Tags: tip

10 Ways to Build an Opt-In Email List

Beyond • November 14, 2009

As an email marketer, your first job is to build an opt-in email list. Without this list there is no way to send out your email newsletters. If you are building an opt-in list for the first time, don’t worry. Take a look at some great tips to help you compile a fantastic opt-in list! 1. Create a website Creating a website is a pretty simple thing to do. It can even be done for free. Once you create your website you can request visitors to register with you and thus get them to sign up. 2. Prominent Opt-ins Place prominent opt-in forms where ever you think potentials may see it. People do not have to time to hunt for your sign in forms. Place these forms in easy to see locations. 3. Write an E-book or E-report An E-book or E-report is a great way to get potential customers to visit your website. In this way they will be motivated to sign up for your newsletter. 4. Guest-write blogs A lot of blogs permit guest writers to place articles on their blogs along with a link leading to their website. This technique is excellent for gaining publicity. 5. Use ezine directories Get yourself listed in ezine directories. The best part is, this option requires no subscribers and is usually a free service! So make the most of it and get listed now! 6. Give out freebies Give out free stuff to your potential clients. Give away free screensavers, games, ebooks and more on your website. Place a sign up box on your website so that people checking out your freebies know they can register for your newsletters. 7. Submit your writing Make use of online magazines that accept your writing and if possible place a link leading to more information. You can also publish an online newsletter. There are lots of services that help you do this. 8. Provide quality information Your newsletters should contain interesting and well written quality content. Good content is the best motivator for getting people to sign up. 9. Provide quick opt-out Provide a simple and quick process for opting out. This encourages people to take a chance on signing up. 10. Find a partner It could be beneficial if you found a partner with similar interests to build an opt-in list with. This could lead to shared expenses, sharing of the list and better profits. Can you think of any more tips to build an opt-in email list? Tell us about them!


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5 Tips to Lower Your Unsubscribe Rates

Beyond • October 27, 2009

Are you suffering from high unsubscribe rates in your email marketing campaigns? Are you at a loss as to why this is happening? Are you wondering what the reason for this dilemma is? Take a look at some common reasons that cause subscribers to unsubscribe and the solution to these problems! Read on for 5 great tips to lower your unsubscribe rates! 1. Provide alternate ways to stay in touch One of the biggest reasons for recipients’ unsubscribing is because they feel they are being flooded with emails. Unfortunately when this happens they usually land up unsubscribing from the majority of emails they have been receiving. The sad reality of this situation is that these recipients do not consider your email to be anything special. Therefore they do not think twice about unsubscribing from your emails. However, there is a way to salvage this situation. Let them know that there are other ways for them to stay in touch with your business. Provide them with links to your blog, web feeds and any other means of communication. 2. Stop overwhelming recipients with your email Often you are the cause of your recipients’ decision to unsubscribe. This happens when you get carried away and flood your recipients’ inbox with numerous emails. The good news is there are a number of solutions to fix this problem. You can provide your recipients’ with an option to remain subscribed and change the frequency of the emails sent by you. This option should be offered when they click on the unsubscribe link. This option should also be present at the time of sign-up so that your recipients’ can select the frequency most suitable for themselves. You could also consider testing different frequencies and analyzing your recipients’ reactions in order to discover the best frequency to be used. 3. Provide an option for changing the email address Your subscribers may simply want to change their email address. However, if you do not provide them with an option to do so, they will end up unsubscribing. Leading Email Service Providers like Benchmark Email, etc already have such options inbuilt into their application. Failure to do so may result in you needlessly losing subscribers. 4. Give subscribers what they are looking for Your recipients’ subscribed because they expected you to fulfill certain expectations. If you don’t give them what they want, they will have no reason to remain subscribed. Keep an eye on your emails and ensure that they contain what you promised to deliver. If you have promised to send informational emails, avoid placing excessive promotional tactics within your email. Ensure that at least 70% of your information is promotion free. Provide your recipients with a list of topics and subjects and let them select what appeals to them. Also provide them with the option to unsubscribe only from a particular topic or subject. Analyze your reports and make a note of the topics and promotions that get the best response from your recipients and tailor your emails accordingly. You could even think about implementing trigger emails and segmentation in order to better target your audience. 5. Get people to use subscriber preference centers Make an effort to motivate people to use subscriber preference centers. This is a great way for your recipients to let you know what’s lacking so you can adapt accordingly. Unfortunately most people only seem to use this option after they have already decided to unsubscribe. Give them incentives to visit the preference center by notifying them about special offers or requesting them to update their profiles for upcoming events. Do you know any more tips for lowering unsubscribe rates? Do tell us about them!


