Series Posts: Clueless Email Marketer?!

Growing a List: Exit-Intent Signup Forms

Growing a List: Exit-Intent Signup Forms

Clueless Email Marketer?! • August 16, 2018

If a visitor leaves your website without subscribing to your list, they may be gone for good. Don\'t let that happen! Catch them on their way out the door with an exit-intent signup form. Learn how in this episode: 00:22 Andy Shore: Everybody welcome back to Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer. And today we\'re gonna start, first of a handful of episodes continuing about growing your list but this gonna kick off really talking about the exit intent popup form. Because more websites than a couple of years ago are using it. But I think it\'s still a strategy that a lot of people should consider because, I mean as we mentioned in the last episode, what an exit intent form is, is when someone\'s going to exit out of your website or leave the page, it catches them on their way out the door and it\'s like, \"Hey do you wanna subscribe?\" So even if they\'re still gonna leave, you\'re gonna be able to follow up with them and not lose all the traffic that the rest of your marketing did the work to get to your page, and then they\'re gonna leave and maybe never be seen again. So this is kind of that hail Mary that you throw to keep someone in the communication loop. 01:13 Daniel Miller: Exactly. And I think this goes without saying, any time that you\'re trying to get somebody\'s email as a lead, right? Not as a customer or something like that, as a lead your initial goal is to reduce your expense and overall workflows to get that person back, right. Meaning just like Andy said, if you\'re marketing team spent all that effort to get somebody on to your page, you wanna try to get an email something so it\'s a more direct channel to get them back. And also it gives you the opportunity to open a conversation with them and stay engaged through email, right? So when it comes down to popup forms, exactly before they walk out the door, you wanna try to offer something of value that will not necessarily keep them on your site, but it\'s kind of like, \"Hey let\'s talk later\" kind of conversation. 02:01 AS: Yeah, definitely. I mean, like he has said, you do so much work to bring someone to your website, there\'s SEO, there\'s social media, there\'s offline advertising, whatever it is they\'re doing, your URL is on every single one of those things, whether it\'s a link to click there, in the print ads, in your restaurants, and your store, you\'re doing work to drive someone to the website, so getting them there, there\'s a lot of testing to make sure that all the content is right, that they\'re able to find what they\'re looking for, but not everyone\'s exactly the same. You can only test so much, you\'re not gonna please everyone all the time. So when you do have this exit intent, it is like it\'s your last line of defense. 02:42 DM: Yeah. 02:42 AS: It\'s that last thing that\'s gonna be that, well, all your work isn\'t for not. We\'re gonna put up this one last effort, it\'s really gonna make sure that all that other work was worth it to get that subscriber because, we\'ve talked a few times about micro-wins, but that\'s kind of what getting someone to sign up to your list is. It\'s another win in the process of gaining customers. Gaining repeat business, and turning them into like brand evangelists. If you\'re doing all your communication right, that\'s what the end result is. So getting someone in your list, we keep telling you how important it is but you can\'t give up, wouldn\'t go down without a fight, and that\'s kind of why we\'re gonna dedicate so much time here to the exit intent popup form. 03:27 DM: Yeah, and a good thing of it is, if you do the popup form right as somebody\'s on your site or if they\'ve been on your site for let\'s say a minute or two, when you show that popup form then, giving a discount or giving an add-on, you may be already giving a discount on somebody that was already gonna buy, right? But if they\'re about to leave, you know, that\'s the last step, like, \"Hey wait a second, right before you leave, check this out here\'s a 10% off, or here\'s our manual or guide\", whatever that could be. So it kinda helps aligning your journey with what the customer is actually doing. And making sure that you\'re not just giving things away for free or giving discounts away when people were already gonna go through that process. 04:08 AS: Yeah, and to that point, in terms of wanting to build a list around the people who want to hear from you, when you sign that popup right away or you\'re just offering a discount, you might be adding people who just added \'cause it was right there in front of them, and sure that\'ll seem like a victory in the beginning, but if those people aren\'t gonna then continue to open your emails to interact with them, then it\'s, you\'re not gonna want those on your list and you\'re gonna end up clearing them out anyways. So, if they are, you\'re trying one last time with the exit intent popup, they do subscribe, they probably at that point are like, \"Okay, I do wanna hear, I was gonna leave and they gave me this offer\". So it\'s a subscriber that\'s probably gonna wanna open those emails down the line and have some interaction with your business. So it also helps you kinda grow that list around the right types of subscribers which is good and we\'ll kick off next time talking about the different types of exit intent forms there are. Thanks everyone for listening, we\'ll catch you next time.


