Many of you spend your mornings exactly the same way. You open up your email and start deleting the stuff that doesn’t interest you enough to even open. Much of this is unsolicited spam. But a lot of it is marketing material from businesses that you have done something with in the past or at least given them your email address. The fact that you delete their emails without looking at them says that they wasted the opportunity.
If you want to use email as a marketing tool, and you should, there is a right way to go about it. Unfortunately, many people take the easy route. They set up an automatic distribution, or email blast, and they send out the same thing to every address they can lay their hands on. Email blasts have their place in your marketing plan, but it should be used later in the relationship and only for certain types of communications.
The primary objective of any email marketing piece is to get your customers to open it, read it and take some action. The first step is often the hardest; getting them to open it. The best way to do this is to get them in the habit of opening your email from the start, and you won’t do this with an auto-responder or email blast. Automatic email responses are a great way to let people know you received their email or that they successfully signed up at your site. The problem is that they encourage the automatic deletion of your emails from day one.
It takes time to mount a successful marketing campaign, but if they are successful, it is worth the time and effort. Your first email to any new or potential client should be written directly and specifically to them. This takes a bit of time, but if you are just starting out, you aren’t getting hundreds or thousands of hits on your site. Take the time to write a personal note and get them in the habit of opening your emails from the beginning.
Next, subsequent emails should contain useful information, informative content, or interesting articles. Don’t start selling right away. Again, the point here is to build a relationship and convince the potential client that your emails are worth opening and reading each and every time.
At this point, you can start with small action requests in your emails. Ask them a question or put in a simple survey. Now they are not only opening your email, they are responding to it and creating a dialog with you. Once you have this two-way communication going, you have developed a relationship with the client.
Now that you have the client communicating back with you, only then should you start the sales process. The question in the next email could be related to a product or service you offer and asking if they would be interested in it. At this point, you are just asking their opinion, but are also roping them in as a potential buyer and future customer.
Only after you have established an ongoing relationship with the client, should you start including them in mass marketing emails. Even then, you should continue the one on one relationship you established at the start so they don’t start automatically deleting your emails.
Many businesses start their marketing campaigns with blast emails hoping to capture 1% with which to build a relationship. Taking the opposite approach and building the relationship first, will net more dependable customers and in the end, make better use of your time.