A reliable email marketing subscriber list is one of the most valuable things a small business person can have. Your subscribers depend on your emails to keep them up to date on any new products you are going to release, special promotions and (if your email newsletter is worth it’s salt,) the interesting content you provide for them.
So, as I’m sure you can imagine, the last thing a savvy small business owner would want is to cause a panic amongst his or her loyal subscribers.
Panic? How could an email newsletter cause someone to panic? Well, I guess that would depend on what your definition of panic was, wouldn’t it? Let's take a look at some examples.
There are few things worse in the eyes of the customer than getting a cheaply made product that doesn’t live up to it’s advertising hype in the mail, when they were expecting a sturdy workhorse that was going to make their life easier.
If you want your subscribers to become, and stay, customers, you need to make sure that all of the products that you market in your newsletters and offer on your website, are as good as you claim they are.
There is an art to email marketing that a lot of first time email marketers don’t get, and that lays in a little thing called sending frequency. If you really want your emails to be effective, then you have to send them often enough so that the subscriber doesn't forget that you and your business exist, but not so often that your subscribers groan every time they see one of your emails land in their inbox. Sending your emails too often will only drive your subscribers to one thing, the unsubscribe box, or worse - spam complaints.
Shady Subject Lines
There are quite a bit of email marketing “experts” out there in the blogosphere that will say that the subject line is possibly the most important part of your email newsletter. And you know what? They’re right.
The subject line is the window that your subscribers look through, to see if they want to visit the world of your email. If your subject line promises them something that sparks their imagination or hint’s at a secret that they just can’t keep on living until they know, then consider that email opened - you’re work is halfway done. Now, let me tell you what shady, panic inducing subject lines look like. They are written in all caps. They have fifteen exclamation points at the beginning and at the end. They are just plain scary, and no one is going to open a scary looking email. Keep your subject lines simple, and you’ll go a long way.
Adding Subscribers To A Different List
You cannot add anyone to any mailing list without asking them first. Not only is it completely sketchy, but it’s illegal. Yup, even if the list is yours.
When people subscribe to an email list, they are putting their trust in you, and the worst thing you can do as a business person is betray that trust. If you want to suggest they subscribe to a new email list that you have started, describe the list in your current newsletter and let them decide. Don’t be sketchy.
Veering Off Topic
There is a slippery slope that those who manage an email newsletter have to manage - I mean, think about it. You have the attention of X amount of people and you can contact them any time you want, right? What’s to stop you from venting if your boss was a jerk the day before or if your car broke down on the way to pick up your great aunt Mildred at the bus station last week? Not much, is there?
But friends, trust me. There is nothing less appealing, than for someone from whom you expect business emails, to send out a sobby, poorly written, drunken email filled with complaints about life. Save the troubles for your diary and keep your newsletters all business. You’ll be glad you did.
Author: Daniel Cassady is a freelance writer and a frequent contributor to an online blog hosted by Benchmark Email, an international provider of email marketing software.