Displaying items by tag: customers
Wednesday, 19 February 2014 13:43

3 Steps to Building a Profitable Opt-In List

Once you have begun building your opt-in list, it is important that you know what to do with it. Here are 3 very quick and very easy ways to achieve a profitable opt-in list:

1. Secure your customers trust in you and your products
Launching a product to your opt-in list is not going to give you ‘expert’ status and turn you into an impressive seller. Write numerous articles before you begin an opt-in list. These should be about the topic that you know and are passionate about as this will come through in your writing. Try to contribute to forums initially to help you gain knowledge about your potential customers, their wants and needs. This will then allow you to target those wants and needs. By joining forums you will be able to offer advice, guidance and recommendations. When it is starting to feel like people trust you, this is best time to begin building your list. Use the base you have collected from the forum as well as friends to start off with. You can also put a link on the forum to your site so people can see exactly what it is you are offering.
It is true that the money will begin to come in only when the customers and subscribers believe in you and trust you. People will not buy anything as a result of your recommendation if they have no trust in you.


2. Find products and services people want and need
Why it might not be your area of expertise, if you provide something that you have taken the time to research and learn about, you will be able to recommend it. It will pay off to invest your time, money and effort in research so that you are able to sell to your buyers or subscribers. Although it is always better to sell something which you are familiar with and have an interest in, not everyone is going to share these interests with you, should you chose to sell something not completely popular or exceptionally profitable. It is also wise to provide your subscribers with promotional material which they are able to use.


3. Become friends with your opt-in list users
This is the most beneficial if it is someone who has successfully launched using an opt-in list as these will be people who have the experience and knowledge that you need. While there are numerous articles on the internet at your disposal, there is nothing like speaking to someone who has first-hand experience.
An experienced opt-in list user shall be able to guide you on what to do and what not to do as they will have gone through it themselves. Although different situations occur for each email marketer, having someone to discuss the general concept with will be very useful.
It is important to remember that building your profitable opt-in list is not going to happen over night. It requires quite a lot of preparation and effort to build from scratch, but as it grows it is essential that you keep it to a high quality, organised and manageable.

Published in Training
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 13:46

Become an Authority Figure

Often, when you see people in the street they simply look like an average, everyday individual, but put them on a podium and ask them to talk about something the know, understand and have passion for they all of a sudden have an air of authority surrounding them.
In order to succeed within the field of internet marketing, you too must have this passion and understanding to project a strong credibility to your subscribers and establish yourself as an authority in your particular niche market.
Consider talking about making profit through a product launch. You have to be able to let your subscribers know about your credibility before or after they have opted in to your emailing list.


Here are 3 simple ways to establish your credibility:

1. Talk about your online and offline experiences
Whether you have run a business online before or have previously been successful in sales and marketing in an offline business use this to prove you have personally accrued the skills to be successful in this field.
2. Visually prove how much money you have made
Show your subscribers’ screen-shots of how much money you’ve made online or images of cheques you have earned. If you don’t have these resources use photographs of well-known marketers you have had your picture taken with.
3. Let others sing your praises
The power of positive testimonials is absurd. Gather as many strong and flattering testimonials as possible to prove you provide good and consistent results.
With some people it takes time to earn their respect and so a few emails may be required for them to recognise your skills and capabilities. One method of building up your credibility over time is to put together an e-course or a newsletter which will then be sent to your subscribers over the course of a couple of days. The material you send will need to be educational, which will establish you as an expert on that subject matter. As long as the subscriber reads your material over a period of time, whether it be daily or weekly, you will slowly be able to earn their respect and seal of approval.


