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3 Priceless Email Marketing Lessons from Fatherly Advice

Practical Marketer - Reading Time: 11 Minutes

3 Priceless Email Marketing Lessons from Fatherly Advice

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Want To Start List Hygiene, But You’re Afraid To Start?

Want To Start List Hygiene, But You’re Afraid To Start?

Practical Marketer • August 5, 2018

In our daily work, we send email campaigns on a regular basis. However, we tend to not take any action once the campaign has been sent. We’re talking about list hygiene. Do you know that the various ISPs (Hotmail, Gmail, etc.) know if you’re sending to an invalid email address and they can tank your deliverability? Yes, they can. For example, if after checking reports no action is taken in regards to bounces or email addresses that have not opened your last 30 campaigns, ISPs can start to block your campaigns with their filters. They will consider your emails to be from a sender that doesn’t take any action to improve results. That said, do you know what you need to remove? When we are referring to list hygiene, we’re talking about removing the hard bounces and email addresses which aren’t opening your campaigns. If you don\'t already know, there are three different types of bounces: Confirmed bounces. The email addresses that no longer exist and the sending server has tried to contact them three times, but the campaign has been able to be delivered. Hard bounces. These are email addresses that no longer exist. When they bounce three times, they turn into confirmed bounces. This could be due to a mistyped address, the domain no longer existing or the person who belongs to the email address no longer works there, and the address is no longer valid. Soft bounces. They are email addresses that temporally are inactivate. It has not yet been possible to deliver the campaign, but only temporally. Consequently, they are valid email addresses which should not be removed. What might the temporary issue be? It could be that the inbox is full of messages and the person cannot receive more emails until they free up space for it. Perhaps you sent a campaign outside working hours and got an autoresponder, or maybe the server has been down temporarily. These email addresses are not available for a period but when those issues are solved, they back to being activate. It might feel like you can’t see the importance of list hygiene, but we’ve made it easy for you to check the health of your list in your account in the reputation panel. This section will indicate a number between 1 and 8 which evaluates the status of your reputation. Do you know what reputation means? Reputation is a measure used for monitoring the behavior of your campaigns in regards to the spam filters and subscribers’ campaign interactions. It is precisely this interaction which will be improved with list hygiene. This is because you’re sending your campaigns to an email address that really exists and can actually open and click to your links. Similarly, if you remove the email addresses that have not opened your campaigns for a long time, you’ll be increasing the interaction for the rest of your list that remains. Furthermore, you can opt for a smaller plan and only pay for the subscribers that are opening your campaigns and through which you have chances to deliver your message. Please note that this won’t necessarily work with a new list as you likely won’t have enough data or bounces to make any major changes to the hygiene of your list. List verification may be more helpful to you in this instance, to remove things like mistyped email addresses. This is also solved by using double opt-in signup forms. In this blog, One Simple Way To Rescue Your Email Marketing Strategy we shared some ideas on how to increase your database. However, if the database is not current, or if you have never sent email marketing campaigns to it, your campaign’s reports will likely show a high bounce rate (in other words, more than 2%). Do you know what bounce rates you have? An email marketing account should have on average a 2% of bounces as the maximum. Additionally, list hygiene can be necessary if your list lands you in a spam trap. A spam trap is a trap used by ISPs to know which users are sending to a non-permission database or have a very old database. How can list hygiene be done with Benchmark? If you do not have a good control system in place to handle your contacts that you have removed, it’s possible they can be uploaded again into the tool. To solve this, the list hygiene would be: Login in your account Click on “Clean list” Select: confirmed + hard bounces Click on “Create New List” Once it has been created, you need to access the list and click on the three points. Select the option “Copy List” Copy to an “Existing List” and select “Master Unsubscribe List” In this way, we are blocking those contacts that are unuseful to be uploaded again to the tool. Keep in mind that this action is irreversible. If you have a good control system to handle your contacts to avoid your removed addresses being sent to, then the list hygiene would be from the points 1.1 to 1.3, and then click on “Remove from list” If a specific campaign you sent had a high number of bounces, and in that campaign, you selected multiple lists, following the steps above can be tricky. In that case, we recommend you to do the following: Go to Reports and click on the campaign Click on “Bounces” Select “Hard Bounces” Click on the three points and then “Export to File” Download the file and upload it to the “Master Unsubscribe List” If you have spam traps in your account, you should follow the previous steps and include the subscribers who have not opened your last 30 campaigns. The spam traps are in this group because they won’t be opening your emails. These are the four ways that we propose you keep your account clean of bounces to earn a high reputation. Now, you just need to choose the option that fits best with your needs and start doing it. If you need help with this process, you can contact your Email Marketing Specialist, or if you observe an anomaly in your bounce rate, such as a sudden growth in it, feel free to contact us before proceeding with list hygiene. We want to know what list hygiene practices have impacted your email marketing. Share your tips or results in the comments below!


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8/3/18: Weekly Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer Digest

8/3/18: Weekly Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer Digest

Beyond • August 3, 2018

Well, folks, we\'ve officially got a week in the books for Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer! For these first five mini-episodes, focused on growing your email list. These topics included why your email list is so important and why you should put effort into growing that list. Then we began looking at the individual touchpoints where you should be trying to build your list and some practical strategies for doing so. Introducing Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer Welcome to our new podcast! We\'ll be releasing daily mini episodes (minisodes) each weekday aimed at the Clueless Email Marketer. After all, we\'re all clueless until someone clues us in! In this first episode, we introduce the podcast and start a conversation on the importance of your email list and why you need to focus on growing your list. Growing a List: Homepage We kick off our series of conversations about how to grow your email list by focusing on the most obvious starting point: your homepage. Do you know where you should place a signup form on your homepage? You will after these 5ish minutes! Growing a List: Your Blog Your blog is one of the best SEO tools for your business. It\'s going to drive traffic to your site. Keep those site visitors coming back by converting them into subscribers. Growing a List: Other Website Pages We continue our conversation about growing an email list by looking at some of the other places to consider putting a signup form on your website. Know the highest trafficked pages on your site, so you\'re not missing opportunities to grow your list. Growing a List: Social Media Email marketing and social media aren\'t an either/or situation. You should always be using both and that includes efforts to grow your list. Listen to this episode to find out how you can use social media to attract new subscribers.


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Best of the Heart of Business

Best of the Heart of Business

Beyond • August 3, 2018

Well, one week is in the books with our daily (on weekdays) mini-episodes of Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer and Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer. Now that we have three podcasts, it seemed like as good of a time as any to look back on our original podcast, the Heart Of Business. With a little over 100 episodes released, the Heart Of Business has seen some awesome guests, who are doing (or have done) incredible things. We wanted to honor some of our favorites … and some of yours! The truth is, we’ve enjoyed every single episode we’ve recorded. It’s hard not to when you get to speak with people who are passionate about what they’re doing with their lives. Thanks to everyone who has ever been a guest on the Heart Of Business and all of you who have been listening all these years! Andy’s Favorite Episodes Diamond Dallas Page: Wrestling with a New Yoga Business If I’m being honest, a large part of why this was so special is because of the voicemail that was left for my by DDP himself prior to recording. My junior high self was squealing on the inside about this episode. He did not disappoint. Nick Uhas: Beginnings, Big Brother and Beyond You ask Nick Uhas how he wound up on Big Brother and you first hear about how he started wrestling in Junior High, competitive rollerblading and how he crashed a fraternity leadership summit in Mexico. Somehow, it turns into a story of following the path presented to you and gaining confidence in your strengths. There Is No Shot: ImmunoMatrix with Kasia Sawicka Kasia Sawicka is the Neo of ImmunoMatrix. The one that did what has never been done before. During a college experiment, Kasia stumbled upon a discovery that might have major implications across the globe. Through her findings, she has made a patch that can deliver medications through the skin at a greater rate than was previously thought possible. She\'s got a growing list of awards and accolades that boast the significance of ImmunoMatrix. Daniel’s Favorite Episodes All About.com That Podcast with Neil Vogel Neil Vogel is the CEO of About.com. He talked with us about transforming a brand, chubby babies and content. With Andy on injured reserve, Engineer Claude and Daniel took the reigns for this great listen. Siri, Will You Be On Our Podcast? You\'d think being the voice of Siri could be the coolest thing a person could do. Then you learn that Susan Bennett also toured the world with Roy Orbison. She toured with a guy that was in a band with a Beatle. How cool is that?! The answer is very cool, and Susan Bennett is just that. Learn about the life of a voice actor and singer and how one can be the voice of Siri without even realizing it\'s happening. Energized By Grid Modernization Engineer Tirthak Saha Tirthak Saha is only 26 years old. He\'s been recognized by Forbes 30 Under 30, worked with NASA on origami-inspired satellites and won American Electric Power\'s Spark Tank Innovation Challenge. You may not have heard of him yet, but he believes that will change. So do we. Most Downloaded Episodes (Your Favorites!) Drive Change: Social Justice is a Dish Best Served ... Literally It seems more important than ever to tell a story like that of Drive Change. A force for good in our society aimed at improving the lives of its employees, maintaining a conversation on social justice and serving delicious food. Drive Change brings its cause straight to the people taking its food truck, Snowday, on the move with a message. You see, the food truck employs formerly incarcerated young adults and gives them support, on the job training and assistance in achieving the future they desire. Did I mention the food is amazing? I don\'t have to because the awards are piling up ... as are the mentions in every \"best of NY\" list on food trucks. Drive Change co-founder Roy Waterman and his team deserve all the accolades their food has received and more. In a world of hashtag activism, it seems as important as ever to give a platform to the individuals taking action to work for a better tomorrow. 1,810 Seconds with 2-Second Lean\'s Paul Akers Paul Akers had to go to Japan to become fully immersed in Lean culture. Thanks to him, all of us need not leave our desks. To say we were excited to speak to Paul and hear his story is an understatement. His Lean Journey is one of positivity and joy, albeit not with a few bumps along the road. We talked to him about his own company, FastCap, and how they have benefited from implementing Lean. EasilyDo: Stay On Top Of It All Think about all of the things for which you use your smartphone. Calls, email and texting, sure, but what else? You calendar, the internet, social media. Shopping? Transportation? Business? These days the list can go on and on. EasilyDo is like having an assistant that lives in your phone. It integrates with all of the tools you use in your life to stay organized and get things done. We had a great talk on how the tools in your life can be used more efficiently. It\'s something all of us can stand to do. Most Played Episodes (More of Your Favorites!) The Fan Experience with Kevin Browning, Umphrey\'s McGee Not many bands can tour for more than a decade and a half and still bring something new to the table each and every time. Umphrey\'s McGee has delivered unique fan experiences unseen by most others in the music industry. We chat with Kevin Browning, who manages strategy and development for the the band. Listen along and see how you might conjure up some out of the box ideas for your business. Millennials & More with Michael Price Michael Price literally wrote the book on millennials. Hear how his book, What Next? The Millennial’s Guide To Surviving and Thriving in the Real World, came to be and why he felt he was the one to write it. Hear his thoughts on millennials, who they are and what they are capable of. You Can Dance If You Want To ... at Dance With Me Alex Samusevich co-founded Dance With Me Studios with Maksim Chmerkovskiy of Dancing with the Stars. He took a lifelong passion for dance and turned it into a business that also allowed him to share it with others. What started as a conversation about being able to pursue one’s dreams in business and in life that was uplifting and inspirational turned into a look at using what you have, creating great content and doing it all with a DIY approach. Tell Us Your Favorite Do you have a favorite episode that we didn’t include here? Tell us in the comments!


