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The following is a guest post by a friend of mine named Gabe Johansson. Gabe specializes in email marketing and is a great writer so I asked him to write up some tips to help my readers get started in email marketing. He will be monitoring the comments so please let us know if you have any questions!
The best way I have ever found to build a sustainable business online is list building and many others agree. The benefits are endless including having an instant audience, an easy way to follow up with prospects and customers, and a very personal connection with many people at once.
The major problem with list building is that many people don’t understand the full concept. Truthfully it’s only part of the battle and in order to have a full fledged email marketing, customer generating system, there are some key components to include. Here is how to make sure you avoid the mistakes and fast track your way to email marketing success.
Know What You’re Selling FIRST!
This may sound backwards, but it really isn’t. There is an existing audience for practically anything you can sell online, so know what you want to sell. Know exactly the type of person who would be most likely to buy your product and why they would.
Don’t have a product?
You can become an affiliate for a plethora of digital information products on a site like ClickBank, or you can be assertive and create your own. Just remember to not spend too much time preparing and take consistent daily action.
The same goes if you own your own product or if you’re an affiliate: Simply know who would benefit most from what you’re selling present it to them.
You Need A Proven Conversion System
Here is a basic conversion system in a nutshell:
This is where knowing your product is going to really help. You’re going to want to give or create a compelling reason for people to subscribe to your email list before they even see your sales page or affiliate offer.
If you’re selling a product that teaches how to make the best coffee from home (I’m not sure this exists, but I’m a coffee addict), you may want to create a newsletter or report on the top 7 things to know before buying coffee beans. Offer this as an incentive for your visitors to opt in to your list.
When coffee lovers visit your site, they will want to know these top 7 things so they will be likely to opt in to learn more. From there, they will be redirected to your sales page or affiliate offer for the chance to buy. This strategy may seem pushy, but it definitely works.
If they buy, you’re going to want to add them to a separate customer list. If they don’t buy, then you’re going to follow up with them and share more quality content while you lead them back to that sales page. Following up is vital!
Note: You’re going to want to manage all your leads and customers in a 3rd party software like AWeber or GetResponse. These tools will automate much of the process, saving you time, and time is money in this business!
The idea is to provide as much value as possible through content marketing like blog posts, videos or articles. This way, you end up giving first before asking for anything. The more you can repeat this, the more you’ll generate paying customers and raving fans.
Get Traffic Or Else
I don’t mean to be rude, but you absolutely need to get people to your website or nothing will happen. Even if you have the worst website in the world (which I doubt you do), you need traffic for a single lead or customer to be generated. There are a few things to take note of when working on a traffic strategy.
- Know who you want to attract
- Find out where those people are online
- Get those people to your website
I have a little trick that includes 3 types of traffic: Content marketing, social media, and paid advertising. You don’t have to learn a bunch of different methods either because most of these strategies line up with each other.
For content marketing, I recommend your own hosted WordPress blog. Social media comes down to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Google+ (regardless of what new fad comes around), and for paid advertising you have a lot of options.
Here are a couple great combinations you could use to get all kinds of traffic:
- Blog + Facebook Page + Facebook Ads
- Blog + Twitter + Twitter Ads
- Blog + YouTube + YouTube Ads
- Blog + Forum Marketing + Banner Advertising
- Email newsletter + Google Plus + Solo Ads
Of course you can mix and match or come up with your own, but the reason this 3 part traffic system works so well is that you can use paid advertising to initiate growth, content marketing to provide value to your leads, and social media to interact and share your content.
Personally, I use banner advertising and solo ezine ads for paid traffic, Twitter for social media, and my blog and YouTube for content marketing. I’ve been doing this stuff for a while and have the time to do a bit more, but if you’re just getting into this I would recommend focusing on one set before adding anything.
How To NOT Waste Time OR Money
All this information can be used to create a thriving online business or give you headaches and stress you out. I’ve been on the receiving end of both results, but I know WHY some things work and some don’t.
How do I know this?
I track and test EVERYTHING I do. I have multiple conversion tracking softwares running at all times. If I run a $500 solo ad, I know exactly how many subscribers and customers I get from it. There are multiple options for tracking that you can use, but the software I use is Google Analytics.
This will work best if you’re selling your own product or a Clickbank offer, but you need to install the tracking code into each page of your sales funnel and link it up with your autoresponder software. You’ll also want to use the URL builder to track paid advertising campaigns.
Start with paid advertising and see how well that traffic converts through your funnel. If you end up making any profit (even $0.50), do that again! To increase your income, split test different squeeze pages and sales pages using Content Experiments which is inside Google Analytics and is all free by the way.
Putting It All Together
What you need to remember is that your product should line up with your squeeze page and overall message. All your marketing should lead to your squeeze page. You need to find out where your customers are and attract them by providing value. Most importantly, track and test everything you do for best results!
You can do this and if you put these concepts into action you can really kick your email marketing into high gear and build a funnel that literally churns out customers. The biggest tip I can give you right now is to just start!