Three Rules for More Sales Through Email by Tom Kulzer

by Shawn Collins on July 14, 2008

Build profitable customer relationships by following these simple email axioms

Email holds distinct advantages over other online marketing channels:

  • It is widely used by consumers.
  • It enables targeted, one-to-one communication with potential customers.
  • It is repeatedly cited as delivering superior ROI over display ads, paid search and SEO (among other channels).

Many affiliate marketers use email to boost their sales. The most successful ones follow the “golden rules” of opt-in email marketing:

Rule #1: Start With Permission

Successful email marketers build their campaigns around a foundation of permission. Spamming undermines that foundation, ruins your reputation and ensures that future emails from you won’t get treated kindly by ISPs.

It might seem like a shortcut to buy or rent a list from someone, but shortcuts don’t lead to a responsive audience that actually reads your emails and makes repeated purchases from you over their lifetime. Besides, spamming people is just… wrong. You don’t like getting spam and neither does anyone else.

Build a list of people who come to your website and sign up to get emails from you. They’ll be your most responsive, most profitable subscribers – and you’ll actually get your email delivered to them.

Rule #2: Give the People What They Want

Even though there’s no money changing hands, when someone signs up to your email list, they are conducting a transaction with you. Basically, they are trading you some of their time, privacy, and attention, with the expectation that what they get in return will be more valuable than those things.
To get potential subscribers to sign up, show them how they’ll benefit from your emails. Sell them on the value of being on your list.

Then, once they’ve signed up, (over)deliver on that promise of value. Don’t hammer them with sales pitches right away – give them what they asked for. Earn their trust first with relevant, valuable, timely email messages.

Relevant, valuable, timely emails lead to happy subscribers.

Happy subscribers not only stay subscribed and become happy customers, they refer other people to you, helping you grow your list (and get more happy subscribers) without increasing your ad spend.

Rule #3: Stick With It

Email marketing isn’t a single-use tool. It’s a process whose benefits grow over time.
Many potentially great campaigns are derailed by inaction – sending so infrequently that subscribers forget they ever signed up. Consistency is the key to building the trust that leads subscribers to become customers.

Email your subscribers at least 1-2 times per month. Better yet, decide how often you’re going to email them and tell them when they sign up how often they can expect to hear from you. Then, stick to the schedule you’ve committed to.

Tom Kulzer is the CEO and Founder of AWeber Communications, the leading email marketing service for affiliate marketers and small businesses.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Dan Alcorn August 23, 2010 at 5:20 pm

Our clients send monthly, or even quarterly, expressions of appreciation along with helpful information or invitations. No sales promo! Appreciation wins over self promotion – every time!

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