Using Content and Language to Increase Leads for Your Business
Small to medium sized businesses everywhere are clamoring to get in on it.
In fact, according to an article called How to Write Email Marketing Copy that Converts by Kim George, the founder of Small Business Sense, entrepreneurs are spending 42% of their marketing budget to harness it.
If you have sat at your computer for any length of time trying to figure out your next email campaign, its content, creating eye-catching design, engaging the appropriate audience or coming up with a captivating headline then this blog post is for you.
The truth about email marketing is that it works.
It is measurable and doesn’t just increase your company’s sales, but increases engagement with your potential customers and your current customers.
Today’s customers require a buying structure that includes online engagement; it creates trust and a sense of connection with your brand.
According to Nielson, 50% of consumers worldwide trust email messages from companies they have signed up to receive.
Yet there are also some myths about email marketing that deserve to be debunked.
WHAT EMAIL MARKETING IS NOT
According to Andy Newbom, writer for SocialMediaToday.com today's email should not be spam. If it is spam - it is unwanted.
In his recent article 5 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About Email Marketing businesses that legitimately receive permission from website visitors who give out their email addresses are not sending spam.
“Email marketing is sending marketing messages to your customers and prospects that they have requested and want to receive. It is a positive communication between the brand and the customer that benefits both parties.”
Legitimate email marketing is permission-based and a viable way to send information to potential customers.
It is by far one of the lowest cost methods of marketing out there, but it is not free.
There is writing, designing, creating and then actually delivering the email to the right people.
Yes, there is a cost, but when done right the results are staggering.
Newbom considers email marketing a “constant dance to bring all the pieces together in precisely the right way.”
Making sure that a campaign is built well, edited, tested, tracked and measured, and adds value and meaning to a potential reader is amazingly difficult, but the results are compelling.
So what is an email supposed to do?
IS YOUR EMAIL CONTENT SERVING ITS PURPOSE?
If you are any kind of an email marketing professional, the majority of your time is spent crafting the content for your campaigns.
Eat, content, drink, content, sleep (or don’t sleep), content.
How do you write another exciting email that keeps your current readers coming back and fosters new readers?
Is the verbiage you include in your email doing what you need it to do?
- Driving visits to your website?
- Creating brand awareness?
- Growing your audience with meaningful content?
- Driving conversions in your sales funnel?
- Creating a sense of urgency to explore or even purchase your product?
If your emails aren’t doing these things and creating paying customers, it is time to take another look at how you are approaching your email marketing process.
If someone actually takes the time to open your email then read it, do they know what to do next? People are busy, they don’t have the time to figure it out for themselves.
Creating that sense of urgency, grabbing their attention, and prompting them to action is the content writers’ purpose.
WHO ARE YOU SENDING YOUR EMAIL TO?
When you craft your email ask yourself some questions:
Who is my target audience? What are their “pain points”?
How can my product help the visitor to solve their problem?
Then dig further.
Your buyer persona should contain information about buying patterns, slow seasons and other demographics that affect the sale of your product.
Your product, your business and your audience drive what you include in your emails and when you send them out, as well as the buying cycles of your potential customers.
The times you share specific information throughout this buying cycle is important.
USING ACTION LANGUAGE
Sure, your email has value, you wouldn’t be sending it out otherwise right?
The email that you have put together has important information that your potential customer needs.
But how do you guide the reader to take that next step?
You don’t have to be obnoxious about it, but being direct is certainly a good method.
- Tell readers where to go in order to receive more information.
- Direct readers what they must do next in order to get their offer.
- Give them the phone number that they need to call.
- Provide the link with an easy to see button.
- Let them know how they are going to receive their reward.
Also, think about giving them a deadline to react.
Establish a clear offer with value and then give it to them.
THE SUBJECT LINE
When the people who have signed up for your emails open up their accounts for the day the only thing they really see is the subject line that appears in their inbox.
The few words that are jostling for attention along with company emails, messages from friends, as well as the emails sent by all the other brand content they’ve signed up for are a mess of words on the screen.
Your mess needs to stand out.
If someone signs up for your content, it is still going to go unopened most of the time.
But, according to the website ConvinceandConvert.com 33% of email recipients open their emails based on the subject line.
Subject lines that include your recipients name are also more likely to be opened.
STAYING ON TOP OF THE TRENDS
There is no doubt that creating fresh content that is geared to your target audience is hard.
An excellent way to get relevant information is to take a look at what is going on in your industry. You probably already subscribe to emails and newsletters from industry peers and trendsetters, or even old-fashioned magazines that still cover industry related topics very well.
Monitor your competitors and see what they are sending out.
Take surveys from online friends in the business.
In addition, here are some of our favorite online methods for following market and industry trends:
BuzzSumo – Utilize their main topic board to find the top content and influencers on many subjects.
Feedly – Is the application to use for content from your favorite blogs and websites.
HuffingtonPost – Has the top news from around the world on a variety of topics.
Google Trends – Will allow you to research what SEO tactics other companies are using. The results yield rich content and topic ideas.
Twitter – Is still the place to find out trending topics by typing in a hashtag.
Business to Community - A great site for getting trending news, insights and expert analysis on any topic.
There is a reason why 61% of marketing companies plan to increase their efforts in email marketing in the next year according to Experian Simmons.
SET THE TONE
The online ecosystem has changed the way business talks.
No more boring formal letters.
Write the way you talk.
Use conversational tones and come across in a more personal way.
Your company suddenly becomes a person rather than something coming from behind the screen.
NEVER FORGET THAT CALL-TO-ACTION
The reason your company is sending out that email in the first place is to get the reader to buy your product or utilize your service.
You didn’t send them an email to tell them about dinner this weekend with Aunt Betsy. Well, maybe you did, if it fits.
However, the main idea behind an email is to get the reader to act on another level and take some type of action with your brand.
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Creating an email campaign is still the best way to create more website traffic and increase leads for your business.
Before you even send out your first email, make sure you know who your audience is. Every time you set up a new campaign make sure your emails are valuable to your potential customer. Use captivating headlines and create a sense of urgency to make sure they want to take that next step.
How have you used emails to reach out to your potential customers? Is there a method you prefer to use that makes it easier? Let us know in the comments!