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Growing a List: Popup vs. Standard Embed Signup Forms

Growing a List: Popup vs. Standard Embed Signup Forms

Clueless Email Marketer?! • August 15, 2018

In this episode, we talk about the times you\'ll want to use a popup signup form or a standard embeddable one. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each. Learn when to employ each of them to grow your list. 00:22 Andy Shore: Welcome back, everybody. Today, we\'ve got a battle of epic proportions for you in this minisode. In one corner, we\'ve got pop-up sign-up forms. The other one, we\'ve got the standard embeddable forms, and there\'s advantages and disadvantages of each, so we\'ll talk about what those are so that you can help understand when to use each one. 00:45 Daniel Miller: Yeah, so this is something that I wanna say what I believe, really, for the very end, but when it comes down to it, some of the advantages of a pop-up form is that you really can\'t miss it. When you\'re on that website, the pop-up shows up, boom, it\'s right in your face, you can\'t miss it. If there\'s a really good advantage for the subscriber there, it\'s a win-win all the way around, as well as if the timing was right. So, if all of those things fall into place, it\'s a win-win all around. Now, there\'s some of the disadvantages. 01:17 AS: Sure. The disadvantages, like Daniel has mentioned in our earlier episodes, it could annoy someone. I know if I\'m in the middle of reading an article on a blog, and I\'m getting really into the story, and all of a sudden, the pop-up comes up, I\'m just like, takes me out of the narrative, maybe my ADD takes me out of the site entirely at that point, and it\'s just, it could... You don\'t wanna impede the flow of what you\'ve got, but as we were mentioning, you gotta think about the entire process of how someone got to your site, how long they\'ve been there, in terms of whether it is an advantage or disadvantage. 01:52 AS: As I mentioned in an earlier episode, one instance where they\'re really effective for is when it\'s a landing page from an ad because you already have the micro-win before that. They clicked through from that ad \'cause they were already interested in learning more about whatever you\'re selling, so that when that pop-up comes right when they get there and you\'re like, \"Hey, your first purchase, 10% off,\" you\'re just pushing them down that funnel further and further and getting closer to that conversion because you\'re using the pop-up form right away. But when it comes up when you\'re trying to go to another important section of the website to learn more, you don\'t wanna add in that distraction of a pop-up form to stop them from the goal of what they were doing, so you really gotta understand your goals with those things to know if it\'s gonna be an advantage or disadvantage for you. 02:37 DM: And you just mentioned something, I think, that\'s very important to really focus on real quick, giving the example of coming from an ad, and then being on that page and being indecisive, and then getting a pop-up that says, \"Hey, your first purchase, 10% off,\" you are aiming in the same direction, and that makes a lot of sense. Sometimes though, I\'ve seen some pop-ups that are totally selling something different than what I came there from, and that\'s kind of thrown me off, but there\'s also something that you may call something like a splinter deal, right? Something that, yeah, I\'m not ready to buy right now, but now there\'s a pop-up, \"Hey, check out this manual that explains the 10 reasons why our service is the best for you,\" something like that. So again, it\'s still pointing in the right direction. So what I wanted to say about that is, make sure that your pop-up is adding value. If you\'re just showing the pop-up to get their email, most likely, people aren\'t gonna sign up, but if you\'re adding value to that, people are definitely gonna sign up. 03:31 AS: Exactly, and there\'s really two different kinds of pop-up forms, or they work on your site in two different ways. The first one is a time-based pop-up, so it comes up immediately when you go to a page three seconds after, 10 seconds, 20, because sometimes, if someone\'s spending a lot of time on your page, then you know you\'ve got their interest, or they\'re distracted and forgot about it, but... [chuckle] they either are more engaged, maybe then they\'re more likely to sign up, or if they forgot and then come back and they\'re like, \"Oh, good, I\'ll get more of this information,\" after they come back, but that\'s more the time-based. 04:02 AS: And then the other one is the scroll-based, so it\'s like, as they\'re getting towards the end of your blog post, you\'re like, \"Oh, they thought this was good. Let\'s send them more by getting them to subscribe,\" or \"Oh, they were interested in this page\'s content, let\'s keep in touch with them.\" So those are the two different ways they interact. Let\'s talk a little bit about when you definitely don\'t wanna use a pop-up form. 04:22 DM: I will. Before we jump into that, I wanna add a third one, exit intent, which we have a whole episode prepared for that upcoming. 04:30 AS: Multiples of them. 04:31 DM: Yeah, but the exit intent is, I\'m sure you\'ve done this. You\'re on a page for a couple minutes, you scroll all the way to the bottom, but then you\'re about to leave, meaning your mouse goes up to the left-hand corner, or right, depending if you\'re using a Mac or Windows, and you get the pop-up right then and there. Those are called exit intent pop-ups, and that\'s exactly what they\'re for. Before you leave, why don\'t you take a look at this? 04:53 DM: So when is it not okay to use a pop-up form? If you ask me, this is gonna be more personal. It\'s right in the middle of me actually trying to perform the action that you wanted me to do in the first place, whether it\'s reading a blog or about to buy something, do not distract me when I\'m about to buy. I\'ve seen some pop-ups that have been in the cart abandonment process, and unless you\'re trying to help, meaning, \"Hey, do you have any questions on your cart?\" Something like that, then go for it. Now, to be honest, though, your cart should not have any questions. If you have to have a pop-up for your cart process, yeah, I think you have a different kind of problem. That\'s an episode for another day. I honestly believe that no matter what page you\'re on, having an embed and a pop-up form has value to it. I wouldn\'t choose one or the other, I would have both. So that\'s my piece of advice. 05:41 AS: Yeah, it\'s a good point. Even sometimes, when you have pop-up forms, someone could click out of it, either on purpose or accidentally, but then still decide at a later point, while still on that page, that they do wanna sign up.


