Do your email sales results need a first aid intervention? It may be time to perform CPR. Columnist Daniel Faggella breaks down the steps you need to resuscitate your email marketing strategy.
If you run an e-commerce or service company, you know email sales can be the lifeblood of your firm’s marketing.
However, if your email sales results are DOA, then you need to give your email tactics a bit of CPR. That is, correct your mistakes, practice persistence and rotate your marketing approaches.
Correct Your Mistakes
Errors can lessen the impact of your email sales campaign. So start by looking at your tactics to see if you’re making some of the most common mistakes. The one I see most often in autoresponders and newsletters is simply a lack of effort to make the sale.
As an example, think of the internet marketer who lines up a six-email autoresponder sequence, saves the sales pitch for the sixth email, and when that doesn’t generate a sale, simply writes off that lead.
Remember here that email open rates are nowhere near 100 percent, and limiting himself to six emails with the sales pitch only in the last email in the sequence means that internet marketer is going to have a very hard time selling anything.
To fix that mistake, start by mixing up your email sequence to include sales messages more frequently. (This article provides a succinct overview of the various types of sales pitches.)
Using the above example, include a sales message in every other email, rather than just the sixth. Most importantly, if you don’t convert your lead into a sale after your initial autoresponder sequence, regardless of how many emails it might entail, have the gusto to keep trying.
Remember that more attempts to sell make a sale more likely.
Service providers who sell a service over the web instead of a product often make the mistake of omitting a call to action.
While many service providers consider the omission of a sales pitch or call to action a “professional approach to email,” you shouldn’t eliminate selling altogether. Instead, simply focus on less overt forms of selling.
As an example, instead of simply sending out a monthly newsletter that’s basically a glorified press release, mix in an email promoting a webinar in one of your emails, embed the video on your website and make sure your appointment or assessment form is in the column next to it.
For another option, integrate a client success story, along with a little sales nudge urging your email recipient to find out more about what you can do for them.
There are several more subtle ways to make a sales pitch, but don’t forget that you can still sell, be professional and drive phone calls to make money.
Those are the most common mistakes I see in email marketing. If you want better results from your autoresponders, use them as a starting point to evaluate what you can improve in your own email campaign.
With these errors corrected, we’re ready to move on to the next step of email marketing CPR.
Practicing persistence in your email marketing is more than just not giving up on a lead. Instead, think of persistence as using every approach possible to maximize the potential of every lead.
For example, let’s look at Amazon’s approach. Once a potential customer has opted in, Amazon will try to make the sale based on whatever the customer showed interest in. When the customer is looking at an item, whether it’s a book or a flat-screen TV, Amazon also points out what other people purchased when they bought that same book or TV.
After the purchase, the customer will get another sales pitch on the Thank You page and in follow-up emails that suggest complementary items. Amazon will keep on trying to make sales on subsequent visits and never fail to remind the buyer of discount codes or seasonal specials.
In other words, Amazon persistently tries to make the sale through a variety of effective approaches.
So how can you apply Amazon’s tactics and persistently try to sell with your email campaign? Start by assessing all the sales tools that are available to your business.
If you’re an e-commerce business, your sales approaches can include incentives, coupons or codes, bundles or package deals, buy one/get one offers or simple price reduction promotions.
Service companies that want to book appointments can offer seasonal specials, price reductions or free assessments. Both service providers and e-commerce marketers can include educational blogs, webinars, client testimonials, video or audio content and even guest articles.
The key is to continuously sell through varied approaches and various tones, so that over time, your email marketing will build relationships, build trust and build your sales. That leads us to the final step in the email tactics CPR program.
Rotate Your Marketing Approaches
Now that you have a full arsenal of sales approaches for your email campaign, it’s important to use them in a balanced rotation that will keep the sales rolling and/or the phones ringing.
To find that balance, consider all the email tactics that are available for your business and develop the perfect combination of educational, testimonial and straight sales pitches that will turn your email list into a consistent sales generator.
Since no two businesses are the same, remember that your email sales approach should be tailored to your company. It may take some experimentation, but the key is to find the right mix of overt and subtle sales approaches that you can use constantly to develop relationships that will, over time, lead to more sales.
Once you have an autoresponder sequence with different sales approaches put together, go back to the top of the CPR plan. Look for three things or three areas that you can make even better.
Consider email open rates, and look at the mix of incentives, discounts, webinars and newsletters in your sequence. Then, when you have a healthy mix of sales approaches, be persistent and keep working to make the sale.
If your email sales results are gasping for air, you likely already have everything you need to breathe new life into your autoresponders. Just remember to perform CPR: Correct your mistakes, practice persistence, and rotate your marketing message.