Success through legitimacy
Email is the crux of a successful conversation marketing campaign. If you’re using the Internet, it’s clearly the easiest way to contact a potential customer. Every Internet user has email, and they all know how to use it. Plus, you’re ‘pushing’ the message to them – if you have important news, you don’t have to wait until customers happen by your web site.
Email is unique in the conversation marketing equation, though, because of the stigma attached to it. Most web surfers see all forms of email marketing as unsolicited junk. So, the key to successful email marketing, and successful conversation marketing, is removing that stigma.
How do you do that? Cultivate legitimacy:
Inform. Don’t send out emails that are pure marketing. Provide useful information, followed by a small bit of marketing. It works (you’re reading this, aren’t you?) and makes you look smart, to boot.
Opt In Only. Only send your emails to folks who request them. There are NO exceptions to this rule. Sure, this may make your list smaller. But which would you prefer: A small group of interested readers, or a big group of irate detractors? ‘Nuff said.
Don’t Do It Alone. Email marketing requires someone who can balance the technology issues, design concerns, content, messaging and strategy. So hire a pro. Yes, I’m biased, I’ll admit. But your customers get dozens of worthless spam messages every day. Somehow you have to set yourself apart. That’s what a good Internet marketer can do for you. It’s not that expensive and the results are worth it, believe me.
Let’s Talk. I know I’ve barely touched the surface of email marketing. Fortunately, you can ask me questions: We’ve just launched Discuss, an email group for professionals who want to talk about Internet Marketing. To sign up, click here and send the blank message to us. Once you’re a member, you can join and ask me or my staff questions, or just listen in. We don’t charge for it, and we don’t give your information away, either.
Talk to you next month,
Ian Lurie – President, Portent Interactive