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Growing a List: Location

Growing a List: Location

Clueless Email Marketer?! • August 14, 2018

Location! Location! Location! We talked about the importance of timing last episode, but one factor in that timing is where on the page a signup form is located. Do you want your form above-the-fold, in the sidebar or the footer? Listen to find out. 00:22 Andy Shore: Hey, everybody, welcome back to Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer. We\'re gonna continue talking about how timing plays a role in growing your list, and we\'re gonna get a little more into detail than the last episode and talk about, specifically, the location of where a sign-up form should be to make sure it\'s timed properly. 00:39 Daniel Miller: Exactly. Of course, the location of a sign-up form is gonna vary on the different type of page that you may be on. If you are on the blog page, the sign-up form may be on left or right side column, or maybe also at the very end of blogs. If you\'re on a pricing page, that sign-up form may be in a totally different spot. 00:57 AS: Yeah. And we talked about the home page in one of our first episodes and the different ways that you can do that, and the reason it varies is because of how the timing plays into that overall user experience of visiting your home page for the first time. Someone goes all the way through your home page and you wanna make sure they\'re consuming all that information. You could put a sign-up form in the footer because you know those are a captive audience. You\'re not gonna get the highest volume of the traffic to that home page by putting it all the way down there, but that\'s how you\'re gonna get the people who are probably the most interested in your product, so the timing plays a role into who are you trying to get to sign up or versus, like you were saying, maybe a sidebar or above the fold, which is one of the first things they\'ll see when they get to your home page, which isn\'t quite the attention demander of a pop-up, but is gonna make sure, more often than not, people are gonna see it and give them that opportunity to subscribe. So it\'s really just a matter of the timing for even the amount of subscribers you\'re trying to get and the type of subscribers you\'re trying to get. 02:00 DM: Exactly, and when you think of it when somebody goes to your blog, it makes a lot of sense for them to subscribe to you. Now, if somebody\'s on your home page, what are they really subscribing to? I may not see something that is subscribable on your home page, specifically, but your blog, of course, \'cause you\'re talking about a specific topic that I like. And any time you post new blogs, I wanna hear about that, so kind of think about that. Because of that, on the home page and other types of pages like that, I like to have it to where the sign-up form is always in the footer, so that way, people that know that they wanna subscribe, they can go to the very bottom and subscribe there. Now, as Andy said, not all of your website visits are gonna go to the footer, and that\'s where maybe an exit pop-up plays a perfect role, which we\'ll be getting into at a later episode, more into detail, how they work and what you can do with it. 02:51 AS: Definitely. We were talking a lot about the different pages on your website and how people might encounter, but I wanna take it offline a little, too, because timing and location play a factor there. If it\'s in your store, do you put it by a register? Is it on displays throughout the store? Is it on the windows before you leave? Think about every time that customer experience and how they\'re gonna maneuver through the space to where you want them to see it. If they\'re in line by the register and you usually have lines there, they may be looking for something to read and you\'re like, \"Hey, get 10% off for subscribing.\" That\'s gonna be good timing and location because you\'re getting a captive audience when you know they\'re gonna be purchasing already, so a discount\'s gonna be of value to them and it\'s gonna help you grow that list. Or restaurants, we talked about the Chili\'s example with the little table devices that help you go through all that. So don\'t just think about it in terms of online because there\'s a lot of the offline aspect as well. 03:49 DM: Andy, you just brought up a really good point in regards to restaurants or stores. Really think of yourself and what you wanna get out of this. If you do often have a long line at your cash register, it is of perfect sense to add a QR code or something that allows the buyer to subscribe from, right? Now, once they\'re subscribing, they may be getting a 10% off, a 20% off, so really, put that in your business model. Do you want to offer that 10% off to somebody that\'s already gonna buy, but also, knowing that now you\'re gonna have their email, and you\'ll have more chances to get them back into the store in the future. \'Cause I have seen some businesses say, \"Well, wait a second, I don\'t wanna give away a discount if they\'re already gonna buy,\" but it\'s not about that purchase; it\'s about the long-term relationship that you can both benefit from. 04:40 DM: And then also, if you do have a restaurant that has a long line, you don\'t wanna keep that line there; you wanna speed it up. So also think of it in that perspective as well. How much is this sign-up process really delaying your line? If somebody is trying to fill out their email at the point of sale and that\'s having the line go longer, is that really beneficial versus maybe having little stands on your table, so when people are dining, they can subscribe there? 05:09 AS: Yeah, see, I was gonna go the opposite, but you made a really good point about not taking too much time in the line, but I was like, \"Oh yeah, it\'s another way to help people pass the time when they\'re online,\" so know how long your sign-up process takes because, after all, these episodes are talking about timing and that\'s an important aspect, too. So we\'ll catch you guys next time. Thanks for listening.