What NOT to do
Building strong relationships with your subscribers’ takes a lot of time and care, so it is important that you do not commit these 5 email marketing mistakes;
1. Spamming
You must make sure you never, ever spam your mailing list. Although they will have given you permission to email them, spamming is a completely different matter. Emails should always be sent at carefully, thought out intervals.
2. Only email them when you are selling
A good email marketer will know what their subscribers do not want to receive emails which only sell. Your subscribers will want to benefit from being on your list by receiving valuable and educational material as well as your sales pitches.
3. Rushed emails
One of the biggest errors to make is to rush your emails. Your subscribers will be reading the material you send out and for them to be able to spot spelling, grammatical and factual errors is a big no! This will not only make you look unprofessional but it will also make you lose their respect. Nothing could be more embarrassing than spelling someone’s name wrong or making a mistake on your affiliate links.
4. Leaving long periods between emails
This is like the opposite of spamming. Not keeping in touch with your subscribers will not only make you look lazy and un-committed but there is also a chance that they will forget who you are.
5. Failing to relate to your subscribers
Some email marketers get too carried away when a new product launches and email to their entire mailing list, forgetting that the product in question is not going to relate to every single one of them. For example, there is no point in selling cat food to someone who does not own an animal.

Published in Delivery
Wednesday, 08 January 2014 14:00

Social Media and Business

Social media should not be treated the only element of your business. It is not a little piece of dynamite which will help a struggling company reach new heights, but more of a means to help a business listen to their customers, react to what they want and build relationships with them.

Read on to find 18 simple reasons why your company should wish to become involved with social media. Although this is not a complete list, it does demonstrate just what can be achieved through these interactive platforms.


1. Increase your visibility
Partaking in social media and blogging will enable you to remain constantly visible with your audience. Taking part in conversation and sharing daily information will make you and your business a small but memorable part of their day, turning your company into a recognisable brand.

2. Become a resource
Once you have become a recognizable brand, you need to be seen as useful. By painting yourself as a resource for people to ‘go-to’ for certain topics, you will build both trust and confidence in your business. This is how you become known as an industry expert in the eye of you followers.

3. Obtaining speaking slots
Conference organizers keep an eye out for speakers at their events who are both trusted and respected. Social media will enable you to be seen as both.

4. Create a community
Being available through social media and reaching out to your current and potential customers, and sharing information will strengthen your online community. You can build new connections, help community members to meet one another and form deep conversations with more and more voices.

5. Faster conversions
When an individual lands on your website via social media, they make a purchase much quicker than through the far more conventional routes. They require far less convincing to complete the transaction as they often have far more trust and faith within your business as you are not seen as a stranger.

6. Draw attention to your product
Social media provides an extra avenue for you to promote your product and/or service in an information and far more conversational way. You can expose the advantages of what you are offering without being seen as ‘salesy’. You also have the ability to answer any questions your followers may have.

7. Locating new projects and clients
Most often businesses are contacted for their services or to partner in something as a they like what that business is doing on Twitter or because they read blog posts or e-newletters and relate to what is being said. When a company takes part in conversations, they make their brand a part of their story and people take notice of this.

8. Perceived through association
People often say what we are the company we keep and this also applies to social media platforms. You can become friends with people who your customers most respect and look up to, assisting you in building on your own authority through association. For example, you can look smarter by talking to smart people.

9. Tell your story
Studies into social media have shown that people prefer to work with and buy from businesses they know. People enjoy meeting the personality behind the brand as it allows them to feel a part of them. By telling your followers your company story, you will be sharing them your success and create that personal feeling.

10. Become a mentor
Obviously you not the only business using social media to network with and meet new people, so are many many others. But sometimes you will be the person they are trying to meet and learn from.

11. Take time to improve your writing skills
Becoming a part of the social media world will mean you are forced to improve on your writing skills. Not only will you need to entertain your followers but you will also be required to teach, inform and explain in a limited number of characters.

12. Develop new and better ideas
With your blogs, social conversations and interaction on forums you will be able to collect more and more feedback on ideas before investing time and money in them. You can find out what people like, dislike and what they want more of. This will enable you to produce something which excites them, rather than putting them to sleep.

13. Quicker networking
Via Twitter you will be able to converse with numerous influential and accomplished people before your launch. This is the kind of interaction you could not buy for all the money in the world.

14. Locate partners
Social media platforms will also enable you to locate potential partners and mentors to share resources with who are able to assist in various aspects of business and possible collaborations.

