Handyman Connection’s Derek Christian explains, “The most important element is the subject line of the email. We look for a compelling idea that can be communicated in less than 60 characters. The topic drives the rest of the newsletter. That idea is what the entire thing is designed around. We start with the copy for the subject then we work back from there”.
"We just had a chance to check out your private membership area, and are completely BLOWN AWAY by all the advertising services and tools you provide for your customers! You're totally over-delivering and should be charging a monthly fee for this advertising service! Anyone looking to consistently generate more targeted leads to their website or affiliate links by using safe methods of email marketing should sign-up now. We will be recommending your product to ALL of our members."
Keep an eye on your stats. Most email newsletter services offer free reports that contain helpful information. Learn how to read and understand your reports, so you can use the stats to improve your campaigns going forward. Pay attention to your open and click rates, and identify any patterns that make those numbers go up or down. If a campaign receives a high number of unsubscribes, then try something different the next time.

What we liked: The automations included on the free plan are surprisingly advanced – you’ve got options to send abandoned cart campaigns, for example, and to perform actions such as moving subscribers to different lists or updating custom field values. In general, the simplicity of the tool is a nice change from the overcomplexity of other similarly-featured tools.


Constant Contact's event campaign tool lets you schedule your upcoming events, create a registration page, and spread the word via email and social networks. Then, its social campaigns tool helps you create coupons or downloadable resources for social networks to gain new follows and keep your existing followers excited about your products. Tying it all together is Constant Contact's email tools that let you share these events and promotions in your email newsletter and easily add new subscribers to your lists whenever you run an event or promotion.
If someone doesn’t open your email, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are not interested. They could be out of the office, didn’t see the email, or were too busy to read or reply when it was sent. Most people don’t empty their inboxes, so once it’s missed, it’s unlikely to be seen again. To counter this, resend emails to non-openers a week later with a new subject line.
Check out this simple example from YouCanBook.Me, an online scheduling and booking tool. The email educates users about the product itself, specifically, its new features. Those who actively use it benefit from the information, while those who don’t use the tool see how the team is continually making improvements to and developing the product, which may pique their interest.
Beyond that, avoid using all caps, too many exclamation marks, and hyperbolic phrases ("ACT NOW BEFORE TIME RUNS OUT!!!!"). Poorly formatted HTML in your emails can also hurt how they’re handled. Every spam filter is different, so an email might pass through one filter but get flagged by another. For more comprehensive info on how spam filters work and how to avoid them, check out this guide by MailChimp.
Remember, most visitors won't read your entire email but will simply scan it, looking for clues to quickly answer their questions. For best results, use short blocks of text and bullets to make your message easier to scan. A call to action should be visible "above the fold" - that is, within the first screen full of information that the reader will see. Make sure that any links are clearly formatted as clickable links. If you're using images for links, make sure they look clickable as well (for example, a button that contains the words "more information" or "order now").
You can design your own email templates or import an HTML page to send as an email, then use those templates for all of your emails. SendinBlue can also market to your users on the go with its integrated SMS marketing. With its site integration, you can see what your customers do on your site and what products they've purchased, then followup via email or SMS automatically or put them on new mailing lists based on their interests. And, you can use the same tool to let everyone know about your latest news and deals.

I’ve always been a mailchimp user myself, and I have to say I really like their UI but I’m always open to new options. I’ve dabbled in a couple of the other email marketing providers like Pure360 – but find them so clunky and annoying to use (despite them looking really pretty and having great templates) that I always end up going back to good old mailchimp. I haven’t used GetResponse yet, I’ll give their free trial a shot :)
Taking this nurturing, gentle approach could improve the chances of said recipients hanging on to purchase stage. It is at this point that you can begin talking numbers; perhaps offering customised quotes or targeted plans within your marketing emails. The respect you have shown your recipients throughout the buying cycle will be taken on board when they make their final decision and really, can only improve your chances of making a sale.
One of the most common questions that people who are new to email marketing typically have is whether their email marketing program should feature a newsletter or a direct sales email … or even a hybrid of both. Of course, the most effective email marketing programs will contain a combination of both types of emails. However, it's also important to take the time to think through what the difference between an email newsletter and a direct sales email is. With the information that you gained in the previous chapter about the different types of email marketing, their users and the types of information contained in them, you'll then be able to read this section and begin to visualize what your email marketing program should look like.
GetResponse adds another layer to the functionality of landing pages with A/B testing that can further increase the efficiency of your campaigns. According to McKinsey, “Customized landing pages — which send the user directly to the item or offer featured in the email — can increase conversion rates by more than 25 percent.” While minor, this feature demonstrates just another way that GetResponse has taken standard email marketing features a step further.
In terms of relationship building, email marketing done well can be extremely successful. Whether it’s a monthly newsletter that comprises targeted information to nurture leads or a blog post, emails can provide an online resource for recipients, positioning a small business as an expert in the field through the posting of regular, insightful and relevant emails.
After Mailchimp, here's another animal in the email marketing zoo. EmailOctopus is a special breed: it's built on top of the Amazon SES service that provides the email infrastructure. The Octopus takes care of the newsletter tool in which you build your email campaign and manage your subscribers. Once you hit the send button it will be channeled through Amazon's email server.
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Janet: Yeah, and I think one interesting difference between them, as you were saying that with the drip emails, everyone gets the same one depending on where they are in their customer life cycle, versus the newsletter, you sort of enter the stream, where you enter the stream. If you signed up for a newsletter last week, you’ll just start getting that stream of information that they’re sending out.