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Growing a List: The Importance of Timing

Growing a List: The Importance of Timing

Clueless Email Marketer?! • August 13, 2018

We\'ve been talking about all the various touch points you should cover when attempting to grow your list. In this episode, we start to talk about how timing factors into your list growth. 00:22 Andy Shore: Hey everybody, welcome back to Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer. We\'re gonna continue talking about growing a list today and we\'re gonna focus, for this episode, on the importance of timing, and what we mean by that is like, how long when someone\'s encountering your website, social media, wherever else could they be, how long is it until they see that sign-up form. 00:45 Daniel Miller: Yeah, so I\'m sure some of you have been to a website, you\'re reading a blog and then you get that pop-up that shows up right in your face, that is part of timing. We\'re gonna talk about timing specifically like that, and also timing in regards to, when should that sign-up form actually appear. Maybe instead of having the pop-up form be right then and there as they get to the site, maybe as they\'re scrolling through, the timing is just right for you to ask for the subscription there. 01:12 AS: Yeah, and whatever the timing is, it\'s just, with each individual user experience or path that they\'re on, you need to think about when would be that perfect moment for them to encounter that sign-up form that\'s gonna make it most likely that they subscribe right then and there, \'cause that\'s what it\'s all about, is you don\'t wanna get a site visitor and have him go out the door. So you need to get that timing down so that you make sure you\'re growing your list with the most site visitors and other customers, leads that you can by timing it well. 01:46 DM: Exactly, and to be honest, those pop-up forms that to me, are very annoying. I came to your site and I\'m about to read a blog, and before I can even read two words, you\'re already showing a pop-up for me to subscribe. To me, that\'s annoying, but the stats and the numbers show differently. I believe websites like sumo.com, which offer a wide range of services for this, not to be an ad for them, but it is true. They share a lot of stats that show how those pop-ups really work. The bad news is, it may not work for you, and that\'s the thing about testing. Whatever you wanna try to do, make sure to always test it, don\'t just go with what we\'re telling you or with what someone else tells you. If that pop-up that shows up right away works for a lot of people, test that first. But then also maybe test it where the pop-up shows up three seconds after they\'ve been to the site, or maybe test it after they\'ve scrolled down to the very bottom of the blog, or maybe when they\'re about to exit your blog, right? 02:47 AS: Yeah. And then we\'re gonna talk about a lot of that in greater detail in the next coming episodes, but I think what Daniel\'s talking about whether or not pop-ups work and testing is, you can\'t just test on one page either. You need to know what it\'s like for each different customer touch point you have, whether it\'s your home page, your blog, and all the other touch points we talked about in the previous nine, 10 episodes. It\'s gonna vary in when that timing is. Sometimes, if it\'s the landing page from an ad, yes, then those pop-ups are perfect; on the pricing page, you don\'t wanna distract them from what you\'re doing, so maybe you put it down on the footer, on the side. It\'s different for each page and it\'s important to test all that out, and like we said, it\'s important to optimize it with testing so that you know it\'s the right experience for each one of those touch points. 03:36 DM: Exactly, and as Andy has mentioned, if you wait too long, you may lose that subscriber entirely, so that\'s why it\'s all about that perfect timing. And unfortunately, there\'s no blanket, here\'s the strategy, go ahead and try it. There\'s a lot of strategies that we\'re gonna show you in the upcoming episodes. Try different ones, test it out and see what works best for you. 04:00 AS: Yeah. Thanks, everyone, for listening. We\'ll catch you next time.


