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Targeted Email Marketing ProTips #2

A couple of weeks ago, we talked about targeted email marketing and how to get your clients to opt-in to your list. Today, we’re back on the topic, but today, we’re looking at the question “What do you do with your list once you have subscribers?”

It sounds like an easy answer — you email them, right? But what? There are a few questions you might have, and we’re going to endeavor to answer them all.

What Kinds Of Things Should I Be Emailing At All?
The trick with targeted email marketing is that if you come across as blatantly commercial, you’re going to lose people instantly. If your first email is full of “give me money”, people will click the unsubscribe link in droves. So you need to establish that your emails are worth reading first and foremost. That means — you guessed it — more content!

Once you’ve given your subscribers a few weeks of content (using an autoresponder, natch), you can slip in an email that suggests a product or mentions how useful the product was to you. These ‘affiliate sales’ can still make you decent money, but they let you do it while coming across as helpful and genuine rather than greedy.

What If My Industry Is Boring?
There’s no such thing as a boring industry. No matter what you sell, there is drama to be found. If BlendTec can turn blenders into amazing entertainment (“Will It Blend?”), or Dollar Shave Club can turn a five-minute (barely-)shaving-related viral video into the year’s best indie ad campaign, you can find something to turn your industry into entertaining, controversial, provocative, or otherwise worthwhile content. Just don’t lock yourself into your own shoes. If you do, you not only won’t be able to create emails, you also won’t be able to come up with blog posts or any other content for your industry.

How Often Should I Be Selling?
That depends largely on your niche. If you’re selling tools to people just getting started in an industry (for example, custom blog creation to new Internet marketers), you can sell a lot harder and more often than you can if you make your business, say, as a construction contractor. In general, the larger your sales and the more commitment they require, the less often you want to sell and the more often you want to provide useful information and keep people subscribed to and reading your emails.

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