So, we all know that one of the best and most essential tools required to running a successful online business is the ability to capture a prospective client’s contact details. Usually from your website offering a free download via an optin form.

Once that prospective client has provided their details in return for your valuable expertise in the form of an e-book for example, the relationship shouldn’t end there. It’s just the beginning. This is your opportunity to build a stronger relationship and hopefully turn that potential client into and actual client.

Not sure how? well let me tell you…

If you’re not familiar with autoresponders then listen in…

First – for the complete newbies – what is an autoresponder?

Well, an autorespoder is a feature of any good Email Service Provider i.e Aweber & Mailchimp, it is a feature that allows you to send automated follow-up messages, triggered as soon as someone has opted onto your mailing list.

Why are they important?

Well in the first instance they allow you to send emails automatically without you having to do it, you set them up and away they go each time someone signs up to your list. So this, saves you a lot of time doesn’t it?

Most importantly however, they are an excellent way to build up a relationship with your customers or your prospects.

So how do you go about including autoresponders into your email campaign?

First you need to PLAN! plan your email sequence as far ahead as you can. For example, I have a download on the homepage of my site offering 12 internet marketing tips – my sequence is 12 days long. I also have a Facebook Timeline course – this is 10 weeks long.

So, the length of your sequence depends on what you were giving away in the first instance and inkeeping with what you were providing. i.e if you were giving away tips for vegetarian, don’t send them information about steak..

How do you capture their attention?

Like any email marketing campaign you have to make the subject stand out and compelling enough for them to want to open your email in the first place.

If it’s not, it doesn’t matter how great your email is inside as no one will see it.

Tell them exactly why they should open it.. don’t use subject lines that are too cryptic.

Don’t use words like free, sale, special offer, discount, as they will usually end up straight in spam, or in the junk folder, but don’t use subject lines that are too obvious either i.e if you’re promoting an event, don’t give away the date and time in the subject.

Examples of bad subject lines that are proven to have low open rates are:

  • SALE ends soon – up to 50% off all bras at Karas!
  • Funk n Sandi @ The Roxy on 3 March

Examples of good subject lines that are proven to have high open rates:

  • Your April website stats
  • Idlewild Camp – Important Travel Information

Providing valuable information and content

Offer free and valuable content as much as you can, ensuring that the content is relevant and of benefit to the recipient. The key is to provide customers with solutions to their problems.

Don’t send emails that are all about you, the products you provide or the services you deliver. No one cares! All your subscribers want to know is how you can help THEM.

Obviously add an element of selling, a good ratio would be 5 ‘freebie’ emails to 1 promotional email.

Don’t oversell and don’t spam!

If you want your email list to grow, remain loyal & don’t oversell to them! If you are all ‘me me me’ then your subscribers will ignore your emails or worse, unsubscribe. You want to prove to your subscribers that you are worthy of their time, again, by providing timely and useful information.

Be clear with what you want your readers to do – ‘call to action’

Make sure that in each autoresponder you send you there is a purpose and a desired outcome. This is known as ‘a call to action’. It could be ‘watch this video’ or ‘read my blog post’.

Include links and drive traffic

Keep your emails short and to the point. No one has time to read lengthy emails these days, readers will soon stop opening them if they begin to learn that your emails are too difficult to read.

Instead, summarise your content and add a link.. i.e if you want readers to read a blog post, add a summary of that post in your email and ask them to visit your blog (with a link) to read the remainder.

Track the results!

If you don’t know who’s reading how do you know if your content works? If you’re using Aweber or Mailchimp, they have excellent analytics that will help you track the success of your campaign. You will be able to see how many prospects have opened your email, clicked each individual links and also how many sales you’ve made. You can use this information to work out what subject headings work, what day’s of the week it is best to send out your mail and also what time. All making a succesful email campaign that will hopefully bring in more clients and build a fruitful business.

These tips should help you plan and schedule a successful email marketing campaign without you having to do anything (after you’ve set it up of course). Remember to add value, provide your prospects with answers and solutions to their problems. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was a ‘beautiful relationship.

If you need additional help or guidance, feel free to get in touch, or you can find out more here 

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