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Interns Ask Us Questions About Growing a List

Interns Ask Us Questions About Growing a List

Clueless Email Marketer?! • August 10, 2018

We made our interns listen to the first nine episodes on growing a list and then told them to ask us any questions that came up. After all, they\'re the resident Clueless Email Marketers in our office. 00:22 Andy Shore: Hey, everybody, welcome back to Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer. We have a special episode for you today. We have our interns here with Daniel and I, and since they are the clueless email marketers in our office, our resident clueless email marketers, we figured we\'d force them to listen to the first nine episodes and then see how Daniel and I did, if we covered anything, if it raised more questions with you guys, or if we\'re geniuses and our job is done, but we know we\'re not, so we expect you guys to have questions. You can say \"hi\" and introduce yourselves, if you guys like. 01:00 Zach Morita: Hey, how\'s it going? I\'m Zach, thanks for having me. [chuckle] 01:03 Milena Saradinova: And... Oh, my God. [laughter] Hi, I\'m Milena. 01:07 AS: Milena is nervous, and she\'ll be fine. [laughter] Daniel and I were more worried she is gonna ask us too hard of questions. 01:16 Daniel Miller: Yeah, we were very worried about that. [overlapping conversation] [laughter] 01:22 AS: So, how did we do? What\'d you guys think of the first nine episodes? 01:25 ZM: I thought they were pretty good, very informative. You guys really broke it up into easy to understand parts. 01:30 MS: Yeah. It was easy even for us to understand, how to build our lists if we were starting fresh. 01:38 AS: You guys don\'t have to say that, you\'ll get your college credits. [laughter] 01:43 DM: Was there something in there that you had no idea that existed and you\'re like, \"Oh, that\'s pretty cool. I had no idea I could do that\"? 01:52 ZM: I\'m not too sure about that, but I like the strategies that you guys talked about. I would have never thought of print ads or anything, \'cause these days everything is digital. 02:00 DM: Millennials. 02:02 ZM: Yeah, exactly, right? 02:04 AS: They\'re younger than millennials. We\'re the millennials. [overlapping conversation] [laughter] 02:11 DM: So, what\'s your first question? Hit us. 02:13 ZM: You guys talked about a lot of things that are happening in present time. Do you guys foresee any future trends happening under new technologies, or just new things you can do with emails, other things you can add to them? 02:25 DM: There was a certain... There was this app, I think it was called Bump. And what it was is... The whole thing of cards is kind of in the past. I have business cards, but I got a feeling when I give that to someone, they throw it away 10 seconds afterwards. The people that really care, they\'ll take a picture of it. There\'s an app, I think it was Bump. I think when the iPhone 3GS was out, or something like that, it allowed two people with the iPhone to bump them and it would automatically share their contact details. 02:54 AS: Yeah, I remember that. 02:55 DM: So, I\'m hoping for more of that to evolve in some way, for app developers and the phone companies to try to figure out a way to sync it, because only iPhone users could do that. If it was Android, there was a lot of conflict that would barely ever work. Technologies like QR code and apps like Bump, I\'m hoping for those to evolve more as business cards become more and more obsolete. 03:19 ZM: Yeah, it\'s crazy. 03:20 AS: Yeah, I don\'t know what I... Maybe something with voice, in terms of growing your list, \'cause voice search is continuing to grow and people are having to optimize their websites to have phrases like people would talk, that there might be something in the voice space, like an app to grow your list or something with how that integrates to make it easier though. I don\'t know how Siri understands me half the time, and she doesn\'t the other half. But I think that\'s a possibility, if I\'m just guessing. [laughter] 03:52 ZM: No, absolutely. I\'m like, I can\'t tell the future, but, yeah, that\'d be interesting to see. 03:56 DM: Milena, do you have any questions? 03:58 MS: You guys have a lot of good tips on how to grow your list, but let\'s say someone has tried them all and nothing really worked for them. What advice do you have for them, and... I don\'t know, if they\'re feeling discouraged about it, do you have any words of encouragement and what do you guys do? 04:15 AS: Shut down shop. [laughter] I think you have to look at yourself at that point and realize that, are you going after your core customer? Because if no one\'s signing up, no one\'s joining your list, you might not be going after the right customers, because what you\'re offering, they\'re not interested in, and you might not be offering either a good enough incentive or good enough content. It could be that your sign-up form doesn\'t tell them the amazing things they could get, or offer a free e-book or something or other for signing up, or once they get the newsletters, they don\'t like what they\'re getting, and so they\'re unsubscribing and your list isn\'t gonna grow. But I think there are very specific reasons that\'s happening. I don\'t think anyone who\'s doing the right things and the right strategies in the right places is gonna find that happen. But if you are, I think you really gotta look inward at that point. 05:06 DM: Yeah. I think what Andy is saying is absolutely right. It\'s really easy to bring people to your site, really, really easy. To bring the right people to your site is the complicated part. And just to give you a personal example with Benchmark Email, our traffic spiked, but signups didn\'t really go up. And we\'re curious, \"What the heck is going on?