15. Obtain information quicker
If you have a question you need answering or a problem you require help solving then social media is the perfect platform to help. You can create a network full of people who will have an abundance of business knowledge between them, which makes for a fantastic information resource. You throw a question out there and someone will respond much quicker compared to any other form of communication.

16. Build a depositary
When someone tweets or posts an interesting or informative article or tutorial, save it. Over time you will build a very valuable resource depositary you will be able to refer back to time and time again.

17. Consider your company culture
When your business is social and customers are interacted with in real-time, you are forced to really pin down exactly who you and your brand are. What makes you you? It is important to take the time to figure this out.

18. Better staff hires
Getting involved in social media can help your business employ staff smarter and faster. You will be introduced to more qualified candidates and help you to establish a referral network. So rather than sieving through a great big pile of CV’s, you can put in place a far clutter-less process.

Published in Social Media
Tuesday, 12 November 2013 12:10

Get Protected

Do you know who is held responsible when a marketing email is sent to someone without gaining their permission?

Locating new contacts is a continual task for email marketers and the need for band new, current prospects to supply the marketer’s requirements is unquenchable. However, some people are not 100% sure about where a marketer stands in regards to the DPA compliance regarding the data they buy-in or rent. Exactly who is legally responsible if an email campaign is sent out to a hired list which has been accumulated either by unfair means or illegally?

The reoccurring issue of SPAM persists in bothering the privacy regulators, the marketers as well as a significant number of customers. Within the market of data there are numerous non-legitimate supplies of email data which are being offered either on a hire basis or available to purchase. However, it is these sources which feed the illegitimate email marketers with the contacts which they need.

Where does the cycle end? The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office has released its advice and guidance regarding marketing via electronic media including a blunt and stark warning to the marketers themselves. They have stated that email marketers shall be held fully responsible as the ‘instigators’ of the campaigns should the data they use be proved to have been gathered by unfair methods.

Similarly, the Advertising Standards Authority is also indifferent when it comes to the marketers. In their eyes also, it is the client’s responsibility to ensure that the data they chose to use is legitimate. A customer must ‘opt-in’ to receiving email communications from 3rd parties. Therefore, should you be offered an email database be sure to see evidence of ‘opt-in’ procedures.

Published in Spam
Friday, 08 November 2013 16:50

Business to Business email marketing

The current UK regulations state that ‘prior consent’ is not required by B2B marketers who are sending marketing communications to contacts with which they have previously had a customer relationship.

What is prior consent?

The phrase ‘prior consent’ means that the person in which you are sending a marketing email to has formerly ‘opted-in’ to that communication channel i.e. they have at some point notified you, the sender of the email, that you have their consent to email their contact address for marketing purposes.

For a B2B marketer, this ‘prior consent’ requirement does not apply if you are sending a marketing email to contact with which you have a previous customer relationship.

What counts as a previous customer relationship?

A previous, or existing, customer relationship exists if:

  • The email address has been obtained during the course of a sale or sale negotiations of a product or service to that particular individual.
  • Direct marketing is in respect of services or products belonging to you, which are also marketed are like those which are previously provided.
  • Your identity as the sender is clear.
  • The person being targeted is provided with a clear opportunity to withdraw their consent at any given time regarding all forms of communication.

Disclaimer: This article is intended to serve as general guidance only and should not be regarded as legal advice. For more information please visit http://www.ico.gov.uk.



Published in Delivery

The rapid growth of social media platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook, has resulted in very exciting opportunities for marketers over the past few years. Communication channels are known for shifting and evolving consistently, which leaves online marketers with the challenge of locating the best ways in which to incorporate these social platforms in way which engages consumers and results in increased revenue.

While the effective incorporation of social media communication channels holds a vast array of potential, a successful method of implementation needs very careful planning. Below are three methods used by email marketers to capitalize on this thrilling prospect:

Employ social media platforms to encourage opt-ins for email programs

Social media websites attract a brand new cluster of individual and therefore attempting to add followers, friends and influences on these platforms to the email channel, which is where conversions and building relationships can occur. 