It’s also important to look at what content has already done well for you. As this content will make a great addition to your newsletter. Amber Ooley from Thrive Internet Marketing Agency says, “I pull the top-performing blog posts and other content from the last week based on Google Analytics, website engagement, and social media shares. Then, I’ll craft it all into a consistent email template”.
Not only was this initial email great, but his response to my answers was even better: Within a few days of responding to the questionnaire, I received a long and detailed personal email from Matt thanking me for filling out the questionnaire and offering a ton of helpful advice and links to resources specifically catered to my answers. I was very impressed by his business acumen, communication skills, and obvious dedication to his readers.
I recently had my MailChimp account suspended. One of my sites is in the ‘make money online’ space. It’s a completely legitimate website, but apparently if your emails contain keywords they don’t like, they will suspend you. I would not recommend using them. Contacting support I just get form responses that are completely unhelpful. There’s no phone support- just account termination. Really bad experience. Luckily, this is a very new site- but imagine if you have thousands of emails and they just shut you down without ANY recourse.
ToutApp is a great email marketing tool specifically for sales teams. It enables users to create emails fast and follow up on email marketing promotions (via a unique email and marketing tracking feature). Users can view opens, clicks on attachments (e.g. PDFs) and website links and when they’ve responded to an email all in one dashboard. ToutApp also functions as a lead nurturing tool as it allows sales teams to send content to the right people at the right time.
With a clean and minimalist design, Benchmark is one of the most user-friendly newsletter tools we’ve tried. What’s more, their free Starter plan gives you access to all areas – marketing automation, forms, surveys and reporting included – with a few caveats (you won’t be able to activate automations or A/B tests, for example, and sign-up forms will only allow you to add 75 subscribers a day).
Their email campaign looks really good. The design has everything you want – fresh colors and clear design, a clear objective and minimalistic copy. They are doing a great job of keeping their emails very pointed with a clear CTA. In every letter, you will get guides to different cities. Like recently it was about Barcelona with its secret beaches and local places. 
From a business perspective, emails are widely used as a cost-effective as well as efficient way of acquiring new customers, boosting sales, building up your brand awareness and fostering a sense of trust among your customers. Email marketing has also shown a better ROI compared to other marketing channels. According to a survey conducted by Direct Marketing Association and Demand Metric, email had an ROI of nearly 122%, whereas other channels such as social media had just 28%.
A cloud-based email platform, SendGrid is a tool built to serve developers. It is known as the world’s largest Email Infrastructure as a Service provider. Users can quickly send out emails such as shipping notifications, email newsletters, sign-up confirmations, etc. Businesses can also track email opens unsubscribes, bounces and spam reports without the use of code. This email marketing tool also provides templates, scheduling and A/B testing. Email analytics can be viewed in real-time.
Gathering customer feedback via email works well for a few reasons. Your subscribers have already given you permission to contact them, which means they’re naturally more engaged than the broad audience you’d reach by publishing your survey on your website – and they’re more likely to have a vested interest in whatever you do with this information.
Our highly integrated approach to multichannel marketing provides added benefits for your company, as well. We can create a comprehensive marketing strategy that incorporates your branding efforts, print media, direct mail advertising, and online presence to create synergy and boost your visibility, online traffic, and sales. We deliver exceptional services that produce results.
Both MailChimp and GetResponse offer scoring tools to gauge the quality of your contacts, which makes it simple to determine who you should be contacting; used in tandem with automated workflows, you can easily set up segmented campaigns based on the quality of your subscribers, sending targeted messages to different recipients in order to increase engagement.
"I just wanted to let you all know how much I appreciate this club. I have learned more in a few weeks utilizing all of the resources provided, than I have in six months of internet marketing. My business is really starting to take off. The low cost I paid for membership is absolutley one of the best investments I have ever made. Thank you from the bottom of my heart".
The key here is just not to purposely deceive your recipients. If you are sending a campaign on behalf of ABC widgets, it’s a breach of the laws to put ‘Brad Pitt’ in the From name field to get people to open the campaign. However, arousing curiosity or getting creative with your subject line is perfectly ok, so long as you don’t purposely try to deceive recipients.
