“No matter how old it gets, email marketing will still be relevant.” Para Arora
Social media is the shiny new object. Facebook, LinkedIn, Snapchat and Twitter (to name a few) have become must-have tools for companies to communicate with prospects and customers. Given this “shiny new object” syndrome, let’s not forget or doubt the power of email.
Times have changed since the days of “You’ve Got Mail.” On average, the 2.6 billion email users receive 88 emails per day. That’s a lot of email. So, the question comes to mind, with the large number of emails that people receive every day and the rise of social media, should I use email marketing to help my business acquire new customers?
The answer is a big YES. And here are 3 reason why using email marketing will be an advantage to help drive your customer acquisition efforts.
In some instances, email is better when it comes to reach. The organic reach on Facebook dropped to 49%, lingering at around 6% of your fan base according to a 2014 study by Social@Ogilvy. This is compared to the average email open rate of 21.7%. This means if you send 3,000 emails and have 3,000 Facebook fans – 651 people will open your email and only 180 Facebook fans will see your post.
The Almighty Automation
Automation has taken email to the next level and makes email marketing even more effective. No more one-off campaigns to a whole list in one send. Marketing automation has given us:
the ability to automagically nurture prospects with highly personalized and useful content
allows for dynamic content based on an individual’s specific user profile
helps to develop optimal marketing patterns (such as send time, subject headers)
categorizes customers and prospects by common behaviors, demographic information and interests
The first step in optimizing an affiliate email marketing campaign is to engage in agile email marketing. By engaging agile principles you will:
Anticipate your audience’s interests with relevant, dynamic content
Automate opt-in forms and unsubscribe requests
Use data to pinpoint content and iterate email campaigns
Read below for the basic principles and best practices for micro segmentation in affiliate email marketing and the easy third party integrations you can use to employ them.
Segmentation is a Starting Point
According to their recent article on segmentation, IBM found that segmented campaigns had “94.1 percent more click-through rates and 14.63 percent more opens than non-segmented campaigns.” Segmenting your audience by location, vocation, and interests is a no-brainer in today’s affiliate email marketing ecosystem. Most recipients are inundated with emails with subject lines like this:
Katerina, Your Business Cards Need a Makeover
5 Entrepreneurship Tips for you, Deray
While personalization increases engagement and segmenting has measurable benefits over non-topically divided emails, the top affiliate email marketers are using micro segmentation to create dynamic, targeted content in emails that lead to increased clicks and conversions, and loyal email fans.
Advantages of Micro-Segmenting
Micro segmenting: layering segmented groups in a data-smart manner for optimization of available email marketing data to exponential ROI.
Targeted campaigns to groups with up to 150 customers had at least a $1.90 uplift per customer, while target groups of 1,500+ had an uplift of at most $0.50 (almost a 4:1 ratio).
The bottom line: micro segmenting in affiliate email marketing campaigns ROI has exponentially beneficial results for your bottom line.
The Best Micro Segmentation for your Campaigns
The more specific and relevant your content, the higher return on the investment of time and resources in sending an email.
Here are four main areas to focus on in micro segmentation, recommended by Jordie van Rijn:
Geotargeting: Personalizing content based on location is a goldmine for affiliate email marketing with job search engines
Behavior: Intent, buyer stage, life cycle stage, engagement (past, recent, opens, clicks, and other post click engagement data, areas of particular interest based on engagement data)
Cross Channel Marketing Data: from your website, social media, and other marketing channel data you might have on your clients that would determine the type of specific dynamic content they should receive
Each of these segments aids in targeting your audience, but just as a missile uses velocity and temperature to hit its target, micro segmenting your list will help you hit just the right people with your affiliate email marketing campaigns.
Dynamic content is one of the more powerful and efficient tools marketers can employ to target micro-segments with tailored specific content for each micro-segment.
For example, to target job-seekers, you might segment of all recipients who opened a job-offering campaign you sent them in the last week. That behavior (opening the previous message) may signal that they are actively looking for a job.
That segment of active job seekers can still include 100K or maybe even a million subscribers. This is where dynamic content saves the day.
With dynamic content, in the same campaign, you can serve tailored job listing content to a micro-segment of coders seeking programming jobs in San-Francisco, while another micro-segment of RNs seeking nursing jobs in Dallas gets a completely different set of job offerings in the very same campaign.
In the end, your campaign to 100K subscribers might end up targeting 10K micro-segments in the very same campaign some.
The highly dynamic level of serving up tailored content for each micro-segment will do wonders for streamlining your email marketing operations and resulting in tremendous lifts in performance.
