The challenge is NOT TO SPAM. This method is my least favorite, even when mailing my own list. An email campaign once in a while is fine by me, if targeted at people who explicitly agreed to it and, ideally, asked for it, but anything more than that is playing with fire.
I recently signed up to a traffic generation service which looked really interesting and informative. I knew I wasn’t going to have time to get into it seriously for some days yet, but I wanted to also make sure that I signed up, filed my signup email and remembered to get back to them as soon as I had a moment. But I didn’t foresee what what going to happen next. I now receive NO LESS than 50 emails PER DAY from them. If I wanted to read all those email I would do nothing else! I tried unsubscribing, and in spite of their messages assuring me that I can indeed unsubscribe, doing so has proven DIFFICULT. In fact, I still didn’t manage to do it. I spam-blocked them.
I didn’t unsubscribe yet because I didn’t have enough time – and – because I DID find SOME of their content interesting. So now, I both like them just a little bit and HATE their guts at the same time.
They don’t seem to care. Well… they ain’t getting my business!
Some people are so sensitive to unsolicited emails that it borders on insanity. I had some folks sign up to my list in order to get something from one of my sites, and then after a year or so of NEVER bugging them with emails I’ve sent them a short information email about something we were going here. They replied with such venom as can only be imagined. “How dare you spam us you €#@#€! Take us off you &%&%$ list immediately – or we’ll sue you!”
Needless to say, I think they’re mentally ill. But I also agree that unsolicited anything is BAD. ONLY USE direct email campaigns with people who are your LOYAL subscribers, and NEVER overload them with your “news.”
Oh, and NEVER buy those “email lists”. The ones which sell you 10,000,000 addresses for $49.95 or whatever. Even if you do manage to get all that sent off (there are companies specialized in sending SPAM) – and you can even set up your own SMTP server easily – you will just generate HATE. The 0.001% who sign up to your list as a result are NOT WORTH IT. This business model is a SCAM – in my book.
All this said, this website wouldn’t be complete without a discussion of Email Campaigns. So, let’s diver right into this. Parts of this discussion come from Jeff Johnson’s Traffic Voodoo course and from WilsonWeb – just for the record and to give credit where it’s due.
Push send, get traffic
- Get people on your list
- Get them to open mail (“steal my best .. for free”)
- Get them guarantees, curiosity, controversy, shock, facts, humor, bold statements to click on links (strong calls to action, risk reversals, quality , risk reversals and money back guarantees, quality guarantees)
- Get them to take action afer they click (offer a killer bonus)
- Dont use “money back guarantee” as it will trigger spam filters
- Tell them exactly what to do in strong terms
- Tell them you checked it out and it’s high quality, arouse curiosity
- Offer a bonus so powerful it outweighs their risk of wasting time
- Pay for shipping
- Offer your costs for the product
- Prevent people stealing your products on ClickBank by offering unbeatable freebies
- Bonus offer may outweight value of the product
The E-Mail Marketing Handbook, by Dr. Ralph F. Wilson. Do read it, when you can.
Don’t neglect e-mail as an important way to bring people to your website. Just don’t spam, that is, don’t send bulk unsolicited e-mails without permission to people with whom you have no relationship. Many countries have anti-spam laws.
You can find lots of details and tips on e-mail marketing in The E-Mail Marketing Handbook. I’ll mention just a few important elements here.
- Aggressively Ask for E-Mail Sign-ups. If you want to get subscribers to your e-mail newsletter, you’ll need to work hard at it. Include a subscription form on every page of your website. Promote sign-ups through free whitepapers, e-books, or other products. If you have a local business, ask customers to sign up for your e-mail list to get “special Internet only offers.” Also ask other businesspeople when they give you a business card if you can send them your e-mail newsletter. While only the e-mail address itself is necessary, I always ask for a first name also, so I can personalize the newsletter and the e-mail subject line with the recipient’s name.
- Send Transactional and Reminder E-Mails. A transactional e-mail is sent to an existing customer to initiate, remind, confirm, or thank the person. Be creative. If you keep careful records, you can send e-mails to customers on their birthday to remind them to return to your site. Subscription confirmation e-mails can also mention several popular products. You might remind customers that it has been three months since their last order and ask if it’s time for a refill. Thank you for your purchase e-mails can offer a coupon to bring your customer back for a future sale. Use your imagination, but don’t pester your customers. You’re there to serve them, not the other way around.
- Send Offers to Your Visitors and Customers. Your own list of customers and site visitors who have given you permission to contact them will be your most productive list. Send special offers, coupon specials, product updates, etc. They often initiate another visit to your site. If you have a regular newsletter, you can include many of these in your regular e-mailing.
- Exchange E-Mail Mentions with Complementary Businesses. You might consider exchanging e-mail newsletter mentions with complementary businesses to reach new audiences. Just be sure that your partners are careful where they get their mailing list so you don’t get in trouble with the anti-spam laws in your country.
- Text-based emails
- HTML emails
- HTML emails made to look like text emails
- HTML emails with video embedded
Text-based deliverability is higher! … but HTML looks better. So, if you use aWeber – most emails go through in any format. PLUS: you can track these. Just be careful: too many images and your email can be blocked!
TIP: make HTML emails look like text mails, spell out the links rather than anchors.
Long Copy versus Short Copy
- Link placement
- near the top
- repeat in the middle
- include in the PS
Website letters: long is better
Emails: short is better
- Tesults from my own testing
- Weekdays perform better than weekends (your niche market may be different)
- 1. tue (best day)
- 2. wed
- 3. thu
- 4. fri
- 6. sun
- 7. sat (worst day)
- US market 12pm EST (5pm UK time) – 9am PST
- UK market 12pm UK time (7am EST)
- aWeber can allow you to send at different times based on ip adress
- excite & tantalize
- build rapport
- evidence & authentication
- belief & certainty
Also, when emailing… most imporant things are:
- Subject line
- Who is this from (don’t always use the same)
Killer Subject Lines
- Question mark: can I count on your support…?
- Odd numbers: $128,801.21 without Google
- Quotation marks: “…I’m GIVING you my internet business”
- [NEW]: [New] 1 man.. 1 campaign … 1 week = $6,016.34 (chocking)
- RE: Re: YouReceived a New Sale
- Free Video: Total Internet Rookie Banks $3,238 (free video)
More Killer Subject Lines
- Subj: Your new life enclosed
- Subj: Important (from my lawyer)
- Subj: Even I’m shocked
- Subj: Bad News
- Subj: Don’t take it personally, but…
- Subj: I disagree!
Brilliant Resource for hunting down Killer Subject Lines: www.digg.com – headline = subject line