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The Customer Support Side of CRM

The Customer Support Side of CRM

CRM • August 3, 2018

CRM can be a lot of things for a lot of people in your company. This episode focuses on the customer support side of things. Because after all, an important part of fostering strong relationships with your customers is making sure that you\'re solving any issues that may arise. 00:22 Andy Shore: Thank you, everybody, for tuning in once again to Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer. And I\'m sure before this is all said and done, I will call this Clues for the Clueless Email Marketer, and I may have already, and I apologize in advance. But if you\'re into email marketing, check out our version of that, where we\'re doing minisodes on email marketing. And now I\'m ranting and mumbling and wasting time, so we\'ll get into it. And whereas last time we talked about transactions in CRM, today we\'re gonna talk a little bit about the support side of things. 00:58 Paul Rijnders: Yeah, support is very important because I think when people come to CRM, they\'re really focused on sales. How can I convert this lead? How can I convert this lead to a contact and an opportunity? How can I track this opportunity through the sales process till it means money in our company\'s pockets? But support tickets are important because after the sale, somebody might have a problem, and how you address that really makes a big impact as to whether that customer is gonna feel comfortable calling you up again and purchasing something. Or the fact that the next time you try to sell someone, that you even acknowledge that they had an issue and then you give them some reassurances that that thing was taken care of and that it won\'t happen again. Or if it does happen again, that you\'re ready for it. 01:44 PR: So what are you looking for in a support ticket? And by the way, there\'s different ways that CRMs handle it. So some CRMs, you might see something called Support Case, and then you might have some types of SaaS products that are really ticket-focused. So I won\'t say the big one, but their name rhymes with Hendesk... [chuckle] 02:09 PR: And you\'re not gonna find cases there, you\'re gonna find tickets there. But they\'ve got a fantastic... I think they\'ve got a fantastic angle. Why? Because when you were a kid, did anyone ever say, \"Don\'t make a big federal case out of it?\" 02:23 AS: No. 02:24 PR: Probably not. 02:25 AS: No. 02:25 PR: Maybe that\'s because I\'m older, or maybe because I was the kind of kid who always made a federal case out of everything, [chuckle] but it was the same, \"Don\'t make a big federal case out of it.\" But the idea was this, why are you making a mountain into a molehill? So when someone\'s got an issue, is it really a case? You\'re calling for the detectives where they\'re saying, \"Okay, I got this case open. It\'s gonna take me a couple weeks to close this.\" No, is this something... Your customer doesn\'t want a case. If I call up AT&T and I got an issue with my phone not connecting, I don\'t want them to open up a case, I want them to open up a ticket. I want them to say, \"Yeah, you know what? We\'re on it.\" I want them to open that ticket and close it before I hang up. Or, if they can\'t solve it, I wanna know that ticket is somewhere popping up on someone\'s screen with a big red button that\'s saying, \"Alert! Alert! Solve! Solve! Solve!\" [chuckle] until somebody fixes this. That\'s a ticket. 03:12 PR: So maybe it\'s semantics. To me, a ticket is a little bit lighter than a case. And guess what? Your support staff can probably handle 100 tickets a day; they can\'t handle 100 cases a day. So that said, what is it? They\'re basically the same type of thing. You got a record that has some fields, and the fields say what the problem is, what\'s its priority, when is it due, when are you trying to solve it, and by the way, the most important thing, with whom is this case with, or this ticket with? So who do you got to solve this for? And then who are you gonna assign it to? The person that created that ticket might not be the person that\'s actually assigned the ticket. So for instance, let\'s say I open up a support ticket and it\'s for a customer named Wendy Smith. Well, Wendy Smith can\'t get her TV remote to work. Well, I\'m gonna make a ticket real quick for it. If I can\'t solve it really quickly, maybe I\'m gonna bump it up to Miguel. And I\'m gonna assign this ticket to Miguel so that Miguel can either contact her or do whatever he\'s gotta do to solve that thing. And then bam, that thing is solved. 04:17 PR: So what should these support tickets have? Well, they should be related to the contact that we just talked about. And then also, they should have a unique number. That way, if someone\'s looking it up later on, that there\'s not like five tickets that all say, \"Broken remote.\" If there is, you might wanna check your remotes, by the way. [chuckle] But these tickets should have unique numbers. That way, someone just looks at that number and goes, \"Okay, guy, I know what this is.\" The tickets should have a priority, we talked about this, the ticket should have a due date. And then I think you\'re golden. 04:46 PR: And then some companies maybe have stages for their tickets. For a lot of companies, maybe the ticket being open and closed is good enough. And rather than closed, we like the term solved, that sounds better. You can close their ticket. You close their ticket, what did you do? You don\'t close that thing, you solve that thing. And then some people have a middle stage, which is like pending or it just means you\'re waiting on something else. And maybe there\'s a way for you to put even your own custom stages in there. But I\'m here to say that the more stages you put in your ticket, the less likely it is to get solved. Does it have to be bumped up to Level 2 support, Level 3 support, Level 4 support? I guess, maybe, if that\'s the way your company solves things that\'s great, but I think to the customers, there\'s only two stages, \"It\'s open,\" and, \"It\'s solved.\" That\'s it. 05:31 AS: Yeah, it\'s kind of like your support is on a compound board. Sounds like that\'s what you\'re talking about. 05:35 PR: There you go. Yeah, it is. Yeah, it is. The more places you have for that ticket to go besides solved, it\'s human nature that they\'re gonna end up in those places. Someone\'s gonna say, \"Oh, okay, I gotta put it in a category. I can\'t solve this right now, so I\'m gonna put it right here.\" It should be painful that that ticket is open, for everyone in your company, especially the person that\'s assigned to it, and then it should be solved as quickly as possible. 05:56 AS: Definitely. And a good point of why Paul\'s the one giving the expert advice and not me is, as he\'s explaining, it shouldn\'t be a case. Case doesn\'t sound like a thing you wanna be involved in. Me, who has binged countless Law and Order marathons, is like, \"Yup, give me all the cases, I want the cases.\" [laughter] But that\'s just nonsense in... 06:17 PR: It is. 06:17 AS: My TV-addled brain. So that\'s why Paul\'s in charge of the knowing things. 06:21 PR: Can you imagine, \"Hey, can you go to lunch right now?\" \"Ah, I can\'t. I\'ve got five open cases.\" Well, you\'re not gonna eat this month, are you? [laughter] [vocalization] 06:32 PR: Is that the... [laughter] [vocalization] 06:33 PR: Is that the CS-whatever music, or... 06:34 AS: Law and Order. 06:35 PR: Law and Order. 06:35 AS: [06:35] ____ OG Law and Order. But before we devolve into that tangent, we\'ll say goodbye for today and we\'ll catch you guys next time.