\" And when we looked at Google Analytics and we saw where this traffic was coming from, an FAQ that we had, which was how to export your contacts from Hotmail, was driving, I think it was like, 50% of all of our traffic overnight. It just started growing like crazy. When we looked into this, Hotmail had been sold to Microsoft and was shutting down Hotmail, and everyone was trying to look for how to export their contacts. So, our FAQ was rising like crazy \'cause it was a really well-explained, step-by-step process on how to do that, but, of course, none of these people will... Not none of them, but the majority were just looking to export their contacts. They weren\'t looking to sign up for the email software. 06:07 DM: So, our traffic spiked, but our number of signups didn\'t spike. If somebody is trying to grow their list, and they see that they tried all of these tips that we\'ve given and nothing\'s working, are they writing the right message? Like what you\'re saying, are they... On that signup form, is it informative enough to what they\'re signing up for? Could it be better explained? Could there be more of a history behind that? There\'s a ton of different things that I would look into to fix that. But, yeah, I think it would be more on the message getting across and connecting with the core customer than the strategy itself. 06:41 MS: So, what has worked best for you guys to finding your core customer and engaging with them? 06:47 DM: Oh, that\'s funny that you say that. It\'s actually... We tried doing... We were following this book called \"Inside Advantage\" to really try to identify who our core customer is. We got a lot of the company involved in really trying to figure this out, from our sales and support reps, all the way to the top to our CEO. And we had a core customer in mind, which we thought was a really good fit. And just recently, actually, we went back and we\'ve updated that a little bit slightly to adjust more to who are core customers. And, I\'m sorry, but what was the question again? [laughter] I was rambling off. 07:26 AS: What\'s worked for us to grow the list. 07:29 MS: And engage with the right customer, not just with any... As you were saying, not everyone is important... 07:34 DM: That\'s great. Okay, that it is. What\'s worked for us to grow our list specifically for core customers, really understanding who it is that uses our service, and understanding what they use of our service, meaning there\'s email marketers that are gonna go in, and unless you have a very powerful marketing automation tool, they\'re not even gonna take a look at your service. We noticed that we were getting a lot of people sending out simple newsletters, just keeping a constant communication with the subscribers on a regular basis, but nothing really too complicated. So, we made sure to adjust our language on our site to adapt to those people, meaning we would avoid, in a way, using the word \"automation,\" \'cause our core customer, they would be scared off by that word. But maybe later on after they\'ve been using our product for some time, we would then maybe introduce this as something new to them, and start very, very simple and say, \"Hey, try this welcome email strategy,\" and so forth. So, really the biggest thing, I think, that we\'ve done is change our language to really adapt to what our core customer is looking for. 08:39 AS: Yeah. And another thing I\'d say is that one thing that I found incredibly valuable in understanding our customers is getting out from behind a computer and talking to people face-to-face. If you\'re strictly in the e-commerce space or you\'re a SAS product, digital marketing, all that stuff, there\'s really no need, in theory, for you to ever talk to somebody face-to-face. It\'s all on the phone, email, chat, whatever that might be. But Daniel and I started going to events and working the booth for Benchmark and getting to talk to actual business owners and walking them through the process, and time and again having them say, \"Well, I don\'t need email marketing,\" but then being able to talk to them about their business and give them two, three different tips, things they could do with email marketing and see those moments where the light bulb turned on, there\'s really no replacing that. 09:27 AS: So, finding those opportunities to really look your customer in the eye and talk to them and get to know them and their needs and how they wanna use your tools, not how you want them to use your tools, that was huge for us. I\'m the copywriter for the company and I\'m running all our content, so it\'s made me better at that job in delivering more valuable, relevant content, just by talking to them face-to-face, and getting to understand that, I think that\'s helped grow our list as well. 09:56 MS: I guess the main takeaway from this is that know your customer and figure out the best language to really reach them, would be another tip to add. 10:05 AS: Totally. 10:06 DM: Exactly. Back in the day, let\'s just say 10 years ago, or 20, it was as easy as just creating an ad that showcases how you solve a problem. That\'s it. As long as you had a product that solved a problem, people would buy it. Now, there are so many competitors, and no matter what industry you\'re in, competitors come up overnight. People are really looking for products and services that speak their same language. I think there\'s over 100 email marketing platforms out there. Benchmark Email doesn\'t attract everybody. We attract somebody that when they come to our site, they went, \"Oh, this company gets me. They understand my problem. And not only that, they\'ve created tools and support to help me solve this problem in the way that I understand it.\" Versus, if they go to a competitor, they may say, \"Oh, this is too confusing,\" or, \"It\'s too fast for me,\" or, \"It\'s too slow,\" whatever that is. 11:00 ZM: Yeah. So, you guys try to keep it simple with your guys\' interface and everything, it seems to work out? 11:05 DM: Exactly, yeah. We tend to think that our core customer is a time shaft owner or manager, that really they\'re juggling a few things, their social media, their PPC ads, their landing pages, and email marketing is just one of those things. So, we know that time is super important. They don\'t have hours and hours to spend there, so we wanna make sure that our workflow and our process is as simple as it can be, so someone can go in and out in less than 15 minutes. 