Archive for: June, 2023

How Much Should We Budget for Database Marketing VS Sales Lead Generation?

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

A mature database marketing program spends under half of their funding toward image awareness and sales lead programs.

It seems the majority of business to business marketers put over 90% of the budget into image enhancement, market awareness and sales lead generation programs, while under 10% goes into database marketing. This approach is incorrect.

As an alternative, if you’re new to the database marketing game, consider putting about 3/4 or your marketing budget to image enhancement, market awareness and sales lead generation. Then spend the remainder funding other database programs with the intent to develop and nurture hot prospects until they become qualified leads or make a purchase. You may also want to save a bit of this remaining budget to target your existing customers to upsell, retain, upgrade or add-on to the current offerings.

Those businesses which have more developed database programs, particularly those who have demonstrated an ability to measure and increase sales from database marketing programs, usually end up spending less than 50% of their budget on these sales lead, image and awareness-enhancing programs. Why is this so? It’s simple: because they know they aren’t required to spend so much on these objectives when also effectively using a quality database marketing program. These savvy database marketers are able to use the remaining 50% on communications programs directed specifically at their prospects, customers, and leads. These select, coordinated and consistent marketing campaigns are designed to locate and develop sales opportunities.

Although sales lead generation, image, and awareness all play an important role, these programs are most effective along with a well-executed database marketing program. A good balance between both marketing aspects will help you reach top levels of performance in your direct marketing efforts.

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Direct Selling Online – An Insider’s View

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

A Direct Selling online business, also called Direct Sales, is one of the most profitable ways to start an online business. One of the primary benefits is the freedom to decide what your paycheck will be. You are rewarded financially for how smart you work, not how hard.

There are a many misconceptions between direct selling online and MLM companies. Although they are both related to selling they are not the same. Most MLM affiliates are marketing products that are not high-ticket items, therefore providing smaller commissions. In MLM you are also required to build a very large downline in order to make the type of money people dream about. This can take anywhere from 2-10 years. However, in direct selling online, the compensation plans enable affiliates to beginning earning large commissions immediately. This enables affiliates to begin turning their annual income into their monthly income fairly quickly.

In order to be successful in direct selling online, there are several key components to look for when selecting which company to work with. First and foremost one should find a team that has experience, support and a proven system in place. Although many teams claim to have these components, it’s essential to do your own research.

As a new entrepreneur, you will save yourself time and money by following the leaders on your team. Leaders have already spent their time and money discovering what works and what is not successful. Individuals who take this advice to heart, are able to propel themselves further along in their business, than those who insist on “doing it their own way.”

World famous finance and business experts Donald Trump and Robert Kiyosaki recently released a book titled, Why We Want You To Be Rich. This book dedicates an entire chapter to direct sales and direct selling online. Both Trump and Kiyosaki state that beginning your entrepreneurial career in direct sales can be one of the best decisions a new entrepreneur can make. An individual can plug into a system and receive all the real-world business training they need to be successful, for a very reasonable cost. Once an individual has established himself or herself in direct selling online, they have the experience required to take their business enterprise to the next level where the sky is the limit!

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What Article Marketing Will Do For Your Business

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Article marketing is a well established type of advertising that involves writing short articles related to your business. Article marketing has several benefits, including establishing yourself as an expert, lead generation, increased site traffic and improved search engine rank. When you write an article then give people free use of it, you get some back-links and website traffic if your article is re-published elsewhere. Article marketing is therefore one of the fastest ways to develop back-links to your website often resulting in improved search engine results.

Thus article marketing is one of the most powerful skills you can learn for the promotion of your online business and is the most effective way to drive free, targeted traffic to your website, blog or product. However article marketing works slowly and you shouldn’t expect to get a load of traffic overnight.

So how to you get increased traffic from article marketing?