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The Sales Side of CRM

The Sales Side of CRM

CRM • August 2, 2018

In this episode, we discuss the sales aspect of CRM. We cover tracking opportunities and the way it\'s done with CRM. 00:22 Andy Shore: Welcome back everybody to Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer. And we\'re gonna continue our deep dive into all things CRM and we\'ve talked about a ton of stuff so far and had our tangents here and there, but we have mentioned there is a sales side of CRM and it might not be the primary use for your business, but it does exist, and with sales comes transactions, right? 00:47 Paul Rijnders: Yeah, and there\'s gonna be CRMs that are going to be better suited to your type of business. So I think that whoever you\'re auditioning to be your CRM or whatever product you\'re looking at you should, where possible, where applicable, look for specialization. And so let me kind of unpack that a bit. The most traditional CRMs are gonna have kind of a process that goes like this. Okay, well, I\'ve got leads, so let me upload a list of leads and I\'ll have my people work \'em either on the phones or through email or through whatever means that is. At a certain point we\'re gonna qualify that lead and we\'re gonna say, \"Wow, that person really, I think we can sell them something. Let\'s create an opportunity for them.\" So you got this little button that says convert. You convert that lead to a contact, at the same time you create the opportunity. And so here\'s where that little line of distinction goes where you say, \"Well, is that opportunity gonna be with that contact or is it gonna be with that organization?\" 01:49 PR: Some CRMs are co-organizations accounts. For me the way I like to explain it, \"Well, who\'s paying for it? Does John work for Acme and is Acme actually paying for it and this product\'s for the benefit of Acme?\" Well, that opportunity that you\'re tracking, that should be with Acme. Or is it, Wendy that\'s buying this and Wendy\'s actually buying it for herself and the fact that she works for IBM is inconsequential because this is actually for Wendy\'s household. Well, then IBM is out of there, don\'t track it for IBM, \'cause they are not your customer. That opportunity should be with Wendy. That said, now you have this converted lead record that\'s a contact, and now you have this new record that\'s an opportunity and you\'re actually creating follow-up tasks on the opportunity, because you want to do everything you can to actually close that opportunity. If it\'s something you got to personally do for Cindy or whoever it is, Wendy or John, that has nothing to do with the sales you\'re trying to close, then you can make that task and relate it to them, right? And this might sound complicated, but it\'s just this, it\'s when you create that task, what does this relate to? 02:57 PR: Well, this relates to Wendy, or this relates to to this opportunity. That way down the line, when you\'re looking at the tasks that you gotta do for the day, you may not be looking at a task of 100 of \'em, you can start doing your accomplishments for the day and you know to what that relates to. So that said, that transaction now becomes this opportunity you\'re trying to close. Well, these are for big-ticket items. I think that if you\'re selling something big, like you\'re selling helicopters at the Catalina Mixer that yes, you really wanna have an opportunity because you\'re trying to close something that someone\'s spending $1,000, $2,000, $10,000 on, right? Or even if you\'re a music shop, and you\'re selling $400 or $500 items, these are opportunities and you wanna kind of track those. Or you\'re selling a contract or subscription, those are opportunities. You\'re selling a house. What if you\'re a food truck or you\'re an ice cream shop or you\'re a flower shop? I don\'t think that you wanna have an opportunity open for every single bouquet of roses that you\'re trying to close, although you might. Some of them are expensive, I bought those edible arrangements, and those could be like 100 bucks. 04:02 AS: Wow. 04:03 PR: For fruits! For fruits. But they\'re good. [chuckle] Whoever you\'re sending to, they feel a little special because someone cut all the little watermelon and tangerines in these little stars and stuff. So I\'m going on record and saying, edible arrangements, probably those are opportunities. [chuckle] \'Cause you might... You\'re gonna take a couple of tasks to close me on buying [chuckle] another one of those things. 04:23 AS: I just had a flashback to my grandparents telling me about traveling somewhere in Asia and trying to get a melon and it being so expensive, \'cause that\'s not where they\'re growing so they\'re having it sent there. And them being like, \"Oh, this is something we get for a couple bucks at home.\" And it\'s just like $50 at this place. 04:41 PR: Somewhere in the cloud is an open... 04:44 AS: This is like where edible arrangements were born. [chuckle] 04:45 PR: Maybe. But somewhere in the cloud somewhere, is an open opportunity that says, \"Melon.\" [chuckle] And someone is trying to close that deal \'cause it\'s so expensive. Okay, so anyway, sorry about that. So I was trying to say that CRMs are specialized, I guess, for different kinds of businesses. So that traditional business model, if you\'re selling something big, I\'m gonna say that most CRMs off the shelf are going to be good for that, because that\'s the traditional kind of model a lot of them follow. But data\'s getting smarter, how data gets to you is getting a lot easier and if you\'re selling things on an online shop then you\'re probably gonna look for a CRM that\'s got... It\'s a bit more hooked in with e-commerce APIs. The API is kind of a scary term, but basically it makes it so that one program can talk to another, I guess, right? Or one application can talk to another without any kind of... And they could be written in two different kind of languages, so to speak, computer languages. That said, if you... It\'s getting a lot easier and some CRMs do this even if you don\'t have any kind of development experience, you can just say, \"Okay, well, I\'m using CRM X and CRM X says I can bring it on all my transactions from Shopify, Etsy or whatever.\" 06:02 PR: And then now you\'re not necessarily looking to track these opportunities you\'re trying to close, maybe you just wanna see all the things someone has bought and you wanna bring that in so that you can sell them more of that. And then maybe your whole business model\'s not calling them up on the phone, it\'s they go to your shopping cart, they buy something or they go to your shopping cart or your website, go to shopping cart and abandon it. You kick off an email that says, \"Hey, you know what, you left something in your cart.\" Right? Or maybe they didn\'t even get to the cart, maybe they just visited this URL and this URL, so you know, \"Oh, wow. So that person is very interested in ceramic mugs.\" So then you start sending out the emails for the ceramic mugs and as they purchase those, you open up the record the next time, and you see those purchases because all that comes in from API, and I\'ll close it out and say this, what you really don\'t wanna get in a habit of doing is, say, looking at one program, because we see lots of customers that do this, that they\'ll look in one program and they\'ll say, \"Oh, that person bought this, this and that.\" And then they\'ll go in the CRM and they\'ll type in that the person bought this, this, and that. 07:00 PR: Does that work? Yes. Does it scale well? No. Well, if your program that you\'re using or your CRM that you\'re using, can interface with whatever it is that you\'re tracking your sales through, that information should come in and it shouldn\'t be even stored at your CRM, it should be pulling in live. You open up that customer, a little call goes out to wherever that information is housed, whatever your e-commerce retailer is, and now that pings back, \"Oh, these are the five or six things they bought.\" So, you get up-to-date accurate information and you don\'t have data that\'s redundantly stored in a number of places. And that allows you to be actionable and if you can trigger certain automations based on those actions, where you can create views of customers that meet certain criteria based on what those transactions were, all the better. So I\'ll close this out by saying that if you were an e-commerce-type seller and you\'re not doing a lot of face-to-face selling or you\'re not even doing hot calls, [chuckle] cold calls, medium calls and everything is solely based on transactions, then you really want a CRM that\'s really hooked in with your e-commerce site and allows you to do these transactional types of follow-ups. 08:08 AS: Yeah, for those of you that don\'t know, Paul\'s saying, I\'m gonna close this out twice as he\'s trying to close it out as peak Paul, [chuckle] I say. 08:16 PR: That is a perfect example. 08:19 AS: And for listeners, that user-facing side of what he was just talking about, is think about if you\'ve ever been on Amazon and you look at a product and even if you don\'t put in your cart, you better believe you\'re gonna get follow-up emails like, \"Hey, still interested in this?\" Or, \"The price just dropped,\" or whatever that is, that\'s just their CRM, tracking where their users are on the page and following up to make that sale. And so I think that\'s all Paul was talking about. 08:43 PR: So now I can\'t close out \'cause I gotta tell you the story about my dad and the first time we had GPS installed. 08:48 AS: Go for it. 08:49 PR: Okay, so, I guess, like a decade ago, I got this 4x4 type thing and I put GPS in there. My dad and I followed this car club out and we went to a four [09:00] ____ over in kinda like the hills over there by the border of California and Mexico. And my dad was kind of marveling at the GPS and it showed where we were at, and he\'s like, \"How is this working?\" And I said, \"Well, it just kind of triangulates based, I think.\" I guess I was explaining the way I understood it, which wasn\'t very well, but... Or very good. But I did know that it was automatic and it was based on satellites and that they were finding your position based on that, right? Or not they, it. But my dad was hung up on they. [chuckle] He\'s like, \"Well, how does it know where you\'re at?\" And I\'m like, \"Well, you know the satellites and this or that, it\'s detecting.\" And he\'s like, \"No, there\'s gotta be a guy up there.\" [chuckle] 09:38 PR: And I\'m like, \"Wait, wait. There\'s no guy up there.\" And he\'s like, \"No, [chuckle] there\'s gotta be a guy.\" And I was trying to explain there\'s no guy up there that\'s doing it and he\'s like, \"No, this is too accurate.\" And then I was like, \"Well, Dad, I bought this thing for $100. There\'s no way that my $100 purchase gets me a guy up there [laughter] dedicated to telling me where this is at all times.\" So to hook this back to the Amazon thing, right? I bet there\'s a few listeners out there, hopefully, most people are more sophisticated than that, right, that thinks that you need to have a person that\'s going to kinda look at what that person puts into that shopping cart and say, \"Oh, wow. Okay, they need this email. Okay, fire,\" and they send it off. There\'s no guy, there\'s no girl up there. Those are all this automations based on things that happen within the app itself. 10:25 AS: Yeah, but everyone thinks they\'re on their own stage, they\'re in their own movie and they have that dedicated person to shine the spotlight on them, right? That\'s what that is. 10:34 PR: I wish I had that person. [chuckle] And this is before Siri, right? I can imagine how much worse it would have been if there was a Siri or a Hey, Google. \"But I hear her voice.\" [laughter] Anyway, I love you, Dad. 10:45 AS: And for you, Siri users, check out of the Heart of Business episode with Susan Bennett, the voice of Siri. She\'s a hoot. I really enjoy talking to her, it\'s one of our best episode. 10:55 PR: She\'s the woman up there. 10:57 AS: She is, maybe, but we\'re way over our time for this episode. So, thanks everyone for listening and we\'ll catch you next time. Bye-bye.


