These can be your current customers, event attendees or even that random stack of business cards you’ve collected over the years. Once you have permission (because, yes, you ALWAYS ask permission!), you’ll have a nice list of people who are already familiar with you and are just waiting to be cultivated through your awesome email marketing campaigns!
Be Transparent – You should always disclose to your subscribers if you are receiving a commission for promoting a product or service for honesty, transparency and even legal reasons. In the United States, the FTC requires that you disclose any payment that you receive for endorsing a product or service. You can read the FTC’s endorsement guidelines at http://1.usa.gov/1FRMynQ.
Beware of honeypots – Honeypots are a form of spam traps. Spam traps are specifically set up with the aim of catching spammers. They are email addresses “hidden” on a web page, but which can be found by address harvesting programs, commonly used by spammers. Unfortunately it can affect legitimate email marketers, too. In one case, a prominent email marketer lost 100,000 email addresses after a honeypot email address was added to their list by a competitor. To make sure this doesn’t happen to you, choose an email service that offers a double opt-in option. This way any email address has to be verified with a confirmation email before being added to your list.
Now that we’ve covered some of the bear bones of crafting a good email campaign, we’ve reached the point in this email marketing guide where it’s time to talk about visuals. While many claim to prefer emails with fancy visual elements, it’s often noted that emails without them actually convert best. While we neither suggest totally ignoring this element when building your email marketing strategy nor obsessing over the aesthetics, it’s best to find a balance between the two extremes. Make sure your CTA buttons are text based so that someone who can’t see the images can still understand the email, and of course you want to prioritize things like readability and mobile friendliness. Here are a few more technical guidelines to consider when coming up with the appearance of your emails:
No matter how effective the subject line you’ll always have subscribers who don’t open it for a variety of reasons. Send your email again specifically targeting a list segment of those who didn’t open the first time around. Not only is this a second chance in case they just missed the first email, it’s another opportunity to further split test subject lines as well as send times.
You should avoid using “Click here!” or “Once in a lifetime opportunity!” in your email, in addition, excessive use of exclamation points (!!!!!!!!!) and All CAPS Content should also be avoided. Email Marketing Tutorial asks marketers to avoid using bright red or green colored fonts, bad content, and HTML email with one big image that has little or no text
Once you know where you stand in terms of campaign performance for your industry, you can start taking steps to improve opens and clicks with tools like A/B Testing. Low open rates, for example, could indicate that your subject lines aren’t enticing people to open your campaigns. Follow our tips for writing an effective subject line to come up with a few variations, then run an A/B test to see which one gets the most opens.
Our email boxes are crowded with promotional content. It’s not a surprise that some of your customers will choose the opt-out option once in a while, feeling overwhelmed by the multitude of newsletters they receive. It’s not ethical to eliminate the opt-out option from the bottom of your newsletter. However, you can create a custom script to give your audience some options instead. Let them select, besides the unsubscribe link, to receive emails less often. Let’s say you send emails weekly. You can allow your subscribers to receive word from you once a month and there is a good chance they will take you on your offer.
Creating and building an email list is a very important step in affiliate marketing. To target certain types of customers you want to promote business to, you need to adapt the content according to their wants and needs. When people sign up for a mailing list, they expect to read about information and issues they have. Perhaps find a solution to their problem. It can be an email mini course, tips and tricks article or an update on your latest products, it will bring your customers closer to you.
Unsubscribe rate. Unsubscribes are always going to happen no matter what, and that’s usually OK because those people probably would never have bought from you anyway. However, a high unsubscribe rate can indicate that you are losing potential customers. Check the following: Why did people subscribe to your list in the first place, and are you delivering on that promise? Is the content of your autoresponder highly relevant to the segment it is being sent to? Are you sending too many sales emails with too little value emails?
They want to hear from you, this is the main reason they signed up for your newsletter in the first place. However, they don’t want to hear from you daily, neither to receive the same email with the same campaign, over and over again. If you had good returns from a campaign, start a new one. Old information will not get you the same results just by sending your newsletter again. In fact, you will end up by annoying all those who read it in the first place.
Send an abandoned cart email or series of emails. These are highly personalized emails that are sent automatically after a customer abandons his or her shopping cart. This email includes the abandoned items with images, prices and descriptions. Abandoned cart emails hold great potential for recovering lost revenue so this automated workflow can truly be invaluable! Check these examples of successful abandoned cart emails for some inspiration.
Promotion Equals Endorsement – If you are promoting a product as an affiliate, you are personally endorsing that product as something your subscribers should use. If you wouldn’t personally use a product or service, don’t promote it to your mailing list. Your subscribers will lose trust in you if you promote low-quality products and are only concerned with the affiliate commissions that you generate.