One of the easiest ways to manipulate data is by throwing it into a spreadsheet. Almost anyone can then easily sort the data and quickly find similar segments. Vision6 lets you do this with your contacts, with a spreadsheet-like interface to filter your contacts. Instead of having to set filters and hope they pick the right people, you can see every field in your contact details, sort by the item you want, then select contacts and turn them into a new segment in seconds.
This is supported not only via the written content in your email and the fact you’ve sent it only to the relevant demographic, but also the fact that targeted emails include the most relevant links to your website. Sending an email to someone in the ‘research’ stage with tailored content is great, but if the links to your website included direct them to the ‘request a quote’ page, this could damage the relationship. However, include a link to your ‘guides’ section or a page of case studies will help them form an educated opinion.
But if you’re a smaller company and you can do that, I really encourage you to do so because it helps you create a bond with your subscribers, and kind of build that relationship over time. It also helps with your deliverability, right? Because Gmail will see that you responded to this email address, the emails that come from this email address are much more likely to end up in your inbox than your spam folder or elsewhere.
Smoking Chili Media’s Alistair Dodds explains that a compelling newsletter is a combination of content, as well as testing. Alistair explains their process as first they, “Draft ideas with the team based on best performing content on our blog from past weeks”.  Then they, “Draft ideas of best-curated content the team has read and which we feel will add the most value to our audience”.
One of the most common questions that people who are new to email marketing typically have is whether their email marketing program should feature a newsletter or a direct sales email … or even a hybrid of both. Of course, the most effective email marketing programs will contain a combination of both types of emails. However, it's also important to take the time to think through what the difference between an email newsletter and a direct sales email is. With the information that you gained in the previous chapter about the different types of email marketing, their users and the types of information contained in them, you'll then be able to read this section and begin to visualize what your email marketing program should look like.
A premium feature that you won’t find with any of these providers is marketing automation, so it’s worth taking that into account. It’s often also not possible to access advanced reporting with most of these free accounts either. So if you need this kind of sophistication you may need to open up your wallet. You can get an idea of prices, and compare them between providers, with our newsletter cost calculator.
If you are feeling yucky about the prospect of sending emails or writing a “sigh... newsletter,” chances are you’re either unable to articulate any real value through email, or you’re forgetting there are people out there who would value your insights. You just have to find them! It’s entirely on you to write something people will be delighted by—in your unique way.
Likewise, there are also companies who sell "Email Marketing" or supposed opt-in email for much less than we do. All these companies are doing is SPAMMING people with your offer. These are the companies you see online selling millions of emails for $xxx. This is far less than what we even pay websites for co-registration data. Using these types of companies to email for you  will inevitably cause you major problems with your web hosting company and in fact can get your website shut down.
From a business perspective, emails are widely used as a cost-effective as well as efficient way of acquiring new customers, boosting sales, building up your brand awareness and fostering a sense of trust among your customers. Email marketing has also shown a better ROI compared to other marketing channels. According to a survey conducted by Direct Marketing Association and Demand Metric, email had an ROI of nearly 122%, whereas other channels such as social media had just 28%.

Make it shareable. Send content that people want to share, and make it easy for them to do it. Sure, subscribers can forward your campaign to friends, but that's a lot to ask. Include a public link to the web version of your campaign so people can read it outside of their email programs, and consider adding Twitter and Facebook links to your newsletter, so readers can share your content where they're already active. When their friends start sharing and subscribing, you'll know it's working.
One of the advantages of email marketing is that it can be used to connect with a varied selection of individuals and audiences. On the other hand, because it is so versatile, there really isn’t any single set of best practices that always result in effective campaigns. Therefore, the ability to test email campaigns with built-in testing tools can help you determine what is effective, and what belongs in the spam folder.
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