11:34 AS: Yeah, a few years ago, we made coffee mugs. The design was like a barometer, and as soon as you were two or three sips in from the coffee, you were done with your email and you can move on with your day and do everything else you had to do. It was just like, you don\'t need to worry about spending all your time here. We know that both marketers and business owners have to wear a lot of hats these days, even just the marketing space, every aspect of it, but some business owners don\'t get to be just marketing. They\'re marketing and sales and support, and everything else, so to be able to do it quickly and effectively is really important. 12:10 MS: You didn\'t go into... When you have your list, what do you do? How do you keep that engagement? How do you get people to open your emails? How do you get them engaged with your content, and let\'s say you\'re sending all these emails, but you don\'t get any response? 12:26 AS: Sure. It starts with the open rate. If they\'re not opening your emails, maybe your \"from name\" isn\'t familiar to them, maybe you\'re using a person in the company instead of your brand name, and they might not know it\'s you sending the emails, and that might be an issue, or your subject line isn\'t very good or not interesting or enticing enough to get them to open the email, or you didn\'t use the preview text that gets a little extra shot in there, trying to grab their attention and beam that teaser that gets the email opened. And then once it\'s opened, if they\'re not clicking through to your website, then it\'s a content issue. And it\'s just trying to pay attention to your reports and identify which level of the problem you\'re facing and working from the top down to improve each one to where the whole funnel is working. 13:14 DM: Yeah. And for this first section that we have for the Clues for the Clueless, we were really focusing on list building first. What you\'re talking about, list engagement, is gonna be part of our next series that we\'re gonna talk into how to build email properly to get the most opens, engagement rate, click-through rate. And revenue, as well, I think, is something that we\'ll definitely tap into. But I do agree with what Andy is saying. One thing to really keep in mind, separate... I\'m kinda getting ahead of our self now since we\'re gonna be covering this next week, but as a preview, as a snippet here for us, when you\'re looking at your email performance, people tend to do what Andy just said now. If you see a problem with your open rate, just play with the subject line and your \"from name\" and the preview name, let\'s say. That\'s technically true, but at the same time, similar to the traffic, it is very easy to get opens. If I say in my email \"$300 gift card to Amazon,\" I may get a lot of opens. But then if the content has nothing to do with that, I\'m really shooting myself in the foot, I\'m creating a bad taste in the mouth for my subscriber, and I\'m creating a sense of distrust. They\'re not gonna trust me anymore. 14:26 DM: So what\'s important is look at those step-by-step, the open, the click, on the email, how long they stay on the email, did they click to get to your site, to get an overall sense, but always keep in mind what is the message that you\'re trying to send. Maybe the open rate that you have for the message you\'re sending is through the roof, because not all of your subscribers are technically interested in that. And instead of trying to say, \"My strategy sucks,\" maybe try to go back and say, \"How can I further segment this to make the messages more relevant to each of the buckets or each of the type of people that I may have on my list?\" Again, we\'ll get into that in the next series. 15:01 AS: Just to add to what Daniel was saying about opens are easy to get, you\'ll also have the neurotic subscribers like me who are just like can\'t handle having push notifications on their phones, so I\'ll open and X out of an email immediately just so it\'s not... The push notification isn\'t there anymore. And so that open has no value either. But I wanna ask you guys a couple of questions, as long as you\'re here. I thought about doing it before, but we\'re not throwing you any curve balls. It\'s about growing your list. What are some newsletters or email lists you guys subscribed for recently or have you ever subscribed for an email list? 15:38 ZM: Me, personally, I do. Sometimes when I shop, like clothing companies, or something, something that catches my eyes, like \"20% off now,\" or things like that, something that\'s in it for me. 15:48 MS: I do like those retail ones too, like when you sign up for their newsletter, you get some percentage off of your next purchase or something like that. And I also am interested in marketing, so I do subscribe to the Ad Age newsletter, and I really like it. They give you the quick updates for this week, and I really like that. I\'ve subscribed to a lot of emails and newsletters, and I\'m really upset about it. I get at least 50 emails a day, and I hated it. That\'s why when I think about email marketing, I\'m like, \"How do you even stand out? I don\'t open most of these.\" I get 50 of those every day. So, it\'s not even about... Even if you\'re subject line is cool, I\'m not going to open it just because I get so many. So, when you guys were talking about how sure you are about the future of email marketing, I was thinking, how can you guys be so sure when our future generation gets so many emails a day and doesn\'t even open one of them? 16:46 AS: Sure. We actually had the Heart of Business a month or two ago, interviewed Chad White, who wrote the Email Marketing Rules, and we asked him a similar question, \"Are email marketers shooting themselves in the foot by sending too many emails? Are people fatigued by crowded inboxes.