Thank you! This is excellent content in so many ways! This was actually very inspirational for me as I have been stuck fighting with what I truly want to do. Reading this seriously brought tears to my eyes and made me come to the realization that it is okay to be REAL because people need to hear true life experiences as they will relate. You also helped me clarify that my purpose is to help people lose weight and get in fabulous shape because I’ve been fat a few times in my life and I’m 20#s overweight now and I’m done with that! It’s full force ahead – I’m ready! Thanks for the inspiration!
Create a bonus offer for a product that an affiliate is already marketing. For example, if one of your affiliates is selling a course on driving e-commerce sales from your Facebook fan page, you can write a short and useful step-by-step guide that complements the product, such as the fundamentals of lead generation from Facebook. Ideally, the short bonus that you add to your affiliate’s product should bring extra value to all of your customers.
Beyond that, avoid using all caps, too many exclamation marks, and hyperbolic phrases ("ACT NOW BEFORE TIME RUNS OUT!!!!"). Poorly formatted HTML in your emails can also hurt how they’re handled. Every spam filter is different, so an email might pass through one filter but get flagged by another. For more comprehensive info on how spam filters work and how to avoid them, check out this guide by MailChimp.
It’s hard not to take the unsubscribes personally at first, especially for service-based business owners pouring their heart and soul into content. When you see people leave your list while you’re still trying to gain confidence and footing, it’s demoralizing. But it also doesn’t matter at all. In fact, it’s great. The people leaving aren’t right for you anyway, so they’re really doing you a favor.
Requiring your recipients to expressly opt-in to receive your email communication is permission marketing 101 (see P below for more on permission marketing). Providing an unchecked box as part of the sign-up flow that people must click in order to opt-in to receive emails cultivates an engaged list of subscribers who will be excited to receive your email.
Think about the information that pertains to your customers’ interests, desires, and needs. That could be colorful, opinionated commentary on your industry, original content, sharing resources like software and books or simply things you think are cool. Whatever it is, though, make sure it’s tailored to your brand and the unique offerings and benefits of working with you, as well as the issues you deal with, and the problems you solve in your industry.
You’ll want your messages to be easy to read, no matter what device your readers are on, or how much time they have. Using bullets and subheadings makes your email easy to scan, even, for example, if someone’s quickly checking messages on their phone while taking the subway to work. Also, make sure to break up longer paragraphs into shorter ones to make your material more digestible.
Pat Flynn (www.smartpassiveincome.com) is a great example of someone that does affiliate marketing properly through email, his website and his podcast. He has established himself as an online business experts and recommends tools, products and services to his audience that can help them build their online businesses. He only promotes products that he can personally recommend and is always transparent when he receives an affiliate commission for promoting something. He has built such a large audience and has gotten so effective at affiliate marketing that the commissions he generates through affiliate marketing have become far larger than the actual revenue he makes from his other online businesses. It’s not uncommon for Flynn to generate between $50,000 and $100,000 each month through his affiliate marketing efforts.
Be friendly. Feel free to use a casual tone in your email newsletters. Since most emails come directly from one person, people expect human voices in their inboxes. There's a good chance your subscribers are already in a informal frame of mind when they're checking their email, so an overly formal or stodgy voice might seem out of place. Plus, they've given you their email address, so you're already on a first-name basis. If you collect first names on your signup form, you can dynamically include them in your email greetings.
Finding products and services to promote as an affiliate is an incredibly straightforward process. There are several large advertising networks that focus exclusively on creating affiliate relationships between advertisers and publishers. These affiliate networks will handle any necessary paperwork, provide banners and other creative to use on your website, serve as an intermediary in the relationship and make sure that you get paid for your efforts.
Newsletters have historically been emails that humble-brag about internal company achievements and give generic information to the poor saps that were unfortunate enough to end up on said company's RSS feed (whatever that is, or rather, was). So while the old “newsletter” content is useless and dead, successful marketers know that quality email marketing is still one of the best marketing tools available, especially for service-based businesses. Depending on which study you read, you get $35 to $40 back for every dollar you invest in email! This reinforces the fact that, hands down, there's nothing more valuable than direct access to someone’s attention.
When people talk about email marketing, lots of them forget to mention transactional emails. These are the automated emails you get in your inbox after taking a certain action on a website. This could be anything from filling out a form, to purchasing a product, to updating you on the progress of your order. Often, these are plain text emails that marketers set and forget.
He is the co-founder of Neil Patel Digital. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web, Forbes says he is one of the top 10 marketers, and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies. Neil is a New York Times bestselling author and was recognized as a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 30 by President Obama and a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 35 by the United Nations.