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CRM Interactions and Touchpoints

CRM Interactions and Touchpoints

CRM • August 1, 2018

We discuss who in your company can and should be using CRM and the touchpoints with your customers and prospects where they might be interacting with your CRM or you may be collecting data for it. These two points are important for gaining an understanding of how CRM plays into your workflows. Check it out! 00:22 Andy Shore: Welcome back everybody to another episode of \"Clues for the clueless CRM Marketer\", and today, we\'re gonna continue kinda getting into CRM and how you interact with it and who interacts with it and on that note, we kinda wanted to talk through the different interactions, and touch points where a CRM comes into play both from the customer\'s side, and of the employees side I think and so where does that start it? I mean, like let\'s say from the workforce side, who all is using that CRM in the company and how are they doing that? 00:55 Paul Rijnders: Got it, okay. So there\'s what the workforce is doing and what the CRM calls those things, right? So there is a little bit of an adoption and it\'s not a heavy curvy... So you just gotta know where to put it, because as we talked about in our last few episodes, you could just make everything a note. But now some insufferable person gotta go through all those notes and pull out all those touch points, right? Or, you have some kind of program that does that or maybe the thing actually does it for you. It pulls out those important words that you\'re looking for. Better yet, why doesn\'t everyone in the company decide that what they\'re doing is all activities centered around this client? So what these activities are, at least in our CRM, is their tasks or events or calls. So, is your company making outbound calls to your customers or are the inbound calls? 01:47 PR: Well those be noted as a particular record type? And the reason that\'s very helpful is if you note that call, as an activity and for us they\'re all the same kind of record activities call center task but now, someone can, later on, say, \"Okay, how many calls did we make today? How many calls came in today? What was the outcome of that call? How many minutes did we spend on that call?\" And you could do the same thing for events, which is basically like a meeting. So if you\'re gonna have lunch with somebody or you\'re doing a demo, something that has a beginning time and an end-time, that\'s probably more of an event-type activity. The final thing is task which is everything else. It might be the thing you\'re doing, mostly. So, are you sending something to the client? Are you doing something on behalf of the client? If that particular task resulted in some kind of action for the client, the client\'s aware of, or that the client responded to you, or that you talked to the client, then that very well could be a task, but if you\'ve put in those three buckets, then those could be measurable. 02:52 PR: It does matter what CRM we use. Maybe we have a CRM that only has tasks, and tasks is all of those things. But the point is, that since a CRM is a relational database, it\'s great to be able to pull report later on and say, \"Okay well, the contacts that are related to the companies and the activities are either related to the contacts or they are related directly to the companies.\" Let me see if I can do report and say \"What activities that I do for what companies? What companies did I do the most activities for? What activities did I do that resulted in the most sales?\" So when you say touch points, yes, they are interactions. Even a support ticket, I guess, you could consider a touch point, right? But the end point of getting all that information into a structured kind of record which is one of those that we just talked about, is that somebody, somewhere down the line, even if it\'s you and you\'re a whole one person show, you can say, \"Oh wow, this is how I spent my time. And these were the results.\" 03:51 AS: You can even get that several thousand high view whatever, totally vouching what that says... [chuckle] 04:00 PR: 30,000-foot view maybe, I don\'t know. 04:02 AS: That is what I was going for but just as I was trying to say it my mind was just like, \"Nope, we got nothing to say right now, sorry.\" There is no recall there when I went to reach for it, but it makes sense that, it\'s really like anyone from the CEO down to sales support, marketing people, those guys you got in your trenches, that are using that CRM for all the different reasons and kind of touch points that you might have with a customer. 04:29 PR: Yeah, because what happens when you don\'t have this, you have a bunch of sales people and support people that are kinda just doing things on their own, solving their problems because they need something to solve their problem, they\'re not like gonna... You\'ve done due diligence, you\'ve hired quality people, but maybe people are writing down these things in notepads or maybe they\'re tracking this all on a spreadsheet. What if you got four or five spreadsheets in several places? What if you don\'t have the spreadsheet in a cloud, like a Google spreadsheet, which is maybe a better way to go on that, but how is all that information shared? How is that actionable? How is it measured? How are you measuring those results? So, it needs to be in that simple spot. 05:06 AS: And you mentioned that it\'s even things like scheduling lunch meetings or those sorts of things that you never think like, \"Oh, my lunch for today, that goes in the CRM, but... \" 05:15 PR: Yeah. 05:15 AS: What are some other of those touch points that someone might not expect, is really a CRM task or activity? 05:23 PRAS: Oh, got it, yeah. Well, some of the more innocuous type things and I guess it\'s gonna be specific to your business, I think that\'s the most important thing. You never want to record things just for the sake of recording them, but I would say anything that you do that involves the customer, that is a pathway to them either buying more stuff or just keeping them as a customer. For instance, a lot of our businesses don\'t have something where they sell every day, they sell a subscription, right? Maybe, what if you\'re a health club... The health club. Yeah, it\'s great to do add-ons, your main goal with the health club is so that that person, when they see their monthly bill, that they don\'t say, \"Well, I only worked out twice this year, maybe I should cancel it.\" Right? You want to retain that customer. 06:12 PR: So what are you doing to make that customer feel loved, right? Are you sending out email marketing to that customer? Guess what? What if that customer is only not coming to your gym, but they are getting your monthly newsletter, your weekly newsletter about eating healthy, or things they can do at home, meditating, etc. This is getting kinda out there, but if that customer sees value in that, then guess what? Those email marketing pieces are a touch point. If your email once every month, week, just say, \"Hey, I\'m checking out on you. Just want to make that everything\'s okay.\" If they respond to that and you can see that they opened it, then that would be a touch point. So how do you know that that little personal email that you sent is a touch point? 06:57 PR: Well, with your email you can do some tracking and you can see whether that\'s been opened or not. And if it\'s been opened, then you can say, \"Well at least that person clicked on that and they\'re engaging with it.\" Did they do a click? That\'s even better. They clicked on my link, that\'s an engagement too. So back to your question, maybe things do transcend that, I saw that person face-to-face, or I did a call for X-amount of minutes, or I did task X, Y, and Z. 07:23 AS: Yeah. Where that opens thing falls short, is if you\'re a person like me who is so neurotic that you have to zero-out your inbox all the time, so there\'s no push notifications looking at you. So I open everything, but I look at 10% of it. I\'m the one skewing the data, I guess, is what I\'m trying to say. I\'m sorry to all the marketers out there. 07:46 PR: That\'s okay. Then it goes to the next level, right? So as a CRM marketer, what you should be looking at is not just your opens rate, because if your opens rates... If you can\'t see a correlation between awesome open rates and an uptick in sales, then there\'s a disconnect there. So then you go next level, and you say, \"All right, well, you know what? Maybe they\'re interacting if they\'re actually clicking on this stuff, right?\" Now you got quality interactions. Oh sorry, go ahead. 08:17 AS: Now, it\'s just \'cause... See everybody. Paul just took my throwaway joke and turned it into another teachable moment. 08:22 PR: That\'s what you get. 08:23 AS: That\'s why he\'s the perfect co-host... 08:25 PR: That\'s what you get with CRM soda. That has no context [08:30] ____ the five-minute episodes. I joked with Andy that we should rename the podcast CRM soda. 08:37 AS: Yeah. And we\'re still not gonna do it, but we will see you guys next time. Thanks for tuning in. Bye.


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What is CRM?

What is CRM?

