Deciding to combine blog posts and an email campaign is a great idea. But most business think all they need to do is write a post and send an email. There is more that goes into a campaign than just those two steps. The most important component is having a plan and recognizing your goal.
Understanding what you want to get out of a blog post/email campaign will help you achieve it. Do you want to sell a certain product? Get more Facebook fans? Get more readers to your blog post? Whatever it is, make sure you understand it and always have it in the back of your mind.
Because you don’t want to inundate your readers’ email boxes daily or most likely even weekly, get out a calendar and pick a few days throughout the year that will have a blog post and a corresponding email campaign. You may want to choose holidays such as St. Patrick’s Day if it corresponds with your goal, or it may just be every 3rd Thursday. I usually suggest around 8-10 emails a year, plus a few other tricks to stay on the forefront of people’s minds.
There are a few elements that you need to make sure to include in order to have the most effective campaign possible.
- Every blog post and email has to have an extremely strong headline
- Every blog post and email has to have a call to action
- Set up landing pages for those who click through to “land” on that makes it incredibly easy to achieve your goal. For example, if your goal is to get more Facebook followers, your landing page will be a link directly to your Facebook fan page.
Just because an email goes out doesn’t mean your work is done. Make sure you are monitoring your open rate, click rate, and purchases. If they seem weaker than you wanted, next time try tweaking the headline or having a super simple landing page.
Take the time to set up a blog and email campaign and you will see your sales and website numbers go way up.
The first thing to know about relationship marketing is that its main goal is to develop a long-term relationship with a client. If you sit down the think about it, chances are you get most of your business from repeat clients, not new ones. Therefore, it’s extremely important to nurture the relationships with those who use you.
I’m not suggesting you become buddy-buddy with your clients. You need to maintain a professionalism, but you do need to look at each interaction as one event that builds on top of other events.
So how do you do this? First, make sure to put in the effort and follow-up with customers. Many years ago my grandpa and his brother ran a business called Client Follow-Up. The entire idea behind it was to send birthday cards, thank you cards, and follow-up cards to clients for real estate companies. My uncle built it from the ground up based solely on the idea that it was important to build relationships.
When you think about it, this achieved two goals. One, it made the customer feel warm and fuzzy that their real-estate agent remembered their birthday, or sent a note to say that they hoped the new home was working out. But two, it kept the real-estate agent’s name in front of their customers. Maybe it was just once a year, but people move a lot, and this way, real-estate agents could feel comfortable knowing they never let a client slip through the cracks.
Today with email, it’s much easier to keep in touch. Companies don’t need an entire business to serve their follow-up needs (or maybe they do), but follow-up really is an incredibly important aspect of relationship marketing.
I’m going to stop here today. I think follow-up is important enough to earn its own blog post. What ways do you use to follow-up? Do you do anything individually or do you use an email blast to hit many customers at once? Do you agree that fostering long-term relationships with customers should be at the top of every company’s priority list?
For those of you who live in Chicago, you may or may not have known that last weekend was the Renegade Craft Fair in Wicker Park. The fair is comprised of over 300 booths, all manned by craftspeople selling their handmade goods. Since I live down the street, I took some time to check out this wonderful event. While perusing the stalls, I also checked out the booths’ social media presence, to see what they were doing to promote themselves, so I could share it with you.
The number one most common piece of promotion I saw was a notebook set out, asking people to please provide their email address. (The second most common was handing out business cards with essential website and email address on them.) There were promises for newsletters, online deals, and so forth. Email really is an easy and ingenious way to build a customer base. In the age of Twitter, Facebook, and blogging, the idea of creating a mailing list can sometimes get lost.
Email is the first thing people look at in the morning, and a well-crafted email newsletter has the potential to bring in some revenue and keep your business in the forefront of your potential customer’s minds.
I’ve heard from a lot of small business owners that they are apprehensive about sending out an email. Below are a few instances where you should send out an email to your list.
1.) New product or service
2.) Digest of a month’s worth of blog posts
3.) Revamped website
4.) A sale
5.) Any sort of award or honor your business receives or any media attention
It’s a great idea to constantly be growing your email list. You can do this a number of ways. If you have a brick and mortar store, have a notebook at the cash register so customers can leave their contact info. Make sure you maintain an email database and update it anytime a customer emails you a question or request. Invite people to be your LinkedIn connection and add their email address to your database.
Email marketing is a really great way to build up your client base. Don’t forgo this opportunity. For more ideas on what to put in these emails, read this post on E-Newsletters.