You write articles relating to the benefits of your products or service and place them in article directories which can get your name before millions of people, help you to establish yourself as an expert on your subject matter, and drive traffic to your websites. The greater majority of authors never make it beyond single figure article counts, with the most prolific writers enjoying significant traffic rewards because they publish many articles.

It doesn’t have to be spectacular, but you can create a steady trickle of incoming traffic from the sites that published them. Without traffic, it’s hard for an internet marketer to be successful. You must be prepared to deliver what the search engines want to get lots of free targeted traffic. Articles that are interesting and informative will act to draw targeted traffic direct to your website in both the short term and the long term. Articles I submitted to one article directory over two years ago still brings regular visitors to my site proving that high quality articles can be “timeless” and provide web site links and targeted traffic to your website for years to come. This is because article marketing caters to the thousands of websites on the internet that are looking for original content.

Articles should be written to target particular keyword niches, and distributed to content publishers that cater to those markets. Greater attention to the content creation process will create greater appeal to your target audience. Simply put, if you have AdSense sites, then you NEED to be using article promotion, otherwise you’re missing out on new income from the advertising which your visitors click on.

However, don’t be fooled into thinking that just writing a few articles and building in some links will push your website to the number one position for your primary keywords. Most major search engines see incoming links as ‘votes of confidence’ and may rank a page higher due to these votes. Your article will serve as a viral marketing tool that will grow in exposure to steadily generate even more permanent direct web site links that result in even more targeted visitors to your web site. If you want to build one way links to your website, learn more about directory submissions.

Article submission sites like get the spider bot treatment because of their regularly updated content which in turn speeds indexing of the site. As proof of the popularity of article marketing, article directories have watched their submissions mushroom by 400% over the last two years.

When articles are published to the Internet, the content, based on keywords used in them, attracts the attention of search engine spiders. These articles should be quite different from each other, and the links in the author bio should be directly to the important pages you identified and include the top keyword for those pages in the link text. If we assume that you have focused your website(s) for your most important keyword(s), then article marketing can be used in a very effective way to drive home and support that focus but most experts agree that if you try and get too promotional you may turn off potential publishers.

The great thing about article marketing is that you are rewarded with one-way incoming links from your resource box at the foot of every article, yet you don’t have to reciprocate as you would with link exchanges, which in theory should reward you with better search engine rankings.

So, article marketing and submission is one of the easiest kinds of website promotion, it is a perfect way to focus your website marketing on the full range of your most important search phrases and it is a practice that no webmaster, blogger or Internet marketer should go without doing.

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What Mobile Marketing Can Do For You

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

How many people do you know without a cell phone? Within our technologically savvy environment, for most people that number is probably close to zero. Given the changing trends of society, where people are reminded to turn their mobile devices off in a movie theatre, the concept and implementation of mobile marketing becomes more and more relevant everyday. What better way to get a message out to a niche audience than through a device that people carry with them twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week? Just as cell phones, BlackBerrys, and iPhones keep us connected to people across the globe, they also provide a new avenue for businesses to garner customers and attract a targeted group of consumers. Therefore, businesses should and inevitably will embrace this innovative concept of mobile marketing, realizing that the possibilities are endless as it will certainly play a pivotal role in the future of marketing and advertising.

In today’s media saturated world, businesses are constantly looking for a viable outlet to attract their target consumers. Over the last decade, traditional media forms such as newspapers and magazines have become less popular among the masses, and by extension, a less formidable way to advertise. According to a recent M:Metrics report, the average person sees more advertisements in one day than people of 50 years ago saw in a lifetime, severely desensitizing consumers and destroying the marketing effect. Additionally, the widespread use of DVR devices such as TiVo has weakened the impact of television ads, while pop-up and banner blockers have diluted web ads. So how are businesses supposed to promote their product or service? The simple answer: mobile marketing. Unlike the more traditional forms of advertising, mobile marketing is able to bypass common hold-ups and reach an attentive audience, anywhere at anytime.