CRM • July 31, 2018

In the first episode of Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer, we introduced the podcast and then went on a long tangent that confirmed what all of us here at Benchmark already knew: Paul can talk. Since we never even got to the first talking point in our outline last episode, we resume our conversation on \"What is CRM?\" 00:21 Andy Shore: Hi, everybody. Welcome back to another episode of Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer. We\'re gonna get back into it with what is CRM. Because Paul was so excited to talk here, and we didn\'t even get to the first talking point, we had plans, so we\'ll get into that today and make sure we\'re teaching you everything we have planned. 00:42 Paul Rijnders: Yeah, sometimes I get very excited and I\'m kind of just... You take off the lid and it\'s like someone had shaken a soda, CRM soda. [chuckle] 00:51 AS: Exactly. We tapped the can a little bit so it calmed down and... 00:56 PR: We should ought to rename the podcast to CRM soda \'cause I like that. [chuckle] It feels very effervescent. [chuckle] 01:04 AS: People are moving away from soda, it\'s all about the La Croix now, we\'re not gonna switch name, we\'re committed. 01:12 PR: Yeah, I think. Okay. 01:15 AS: But thanks, everyone, for tuning in and I hope you\'re finding this useful so far. We got a lot more great information for you, so we\'ll get into it. And we just touched on it a little bit, even though we didn\'t directly say it, but what you were saying in that customer-centric focus is, CRM\'s about building relationships. I mean, relationships are in the name. 01:35 PR: It definitely is, and that\'s the key there. The key is, is that you really want to get as much information as possible either at your computer or if you\'re at some place out in the field, does your CRM allow you to do this mobile-ly and can you type that in really quickly as a note or whatever? One thing that\'s nice in our CRM is we\'ve got this feature, if you\'re in Chrome, where you just click Record, and then that\'ll record the note, and you can just talk. And that\'s really convenient. I like to use that a lot myself, \'cause sometimes it just gets hard typing, right? So anyway, the idea is, is that is that you just wanna get as much information as possible so that you can know that customer the next time you talk to them, however that is. 02:21 AS: I just had the thought of, you know those people who walk around with voice recorders they\'re leaving themselves memos to plan for their memoir at some point or whatever it may be, either like whether it\'s a grandparent or something like setting in the benchmark CRM and being like, \"Here\'s this cool feature where you can leave yourselves notes,\" and I was just tracking just like all the inner thoughts of this person. I don\'t know, I think that\'d be really funny. Probably inconsequential to what we\'re talking about, but amusing to me nonetheless. You\'re talking about you can access anywhere to get that information. And I think, thinking about it in the context of our company, we use CRM and we\'re also a worldwide company, we have offices across the globe. 03:08 AS: And one of the advantages of that is our 24-hour support doesn\'t all have to be out of our US headquarters because then they can just do it on their time zones and lets us have 24/7 support. And thinking about how you\'re saying that anyone could access it, it goes into this database that if you can do that and have one central place or a worldwide workforce to work together and store all that information and be able to... It\'s consistency. It\'s like when you go to a chain restaurant, and you know that one dish you like is gonna be the same anywhere you get it across the world because that\'s how it\'s set up. 03:46 PR: Yeah, it\'s really important that all your team is not only strong, but they\'re all rowing in the same direction, right? I mean, can you imagine if you had five people on a boat and they\'re all rowing five different ways, you wouldn\'t get anywhere very fast. 04:00 AS: Yeah, it works good for comedies and cartoons but probably not business. 04:04 PR: Not business, right? So that means that if you got three or four people that are interacting with that person, they should have a common place where they look at and they say, \"Okay, cool, these are my touch points. These are the interactions that I had with this customer. This is what\'s important to this customer.\" Now, there\'s a couple ways to think about doing it. If you just pull out all your information and you just dump it into notes everywhere, sure, there\'s ways to extract all that, but that\'s on a little bit higher order, but it\'s possible. But you probably should have at least a little bit of discipline. Maybe you as a team should decide, \"Okay, what\'s important and what\'s not important?\" That way, when you talk to your customers, you kind of decide as a team what we wanna put down there. 04:49 PR: And by the way, there\'s a few ways of doing that. There\'s, you can put down that data in fields that you make ahead of time, like what\'s their favorite soda or what\'s their favorite non-soda beverage. Or you could do it by the way of notes, what we\'ve just talked about or you can even do a tag. And tags are nice because those are things you just put down that are maybe something that identifies that customer at that moment and it could be deleted, but you can sort by those things too, and then you kinda see patterns that come up with that. 05:18 AS: Yeah, I think tags is a good point, \'cause sometimes you may wanna run a specific campaign or something, it\'s like I wanna talk to all customers who like this or use this product or some sort of thing that lets you just sort it out. From the email marketing side, that\'s segmentation, that\'s what makes sense to me. I think I\'m gonna keep finding my way into CRM, understanding through the lens of email marketing. 05:47 PR: It\'s interesting how you bring that up too, because there\'s what the marketer needs, right? And there\'s what the sales person is facing the customer can get. For many of our customers, they might be the same person, and that\'s a tough spot to be in anyway. And there\'s a lot of work for that person. If you are lucky enough to have a team where at least one person is front-facing your customers, and then you have someone else actually doing the marketing, the marketer is gonna be like, \"Okay, well, you know what? This is important to me. I need these five questions answered, that way I can set up something very targeted and very specific. And bam! Everything is just gonna be so perfect.\" Well, guess what? It\'s not perfect for that person facing the customer. 06:27 PR: If a customer walks in, you know they\'re out in the field with their phone, the CRM\'s open on their phone, they\'re not gonna say, \"Hey, you know what? Before we get started, Bob; before we get started, Cindy, I gotta answer this question.\" Right? And so, are they gonna read off five questions? That person, that customer\'s gonna feel like they\'ve been completely, just either have been sold to or that they\'re just some kind of piece of meat and their best need isn\'t addressed. Or maybe the person is just talking to the customer naturally, and then they\'re saying, \"Hey, wait, hold on. You said this? Okay, I gotta find that. Okay, that must be field number 21. Okay, I gotta get that. Okay, go on.\" You know? 07:02 PR: So this is where tags can help out. So what you could do is that you can mentally just jot these four or five things down, just note them, or just write them down on a pad of paper. Or even if you\'re at your computer, you just type that message. If that tag already came up before, it\'ll automatically suggest that, then you just hit Enter and go, \"Oh, yeah, that\'s the one.\" And it\'s all a very natural process. You get those four or five bits of information, and now they\'re in there, the conversation could go on, and you don\'t have to stop to say, \"Hey, you know what? Let me fill out this form.\" 07:30 AS: Yeah. That makes sense. That\'s how you foster that relationship and build those relationships is knowing the way to sort and organize it so that you\'re not harming that relationship. But I wanna thank everyone for tuning in. I think we\'ve exhausted our time for today, and before we get caught on another tangent, we\'ll say goodbye and we\'ll catch you next time. Bye, everybody.


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How to Harness the Power of Emails at Every Stage of Your Buyers’ Journey

How to Harness the Power of Emails at Every Stage of Your Buyers’ Journey

Practical Marketer • July 30, 2018

Understanding the buyers’ journey allows you to get the database sorted based on their lifecycle stages namely Awareness, Research, Comparison, Purchase, Relationship Building, Retention and Advocacy. You can move your leads down into the sales funnel by nurturing them and convincing them to convert. The most commonly used lead nurturing tool is EMAIL - as it is scalable and cost-effective. However, if you want your email marketing strategy to work, you should understand that every campaign should be tailor-made to match the buyer’s journey. Let’s understand how you can utilize the power of email marketing at every stage of the buyer’s journey. 1. Awareness The first step of any prospect is Awareness. As the name suggests, this is when people get to know about your brand and your offerings. You can help your subscribers evaluate the product in the awareness stage. Send out emails that let them know about the benefits of your product and explain to them how your product would troubleshoot their problems. It is important to understand that customers purchase the solutions to their problems and not just a product. Make sure you entice your subscribers right in the awareness stage so that it is easier to take them further in the sales. After all, well begun is half done. See the welcome email sent by Heyo and how they have included the various tutorials of their solution to help the new subscriber with the contest creation. 2. Research Your subscribers are trying to figure out which solution is the best to resolve their problem during the research stage. It’s in this phase where you can leverage content marketing to educate the subscribers and build credibility for your brand. Examples of emails to be sent in the research stage: Various types of content resources You can have your content published in various formats, namely webinars, white papers, instructional videos, ebooks, slide decks, etc. As your subscribers might have distinct tastes when it comes to consuming information online, you can even ask your subscribers to choose the format preferences for receiving information. Content sharing the challenges faced by the subscriber You can share relevant case studies to explain to the subscriber about the similar challenges faced by fellow customers and how your solution helped to address their concerns. Content sharing actionable tips Your subscribers look forward to getting some valuable advice and actionable tips through the email. If your emails cannot deliver value to them, the brutal truth is that they would not want to hear from you. Content that convinces the subscribers that you offer the best solution A subscriber who is almost at the end of the research stage would want to know why he or she should choose your solution over your competitors. Convey your brand promise in such a way that they are eager to know more about you and are keen on buying from you. The email by Tinder cleverly informs the subscriber about how to use the App and entices them to try it at least once. No wonder, it is so popular among the youngsters nowadays… 3. Comparison After the research stage, comes the comparison stage. Leads who are in the comparison stage demand a special treatment and exclusive emails tailor-made for them. This is the stage where you should send out customer-focused marketing emails. Talk about your USPs and how you STAND OUT from your competitors. You can involve your sales team and schedule a personalized demo or meeting with the prospect. Here are some email examples to be sent in the comparison stage: Wanna schedule a demo? Need help? Have a look at the buyer’s guide. 5 reasons why our solution is the best match for you. It is not always necessary to send a visually attractive email. There are occasions when a plain text email can work better than an HTML email. Check out the below example. That’s plain text emailing done right! 4. Purchase The entire sales process is very much like proposing someone. If you goof up, you are likely to lose the sale. Make sure you do not disappoint your interested subscriber and offer them the resources that would warrant a pleasant shopping experience. Take a look at the type of emails to be sent during the purchase stage: Address the probable objection of the customer proactively. Guide the customers to use the product correctly. Once they make the purchase, send out a follow-up email to tackle the issues, if any. Check out how Code Camp has included a subscriber’s feedback, to encourage the recipient to do the same. (Applauds for the idea!) 5. Relationship Building and Retention The stages of relationship building and retention go hand in hand. After a customer completes the purchase, you should consider building a long-lasting rapport by using an emotional appeal in your emails. Doing so can help you retain the customers and enhance your customer lifetime value and loyalty. A regular email newsletter talking about new products, updates in your services, promotional offers and discounts goes a long way in retaining the customers by keeping your brand at the top of the customer’s mind. Chewy sends out an engaging feedback email to make sure that they can retain the recent buyer. 6. Advocacy Advocacy is the stage where a prospect turns into an evangelist. This implies that your customer becomes the brand ambassador of your business and helps you drive more sales. Word-of-mouth marketing works wonders for any business. In fact, it brings the best ROI and maximizes conversions. Consider sending rewards to ‘patrons’ in your elite list of customers to encourage them to purchase again. You can even leverage referral email marketing, which works towards retention of existing customers as well as the acquisition of new ones. Saying “Thank you” without any marketing or sales pitch also helps in getting evangelists for your brand. Check out the type of emails you can send in the advocacy stage: Refer us and earn a referral bonus. Allow us to serve you better by providing feedback. Mind referring us to your friends and family? Here’s 50% ‘elite customer’ discount for you. Thank you for choosing us. Lyft offers rewards to their top customers in their email with a catchy CTA that would prompt the user to take action and ride with them. Wrapping Up According to the 2018 report by Econsultancy, email has once again maintained its position as the most effective channel for marketers, with 74% rating its ROI yield as either ‘excellent’ or ‘good’… And to use this channel to its full potential, email marketers ought to respect the stages of the buyer’s journey. There’s no other way out.


