No, certainly not another “the money is in the list” token email marketing post on Aweber. Don’t worry this is not that. In this post I want to focus on the multiple uses of email autoresponders for various types of businesses.
What I want to demonstrate is that no matter what business you are in, you can and should leverage email marketing to improve your sales, customer satisfaction and overall business results.
Email marketing is the most cost efficient and effective way to promote your business, hone and maintain customer relationships as well as track results to know what is working and what isn’t, something traditional media like TV and radio ads cannot tell you.
When executed manually, email marketing is free because it doesn’t cost money to send an email. However, businesses prefer to use email autoresponders as an email marketing tool because they are cheap, very effective and most of all save businesses gobs of time in executing their email marketing campaigns.
Much of this can be self explanatory, and may be something you already know about. But just in case you don’t, email marketing is the use of people’s email addresses to communicate and build a relationship with them in conjunction with promoting your business at the same time. It is an increasingly popular marketing method because businesses, large and small, are realizing how effective this marketing method is.
Why is it much more effective? Email marketing is the more preferred method of marketing because it is more effective than traditional and social media. A person’s email address is very personal and people guard their emails with their lives. Think about your own email ID. Would you just hand it to anyone just like that? Communicating with someone over email is more personal and repeatedly proven to be much more effective.
An email autoresponder is a tool used by businesses through which they conduct email newsletter marketing. Email autoresponder programs are web based programs that enable businesses to capture customer email addresses electronically or manually, correspond with them seamlessly and automatically, track various statistics such as email open rates, clickthrough rates (readers clicking on links embedded in the email newsletter) and various other analytical attributes.
The business intelligence you get with an email autoresponder is invaluable. You can use the data to split test different approaches and continue to optimize your marketing campaigns to achieve your business objectives. This is particularly important if you are trying to sell through your emails or bring customers and clients in your business.
You can set up email autoresponders to “auto respond” to your customer list, scheduling newsletters way out in advance to go out at a particular time now or in the future. You can also send a broadcast email message to your list anytime you’d like.
So the next time you get an email message from one of the email lists you are subscribed to, it could be a message that was written months and years ago to be scheduled the day you received it. It likely also went out to several others – but it certainly doesn’t look and feel that way does it? Not when it addresses you with your name at least.
You can segregate your email list in various ways so that certain messages only go to certain people, and similarly perform various tasks that allow you to slice and dice the information you have to better target your customers and clients and customize your communication approach and method depending on who you are reaching out to.
If this sounds somewhat confusing and overwhelming right now, a quick read about email marketing and email autoresponders can further help explain this marketing method and the program used to execute it.
Why am I writing about this today? Because understanding how email autoresponders work and its various applications can help you tremendously with your business. It will not only help you make more money, but more importantly automate the customer relationship and marketing aspects for you, saving you tons of valuable time in the process.
Whether you are solely operating online, offline or a combination of both, email marketing utilizing email autoresponders will enable your business to flourish. That is exactly what this website is about, to help you expedite wealth building without adding much incremental demand on your day to day life.
Here are just a handful of ways email autoresponders can be used in a variety of businesses. I have personally used these methods in the businesses that I am involved with.
Freelancers – Freelancers like tax accountants and wealth managers can leverage email autoresponders by scheduling out email distributions during critical times of the year such as tax deadlines.
They can also use the system to pre schedule value added messages such as tax saving and wealth management tips on a monthly or quarterly basis. Wealth managers can send out quarterly reminders to rebalance portfolios to their email list. The possibilities are endless.
Niche sites – If you own niche sites and have either your own or affiliate products to sell, you can use an email autoresponder series to automatically engage with your readership as they subscribe to your email list. I use email autoresponders to promote various affiliate products and my own ebooks on several niche sites that I own. Here is an example:
Sales – If you are in sales and you want to gather customer feedback to see how you are doing and what you should do to improve your business, you can send out an email blast with a link to a survey, or simply ask the survey questions within the email blast itself. Want to know what products and services your clients want? Send an email to the entire list and find out. This is exactly how I obtain feedback from my readership.
E-commerce websites – Keep your customers in the loop of new product launches, special offers, discounts and important company news. Use your email list to send out coupons, or seasonal reminders relevant to your business. I heavily used an email autoresponder when I was operating my e-commerce business.
Blogging – The use of email autoresponders is very much prevalent in the blogging industry. Many internet marketing bloggers will tell you that the “money is in the list”. In other words, in order to make money, you need an audience to sell to. An email autoresponder is a great way to seamlessly build an email list of potential customers and clients. This is how I use email autoresponders on my blog:
Brick and Mortar Businesses – This is where I see email autoresponders way too underutilized. I have done several consulting engagements for small local businesses and one of the quickest ways I add value is by setting them up on email autoresponders to start building their email list.
For example, hair cut salons can set up the system so that it automatically emails male clients to come in each month for a hair cut, or it can help dentists send out bi annual reminders for teeth cleaning. My dentist sends me a postcard. Can you imagine the time and resources, not to mention the cost, it takes to do that for each and every patient? God forbid the temp forgets? A computer certainly wouldn’t.
An oil change garage can send out automated emails every three months reminding folks to come in for an oil change. People have busy lives, both consumers and service providers/business owners. Why not leverage technology to better streamline everyone’s lives and operate more efficiently?
I also use an email autoresponder in my Dry Cleaning business, for example, having automated reminders going out to each customer right before winter to remind them to bring in their jackets and blankets. Similarly, one message at the end of winter to remind them to do the same before they stash the winter stuff away in a box.
