However, when it comes to sending your messages, the last thing you want to do is to use your Gmail or Hotmail account. Instead, sign up for an established email marketing provider like Aweber or MailChimp (which offers free, limited usage plans to small business owners). Not only do these services offer great features like message templates and account analytics, the arrangements they have with popular email services ensure that your messages are delivered – not hung up in your recipients’ spam folders.
SendGrid – SendGrid offers both email marketing and transactional messaging services. SendGrid's cloud-based email delivery infrastructure allows you to send email without having to maintain your own in-house email infrastructure. The software's transactional service features a simple SMTP setup, customized white labeling and advanced analytics. sendgrid.com
If you’re a small business owner who’re just getting started with email marketing, then Constant Contact is the best email marketing service for you. It comes packaged with all the features that you’ll need to grow your email list. Plus, you can make use of their 60-day free trial without any contract or commitment. That way, you can experiment and get to know their tools before you actually have to start paying.
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
Not only is InVision's newsletter a great mix of content, but I also love the nice balance between images and text, making it really easy to read and mobile-friendly -- which is especially important, because its newsletters are so long. (Below is just an excerpt, but you can read through the full email here.) We like the clever copy on the call-to-action (CTA) buttons, too.
Visualize — Since BIM tools give users the ability to design their structure in 3D, a BIM platform will likely have the ability to visualize outside elements such as how sunlight will hit a building or how energy efficient the building is, as well as detect any potential clashes in the system or structure. This knowledge ensures the structure you are creating runs at peak performance.
Probably one of the most advanced ways to build your email today is to create an app or WordPress plugin of some kind. In order to access it, users need to enter in an email address. This the ultimate “content upgrade” because instead of just being content it’s a tool that helps your target audience get closer to a key goal of their’s. How to do it:
Drip – Drip from Leadpages includes a visual campaign builder that allows businesses to design email campaigns based on their subscribers' actions, decisions, goals, delays and exits. Features include automation, a lead-scoring algorithm that tracks several events to determine which subscribers are most engaged with your content and likely to become customers, and the ability to send targeted emails. Drip integrates with a variety of CRM, e-commerce, forms and surveys, lead capture, marketing automation, and membership and payment processing tools. drip.com
SendX prides themselves on being a simple email marketing solution aimed at non-marketers. One of their most unique features is “Opti-Send technology” which automatically resends campaigns to contacts who didn’t open the first email, boosting open rates. This has been considered a best practice in the email marketing space for many years, yet is surprisingly manual to set up in most email marketing tools.
Vectorworks Architect is the industry’s only BIM modeling, drafting and documentation software built with the design process in mind. As the architect’s BIM tool, the software enables you to tackle complex ideas in 2D and 3D, refine construction details, increase your energy efficiency and streamline costs. Additionally, high-quality renderings can be created with ease and directly inside files thanks to default textures within thousands of Vectorworks content library objects and our easy-to-use Renderworks features. Learn how Architect empowers designers to transform the world like never before at www.vectorworks.net/architect.
There are tons of software and automation tools out there that make email marketing a breeze. For example, MailChimp and Constant Contact can be used to send out emails and monitor how your subscribers interact with your emails. You can also use email marketing software to track analytics like click-through rates, open rates, bounce rates, and conversions.
2) One of the those being Capsule CRM. As a training company, many of our email subscribers are customers that we’ve met in person. Capsule CRM makes it easy to export them into Mailchimp. One feature I particularly like is that Capsule lets you filter contacts by tags and dates – and then export them into a new Mailchimp campaign e.g. we regularly setup a campaign to email an offer to people that have been on an SEO introduction course within the last 3 months but have not yet been on the SEO intermediate course. This works really well!
Another poor email marketing tactic you should never take advantage of is purchasing pre-made email lists. You should build up your email list with people who have a genuine interest in your company. Purchasing a pre-existing email list is a bad idea for many reasons, but mostly because it can provide you with unqualified people who will be less likely to have a genuine interest in your brand and more likely to unsubscribe from your emails or even report them as spam.
Retention Science – Retention Science (ReSci) is a predictive marketing and personalization software that helps brands convert more customers through 1:1 multi-channel communication. Its machine learning platform uses AI to automate and deliver scalable and relevant marketing campaigns to create direct relationships with each individual customer. retentionscience.com
3) Expanded Guest Post (EGP). This is more a technique than a tool and one I plan to try soon. Bryan Harris from Video Fruit (Twitter hat tip to Brian Dean) shows how you can write an example and storytelling based guest post with a content upgrade hook. Bryan says he routinely gets 500 new subscribers in a week from EGPs and when done the right way it makes guest posting 100x more effective.
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.
Because users have different operating systems, web browsers and computer hardware (including mobile devices and different screen sizes), online ads may appear to users differently from how the advertiser intended, or the ads may not display properly at all. A 2012 comScore study revealed that, on average, 31% of ads were not "in-view" when rendered, meaning they never had an opportunity to be seen. Rich media ads create even greater compatibility problems, as some developers may use competing (and exclusive) software to render the ads (see e.g. Comparison of HTML 5 and Flash).
So many brands and companies build their audiences on Facebook and Google+, which is fine, but we don’t own those names – Facebook and Google do. If we are thinking like real media companies, the asset is in the audience. Getting an email address is the first critical step to figuring out who my reader is and, hopefully in the future, my customer of some sort. If our goal is to drive sales or keep customers happy in some way, we first need to get them as part of our audience. If I have one regret as a business owner, it’s not focusing on building our email list earlier in the process.
Campaign Monitor customer Rip Curl utilized segmentation and dynamic content to deliver the right message to the right person. For example, they know the gender of their subscribers and where they are located geographically, so they can ensure that females in the United States receive a promotion about bathing suits during the summer months and males in Australia receive an email about wetsuits during the winter months.
There are many great options available, but some key considerations to help businesses make the right choice are budget, ease of CMS integration and available resources to manage the platform, as the more complex platforms require a dedicated internal or agency resource in order to get the most value. If you’re interested, check out this post on choosing the right marketing automation solution.