Given the current situation, mobile marketing offers a solution to many of the marketing woes mentioned above. According to the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), “three in four mobile phone users text message at least occasionally.” Over 525 million text messages are sent each day. Therefore, mobile marketing opens the door to an extremely large group of consumers that can be targeted by specific demographics. A further advantage mobile marketing presents compared to more traditional forms of advertising is its ability to generate interaction with the consumer, which ultimately increases brand recognition. Instead of simply reading or watching an ad, users can actively participate by playing games, voting via text message, and interacting in a number of other ways. This idea of interaction also makes it possible to measure an ad’s impact more effectively.

Although still a new technology, many are finding that the benefits of mobile marketing far outweigh any risks. Those that adopt mobile marketing solutions can build a vast database of interested consumers that can be contacted instantly. Imagine spending advertising dollars on a campaign that immediately reaches your targeted audience and bypasses the disinterested, saving time, money, and headaches. With mobile marketing, all this is possible. Businesses are not forced to waste valuable money and resources on an audience that will never have any interest in the brand’s product or service. Say a local restaurant was having a slow night and decided to text all those registered in their database with a coupon to come in that evening. Instead of spending valuable time and money to print a coupon amd put the ad in a newspaper (where the majority of people will simply ignore it), that restaurant could immediately have direct access to thousands customers. Mobile marketing with a company such as EnMobile offers direct and instant access to a business’s prime audience.

Overall, mobile marketing represents the new age of marketing and advertising. As people adopt new technologies such as text messaging into their daily routines, businesses should look at how they can capitalize on this current craze, which shows no signs of slowing down. Incorporating a mobile marketing campaign into one’s business strategy has numerous positive benefits that traditional platforms do not offer. If a business is looking to expand to the next level, they should seriously consider a mobile marketing campaign.

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Marketing Agencies – What You Need To Know

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

The aim of marketing agencies is to help the business take its product or service to the customer. In other words, the marketing agency eases the process of marketing that is so crucial for any business.

A marketing agency has a lot of work to do. These agencies are responsible for research and analysis to identify the target customer base for a business and then try through various exercises to turn them into clients. They also work on ways to retain the clients while extending further development of contacts with them. However, the principal role that marketing agencies play involves increasing the turnover rate and also the average statistical purchase value while keeping the target addressees well informed about new products, services, etc.

What Do Marketing Agencies Do To Be Effective

To achieve the tasks effectively, marketing agencies adopt several means including using Direct Mail, Telemarketing, Database Marketing, List-Broking, Unaddressed mail, BTL-Event support, Client/Customer Loyalty Program and Web Marketing. Marketing agencies also oversee the advertisement channels that include promotion through television, radio and newspapers. And also ‘point of sale’ advertising.

While Direct Mail is a personally addressed mail sent by post that is mostly self-explanatory, providing the information about a product or service along with ad matter in the form of glossy printed text with or without images, Telemarketing on the other hand is done through the telephone. However, Telemarketing may not always be a direct sale, it may provide the client’s credibility in producing goods that are beneficial to consumption or use.

Database marketing is more or less a kind of tailored marketing where the marketing agency creates the database, keeping in mind the client’s targeted audience. For example, creation of a database of pork eating communities in Brooklyn will prove futile to a client selling canned vegetable products. Database marketing is important because it helps the business reach out to the existing customer by first creating a list, which is a great starting point.

Some marketing agencies act as List-broker as the intermediary in the lease of databases (personal data as well as juridical data) created by their owners under the current law of the particular state and help a client to deal with it.

There is nothing funny about unaddressed mail. We all get scores of them dumped into our mail-boxes everyday, un-addressed and unsolicited. But their effectiveness is fairly good, at least among those people who do not get these many mailers. Leaflets, brochures and promotional matters received through the mail-box sometimes make the kid go for a breakfast food that others detest. In any case, these flashy fliers often stir up tempests in tea cup on the breakfast table. And here is its efficacy – to raise controversy – to raise interest.

