Internet Marketing: Using Email Newsletters to Boost Your Business
By Robert Mandelberg, The Viz Wiz
If you haven’t already converted the bulk of your marketing program to internet-based strategies, then you are missing out on a whole world of opportunity. In fact, the longer you wait to jump on the bandwagon, the more you fall behind your competitors.
The good news is that it’s relatively easy to get started and capture your fair share (or more) of the market. Your goal is to establish and maintain relationships with your prospects and customers. The easiest and most cost-effective way of doing this is through an email newsletter. Your newsletter will be the centerpiece around which your marketing campaign revolves. Once it’s set up, here is how it will work:
You have built an email list of hundreds (or thousands!) of qualified, motivated prospects and customers. Each month, you send your free email newsletter to your list, featuring advice or information relevant to your specialty. At the bottom of your newsletter, there is your bio, which contains a link to your website. When prospects are ready for your service or product, they simply open your newsletter, click the link, and contact you.
Why is this so important? Suppose you are a dog groomer and own Dolly’s Dog Grooming Service. In your area, there are a dozen dog groomers. How can you get a dog owner to choose your service over all the others? The answer is: Get them into your funnel. Your funnel is your newsletter list. Once they are signed up, you have an opportunity to gain their trust and win their business. Why would they take their business anywhere else? You have already established a rapport with them through your newsletter. Here are some of the benefits you will enjoy by using an email newsletter:
* Constant communication. Every month, you put your name and message in front of your list. Even if a prospect isn’t quite ready for your service yet, your email serves as a gentle reminder that you exist. An email newsletter has all the benefit of mailing a monthly postcard, at a fraction of the cost and effort.
* Cement your expert status. When your email arrives in your prospect’s inbox, it sends a powerful message that you are an expert and leader in your field. After all, you just published a newsletter that provides professional advice relevant to your specialty. The newsletter builds trust and confidence in your prospects and customers.
* Introduce new services and promote specials. Your newsletter should be 80% valuable content and 20% promotion. Use your newsletter to provide information on your specialty. This is particularly effective if you are running a sale or special.
Setting up your email newsletter is relatively easy. Although it is possible to manage your subscriber list and distribute your newsletter through your email account, it is highly recommended that you use an email management service such as Constant Contact (www.constantcontact.com) and iContact (www.iContact.com). Once you set up your newsletter, you can focus on creating great content, and leave the rest to them. The best part is that you can review reports for each newsletter campaign to see how many people (and who) opened your newsletter, clicked on the links, and forwarded it to friends. And you never have to worry about managing your lists. These services automatically register new subscribers, and remove people who wish to unsubscribe from your list.
Newsletter content should be brief, upbeat, and relevant to your specialty. A quick tip, brief article, or recommended resource is all you need to provide to keep your subscribers engaged and interested. If you stray too far from your specialty or fail to deliver excellent content, you will notice a larger number of “unsubscribes” and fewer people opening your email.
As your list grows and you get into the habit of sending your newsletters regularly, you will notice a boost in your sales as you strengthen your relationship with your following.