Direct Marketing Article
Is Anybody Out There? 4 Strategies for Email
By Todd Bates
Should you ever bring up the topic of email marketing, you will certainly
hear people complain about the hundreds of emails they receive on a daily
basis. They will tell you sob stories about the endless "junk" they receive
and how they try to opt-out from all of that "spam" ...all to no avail! They
might even give you a strange look (after all, you did bring up email
marketing at a party) and start asking you if you are "one of those people"
who sends huge volumes of email.
With increased postage rates and the desire to reach your prospect when they
are attentive, email has increasingly been the solution. The most recent
challenge has become: with so many businesses sending messages, how should
you stand out in the crowd? How can you ensure that your message actually
Now more than ever it is essential to have an edge with email marketing when
you want to reach new prospects for your business. To cut through the spam
filters and be sure that your message is one that someone truly wants to
read, consider the following:
The Success You Will Enjoy with Email Starts with Your Offer
When business owners want to improve their success with email marketing,
they immediately look at what they are sending. Whether your database holds
200 emails or it holds a million emails, look at how people have come to
find out about your company or product before looking at the content of your
Did recipients originally sign up for a newsletter? Did your prospects sign
up for information on a specific product line? Did they sign up for a white
paper to learn more about a particular offering or service? Far too often
the same email messages are sent to every prospect in a database. The person
who signed up for the newsletter is looking for something entirely different
than the person who signed up for a white paper.
Look carefully at what prospects sign up for and you will start to uncover
the issues with your response rates. Look even deeper into your offerings to
ensure that they provide enough value that you are actually providing
prospects with "real" email. The better you make your offers, the more
responsive your prospects will be through email.
An Interest-Piquing Subject Line Can Save the Day
Most business owners take the time to carefully review their marketing
pieces before they go out. They might work with a designer on color details
for their website or change the layout of a brochure multiple times before
it lands in the hands of a potential customer... but what about the time
they spend looking at the subject line of an email?
Open your email right now and take a look at the volume of messages. How
quickly do you scan the list to determine if you should delete the message,
save it for later, or actually read it? Five seconds? Ten seconds? You have
just a few seconds to grab a prospectís attention, which means taking the
time to craft a powerful subject line is worth the investment.
Try challenging your original thought as you look to craft engaging email
subject lines by asking yourself these questions:
ē Interest Piquing: Is there an element of curiosity to the subject line
that would make want to find out more?
ē Pain: Does the email subject alleviate pain or pound on a bruise that is
ē Benefit: Will your prospect experience a benefit of time, money or
wellbeing if they read on?
Take time to craft your email subjects and watch as your response rates
Not Just Any Email Will Do, Each Touch Must Add Value
While the goal of email is certainly to bring more customers into your
store, encourage more prospects to call for assistance, and push potential
customers to purchase more of your products online, that canít be what your
emails are all about. Sending emails that are only about sales, new
products, or services is a sure-fire way to ensure that your messages are
quickly deleted. Look at the content of your emails and ask yourself a very
simple question: If I were opening this email as a total stranger, does it
add any value to my day?
For most emails received, the answer is that the message adds no value at
all. Itís merely an advertisement delivered digitally. Regardless of your
industry, it is crucial to create emails that add real value. For example,
if you sell clothing you could share fashion tips. If you sell exercise
equipment you could share fitness tips. Donít try to disguise helpful tips
as sales letters; add real value and your emails will be eagerly anticipated
by your prospects... and thatís a win for everybody.
How Many Emails are You Sending?
Even with a database that has a few million records, sending a big "blast"
email is not likely to help you achieve your goals. Instead of periodically
blasting your database of prospects with offers, consider developing an
email follow-up sequence that will keep prospects engaged until the moment
they are ready to take action.
A good email follow-up sequence will appear personal, add value, and can
allow you to stay in-touch with a prospect for a number of years. In the
best cases you will have a different email follow-up sequence for those that
have purchased a product or service versus the ones that have not yet
The more time you invest in your email marketing, from crafting subject
lines to offering quality content, the more success you will enjoy with your
from your efforts.
About the Author:
Todd Bates is a leading business consultant, speaker, author, and President
and Owner of Todd Bates Systems. A graduate of Colorado State University,
Bates immediately made a name for himself as an entrepreneur. Using his
talent for business marketing and with years of success behind him, Bates
dedicates his career to teaching other businesses and entrepreneurs how to
thrive. Over the past 20 years, he has worked with over 25,000 individual
business owners and has shared his proven techniques with over 250,000
people at speaking events countrywide.