Firstly, you should make sure that your email includes opt-in forms and/or links on to your business’s social network profiles. Secondly, you need to think about the people who interact with your company’s social networks and what they may expect from you such as personality and tone in your communications. Therefore, ensure that your marketing messages are focused on education and personality rather than professional, corporate speak. 

Consider the preferences of your customers

The best marketers know and understand that preference centers assist in helping to increase the relevance of your message and therefore minimize list churn. For example, offering an alternative to communicating via email such as social networking, text messages and direct mail, helps businesses to communicate with their customers on their terms.

Whereas some businesses might wish to use text messaging for only urgent notifications and social media for promotions and as social media continues to flourish and become the channel of communication of choice, the preference centre will become more and more important. Therefore, you should think about adding a link to your preference centre onto your Facebook page and Twitter profile.

Increase your email message share-ability

One of the key elements of incorporating social media into email marketing is by making it easy for your consumers to share what you have to say. In order to encourage your recipients to distribute your message, you need to make sure that it is relevant, personalized, containing suitable links to social media sites.

If your business collects user reviews of your products and/or services then review-posted notifications can provide a fantastic chance to encourage recipients to share the content. Why not try including social media links into the messages you send your users once a new review goes live on your website. This will provide your consumers with a chance to broadcast their opinions through their social media profiles, and therefore increasing how many people will see your business’s offer or promotion and brand.


Despite presenting a range of challenges, integrating social media into email marketing activities offers the opportunity to grow and engage with your audience in a more effective and rewarding way. Don’t miss this chance to turn conversations into conversions and, ultimately, revenue.

Published in Social Media

The firm Access Markets International Partners recently published research which has found that approximately 70% of SME’s (small to medium) businesses are actively employing social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to assist in promoting their company. However, just tweeting about mundane things, for example, what the MD had for dinner is not going to do much for your business.

Best practice is to utilise social media tools to boost their brand awareness and expose to potential clients and customers.

Read on to discover ten of the most persuasive reasons as to why you should be using social media tools to advertise your company.

  • Think, think, think - The public are becoming far more switched on when it comes to using social networking sites every single day. So, if you want to be seen as current and in the know with regards to technology, you will need to be seen on these sites also.
  • Boost your Search Engine rankings - Social media profiles are currently ranking highly with the large search engines. So, using brand names and your keywords in your profile content will assist you in generating traffic to your social media profile and business homepage.
  • Generate traffic to your site - Regular tweets and status updates to your social network profiles, will significantly increase the traffic to your website. Social media bookmarking tools such as Digg and Slashdot are also able to increase traffic to your site when you post regular articles and blog entries.
  • SEO links - The majority of social media bookmarking websites employ ‘No Follow’ tags which restrict the value of outbound links on their sites. However, there are still numerous social media sites which do allow ‘Do Follow’ tags such as Digg and Mixx. But, the advantages of ‘No Follow’ tags can be seen when people read your posts and then link back to your website.
  • Getting your brand known - Social media websites enable your business to reach as many potential customers as possible, which is one of the most important goals of any company. There have been studies which found that clients need to hear/see a business’s name a minimum of 7 times before they will trust the brand and become a consumer.
  • Monitoring your brand - One of the greatest things about being present on social media sites is that it enables you an extra method of understanding what your present and potential customers need and just what is being said about you. It also allows you a chance to address any negative comments about you or false information being spread.
  • Seek out new customers through friends - Remember not to neglect you own personal social media accounts while managing your business ones. These are fantastic means to post and tweet about what your company has been getting up to so your friends can remember to use your services or refer their friends and family to you.
  • Obtain new customers via business profiles - Posting and tweeting regular updates as to your business activity is brilliant way to spread any important news you may have and engage with trends in your industry. By doing this you will catch the attention of potential customers and then you can act on turning this interest into sales!
  • Social media and Search Engines - Popular search engines such as Google and Bing are becoming more and more interested in ranking posts and indexing from information on social media websites. 
  • Niche marketing - Marketing through social media websites allow you to find and target very specific groups of individual according to their personal likes and dislikes. You will be able to build social media tactics with the aim of reaching them, as well as creating very niche profiles to target different audiences.  
Published in Social Media