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5 Fashion-Inspired Color Palettes for Your Summer Email Marketing Campaigns

5 Fashion-Inspired Color Palettes for Your Summer Email Marketing Campaigns

Beyond • July 27, 2018

If you are anything like me, you have been following the summer fashion trends closely and taking copious notes. What is hot this summer and what are the biggest names in fashion wearing this season? It is an especially exciting time in the fashion industry, as there seems to be a constant disruption and turnover sweeping the industry. According to the Pantone Color Institute, a trend forecaster and consultancy, as color becomes increasingly important, designers are responding by featuring more shades in their collections. Vibrant and bold hues, but also new neutrals and more pastels, define the latest summer trends. At this point, you may be starting to wonder what fashion trends have to do with your email marketing campaign. Let me explain: as a marketer you should always look for ways to sustain and increase your competitive position. To do that, you need to stay on top of trends and what better place to look for what is trending than the runway. Fashion trends can always give you a clue as to what is popular at the moment, and this summer there has been some great inspiration coming from the runway. According to a 2015 study by Microsoft, the average consumer’s attention span has dropped to eight seconds. Considering that, on average, a reader spends about eight seconds on an email once opened. Given that small window of time, it is your job to capture your reader’s attention with all the tools at your disposal. Initially, what will capture your reader’s attention are visual elements such as design, imagery, and of course, color. More often than not, it is the color combination, in particular, that is the deciding factor of whether your reader will engage with your content or will lose interest and bounce. Understanding how colors affect one’s disposition towards your content is crucial to the success of your email marketing strategy. With the hot summer days upon us, warmer tones, brighter hues and the use of more colors are popular. This season can present a great opportunity to introduce some bold colors to your email designs, with a summer-inspired color palette. To make your brand more relevant and visible, I have prepared five fashion-inspired color palettes to bring summery vibes to your next email marketing campaign. Tropical Rhythms When I think summer, I think vacation, preferably on a bright sunny beach in an exotic location. Palm trees swaying to a light breeze and ocean waves dancing to a tropical rhythm. To capture this carefree ambiance, tropical hues and patterns have made their way onto the runway to become one of the hottest Spring/Summer 2018 print trends. Leading designers, including Fenty Puma, Michael Kors, Coach, and Gucci, artfully decorated their garments with tropical ornaments like palm leaves, pineapples, and hibiscus flowers. Inspired by this trend, I have created the ultimate tropical palette to bring a summer vibe to your next email campaign. The palette is bright and friendly, with an abundance of color variance and contrast. The most prominent hues include tangerine orange, palm green, dazzling pink, ocean blue and sunny yellow. To make sure the combination of bright and saturated hues is not too overpowering, pair this scheme with a deep tan or a neutral beige. This palette is ideal to add a fresh summery tone to your newsletter designs. Candy Sweet Pastels Anything with an ice cream hue is sweet for Spring/Summer 2018. A slew of delicate pastels came down Spring/Summer 2018 runways Victoria Beckham, Hermes, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Versace included. Challenging the increasing popularity of millennial pink, soft shades of lavender and mint have become the ‘it’ colors this summer. Pastel shades are the happier, lighter version of their original color and their simplicity will allow you to style them with other colors and prints. Pastel colors allow for other prominent elements such as text and action buttons to stand out in the foreground, while still providing a warm and cheery presence to the viewer. Choose from a variety of pastel pinks, yellows, mint, blue and lavender. One thing to keep in mind is, if not combined with the appropriate elements and colors, pastels can appear bland and unexciting. Be sure to accommodate a brighter accent color or an interesting font when opting for a pastel palette. Less is More Monochromatic Monochromatic is this season\'s most dominant color trend. This color scheme features one hue in a variety of tones. Even though this color palette may lack contrast, it provides a clean and polished design. From Victoria Beckham’s ice-cream pastels to Max Mara’s neutrals and Rihanna\'s Fenty x Puma eye-popping oranges, the Spring/Summer 2018 runways were a masterclass in how to work the look. For this color palette, I chose orange, to create a versatile spectrum with color options for every part of your design. Working with this single color palette will help you create a warm and exciting feeling. Bring the reader’s attention to your text by choosing an accent color; when in doubt, always turn to the classic black or white as your font color. And if you are feeling adventurous, you can try combining your monochromatic design with the previously mentioned color trends. Choose this color palette to bring cohesiveness and simplicity to a busy design. Bold Pigments & Neon Brights Summer is the season of bright shades, fluorescent colors, and saturated hues. From Tom Ford to Calvin Klein and Kenzo, designers are going all out with bright and bold designs. A rainbow of colors in their brightest varieties are sure to bring that warm summer style to your email designs as well. As we have seen so far, Summer 2018 is the season of experimenting with color. To stand out from your competitors, use bright and bold colors. Dare to use neons and bright pigments. You don’t need to rethink the entirety of your brand’s color palette to introduce some bold pigments to your design. Instead, pick a few colors as your ‘unofficial brand colors’ and use them for all your summer email campaigns. This will help you bring some excitement and novelty to your newsletter while adhering to your brand’s core identity. For this color palette, I have selected vibrant pinks, blues, ultraviolets, and yellows artfully spiced together! What’s Old is New Again 90\'s Eye-popping colors such as coral, hot pink, neon, are the highlights of the 90s. Nostalgic retro design is having a comeback this summer more than ever before. Designer brands like Versace, Tommy Hilfiger and Fila, are paying homage to the popular retro 90s trend. In incorporating retro elements into their designs, designers have brought seemingly outdated colors back into the public eye, inspiring an unusual and exciting color palette. This summer opt for bolder colors in unusual combinations. Vibrant colors communicate energy, excitement, and optimism, which make up the perfect ingredients to set the right mood and grab your reader’s attention. This color scheme features bright purple, opposite shades of blues, neon green, pink and yellow. Integrating this colorful palette with funky patterns and black outlines is sure to invoke the classic 90s aesthetic. The primary force driving this season’s fashion trends is the rebellion of designers against the plain, basic color schemes. Today designers are daring to explore new combinations of hues and pigments, and the result is an innovative, beautiful explosion of colors! Some of the most successful companies know the compelling reasons to prioritize design, and color, in particular, to increase the odds of success. Choosing the right color palette can help you make a meaningful first impression, enhance brand awareness, and help you stand out from your competitors. However, don’t forget to align creativity and strategy. When selecting a color scheme for your next email campaign, always consider its association with your brand. Whether you integrate any of these trends should be based upon careful analysis and consideration.


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Introducing Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer

