would be flattering.

You see, the individual just assumed that since they had left their previous opportunity and taken most of their organization with them to the new opportunity, then I would naturally do the same.

Problem #1 – I wasn’t interested in a new opportunity. In other words, I was not a good candidate.

Problem #2 – This individual without even asking whether or not I was interested, just started to “sell” me on the opportunity and what they could do for me “when” I decide to move over to the new opportunity.

This of course led to…

Problem #3 – The discussion of “raiding” my existing organization, as well as, the compensation I would receive as a “signing bonus” from the new opportunity. You see, they were going to pay me six figures just to move over with my team… interesting… but highly unethical!

Needless to say, I thanked them for thinking of me and ended the call.

What is this “Raiding” Recruiting Strategy?

This recruiting strategy is when someone decides to actively pursue another network marketer’s team with the sole purpose of having them come join them at a new opportunity.

This marketing strategy has been taught for years to unsuspecting new recruits as a fool-proof method of building your organization.

This strategy has been used within the same company, as well as, against other companies within the same direct selling industry.

This strategy is at epidemic proportions and directly impacts all areas of the direct selling profession.

How does this recruiting strategy negatively impact my credibility?

The moment you begin to communicate to your existing team about an opportunity that does not have anything to do with the existing business, your credibility goes down the proverbial toilet.

Any leadership relationship that you have created will dissolve.

Remember one important factor, just because you think it is a good opportunity does not mean that your down line will think the same way.

On another note, I am pretty sure that none of your down line gave you permission to contact them about “another” business opportunity.

The same goes for other network marketers currently at another opportunity. If you advertise and they actively pursue the advertising, then I believe that they are fair game. However, if you are contacting them without permission, such as calling genealogy lists as an example, then I believe this to be unethical.

How does this recruiting strategy negatively impact the credibility of the network marketing profession?

This type of strategy really takes a bite out of the credibility of the entire profession.

Now you might be saying, “So what, that’s not my problem.”

Well, unfortunately we all are part of the same community and thus are painted with the same brush.

What solution is there for this recruiting epidemic?

First of all it is important to note that I am not suggesting that it is unethical if you choose to move to another opportunity. I am only suggesting that it is unethical if you try and take your team with you.

Now as for a solution, my suggestion is instead of adopting this type of strategy, you actually learn how to attract the right people to your opportunity.

Learn to add value to others without the thought of getting anything back in return. Who knows, perhaps you next great leader in your business will call you.

Online Marketing Web Page Copywriting

Online marketing web page copywriting is more than developing search engine optimized content, known as SEO copywriting; it is writing to make people take action, to motivate and to sell.

Every web page on a marketing site must be written to emotionally propel people to take action, whether that action is to give you their name and email address, or to download a viral ebook, or to buy something.

Writing persuasively is the double edge sword that divides the buyers from the browsers. Online marketing web page copywriting polarizes visitors. You must write for your true prospects, the people that will take action, and sift out the ones that will never make it to the bottom of your web page.

Online marketing is still new and web pages didn’t exist a few decades ago but copywriting already did. It is from offline pioneers that we have learned the skills that we now apply online. The web is simply a new medium through which we reach people. The enormous direct marketing packages we use to get and still get in our mail boxes, like those from Publishers Clearing House, could teach us more about writing copy than many seminars.

Learning how to create headlines, solve problems, tell stories, use testimonials, describe benefits, offer bonuses, provide guarantees, and move people to action is a priceless skill we must all have. That is the essence of online marketing web page copywriting.

Get serious about writing copy. Knowing how to create a compelling sales letter can make you a true online success.

To Whom Are You Marketing?

As I’ve been thinking about my impending direct mailer I’ve read a lot of different things about getting people’s attention, about having a time limit (if offering some kind of special) and having a specific call to action. These are all good and necessary things that you want to use accordingly.

I’m also a big proponent of having your direct mail piece go out and ask the recipient to go your website to fill out some form or whatever to get the deal being offered or be entered into the drawing, etc.

But what about the content? How much do you put in there? There are decidedly two camps:

Less is more: Some are of the notion that people don’t want to sit and read through a bunch of text and that you should just get to the point, give them a header or two, nice photo(s) and maybe a bulleted list. In my previous company we tried that and got basically nothing. Was it what we offered, the list we were using or the economy? Maybe.

More is more: The other camp promotes the use of lots of content and goes so far as to say that a good multiple page sales letter has far better results (profitable responses) and is far more valuable. They say that we should thoroughly and exhaustively describe our services and its benefits.

What I think: Well, I don’t have a definitive answer for you, sorry, but I will give you something to think about.

When you are marketing yourself whether it is your website or a direct mailer or sales letter, who is likely to accept your offer? I used to think that everybody is a potential customer and they just needed to know what benefits I offer and give them some incentive. However, I have changed my viewpoint slightly.

The only potential customers you have are people who are actually interested and may have already been thinking about it. You’re not going to get someone who has no interest at all to read your postcard and decide, “You know what, I am going to do that” out of the blue. Granted, often times it seems like that because they are ready to make a decision and since they get your postcard they call you.

So you may think, see it does work, but think about it, someone else has spent their marketing dollars essentially advertising for you. So you need to decide about if that is a useful, if not somewhat lucky or random way, to spend your marketing dollars. Essentially companies are advertising for each other and the lucky one wins. How lucky do you feel with your money?

Changing tactics

How about focusing your message on those that are already interested and give them all the information they need to make an informed decision? If someone is thinking about your service (which may be the same or similar to many others) and you give them a lot of good information you are building trust. You are letting them know that you care that they have all the information they need so that they can decide knowing all the facts.

The bulleted list folks look graphically very flashy and nice, but I’d bet that the company that speaks clearly and comprehensively will be far more compelling.

Remember, we’re no longer just sending out semi random mailers out hoping we’re luckier than our competition, we are targeting the few that are already interested and ready. We want THOSE people. Those who aren’t interested will toss your wordy card or letter for sure, but keep in mind, they’d toss your bulleted list card too. They aren’t actual prospects yet.

And, if you think about it, the wordy letter or card actually advertises less for you competition because the person who isn’t interested is not likely to make the connection between your marketing information and the others’

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