Targeted email marketing — the art of building a list of subscribers that receive your emails on a regular basis and then sending those people offers that you profit from their acceptance of — has become a mainstay of internet marketing in the past decade. So much so that it’s no longer the exclusive domain of ‘hardcore’ internet marketers; even many web-oriented small business owners engage in targeted email marketing on a pretty regular basis.
You set up a website, SEO it to the point that it gets some decent traffic, and you add a ‘squeeze’ to it: some encouragement for surfers to sign up to an opt-in mailing list. Usually it’s an informational packet, but it can also be a web course or even a discount for a valued service. Once someone has signed up, they receive emails that you’ve prearranged via an autoresponder service and any additional ‘blast’ emails that you create and send out on the spot.
Maximizing The Squeeze
There are two basic techniques for getting as many email addresses as possible. The first is to create a ‘squeeze page’: a page that literally has nothing except a squeeze offer on it. With nothing else to do on the page, the surfer either signs up or hits the X — and when there’s no risk involved in signing up, most do.
The other trick is to make signing onto a squeeze a prerequisite for receiving a product they just purchased. This is a strong tactic because it assures you that everyone on your list are spenders — after all, they just bought something from you. Proven spenders have a tendency to be repeat buyers, so this method gets you a list that will convert better than the first.
The Next Offer
The next step is to make the emailed offers convert well. There are two stages to this: first, you have to convince them to open the email. Then, you have to convince them to click on the link to the offer. At that point, it’s out of your hands.
Getting them to open the email is almost always a matter of coming up with a headline that will catch their attention. How To X your YZ and OMG I Can’t Believe This-type headlines are excellent starting places. Getting them to click the link is usually a matter of keeping the email ludicrously simple. People don’t want to be sold, they want to know exactly what’s going on. A simple “I saw this product, tried it, and loved it so much I wanted to share it with you” is a great marketing email.