Marketing agencies are today doing an extremely important work. But sometimes the work done by them crosses path with the advertising agency and the in-house marketing department of a big business house. In many cases, while the job of the advertising agency is to advertise, the role of the marketing agency is wider. That is because advertising is just a small part of marketing, which is a bigger subject.

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The Best Format To Use In Advertising If You Are Going To Use Direct Mail

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

In my advertising seminars, I always get asked about direct mail…specifically ADVO, Val-Pak, and the magazines that are full of coupons. I’m not talking about direct mail to your customer list. I’m talking about the “marriage mail” that is sent to every resident in a given area…Junk mail.

There are really three formats:

The envelope stuffed with coupons and loose offers. Val-Pak is an example.

Direct mail postcards. These are bundled with the rest of your mail, and are very cheap.: usually less than a dime each. ADVO is an example.

The book of coupons & offers. This looks like a magazine. It may cost a few cents for a full page (81/2 X 11 inches) ad per recipient.

My choices? I’ve used all three formats repeatedly. The advantage of the postcard is that everyone will at least look at the postcard before they throw it away. And ADVO will blanket a large area for a little money. I remember (just a couple years ago…the last time I used them) getting 40,000 postcards printed, addressed, and mailed for less than $900.

I only stopped using them when I realized that I got a better result from the magazine type mailer, and the ADVO ads were cannibalizing the results from the magazine ads.

(Claude’s law #4657…Don’t send out two (or three) direct mail ads out at the same time. Your results won’t be higher than if you just sent out the best ad. If the readers read two of the same ad…they won’t buy twice as much. They will buy the same as if they just saw one ad)

We have always got the best result from the magazine style mailer. In our case The Town Money Saver. Most of you reading this will not be in their area. But there is usually a company publishing a magazine style mailer in your area.

Their sales pitch (from The Town Money Saver) is that the customer will keep the mailer longer because it’s in the form of a magazine. At first, I didn’t believe it, but there is some truth to the claim. Our response to a monthly mailing is this; a few sales the few days after the ad comes out…followed buy a high end sale every couple of days…with a few sales that last day the mailer is good (there are expiration dates on all our ads)

Here is a HUGE advantage of this format…

You can write a far better offer on a complete page than you can on a postcard or coupon.

Our full page ads out pull our half page ads by a factor of five! Why? Because we are selling higher end stuff. The more expensive the thing you are selling…the more you have to tell about it to establish the value & create the desire to buy it.

Let’s say you are selling a vacuum cleaner for $500 in your ad. You have to establish the value, create desire, create the desire to buy it from you, and make it sound like the “bargain of the century”. You just can’t do that on a postcard. On a postcard, you can give a free offer for coming into your store…or sell an inexpensive item.

And here is something else we do…

We place two or three ads in the same the same time…for different offers. And they all pull as well as if they were the only ad we placed. We’ve had as many as four full page ads in a 32 page coupon magazine.

We currently are running three ads in the same book. All pulling very well.

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Don’t Advertise, Just Market

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Advertising is a waste of budgeting when used on its’ own. Despite common misconception, there are two steps in marketing. The two steps are identified as Advertising and Selling. Hold the phone though folks, I know most people think they are not good at selling. However, keep reading this article as you will realize that selling is a lot easier than you may think… at least this type of selling.

Don’t waste your budget, take advantage of both steps! The steps and descriptions are as follows:

o Advertising- Tell your market who you are!

o Selling- Explain to these same people that are in your market, the benefits of your product/ service.

These two steps are simple, and get even simpler with practice. It’s 98% repetition, and 2% creativeness. Change up slightly every once in awhile, but not too often.