Personal – Heck, you can leverage email autoresponders to send out an email to your entire list / email database wishing them a Happy New Year! Saves the manual process of having to remember who to send what to.
The beauty of email autoresponders is that it automatically plugs in the name of the person you are sending it to. So although one pre scheduled autoresponder email may go out to 10,000 people, each of those will feel you had sent it to them individually. How thoughtful. It’s magic 🙂
As you can see, there are many uses of email autoresponders, and this post merely scratches the surface. There is so much you can do with an effective email newsletter system, all within your fingertips and without incurring significant costs.
Aside from tremendous cost savings, there are several other advantages to using email autoresponders. You save a ton of time in marketing your business, you stay fully organized and for website owners you diversify your traffic resources.
Search engines are fickle and can turn their backs on your at any time. With an email newsletter system, you can ensure a certain amount of repeat traffic coming straight from your email list.
And perhaps the biggest advantages of all are that you get to build an email database or list of all your customers and gather business intelligence to understand what they like and dislike, and how they interact with your emails.
People guard their email addresses closer than anything else today. When you have someone’s email ID, you can develop a closer and more effective personal relationship with them. You can also ensure that you can stay in touch with them, with or without the existence of your business, website or search engines.
I personally use Aweber, a very user friendly system that you can get for only $20 per month. It is the cheapest and the most effective email marketing tool I have utilized in my businesses. If you don’t know much about email autoresponders and what they can do for you, I highly encourage checking Aweber’s website out and going through the material. It can be an eye opening experience.
So as promised, not a token post on creating an email newsletter with Aweber. That said, is there a need for one? What information would you like to read more about? I am an affiliate of Aweber and would be happy to answer any questions if you are contemplating using it in your business.
What are some other uses of email autoresponders? How are you using email marketing in your business? If you aren’t, why?Previous: How to Get More Clicks – More Opt-Ins, Conversions, Sales & Subscribers
Nice post Sunil. Aweber is such a low cost tool that it is a no-brainer to have as part of your marketing arsenal.
Although I don’t necessarily subscribe to all the “doom and gloom” about SEO and Google’s recent major algorithm changes, I certainly agree that building a list has never been more important as one of the keys to success online. A list gives you far more control over your marketing efforts.
its my favorite means indeed Greg. many truly believe it’s the most cost effective method of marketing
I know I should be, but the thought of having ANOTHER writing commitment gives me pause. Some people may have gobs of extra content that they can use for their email lists, but I wind up using everything I come up with for my two blogs and many days don’t get posts finished until minutes before they are scheduled to go live.
I currently use mine as an update mechanism. I understand many prefer to visit the blog or subscribe through a feed, but majority of internet users still don’t know what RSS is, what feeds are and how they are used. I know there are pros and cons to my approach, but for now it’s merely an update mechanism – with incentives of course such as promos and giveaways 🙂
Just to clarify, when you say ‘autoresponder’ I assume you mean ’email capture service’ rather than the actual autoresponding part of that service? That word seems very interchangeable across many blogs.
I’ve signed up to aweber and have since got a handful of subscribers. Right now though I only really use it to tell people when new content has gone up using the Broadcast option. Not sure if that’s ideal, but it’ll do for now.
I do have an autoresponder set up at the moment but I’m thinking of removing it as it only shows subscribers four bits of content that are already on the site, and with the site being so small there’s a good chance people will get shown content they’ve already read.
Plans are in the pipeline for an ebook to act as an incentive which I feel will mean a nice boost in opt-in rates (they couldn’t get much worse to be honest ;))
yes, an email capture, however without a back end auto responder service it doesn’t maximize its potential. a free giveaway incentive is definitely effective. give it a shot and monitor your opt in rates.
I have always known that email autoresponders are used by bloggers, e-commerce, commercial and niche sites. I was surprised to know that I can also use email autoresponder for personal purposes, much more brick and mortar stores! Thanks for sharing!
in fact small business is where I feel there is most scope of benefit for this kind of service
Hi Sunil. I was curious to hear a little detsilmore about how u use email marketing in your dry cleaning biz? I know how to do email marketing but was just curious how to apply it successfully to dry cleaning. My girlfriends family owns a couple and I’d love to set them up and help them out
Bobby – for any brick and mortar business, it’s just as important to obtain means to communicate regularly with your customer base. I offer an incentive when customers sign up for my email list, and throughout the year the list automatically sends out coupons and seasonal reminders (i.e. to bring in jackets before and after the winter season, bed comforters etc). it also announces store closings, holiday messages, etc. does that help?
ah yeah, that makes sense. i’m gonna try to implement it, thank you again sunil!
anytime – let me know if you have more questions
Are there any free auto responder services out there. Aweber is great but I was wondering if there are any free services.
I believe there are although I have no experience with them
Interesting post Sunil. I only have a little less than 700 on my mailing list. Is this enough to justify using an auto-responder service?
Right now I just send an alert of a blog post by bcc to about 90 contacts breaking up my list into these group mailings throughout a couple of days. This seems to work. Your thoughts?
it does work, though rigorous and eventually ISPs will give you grief. you mail client may also cut you down. I would start looking into auto responders now, not just functionality as you will have to do this eventually, but particularly in a strategic manner (think of what value you can deliver and how you can increase your business). would be happy to help with questions
Well instructions. I think this news is valuable for every freelancer. So that any virtual worker can follow these rules.
Nice write up and thanks for sharing this. I still remember those days what i work !! but thanks a lot for your feed back . i wish i can get something from here. all the best
It is not quite easy for you to earn money when you just step into the internet marketing. You will have to keep on learning while you spending your time and effort to promote your online business.