The StartupNation Blog Trends, tips and real-life anecdotes from industry experts

Posts Tagged “iContact”

How Accessible are your Emails?

One overlooked aspect of email and online marketing is the topic of accessibility. Many web sites have evolved over the years to become more accessible to people with hearing and visual impairments. In addition, new platforms, such as mobile devices, are transforming the way web sites and other online resources are accessed. While usually only [...]

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Building and Managing a Rockstar Team

You developed your business idea, closed on deals with suppliers, ordered your inventory of products, written your business plan, incorporated, and raised the money you need to get started. Now what? Every aspiring entrepreneur should put considerable thought into building a solid infrastructure and eventually constructing a team full of key players. First, find and [...]

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How to Tell if Your Product is Great

Product development is a crucial step in building a company that will produce top sales. Through the years, innovation has been at the core of creating successful business models or new products. The question you must ask yourself is, “How can I tell if my product will satisfy customer needs in innovative ways that lead [...]

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Announcing new employees in your newsletters

Once you are able to truly afford it, hiring new employees is a great way to begin or continue expanding your business into a more sustainable company. If you surround yourself with people who both magnify your strengths and fill in those gaps where you have weaknesses, your company has a higher probability of becoming [...]

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Study proves that personalized emails are more effective

Email marketing is back in the news with some statistics that could help you improve your email campaigns. According to a recent study by the Aberdeen Group, companies that targeted and personalized their emails received 57% more orders than those that sent out non-personalized emails (, July 28, 2008). The study also found that 96% [...]

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Company events

As a business owner or entrepreneur, one of the best things you can do for your company is to host an event in your local community. We’ve spoken a lot about getting your business’s name out in the online marketplace and in print, and nothing generates buzz like a well-organized event. You can also personally [...]

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Using social networking to increase company visibility

With hundreds of millions of registered users across the world, social networking web sites are among the most popular places to communicate and trade information. There are numerous reasons why people use these sites: to find colleagues, friends or classmates, read breaking news, or make new business connections. As social media continues to evolve, how can your business integrate the use of these sites with your email marketing campaigns to increase your company’s visibility?

The first thing you should do is actually visit some of these sites, and scout around for the ones that seem most appealing to you. As an entrepreneur or business owner, there are a few popular sites that are used for business purposes only, such as Linkedin and Plaxo. On these sites, you can post information about your business and build relationships with businesspeople and new clients from your region or from across the world. Other sites like Facebook and Myspace began as simply social networking sites, and have evolved into places to hear new music, play games, or join political causes.

You can create free profiles on most of these sites, which gives your clients and business connections an opportunity to put your face and name with that of your company. One word of caution however: if you do choose to add a profile onto these sites, and you will be using it for business purposes, make sure not to include anything profane, political or controversial on your profile. This can turn a potential customer or relationship into a lost connection.

Once your networking profiles have been created, you can include them in your email messages and encourage your subscribers to connect with you. You can also use your email newsletters as a way to get your customers to share your content on a variety of social networking sites.

For example, if you use iContact as your email marketing service, you can use our email “sharebar” at the bottom of every message you send to encourage your readers to share you messages with the public. Through the sharebar, your subscribers can post your content on sites like Facebook, Digg, and reddit. This can exponentially increase the number of readers who view your content, and get your company’s name out to demographics of people you may have never thought you could reach.

For this reason, it’s increasingly important to include accurate, quality content in your email messages because you never know who is reading at any given moment. I hope you enjoy your weekend, and I’ll be back next time with more email marketing tips and advice.


Ryan Allis


With hundreds of millions of registered users across the world, social networking web sites are among the most popular places to communicate and trade information. There are numerous reasons why people use these sites: to find colleagues, friends or classmates, read breaking news, or make new business connections. As social media continues to evolve, how [...]

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Email marketing makes it easy being green

In the past few years, we have seen a dramatic shift in the way we talk about our environment. From heated debates in Congress about amending our energy policies, to the fervor generated by Al Gore’s award-winning documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, to millions of businesses changing their company cultures, “greening” has entered into the discourse [...]

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Changes in the CAN-SPAM Act

I’ve spoken in the past about the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 and how it affects email marketers. Congress passed the CAN-SPAM Act (Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing) to establish guidelines for those businesses that send out commercial emails, and to cut down the on volume of spam through the U.S. As ethical [...]

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Personalizing your messages contd.

In the last post, I discussed the benefits your business can receive by personalizing your email messages. Personalization can be a powerful way to reinforce the connection between your company and your customers. Although a subscriber’s email address is the most important piece of information when it comes to your email marketing campaigns, having their [...]

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The Eight Deadly Sins of Email Marketing cont.

Earlier in the week, I began a discussion about what you should not do with your email newsletters. In his article, “The Eight Deadly Sins of Email Marketing,” Ron Evans talks about the worst things you can do with your email marketing campaigns. Here are the final four “deadly sins:” Don’t send out HTML emails [...]

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What NOT to do with your email newsletters

I’ve spoken at length about what to say in your email messages to make your company more attractive to your potential customers. I have also discussed ways to improve the look and feel of your messages to give them a more professional appearance. These best practices will help you maximize your email marketing campaigns, raise [...]

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What Indiana Jones can teach you about running your business

After a nearly two-decade hiatus, Indiana Jones is back in a new adventure that is ripping through box offices across the world. Ever since Raiders of the Lost Ark captured the world’s imagination in 1981, philosophers, professors and college students alike have tried to decipher Indy’s iconic image. They say, “Look, we know this is [...]

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Doing business internationally

There are a few main methods of scaling your business, including: investing more in online or offline advertising, franchising your company, opening up offices in other cities and countries, expanding your business into the international market. With the advent of the Internet and email marketing, the markets of the world have become more accessible to [...]

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Sales continued: Listening to your customers

In his book, Succeed and Grow Rich through Persuasion, Napoleon Hill listed eleven traits that the successful salesperson must possess. I have adapted these and created my own Nine Traits a Successful Salesperson Must Have: Knowledge of merchandise Belief in the merchandise or service Knowledge of the prospective buyer Ability to make the prospective buyer [...]

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The art of the sale

The skill of sales is one of the most-prized attributes that an aspiring entrepreneur can have. The ability to lay out the reason why someone should buy from you and not your competitor, in a customer-centered fashion – and then go for the sale at the exact right moment, is more difficult than one would [...]

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Creating a mission statement

If you are in the process of launching or revamping your business and you have a solid business plan in place, there is just one more element of organizational planning you need to consider. It’s very important to create or improve upon a mission statement for your company that your team members can agree to [...]

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Tracking your email messages saves time and money

Let’s imagine for a moment that you have gone through all the necessary steps to create and develop a successful email marketing campaign. You have spent many hours putting together a great looking, well-designed newsletter, and have obtained numerous email addresses from your customers through your web site’s Sign-up form. You have even created an [...]

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