One former client of mine started using Hubspot for about $50/month, but after adding a few extra features and growing his list he was soon paying $2,000/month which had to be paid annually. For many small businesses, there’s a big difference between $50 leaving the bank account and $24,000 – especially when other tools can offer similar (or better products) at a fraction of this amount.
Though it’s new to the marketplace and relatively unknown, more and more consultants and digitally based business owners are choosing ConvertKit thanks to their simple-yet-powerful tagging features for audience segmentation. Fans of ConvertKit also praise the simplicity of creating and visualizing email sequences, such as a series of welcome and “getting to know you” emails for new subscribers.
It’s easy to get creative and make a perfect email with SendPulse‘s drag-and-drop editor along with 130+ pre-designed thematic templates. Segmentation allows you to send personalized emails based on gender, location, behavior within your previous email campaigns. You can also perform A/B testing to help you choose the best performing version of an email campaign.
The concept of native advertising has become increasingly hot recently. If you’re not familiar with the term “native advertising” it means content that is put in with the regular “stream” of organic content on social networks (or other non-digital mediums) and labeled as “sponsored.” For example, here’s a native ad from my newsfeed on Facebook. We’ve all seen ads like this by now. But one smart way to drive more clicks and build your email list is to send the traffic from ads like this to specific content posts on your website that have already been identified as “high performers” in terms of visitor to email conversions, social shares, and/or commenting. In addition, Twitter recently came out with its “Lead Generation cards” feature (which is free). It allows you to easily collect email optins by offering some sort of content incentive. Here’s one I found from Ryan Deiss, co-founder of DigitalMarketer.com.   Note: If you want to find out more about how to use Twitter lead generation cards, I cover it (along with how to steal your competitors followers) in this free video here. As it turns out, I found Ryan’s ad before he was using Twitter lead gen. cards. I actually converted to an email list subscriber simply as a result of reading an insightful article post on his blog. Ironically, the article I was reading was all about how he and his business had achieved 259% ROI with native ads and non-squeeze page content (blog posts). I get the sense that in order to convert with paid traffic being sent to blog post content, you really have to figure out what’s most likely to convert in advance and make sure those pages are optimized for capturing email optins. Otherwise you’ll be going through a process of trial and error which will require more investment to get right. And if if you want a good laugh, check out “Last Week Tonight’s” bit with John Oliver on certain controversial forms of native ads (NSFW), see below.
Professional email marketing software offers you the tools to track results so that you can better understand customer behavior. This allows you to set customized messages, as well as to A/B test your messages so that you can constantly fine-tune your marketing campaigns. Let’s say, for instance, that you want to find out which is the best auto-responder for your high-rolling segment of customers. You can set different options, compare auto-responders, and make an informed decision. Sendinblue also features marketing automation, and its wealth of plugin capabilities make it easy to maximize your email campaign.

Lead magnets are essentially tempting offers that provide consumers something of value in exchange for their contact information. The valuable offer is often targeted content that aims to help individuals better understand and solve their greatest challenges. For instance, this could be a holiday product guide or an e-book on B2B challenges that your business solves.

Emma – Emma provides email marketing software for organizations of all sizes. It offers tailored editions of its platform for businesses, franchises, retailers, universities and agencies. Emma's professional edition includes a drag-and-drop editor, the ability to send unlimited emails, real-time analytics, audience segmentation, automated emails, and integration for various CRM, e-commerce, event, survey and social tools. myemma.com
The ability to track onsite events makes ActiveCampaign unique from other services. For example, you can track custom event calls from within mobile apps, billing apps and more. All your customer data will be organized in a sales CRM that gives you a complete picture of your customers. You can use this data to create highly effective marketing campaigns and followups.
According to a study (PDF) published in the Journal of Consumer Research, people shy away from single option offers. However, when presented with multiple options, we are more likely to make a purchase decision on the spot (about 3x more likely in fact according the research). For this reason you want to consider giving people multiple options to optin for your offers. For example, here’s how I do it on our free course widget: Here’s another (perhaps even more effective) example from Michael Hyatt’s website. What I like about how Michael does it here is the fact that he truly give your two choices, not just two calls to action. One choice will sign-up immediately. The other will take you to a landing page where you can learn a little more and then optin there. Very smart, copy this on your own website.
This is a topic I plan to write more on in the future, but I’ll briefly summarize it here. When a little old website called Mint.com launched back around 2008, a quick glance at their footer links and you would notice something interesting. Each link had “rich anchor text” (meaning the words used for the link were purposefully chosen) and the pages they linked to were landing pages. Taking note of this strategy, when I launched my previous business, BlueSkyLocal.com, in 2009 I made sure we followed the same strategy (see below). The website was young and had few inbound links at the time. However, I knew that but crafting valuable (simple) landing pages with information that users on the web were searching for, we could naturally start to capture some organic traffic. And we did. The site still gets traffic today even though I haven’t touched it in years. Here’s what one of those landing pages looked like: The idea was that by branching off key pieces of content from our homepage (kind of like a sunflower plant branches petals our from its core), we driving more free trial sign-ups. And we did (until we made the Jenius move of removing our free trial option of course — but that’s a story for another day 😉  ) This strategy can work just as well for you when it comes to building your email list:
Email marketing may be a great way to reach your current and past customers and influence direct conversions, but social media can also be a valuable tactic for advertising your holiday promotions. Overall, social media channels have a much higher engagement rate than email marketing – consumers are more likely to share social media content from brands than they are email content.
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