Here are five different marketing ideas that utilize both steps. Use these and come up with a few of your own and you will be on your way to creating an exciting and successful marketing campaign. Here are the five ideas along with how it utilizes both marketing steps:

1. Networking- This is an excellent way of marketing. You can network with absolutely anybody and it’s so EASY! Think about it, make a mental list of your friends. How did you meet them? That is networking. Some of the people you can network with is prospective clients, government officials, and even competitors! How can networking with competitors help? Very simple, if they get too much work, they will outsource it to other professionals in their industry, why shouldn’t that professional be you? Before you go out networking though come up with an Elevator Pitch. An elevator pitch is an approximately 30 second explanation of your business and the benefits of using you as a professional.

2. Viral Marketing- Viral Marketing is the same concept as networking except instead of you telling others about your business, it’s your happy customers and friends telling others about your business. Best of all viral marketing is free!

3. Cold Calling- Cold Calling is a very daunting task, but it is very effective. You will be more comfortable with cold calling with practice. Now before you have a panic attack, let me give you one piece of advice regarding confidence levels in cold calling. Don’t be nervous… I want you to keep one train of thought “secure the sale”. That is why you are reading this article, therefore complete your mission. Think of it this way, is the person you are calling going to lose any sleep over you calling them regarding your product/ service? Of course not, so why should you? Don’t worry about what they are going to say, just worry about securing a sale!!

4. Create a Website- This is the most expensive route out of all five marketing ideas, but can work if you are willing to do everything that comes with it and do it right. Just putting a website up on the “World Wide Web” doesn’t mean that people will find it. After all it is the “World Wide Web” there are so many websites out there. If you want to go down this route get some books on SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and PPC (Pay Per Click). These two things are used for marketing online. Very effective if you are willing to do them yourself, or pay the money for a professional to do it. One program that I live by in this stuff is called WebCEO.

5. Press Releases- Another free marketing technique is using press releases. Let the media market for you. There are plenty of press release books and templates out there.

Now that I have told you five of the best marketing techniques, let me tell you about four of the WORST marketing techniques.

1. Phone Book Entries- Think that phone book entries work? They really don’t. There is just too much competition listed in there and much too expensive. Fact is, most of your customer’s will be found using the five best marketing techniques… your customers WILL NOT find you 99.9% of the time!!!

2. Referral Services- Referral Services are not that effective. They are telling people about too many other businesses in other industries to be effective.

3. Direct Mail Marketing- Although Direct Mail Marketing does utilize both marketing steps, it is much too expensive for the average small business. The average Direct Mail Marketing Campaign costs between $1500 and $2500 dollars. That is fourfold the average marketing budget of most small businesses.

4. Door to Door Sales- This is a major time waster, especially for service businesses. Just stay away from this area of marketing. Too many businesses and individuals will ignore you and be quite rude to anybody trying to solicit them by means of door to door sales.

Try to stay away from these marketing techniques. They just don’t work. The good news is though, that the list of good techniques far outweighs the bad, and I just barely touched the surface with this article. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different marketing ideas, just make sure that anything you try out using both steps in marketing. Now enough talking, go out there and get some customers!

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Tips For Increased Direct Mail Marketing Response

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Use these tips for increasing direct mail response and sales leads:

1. Ask your prospects which form of communication they prefer for receipt of information and future updates. Fax, email, or post? By being prepared to send information by fax or email you can reduce delivery time and sometimes save considerable expense on postage and printing costs.

2. When sending a newsletter or subscription catalog, include an automatic reply-to card or discount coupon that can be sent to other readers by the request of the prospect.

3. Include ‘Where to Purchase’ info in your direct mail outs, especially if you sell through field salespeople, representatives, or distributors. By including a map, list, or including the correct information in the cover letter, you will be providing the sales contact’s name, title, company, phone, fax, email and addresses, simplifying the process.

4. If sending product brochures that include more than one product, indicate to the prospect where they can find the relevant information for the item or service that they expressed interest in.

5. Always send a cover letter when distributing printed material to customers and prospects. This letter can feature a few features and benefits of your offerings, and invite the reader to go to the next step in the process.

