So you’ve tried automated email marketing before and you got your butt handed to you, right? You’re not alone my friend, we have all been there. It seems that after a while, the only thing you are accomplishing is donating your hard earned cash to your autoresponder service every month.
And worse yet, you mailing list isn’t even that big. In most cases, both your approach and your mindset is all wrong. Let’s talk an automated email marketing plan that really works and works damn well.
Selecting An Email Autoresponder Service
It’s not my goal here to break down all the autoresponder services out there. Unlike the way it was about ten years ago or so, there are many good ones available today. The reason is that the spam police has beaten them to death – if they have been in the automated email marketing business for any substantial period of time. Those who don’t know the rules usually aren’t around very long. So find one that’s a veteran and has been around for a few years.
The only other thing you might concern yourself with is whether or not they allow single opt-ins. Personally, I like single opt-ins better because your list grows faster. These services will tell you how great double opt-ins are and how it makes your list better. However, what they are really mean is that double opt-ins keeps their asses out of the fire because it keeps the spam complaints down.
Okay now let’s look at the steps:
Step 1) Start writing the opening content for your automated email marketing. Emails are different than writing sales letters in the sense that you have to condense them even more. So it’s extremely important that you fully understand your objective and you get to your point of emphasis quickly.
Let me help on the objective part. Your opening email content needs to be very powerful. It needs to solve a common problem and it needs to really work. You want to blow their socks off with this email.
In fact, I recommend that you identify at three common problems in your niche or market before you start writing. Visit some forums and social communities in your niche to help find these. You may be surprised be which problems are getting the most attention. I am just about always surprised about when I do this.
Now here’s how your first four emails will go:
Email 1 – Write an introduction that is brief about what you and your blog does. Mention the 3 problems you will solve for them in the upcoming emails. Tell them when to expect them. Do them every day or every other day – it’s up to you, but send the one after your introduction the next day.
Email 2 – Tell them about problem 1 and how you solved it. If you need more verbiage, then direct them to your blog for more info. Conclude with telling them to expect a solution to problem 2 in the next email.
Email 3 – Repeat as before by telling them about problem 2 and how you solved it. Again direct them to your blog if necessary. Conclude by telling them to expect a solution to problem 3 in the next email.
Email 4 – Repeat again by telling them about problem 3 and how you solved it. And once again give them a blog post link if necessary.
We’ll address your fifth email in Step 4.
Step 2) Promise them something they can’t refuse if they subscribe. What I like to do is come up with not one, but two nice eBooks or reports that your people in your niche would absolutely adore. Put some time and thought in this, but most importantly, put some quality into this. Pick the better of the two to give them when they sign up for your email newsletter.
The next part of getting them to subscribe is making it easy for them to subscribe. This means putting opt-in boxes and squeeze pages everywhere. Put them in prominent places on your blog – such as in the upper left or right sections of your side bar. I like to insert an occasion within other blog posts – whenever it is relevant. Design a powerful squeeze page and blast the URL to all your social accounts periodically. I would recommend once daily if you have a fairly active account.
Step 3) Optimize your emails as much as possible. To succeed at email marketing, you really have to watch your numbers. Make changes and see what works best. If your autoresponder offers A/B split testing, then by all means, use it.
You will want to pay particular attention to your email subject lines. In the end, it is the subject line that determines if your email even gets opened or not. Of course, if readers are anticipating your next email, then they are going to open it anyway. However, not all readers will be like that, so you need to optimize your subject lines.
I’ve always thought of subject lines as headlines because both of them pretty much determine if the piece gets read or not. One trick I use to polish headlines (or subject lines) and to write them and blast them to my Twitter followers along with a link. Then I see which ones give me more clicks. It’s not an exact science, but it will give you a general idea.
Step 4) Send them a powerful fifth email. In this email, you can thank them again for subscribing and give them the second of the two eBooks or reports you made earlier. There is nothing more powerful than an unannounced gift or bonus – and they’ll love you for it.
You can also use this email to mention perhaps a launch you are planning. Either way, ask for feedback about what would be useful to them going forward. Ask them what their biggest problem or concerns are at the moment. Realize that what they tell is PURE GOLD. As you gather hundreds and hopefully thousands of these feedback emails, you will know exactly what kinds of product your mailing list will purchase from you.
Putting Your Automated Email Marketing Plan Together
Let’s review what this 4 step process has done for you. You have gotten subscribers to your email list, and they now know about you, your blog, and your services. You’ve built rapport and started a new relationship with them. You’ve perhaps gotten some valuable feedback and gotten them interested in the launch of your future projects. This is what an effective automated email marketing plan can do for you.