3rd Party Content Integration
In a smart affiliate email marketing tool like Ongage, third party content integrations are simple to implement for all of the measureable results described above.
Job Boards and More
Ongage offers a variety of 3rd party content integration to easily serve up tailored content to micro-segments. From AdStation to many of the leading job-board feeds, to CreditAndLoan.com Mortgage Insurance XML Feed, Ongage offers easy setup and usage of highly dynamic content for micro-segmenting
The cutting edge Ongage platform instantly transforms email marketing by offering multiple ESP and SMTP providers, improved deliverability and redundancy, and a variety of 3rd party integrations and plugins. The Ongage platform was designed to optimize email marketing performance and effectiveness, reduce sending-costs, automate email marketing tasks, and boost ROI. With Ongage, email marketers can easily switch between delivery vendors in order to ensure that each campaign meets their business needs and budge
In the past we announced that Atom mobile app users can now customize their mobile sign up form with their logo, background color, text and more. The possibilities are nearly endless, and customizing your sign up form is just plain fun. But did you know that a great-looking sign up form can do big things for growing your business too?
Why bother customizing your sign up form?
People love visuals – 90 percent of the information transmitted to our brains is visual. A great-looking, branded sign up form will do a better job communicating the value of your business and help you get more email subscribers. That’s why creating a sign up form is such an important first step in getting started with email marketing!
Whether you’re creating your first or your fiftieth form, there are a few best practices you should keep in mind if you want to attract more subscribers. Here are four tips for creating a brilliant- looking sign up form that gets real results.
Show off your brand.
It sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s worth saying: every business communication you make, from your website to your email signature to your sign up form, should reflect your brand.
Consistent branding looks professional and builds trust with people who don’t know very much about you. If you’re just getting started, choose elements in your form that best reflect who you are. If you have an established look and feel, stick with it.
Check out this pop-up form from Tiny Designer.
Sometimes, pop-up forms can be intrusive if they’re not done correctly, but this one doesn’t feel intrusive at all. So what is Tiny Designer doing right? For starters, all of the colors, styles and fonts you see on this form also appear on their website, so the form feels like a natural part of the user’s experience. They even include the cartoon characters that appear on the website, making the form feel fun and friendly.
Learn more about building your brand.
Give social proof.
In the wise words of Peep Laja at Conversion XL, “No one wants to be the only idiot filling [out] your stupid sign up form.” So if you have the social proof, use it! Social proof makes people feel good about signing up for your list. It gives them confidence that you’re not a spammer and that they’re making the right choice.
This sign up form from LeadPages sits on top of their blog and is visible no matter which blog post a visitor clicks.
They have plenty of social proof – 140,000 subscribers is a lot of people! If you don’t have an impressive subscriber list already, skip the social proof until you have it. In the meantime, you can include details about what subscribers can expect to see in their inbox from you.
Tell people what they’ll get.
… and how often they’ll get it! ContentVerve tested two forms – one with no description of what subscribers would receive and one that included a description. The form that told subscribers what they’d get saw 83.75 percent more sign ups than the form with no description.
Use your headline and description to tell people exactly what they can expect in their inbox. To really rake in those sign ups, include an incentive offer. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy – an exclusive discount like Gypsy Warrior offers will do just fine.
Want some extra credit? Create a dedicated subscribe page that goes into even more detail about why people should sign up for your list. You can share this page across social whenever you want to give your list a boost. Check out how The Expert Vagabonddoes it.
Seven reasons to subscribe, blatant flattery (“Subscribers are smart & hot”) and a free ebook? I’m sold!
Change your call-to-action text.
A call-to-action button that simply says “Sign Up” isn’t just boring; it can be a total lost opportunity for attracting more subscribers. First, the text on your CTA button should relate to the action your new subscriber is taking. For example, if you’re offering a free guide, your button could say, “Send me my free guide!”
In one case study, using possessive language on a CTA button increased clicks by 90 percent. Phrases like “Send me updates!” or “Start my free trial” or “Download my free templates” help your soon-to-be subscribers connect with you.
Here’s an example of how Nerd Fitness uses possessive language on their CTA button.
You can also use your button text to remind people of what they’re getting. Social Triggers uses the button on their sign up form to remind people what they’re signing up for and reinforces that it’s free.
When it comes to your CTA text, you have very few characters to work with – make them count!
Try out one of these tips in a sign up form split test – here’s how to run quick and easy tests. The outcome will depend entirely on you and your audience, so don’t get discouraged if you’re not seeing the results you were looking for. Keep testing until you find a sign up form that works for you. Then test some more!
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