6. Periodically include a form or reply card asking that subscribers re-affirm their interest in receiving the mail out. Also ask that they update their contact info, along with a few qualifier questions about their purchasing role, time frame until purchase, and specific product interest.

7. If your business’ B2B sales are influenced by more than just one person at a company, it can be beneficial to include a question on the reply forms which asks for the contact info of others at the same company who are interested in receiving info about your product. Add these contacts into your database for future mail outs.

By putting these tips into action in your direct marketing mail outs, you could see a substantial increase in your leads, responses – and sales.

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E-Mail Marketing Mistakes That May Be Crippling Your E-mail Campaigns Part 1

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Welcome to a seven part series on the Seven Deadly Mistakes that are Crippling Your E-Mail Marketing Campaigns.

Over the next seven parts, we’ll talk about each of these mistakes and how to fix them fast so you can skyrocket your response rates from your e-mail campaigns. So, let’s get started…

Question: One of the best ways to generate a high quality list of potential buyers for your products or services is to publish an e-mail newsletter or e-zine. But, once you have generated your prospect list, what’s the best way to get them to start buying from you?

Answer: E-mail!

But… what if you have a good list and you have been e-mailing it regularly but no one is buying?

Or, what if buyers just aren’t lining up the way you think they should?

The most likely answer is that you are making one or more of the seven deadly mistakes that most marketers make in their e-mail marketing campaigns without even realizing it.

Curiously enough, many of these mistakes are the same mistakes that marketers make in their offline direct mail campaigns.

The good news is that any of these mistakes can be easily fixed with just a few tweaks to your campaign, so you can tune things up and get better results from your next campaign in almost no time.

Mistake Number 1 – Failing To Deliver Your Message “Above the Fold”

It’s no surprise that with all the marketing messages we are inundated with these days, we have a short attention span, especially when it comes to being sold.

Buyers are out there and they actually WANT to be sold, but if you make them sift through a bunch of copy that touts how wonderful you are or all the features that your product has, you’re probably going to lose them to the next incoming message before they have a chance to buy.

So, what to do about that?

Easy, old school direct mail marketers know that you have to capture your prospect’s attention “above the fold.” Above the fold refers to the crease in the letter where the paper was folded.

The idea was to get the would-be buyer’s attention in that tiny little third of a page space they would see before they unfolded the letter, or threw it away.

In modern day web-speak, above the fold means the copy you can see on the screen without having to scroll down. So, what do you want to convey “above the fold?’

Tell Them What’s In It For Them If They Read On

If you can put a powerful attention getting headline that tells the reader some killer BENEFIT they will receive by reading further, then you just may get them to read your entire marketing message.

Getting their attention won’t be easy, mind you. Remember, there are not only all the other e-mails in their inbox crying for attention, but there’s a whole ‘nother world of distractions for them all around them that are OFF the computer screen.

You know, the kids are playing, the boss is calling, phone is ringing, doorbell is clanging, dinner is cooking, chores are waiting to be done, etc.

The key to making them ignore all of that other clutter and getting them to read your marketing message is to let them see your best stuff on that very first screen, all laid out neatly and communicating to them loud and clear that even better stuff awaits them if only they will read on.

Don’t confuse a benefit with a feature. Features tell what your product does. Benefits tell what your product will do for your prospect.

Tell Them What Do You Want Them To Do?

Ideally, you will also be able to tell your prospect what you want them to be able to do above the fold as well.

Put your call to action above the fold so they can just read the e-mail in one screen with no scrolling and know that you want them to click a link or hit reply or whatever your goal for them is in this step of your campaign.

Don’t Confuse E-Mail Objectives With Snail Mail Objectives

Many people confuse selling via e-mail with selling via snail mail. If you’re an experienced direct mail marketer, you know that longer letters generally sell better than shorter ones.

The reason is that the number one reason a prospect does not buy is a lack of information.

