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Category: Marketing

Tips to Improve ROI from Email Marketing

Digital Marketing is now a must have for most businesses, but not all areas within the discipline are created equal.

Email is a case in point. As social media usage and reliance has increased, and direct mail has almost disappeared, the email has become the new junk mail. Stats are disturbing, with over 70-80% of all emails now spam mail – depending on which survey you read, and exactly when – and the lack of engagement from recipients on an ever-decreasing spiral.

Much of this lack of engagement is down to the ‘batch and blast’ methods so disliked by most people and yet so frequently used by most PR and marketing departments and unthinking companies.

Unfortunately the net result is that fewerdigital marketing: the problems with email marketing ‘newsletter’ emails get opened, let alone read, and so the ROI continues to be very low. The solutions are not new but they do bear repeating:

Tailor your newsletters – not every one has the same requirements, so don’t treat them the same. Yes it takes time to segment your list and send tailored newsletters or individual emails, but the ROI is likely to be much higher than a ‘batch and blast’.

Keep a clean list and keep it clean – have your system set up so that once you haven’t heard from a customer for a certain timeframe, they automatically receive a welcome email (with a discount voucher to use if they return if its appropriate). Also assume they don’t want to hear from you if they don’t return (tell them they will be removed or can ask to be removed if this is the case) and ask them to confirm if they do. Yes, your list will be smaller, but hopefully much more likely to actually trigger sales, and also you will have hopefully have gained an advocate in the person you didn’t continue  ‘blasting’.

Keep your emails short – few people read below the fold, especially if it’s a newsletter type email they didn’t especially want to receive, so keep the message short and sweet.

Don’t use pdf attachments – even fewer people open those than read html newsletters.

Do republish your newsletters – use them as news on your website, to gain the SEO and search benefits. It also means you are reaching a bigger audience than just your email list, and many people like to see what you are offering and how pertinent it is before they sign up to your list.

Add social media – far too many business emails still don’t contain the social media links for the companies social media profiles, which is a shame since studies prove that most people on social media follow at least 3 or 4 brands, and that most prefer to receive information via social media rather than via email.

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Social Media Marketing Book to be Published

Well, here’s some excellent news. 🙂

A few weeks ago I wrote a ‘lil eBook to help businesses understand what social media can do to help them market themselves and increase their traffic. It was a product for our digital and social media marketing and PR agency, where we help clients plan and execute their digital media marketing and PR and intergrate it in a holistic way to raise brand profile and increase traffic and sales leads.

It’s a challenge to create interesting, remarkable and fresh regular blogs and content, and twit, FB, linkit, flickr, dig, stumble and delicious it every day, let alone create products such as white papers, eBooks, webinars, podcasts, video, and then link it back into the traditional and online PR and marketing campaigns, that most companies are quailing – and often failing, which is worse than not trying at all. Nothing like an empty company blog to proclaim that you can’t be bothered. Which is where we step in.

The eBook, called ‘WTF Can Social Media do for your Business’ has already proved a great hit with our visitors and their networks and…cue trumpet fanfare!… I have just been signed up by Bookshaker (Lean Marketing Press) to write a full-length version for publication in eBook, Kindle and paperback. Nice.

Watch this space! 🙂

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Warning! Writer at Work!

Good writing is the essential 'conversion' in any marketing or sales material

Writer at work

Call me biased, but I hate bad copy. In fact, I am far more forgiving of a badly-designed page or advert than I am of poor copy, and yes, I know the designers ALL disagree with me!

What we are all agreed upon, however, is that good text, words, copy, whatever you call it, good writing is one of the essential elements of a successful business, from branding and marketing through your website and sales, to how you communicate with your customers and team.

What makes good copy?
It is always easier to define good writing by what it isn’t rather than quantify what it is, because it’s the elusive something that raises good copy to the realms of brilliance. There are, however, certain key elements that help make good copy. Here are my top five:

1. Snappy headlines
They should grab the attention instantly and make you want to find out more. Grab your attention and get you reading. A headline or strapline should encapsulate your feature, product, or brand in five words ideally; certainly less ten! And on the subject of branding, it is well worth investing in a good one because your strapline sums up the essence of your brand and is, in essence, how a brand longs to be remembered.

2. Succinct
If you need to keep repeating things in the same paragraph or page then you are either a school teacher or you’re spinning and in training to become an uber salesperson or an MP. Generally, long rambling repetitive text is a sign of desperation. Not enough to say? Use less space. Or do more research and say more. Whatever. Just put some meat on the bone will you, I’m about to click away to something more…

3. Page-turning, bodice ripping, galloping…
OK, perhaps not in an advert or manual, but all text should have passion and life because dry = turgid which = boring… click away! Text should catch your attention, tug at your soul, dance on the eye, drawing you on at a steady clip right. To. The. Very. End. If your clients give up reading half way through then it isn’t any good. Enough said.

4. Informative
Your readers should get to the end of the copy having learnt something. Hopefully you’ll have presented an irresistible argument and can now close the sale, but in this less than perfect world we’ll settle for you just having informed them of something interesting that they will remember. And so recognise you next time and be prepared to linger a little bit longer.

5. Humour

Make someone smile or, better still, laugh out loud, and you’ve practically made the sale. However, use it judiciuosly. A manager I know quite well insists on bringing sex and porn references in to just about anything he writes or presentations he does. Not surprisingly, his company is not doing so well at the moment…

How do you know you’ve got it right?
When you can’t stop reading it. When they can’t stop reading it. When they come back to read some more. And respond to you. And buy from you. And recommend you to all their friends and family. And come back for more. And read it again.

© Claire Burdett. Please only reproduce this article with permission, in its entirety and with a hyperlink to www.claireburdett.com. Thank you.

First published on www.funkyangel.co.uk, the ultimate lifestyle website for WAHM and Home Businesses.

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