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8 email deliverability tips

8 email deliverability tips

Beyond • September 23, 2009

Spam filters play a huge role in affecting the deliverability of emails that subscribers have opted-in for. These filters sometimes prevent mails which are not spam from reaching the inbox of subscribers. This can adversely affect your open and click through response rates by as much as 20-30%. To ensure your requested emails get delivered, take a look at some great tips: Tip 1: Use a trustworthy ESP Using a well known Email Service Provider (ESP) would greatly improve your email deliverability. ESP’s such as benchmarkemail.com allow you to benefit from their reputation, white listings, references, and goodwill with ISPs. It takes years of hard work and dedication along with huge amounts of authentic email marketing for ESPs to build such reputations. A reputable ESP therefore plays a huge rule in ensuring that your emails get delivered. Tip 2: Select ESPs that use Feedback Loops Select an ESP that is registered with ‘Feedback Loops’ on big ISPs like Yahoo, Hotmail and AOL. Every time a recipient reports your email as spam, the feedback loop lets the ISP deliver an unsubscribe mail to your database. This makes it possible for you to prevent the recipient from receiving further mails, thus avoiding multiple complaints. In this way your reputation is also safe guarded. Tip 3: Get Permission Permission is a huge factor in the case of email deliverability. It is vital that you check that the recipients of your email have actually subscribed to your emails. This requires using a confirmed opt-in or verified opt-in process which sends all attempted subscribers a unique link at the time that they ask for information. Such subscribers must click on that unique link before they can be added to your list. By clicking on that link, the prospective subscriber confirms that the email address is his and that he has asked to receive your emails. Tip 4: Maintain your List Maintain your list by immediately removing addresses that cause your emails to bounce. An email address that causes your mail to bounce with a permanent error 2 or 3 times a month must be taken off your list. Remember that ISPs keep an eye on the number of emails that bounce; constantly sending emails to undeliverable inboxes will result in your ISPs blocking your mails. Tip 5: Keep the same \'From\' information Always use the same information in your ‘from’ field. The means you must keep the same name and address for all your emails. When you change the details in your ‘from’ field, your subscribers will have to add these new details in their address book. If they fail to do so, your emails may not reach their inbox. Most importantly, keeping the same ‘from’ details goes a long way towards helping your subscribers develop awareness of your brand name. Tip 6: Get rid of bounces Ensure that you get rid of every bounce that does not get delivered, on a priority basis. Consistently sending emails that bounce back will make ISPs take action against you and your emails. Tip 7: Stick to a frequency Sending emails at a fixed frequency, i.e., at the same day and time is a great way to get into the good books of your ISPs. It gives the impression that you are a dependable email marketer. It also prevents ISPs from thinking you are a spammer as spam mail is sent at any day and time with no fixed intervals. Tip 8: Send relevant content Always send your subscribers content that is relevant and satisfies their needs. Sending them unrelated information or sales pitches that have nothing to do with the content that they subscribed for, is a sure way to get spam complaints. Email deliverability is of great importance to every email marketer. So before you begin your campaign take a look at these email deliverability tips. They are sure to improve your deliverability results!      


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HTML Email Tips for Web Designers

Beyond • February 25, 2009

Note: This article is valid only for people using their own custom HTML. If you use our pre-designed email templates you don\'t have to worry about this. An HTML email communication might look good on your computer but fail completely on the contact\'s because it depends on graphics, fonts, and CSS files which only reside on your system. When you are creating your email in outside HTML editors like Microsoft Publisher, Dreamweaver, or FrontPage, remember that you are designing for email and not a website. If you design the email as if it were a web page, it may not display correctly in your contacts\' different email and web mail clients. Do not reference external CSS files. Most email clients (Gmail, Yahoo, .Mac, AOL Web, etc) wont reference these external files, because it interferes with their own CSS coding. Use in-line CSS if you have to use CSS at all, and make sure you test your email in the top email clients so you can check for mistakes and inconsistencies.i) Reference to external CSS file will not work <link href=\"css1.css\" rel=\"stylesheet\" type=\"text/css\">ii) Putting css style in the head of the email and calling the it in the body will not work <style> .main{font-size:16px;} .subhead{font-size:14px; font-weight:bold; color:#cc0000;} </style> <span class=\"subhead\">Newsletter Article</span> Use Inline Stylesheet: <span style=\"font-size:14px; font-weight:bold; color:#cc0000;\">Newsletter Article</span> Do not use one large image that takes up your whole email. Most email programs will block images by default, so all your recipients will see a blank screen when you send it. Make sure your email is not too wide. The idea is to design an email that will fit in the viewing area of most email clients. A width of 650 pixels is ideal and would fit in most email client windows. If you have any doubts about this, set up a few free accounts with Yahoo!, Gmail and the like, and send your email to see how it shows up. Remove junk code from your HTML. If you have used Microsoft Front Page, Microsoft Word, or Microsoft Publisher to design your email, please note that your template will include all sorts of junk code that can break up your layout and cause problems. At worst, sloppy code can get your email filtered into the spam file. Make certain you clean up unwanted/empty tags, unnecessary attributes, comments and other junk code before you you upload your email. The following are some examples: <v:shape> <o:column> <b:Xl> ![endif] Flash, JavaScript, ActiveX, embedded movies and sound files do not work in an HTML email. Even though those things may make your email cooler, anti-virus software will block all those things. Save the movies, sound files and more for your landing pages and link to them from your email. Make sure all links to images are complete, Web-based URLs. In many cases where this has become a problem, we\'ve found that clients have linked to images on their hard drive rather than on a Web page.Relative URL (will not work): <p><a href=\"lastpage.htm\">This text</a> is a link to a local page, either on your computer or within the same website.</p>Full URL (will work): <p><a href=\"http://www.microsoft.com/\">This text</a> is a link to a live webpage on the World Wide Web.</p> Test your emails in at least three or four email clients like Yahoo!, Gmail, AOL and Hotmail, just so you can check your layout and see any mistakes. You should send a test email to all the free email accounts you\'ve created and check your layout to make sure the images show up, your links work, your colors look like you want them to and more.


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