Introducing Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer

CRM • July 27, 2018

Welcome to Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer! Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a must for a business of any size. There\'s also no one right way to do CRM. In this podcast, we\'re here for the Clueless CRM Marketer, which all of us were at one point (or still are). With each daily mini-episode (minisode), we\'ll aim to clue you in a bit more on CRM. 00:20 Andy Shore: Hey, everybody. Welcome to the first ever episode of Clues for the Clueless CRM Marketer. It\'s going to be daily mini-sodes, Monday through Friday, and we\'re gonna get to the bottom of what is CRM? How can you use CRM? How can you manage your contacts with it and keep track of all your tasks? All that good stuff, in this subject, unlike the email version, I\'m much more of a novice, but that\'s why I have my co-host here with me, Paul Rijnders. 00:54 Paul Rijnders: Hello. 00:55 AS: Who is our director of product development for the CRM tool. I\'ll let him say hi in a second, but I just want to encourage everybody, check out the Heart of Business episode with Paul. We really get into the whole background on development of Benchmark CRM. It\'s an awesome listen, it talks a little more about CRM too, but that\'s what this podcast is for is really to get into the nitty-gritty of CRM. How you doing today, Paul? 01:17 PR: I am doing fabulous, and you? 01:19 AS: I\'m great. I\'m great. I\'m excited to do this. 01:21 PR: I am too. 01:22 AS: I think it\'s gonna be really good. I figure like we were talking before we started recording, it\'s gonna be a new dynamic Dana and I have been hosting podcasts for a while. So, we\'re excited to get you into the mix and podding with the rest of us. 01:35 PR: And now I\'m excited because I get to listen to Abba at least once per day, because that\'s what I\'m listening to, to kinda cleanse my mind before the podcast starts. 01:43 AS: Yeah, I don\'t think we have the budget to secure the rights for Dancing Queen, but that was our pre-show music, for all of you wondering what Paul was just talking about. So, maybe just before our intro music kicks in you can... Next time you listen to the next episode get that in your head to really set the mood and feel like you\'re in the room here with Paul and I. 02:03 PR: Yeah, we\'re not gonna play you the song, we\'re just gonna tell you what song it was. You\'re on your own, but YouTube and Spotify are close at hand. [laughter] 02:12 AS: Oh, that is like the worst version of a game show. [laughter] We\'re gonna talk about a song to you, and you have to guess what that song is. 02:19 PR: Yeah. No worse than talking about a movie, I guess. I guess that would be worse. 02:25 AS: That\'s funny. So, we\'re gonna start off with really the most basic question there is, and that\'s what is CRM? 02:32 PR: Awesome. Okay, well, CRM is customer relationship management. But it isn\'t so much what the thing is, it\'s what you do. And what I mean by that is, what you\'re trying to get to with CRM is you\'re trying to get to a better understanding of your customer. So, are you trying to sell more? Are you trying to market, so that you can sell more? Are you trying to provide a better experience for your customer, every time they come in to contact with you? All of those things can be solved with CRM. So, maybe the old model of business might be, well, the customer walks in and let\'s see what we can learn about them real quick and what their need is, immediately, so that we can sell them something. But these days, the tools that we have at hand are a lot more proactive and a lot more targeted. So, what you want to do is, you want to be able to assemble as much on your customer as you possibly can. That doesn\'t mean you want to compile a big old dossier or a spy brief on every single customer. It just means that when your customer... 03:35 PR: And by the way, let\'s be really clear about this here now that this has kind of come up, because the whole kind of ickiness of wow, do I have too much data on my customer or does this company have too much data on me? That definitely comes up and I guess you could go crazy and some companies already do it for you, and they\'re pretty big where they\'ve got profiles of a lot of people that are out there, that\'s not what we\'re trying to do with CRM. What we\'re trying to do is, we want you to be able to say, \"Hey, customer, I know you, I know what you want out of my business.\" So, what are you trying to record? Are you try to record all the incidental things in their life? No, you\'re trying to notate their needs, when they come to you. So, what is that? Well, there\'s the structured data that we talked about, I guess, in that opening intro, way back when. And that might be things like, okay, well, who do they work for, and what is their job title? Why is that significant? Well, if you\'re doing a one-to-one kind of conversation with your customer, it helps to know that person was the Human Resources Manager or helps to know that that person is the lead of this particular department. 04:44 PR: Or if you do mass emailing, like we do with our Benchmark email product, which by the way is integrated very finely with Benchmark CRM, that you might say, \"Okay, well, you know what, it\'s time to drum up some business because we just came out with this awesome product,\" or we have this great deal on this product and guess what? All the people who manage automotive shops, they probably wanna know this. Okay, CRM, tell me who are all the people that own automotive shops? And then, bam, here that is, comes up. Hey, let\'s push an email list over to Benchmark email and send out this great piece that tells them why they need this product. So, that\'s the structure kind of data, right? But then also there\'s all the times that you talk to your customer that becomes important. So, let\'s say that you had an interaction with your customer either on the phone or by email or maybe even in person. As soon as you can, you should probably get in there and notate the stuff that\'s important. So, for instance, did your customer have a problem, well, that should be a support ticket. And that support ticket should have all the data in that ticket so that if that gets handed off to somebody else, they know exactly what to do and how to take that up. Or is that a follow-up task, where your customer says, \"Hey, you know what, I need you to send me that price quote,\" okay, well, you need to make a to do. 06:00 PR: So, you put that in the CRM, and now that\'s attached to your customer record, so to speak. So, the next person that picks that customer\'s file up says, \"Oh, wow, okay, cool. You know what? This person had a problem with this and we solved it, and they had a problem with this and it\'s still ongoing. So, before I even talk to them, I\'m gonna make sure that\'s done. Oh, and by the way, we\'re supposed to send out a price quote, that\'s gonna be sent out tomorrow. You know what? Since I already see that that\'s a to-do, and I\'m gonna talk to that person today, why don\'t I just be proactive and send that to them ahead of time.\" 06:28 AS: Yeah, that all makes sense and kind of gives me a little more understanding of what goes into what a CRM is. And one thing I can connect to, that you were talking about, is just understanding who your customer is and as a member of the marketing team, customer-centric marketing is the most important thing. It\'s not trying to sell, that\'ll happen when you\'re understanding your customers and delivering what they need and just hearing what you\'re saying, and that was a very good description, was just kind of helping me see that it\'s just a tool that\'s gonna help you do better customer-centric marketing, interactions, communication because you\'re doing it for them to provide value. You\'re solving problems for your customer. Selling is the by-product, and sure, it\'s what you\'re in the business for ultimately. Everyone wants to make money, but solving problems for people and delivering your goods and service or whatever that is, and doing it in a way that is focused on their needs is the way you\'re gonna succeed in business. 07:33 PR: Yeah, definitely. For instance, if your customer has... Let\'s say your customer has a dog and a cat. You have a pet store. Well, it\'d be helpful to know the name of that dog and cat. Next time they come in, \"Hey, how is Sparky doing?\", or \"How is Roscoe doing?\" [chuckle] That\'s a great name for a cat, by the way, Roscoe. But it helps to establish that personal touch. Or there might be more important information like, \"Hey, this dog\'s got an allergy to this thing,\" so that someone doesn\'t accidentally sell the wrong dog food to that person when they call in. Every business is unique, and every business has their own unique challenges, but it\'s all... Obviously, I think the most overriding concern is, is the data that you\'re collecting about your customer is not icky if it\'s data that\'s helping them out, in a way that you\'re giving them better service, better products, and you\'re not making mistakes with them. Customers demand that you know them. And if you don\'t know them when they walk in your store, they\'re gonna go to the next place that does know them because they\'re gonna feel more comfortable because they\'re gonna get better service. 08:37 AS: Definitely. That all makes perfect sense to me. I think we\'re gonna wrap up this first episode. Thank you, everybody, for tuning in. Catch us tomorrow when our next episode goes live and we\'ll continue digging into what is CRM, how do you use it, where do you use it, who in your company should be using it. We\'re gonna answer all those questions as we continue. So, thanks again for listening, and we\'ll catch you next time.


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How to Compose Marketing Emails to Get Replies

How to Compose Marketing Emails to Get Replies

Practical Marketer • July 26, 2018

Sending a sales email is one of the most common ways marketers use to promote any product or service. Using emails for sales is very versatile: you can play with the form and content to make it more attractive and appealing, include some polls or surveys to study public opinion on how to improve a product or a certain service you’re offering. Here’s the thing: there’s a growing tendency of people not replying to such emails. There are various reasons for not replying to marketing emails: people are either not interested in the product, or may consider such emails spam, or simply don’t care about it at all. It might sometimes seem rude and offensive, but for marketers, this has become a usual thing. They say that not replying to an email also sends a message that calls for further improvement of an email template, changes in content or makes you rethink the whole idea. After all, you don’t want to irritate your potential customers with loads of information about product or service you’re providing. This might cost you your whole business! But wait a minute: if emailing potential customers is still one of the most effective marketing strategies, but people often get irritated because of them, how can you do it in a more effective way? Let’s take a look at major dos and don’ts of writing marketing emails: 1. Do Personalize For sure, personalization in marketing is very important. With the focus on the content these days, it has become very hard to impress potential customers, it seems that they’ve seen it all. Personalization in advertising and marketing creates an atmosphere of exclusiveness for each person receiving a marketing email. In the age of globalization and total accessibility, people have started feeling that they’ve lost a sense of identity, that is why personalizing your content and adjusting it to the interests and needs of each particular person can make your marketing emails more successful. Here’s a good example of personalization. An online healthy food shop offers to complete a questionnaire to define what the user needs to know to improve their health. 2. Don’t Over-Personalize Don’t go overboard, however. While working on personalizing the content of the marketing emails, make sure that it matches the desired outcomes. Sometimes, personalizing a marketing email involves simple steps, something like: Asking the right questions: a wedding specialist website called Paper Style had a problem with people ignoring their emails. So, to increase sales, they’ve turned to personalization, and namely, asking the right questions (a method of customer behavior analysis). They’ve simply asked their customers what they were planning for: their wedding or their friend’s wedding. People answered, and then received an email containing offers and services they needed for the occasion they were preparing for. As a result, the website has got 244% increase in open rate, 161% increase in click-through and 330% increase revenue per mailing. The lesson is, ask questions that match both your interests and the interests of your target audience. Paying attention to location and time: Bustedtees, a company that sales customized T-shirts has made the common mistake by sending emails to all their potential and existing customers regardless of time and location. The location and time they used as default was Los Angeles, and the email suited only their American audience. The company soon recognized that this wasn’t working, as their customers from other parts of the world received their email late at night and missed it, thus resulting in low rates of email feedback. Segmenting their subscribers and dividing them into different locations and time zones helped Bustedtees increase email revenue by 8%. They’ve set the timer for sending an email according to each particular time zone so that their customers could get an email at an appropriate time. Using behavioral triggered emails: when you get an email from Facebook that you haven’t got any activity or haven’t logged on to your account for a week, that’s a perfect example of a triggered email marketing. What they did is analyzing your “behavior” of not being active on Facebook for a week and notifying you about it, thus reminding you of their service. Triggered emails are a perfect example of a balanced personalization, as they appeal to a particular person but don’t overload with unnecessary, redundant information. Such emails are very effective as they result in at least 71% increase in open rates and nearly 102% increase in click-through rates. By analyzing the behavior of your customers, you get a better idea of what they need. 3. Do Use Your Personal Templates There are millions of websites with marketing email templates, but the only good purpose they serve is being an example of an effective or a not-so-effective email marketing campaigns. Besides, they don’t always work. According to Upwork’s experience, email templates work better when you need to advertise a physical product. In this case, you can use a fancy headline and graphics. Regarding replies, personally written emails work better, as in this case your customers feel your attention fully paid to each of them. To write effective personal emails that will be replied, you can use some of the following tips: Greet your customers: seems like an obvious thing, but somehow people forget about it. This is just a polite way to turn your customer’s attention to your email. Address your customers by name: one of the reasons people pay more attention to emails that have their name in it is because a name is a unique identifier of each person, and using it immediately shows respect to this person. Also, using a person’s name in an email immediately turns it into a personal conversation, thus showing that you pay your full attention to this particular person. Personally, thank each of your customers: at the end of an email, you should thank each of your customers for their attention. It might seem difficult, as you might need to send emails to hundreds of people, but it’s not. “I think all businesses dread the process of sending personalized emails, as it seems to be a very time-consuming job,” says David Jones, a marketing specialist at A-writer, “There are so many mailing programs that can be adjusted to your needs and can turn your emails into more personalized messages.” 4. Don’t Overwhelm Your Customers As it has been mentioned before, one of the reasons you don’t get replies to your emails is because people mark it as spam. A website called TechnologyAdvice conducted a survey, during which they contacted over 1300 adult from the U.S. asking why they don’t reply to marketing emails, and results are pretty definitive: Over 40% of subscribers mark emails as spam because they were emailed too often. It gets even more overwhelming when emails contain the same or similar content, which gets customers even more bored and makes them smash that “Unsubscribe” button. How can you fix it? Try to make it as brief and logically structured as possible. The average number of emails you can send to your subscribers is about 6 to 8 emails per month. But to figure it out specifically for your company, let your subscribers decide how often they want to get marketing emails from you. This will help you figure out the needs of each of your subscribers. 5. Do Work on Original Content We live in the world where it has become very hard to create original content. Plagiarism is everywhere, and plagiarism in marketing is no exception. Companies steal images to use in their marketing campaigns without even crediting their authors, and which such services as Tumblr and Instagram where people share their personal images, stealing content has become easier. The thing is that today customers can easily differentiate original content from stolen content. There’s nothing in this world that any modern customer hasn’t seen, and people are well aware of how plagiarism works. If you state that all your products and services are original, then plagiarizing something in your marketing emails will contradict everything you say and undermine your reputation. If you plagiarize because you doubt the success of your marketing emails, you’re making a huge mistake. Remember that what your business offers is a very specific thing, which needs to be advertised in its way. So if you fail one time, next time you’ll learn from your mistakes. Wrapping Up To summarize what we’ve been talking about a little bit earlier, it is necessary to point out some more don’ts you need to take into account when composing a marketing email: Avoid using Caps throughout your email. This just makes your email look messy. Avoid using too many exclamation points. Avoid using Flash or Video content in your emails. This will only make them harder to upload. Avoid attachments for the same reason as Flash and Video content. For sure, it will take time for you to figure out how to compose marketing emails to get replies, as each product or service requires a customized approach. If you follow the tips mentioned above on what to do and what not to do when it comes to composing marketing emails, you’ll increase your chances to get more replies. If you’ve already incorporated some of these tips into your practice, let us know in the comments about your own experience!