When you get their attention in a paper mail letter, you want to give them ALL the benefits and reasons to buy that you can think of AND overcome all of the objections that you think they may raise.

E-mail selling is a different dance though. Think of it as a Texas Two-Step. First, you want them to read the e-mail, then you want to persuade them to click a link that will take them to a longer marketing message.

If you open an e-mail and see a huge, long glob of text, you’re probably going to either trash it, not read it at all or file it away as something you will get to later. Any of these options is a total failure for the e-mail marketer.

The first two are obvious, but the file away option is just as bad because people almost NEVER return to those “I’ll read it later” e-mails.

So, in the two-step, you want to catch their attention and then drive them to a “landing page” which will contain a whole lot more of the specific information you want to give them.

The landing page acts as your traditional snail mail copy that gives all the details and overcomes all the objections. The e-mail message is like a headline in snail mail, it just has to get them to want to go and learn more about what you’re selling.

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Email Marketing Mistakes That May Be Crippling Your Email Campaigns Part 2

Jun 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

This is the second in a seven part series of information on how to avoid the seven deadly mistakes that can hobble even the most carefully thought out e-mail marketing campaigns.

In Our Last Episode

In the first part, we talked about the first deadly mistake that can cripple your e-mail campaigns. That mistake is failing to write your most important copy “above the fold.” Many marketers fail to fully understand the importance of writing “above the fold” in all e-mail communications.

Just as with traditional direct mail, it is absolutely critical that you get your prospect’s attention using the space or “real estate” available to you on the computer screen without the need for scrolling.

In this part, we’ll talk about the second deadly mistake that can cripple your e-mail campaigns, and that is not having the right information in the “from” field of your e-mails. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to have a good “From” line in your e-mails.

Lessons Learned From Traditional Direct Mail

Harkening back to our previous comparison of e-mail campaigns to traditional direct mail, the “From” line in an e-mail is the digital equivalent of what traditional direct mailers call the “return card.”

The return card is simply a fancy name for the information you would include in the upper left hand corner of a traditional envelope.

This information is important in both traditional direct mail and e-mail because what’s on that outer envelope and who the communication is from is going to have a whole lot to do with whether the envelope or e-mail gets opened in the first place.

If your prospect doesn’t recognize who the e-mail is from, you may not even get a chance to catch their attention with a snappy subject line.

Worse still, they may never even have the opportunity to see your message in their inbox because your e-mail may get gobbled up by a spam filter long before it’s ever allowed into their inbox.

So, you can see why it’s important to put a little bit of thought into the “from” line of your e-mails, can’t you?

Okay, so what can we do to make a good “from” line? There are actually Three Keys to a Good From Line

Use a Good Email Service Provider To Send Your E-mails

Simple, let’s start with where you are sending the e-mail from. If you are still mailing from Outlook or your free Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail or similar account, then you are just asking for trouble.

Not only are these programs really difficult to manage your list from, but they are traditional sources of spam in the eyes of all the major ISP’s (internet service providers) when large amounts of mail emanate from them.

So, your first step, if you’re not already doing it, is to send your e-mail communications to your list through an ESP. ESP stands for e-mail service provider and these services have what are called “whitelisting” relationships with most of the major outlets through which your e-mails will be delivered.

My two favorite ESP’s are iContact and ConstantContact.

If you’re not already using an ESP, you can sign up for a 15 day free trial with iContact, or, you can get a 60 Day Free Trial with ConstantContact.

Each has different features and benefits and you may want to try both of them for free trials just to see which one works best for you.

Make Sure The Return Address Is From Your Domain and Your E-mail At Your Domain

Okay, now that you’re using a trusted ESP and not your Outlook or freemail account to send your e-mails, the next thing to think about in your “from” line is what return address is shown.

You want to look professional if you’re representing yourself to the world as being in business. If you have a dot.Yahoo, dot.Gmail or dot.Hotmail suffix on your return e-mail, how serious do you think your prospect is going to think you are?

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