\" And he pointed out to us readily so, and you even say it yourself, you\'re in marketing and so you subscribe to newsletters and now you get a lot, but that isn\'t necessarily the average user. And people who maybe do a little bit of online shopping, but not all of it... And even if they are un-subscribing, people are used to the noise in the inbox, and Gmail has the tabs and everything to sort it that I don\'t think people are tuned out to this point and, the stats don\'t necessarily show it in terms of what the open rates are, that I think the general average consumer will still be opening emails and being able to interact with that. 17:43 DM: Yeah. No, I agree with that. And that enforces more what I was saying earlier about really focusing not on all of your subscribers, because I think that\'s really something that, in a way, is unrealistic, but really focus on who your core customer is. And inside of that, there\'s another shell inside of that, which is, who\'s ready to buy now or who\'s ready to engage right now. I subscribe to LivingSocial, and all those type of things. They send me an email daily, sometimes two or even three times per day, depending on the season. I don\'t open or buy from every single one of them, but I\'ll tell you what, if I have some PTO that I wanna take off and there\'s an email that pops up at the right time with a trip to Yosemite at 300 bucks for a whole week, I\'m taking that. And if you think about that purchase of $300, that almost pays for the email marketing, for me specifically, for them to send it to me for years to come. So, that\'s how that balances out, I see. 18:41 AS: Yeah. Every podcast, audience won\'t be treated to the skeptical look we got from Milena, that response. 18:46 MS: I\'m just curious, because... [laughter] 18:48 DM: If we can convince her, email marketing has the feature. 18:52 MS: I mean, you guys are just so sure about it. And you even talk about how maybe Facebook will become... Will be gone in a couple of years or something like that, but you sound so sure that email marketing is here to stay. But maybe in the past, people thought that mailing things to people, like flyers and stuff like that, was going to stay with us forever. And it still is happening, but what is the return on investment on that now? I have so much junk mail at home that I don\'t even go through right now. So, do you guys fear that one day email marketing will become obsolete? 19:28 AS: I don\'t know. The answer is no, but I\'m gonna steal Daniel\'s answers with all of this and what I respond to, but communication, in some form, is always gonna be there. Like Daniel said millions of times, there was writing on the walls and caves thousands of years ago, and that\'s how they communicated with people. \"Here\'s what I ate for lunch today,\" painted on the wall of a cave instead of on your Instagram. And so that communication is there, in some form or another. Even if it\'s not email marketing, the ideas of how you communicate with people and engage with your audience to sell to them and to solve problems for them and provide them with value is gonna be there, even if it\'s not email marketing, per se. And I think the company and the space will evolve with that in the natural way and in ways that it\'s not something I worry about because, like you said, junk mail, it\'s still communicating to your audience. It\'s just [20:25] ____ do it might change, but even all the new ones, social media, all that ties back into email. You can\'t sign up for it without an email address, you get notifications in your email. It\'s all still pretty email-based. 20:38 DM: When it comes down to email marketing, I think when it comes down to the channels, how many channels I use to communicate with friends, family, co-workers. To name a few, Slack, WhatsApp, Facebook, Facebook Messenger, \'cause I\'m talking about the Facebook wall versus Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Instagram direct messages, Twitter, Twitter direct messages, LinkedIn, LinkedIn, and these are people... 21:00 AS: Snapchat. 21:00 DM: Snapchat, Face2Face, and these are people that I can just choose one channel and communicate on it. But depending on the type of message, I wanna send it through a different channel. Right? If I wanna do a goofy face for a situation, I may use Snapchat. If it\'s more serious, I don\'t know, type of communication, I may use a different form that... If it\'s more personal, I may do something like WhatsApp or regular text messaging. Again, depending on the channel of communication... I\'m sorry. Depending on what I wanna say, I\'m gonna choose that channel. 21:31 DM: And one thing that I wanna be very clear, I don\'t think anybody should just do email marketing. If you\'re just doing email marketing, you\'re losing out. That\'s just the bottom line. Same thing as if you\'re just doing Facebook, you\'re probably losing out as well, because not everybody likes to receive communications through the same channel. Just how I like to send a message based on what the message is for a specific channel, people also like to receive specific things through certain channels as well. If I send the exact same email on Facebook versus their email, it\'s gonna get a totally different response. I think that\'s why every brand needs to identify what does email mean to them, what is the voice and the type of message that they wanna send through that channel, and how does that correlate with all of the other channels and messages that they\'re sending out? Don\'t duplicate it, don\'t overlap it too much, but you want that consistency surrounding of your subscriber and fans. 22:26 AS: Yeah. Do you have any more hard-hitting questions? [overlapping conversation] 22:29 AS: I\'m not giving you any more opportunity to ask questions. [chuckle] Thanks, everyone, for listening to this very special episode of Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer. And we\'ll catch you next time. Bye, guys. You guys wanna say goodbye to our audience? 22:43 MS: Bye. 22:43 ZM: Yeah. Bye. [laughter] 22:45 DM: So enthusiastic. They\'re so happy to be here. Thanks, everybody. 22:50 MS: But it was fun.


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