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How Marketing Automation Helps SEO

How Marketing Automation Helps SEO

Beyond • July 26, 2018

It isn’t easy being a marketer. The economy is always shaky, the customers are fickle, and the technological landscape is always shifting and changing. That’s why we need every single tool we can get our hands on. It doesn’t matter what line of marketing you’re in, it doesn’t matter what product or service you’re promoting, and you need to be on top of your game, all the time. As we said, it ain\'t easy. The whole point of this blog post is to share with you guys one of the best SEO marketing tactics out there – automation. As you may already know, automated marketing is relatively new in the internet marketing world, especially when we compare it to the good old SEO. However, that’s what makes it exciting. Its purpose and design is to automate all those tedious and repetitive aspects of internet marketing, things like email listings, social media posting… Essentially, things that are quite essential, but that are also simple and take up a lot of your time. Marketing automation is here to take on some of the work and help you out. So What Does This Mean To Me? What makes marketing automation great is the fact that it does all the heavy annoying lifting for you, leaving you free to be creative and focus on more challenging tasks. If integrated and connected properly, automated marketing is amazing with SEO. With the latter you can get good lead generation, it will create a foundation, while the former can help you maintain and nurture it. Automated marketing gives you the freedom to focus and to develop your marketing or SEO skills. Many people focus too much on getting leads (which is awesome) but don’t think long and hard about what to do with them once they get them. And while we all know that that is the hardest part of the job, maintenance is still required. Especially if you grow too big to quickly, you may end up collapsing under your weight. Marketing automation can help your SEO efforts directly, or by creating room and time for you to focus on SEO yourself. Helps You Distribute Content You will notice that when you automate everything that the greatest resource you will receive is time. The first place where you will save up some time is in distributing content. When you set up an email list, you will lose a couple of hours (or more). However, if you automate properly, you can avoid any of the annoying stuff by using proper data points. The automation process also relies on and utilizes people’s website behavior. This will then send out the content these people would be interested in. Assists with Link Building Any proper marketer will tell you that link building is one of the major parts of any internet marketing effort. Link building takes up a large portion of any SEO work, and while it is very effective and useful, it’s also quite tedious. Not only is it boring, but it will also take up a huge chunk of your time, and let’s not even mention how annoying it is to get rid of all the spam you can end up with. Just to give you an example, you may have backlinks and connections with a website that was once very effective and professional. However, for whatever reason, this website suffered a significant drop in quality and devolved into a spam-filled hellhole. Now your connection with them just lowers your Google ranking and fills up your inbox with spam. With marketing automation, you can scan and get rid of these easily. A proper tool will notify you immediately if there is some damaging or unhealthy inbound link. As the good folks at Green Web Marketing will tell you, these kinds of websites are pure poison. Any digital marketing company worth its salt will tell you that it takes ages to acquire good, high-quality links and that a poisonous website can ruin all your hard work if left unchecked. More Efficiency, Fewer Mistakes Mistakes happen. We\'re all only human, trying to follow our dreams (and make some money doing it). When you’re trying to make it, when you’re overwhelmed with work and with clients, you will lose focus and will make mistakes, in the name of efficiency and speed. Marketing is not an easy job, and you need to be as efficient as possible. Too few keywords and you’re not as effective as you could be, too many, and you’re oversaturating a post, and Google’s algorithms will punish you accordingly. Knowing what elements you need to employ, knowing what keywords are cool and which are not, is necessary for any successful marketer. Using software that can detect the health and density of your keywords, knowing how many you need, how many is too much, is a godsend. Having to count all that manually will waste a lot of time, but if you get some automated software to do it, you will have more room to focus on other things. We all know how boring and time consuming some of the work can be, and we also know that this kind of work can lead to mistakes. Automated marketing will help you avoid that. Remember that good adage: a job can be excellent, cheap and fast – but you can only choose two? Well, most clients tend to forget this. Automated marketing can help you move closer to this ideal of providing all three, without going crazy or broke. Makes Reputation Management Easier Nothing beats a good reputation. It is a badge of honor, a sign you do what you do well. Reputation is above all cultivated by doing your job well, but it also needs to be maintained. Furthermore, since we are all online, we create our reputation online – word of mouth is almost impossible. This is why reviews and referrals are important. You need to know how to get and how to keep Google reviews. Now, there are many ways to get reviews, but the best possible way is to contact happy customers – and the more influential and powerful they are, the more they build your reputation. Here is also where a stumbling block shows up – how to choose. Namely, if you’ve been in business for a while, you have probably accumulated a lot of happy clients. And the easiest way to get reviews is to ask them. Now, this may have sounded pushy at the beginning, but just remember – if you were happy with some kind of product or service, wouldn’t you want the whole world to know and to give them some traffic? But, contacting them all is impossible. Sifting through your client list and choosing the most important people there is also not the most efficient way of utilizing your time. This is where automation steps in. With proper tools and apps, you can set up a way in which you can have software identify and contact automatically all the people that matter the most. Now, every client is important, but not all of them are influencers. Furthermore, you can also set it up to detect a negative review, giving you an opportunity to respond and fix the issue as soon as possible, before it does any serious damage Gets You More High-Quality Leads All men are created equal – leads, not so much. With proper SEO utilization, you can get a ton of leads to your website. However, this may not lead to any useful or ideal clients. Good SEO attract a lot of people, but it doesn’t filter out all the noise. You will lose time and money on leads that will get you nowhere – and you don’t even need to speak with them at all. The very act of separating the wheat from the chaff consumes money and time that could be invested elsewhere. Proper automated marketing will utilize all the data you feed it and will help you avoid this type of work. It will enhance your SEO strategy by helping you create better and targeted content that gets you only the leads that you want to get, nothing more, nothing less. By doing this separation process, it will free up more time for you to contact these people and set up a deal and helps you do the work you’re passionate about. Conclusion We truly hope this has been useful and informative, and that it will help you along on your journey. Marketing is a harsh environment, but with enough dedication and patience, you will make it. If you have a story or a piece of advice, please feel free to share it and to join the conversation below. Any feedback is welcome, no matter how long you’ve been in this business. Remember, we\'re all in this together!


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Infographic: Why Adopt CRM

Infographic: Why Adopt CRM

CRM • July 23, 2018

There are many advantages to using CRM. CRM is the best solution to manage the contacts in your list. It’s also the most efficient way to track the interactions with your customers and leads to foster stronger relationships. The numbers in favor of using a CRM are getting harder and harder to ignore. In fact, by the end of 2017, the revenues from CRM were the largest of all software markets. That number is expected to reach $40 billion in 2018. No wonder it’s the fastest growing software market! A look back 10 years will show that a mere 12% of businesses were using a cloud-based CRM. Traveling back to the present day sees 87% usage rates. If your business has more than 10 employees, and you’re not already using CRM, you’re about to get some serious FOMO. That’s because 91% of companies with 10 or more employees have a CRM. While that is a very impressive number, just because businesses have a CRM doesn’t mean they’re actually using them. 22% of salespeople don’t even know what a CRM is and fewer than 40% of businesses have a CRM Adoption Rate greater than 90%. However, the majority of companies who have put CRM to use see it’s benefits. 64.2% say that CRM has been either impactful or very impactful for their businesses. The need for CRM is real. In 2017, 70% of business leads failed to make it to conversion without the use of CRM. Here are some more impressive stats: 50% of teams saw productivity increase 5% rise in sales productivity 10% reduction in consultation time 2% revenue growth 40% reduced labor costs on Customer Service 20% reduction in overall labor costs A whopping $75,000 saved on marketing budgets If you haven’t already, signup free for Benchmark CRM.


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Really Good Episode with Really Good Emails’ Matt Helbig

Really Good Episode with Really Good Emails’ Matt Helbig

Beyond • July 20, 2018

Spoiler alert: Your hosts of the Heart of Business podcast are really big email nerds. Not surprised? That makes sense. That’s why it was inevitable that we’d invite the folks behind Really Good Emails to join us on the podcast. Matt Helbig did not disappoint us. We talk about what the site is and how it came to be. Matt also offered some intel on the advantages of having a passion project. If you ever wanted to know what email marketing professionals consider to be really good emails and which one makes them cringe, this episode is for you. The number one thing that rings true when we look for emails that we always come back to is that the content serves a customer more than the company. That always kind of holds true with all the different emails. We also looked to the future and discuss what email marketers have to look forward to. 1:12 - What is Really Good Emails and how did it begin? 6:28 - Tips on managing a side hustle 9:14 - How to communicate when your whole team is remote 11:52 - What makes a really good email? 16:20 - What in an email campaign makes them cringe? 21:55 - Matt’s hopes for email marketers 26:21 - Where Matt got started with email marketing


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