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CONNECTED CULTURE Blog by Jerry Allocca

Now, more than ever, we're all connected. What does it mean to be part of the Connected Culture? Share your thoughts and ideas here!
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The One Thing You Need to Do Right Now to Boost Your Email Marketing Subscribers

Email Marketing Best PracticesGetting more people to subscribe to your email marketing campaign is the first step to getting more customers. And of course, a strong email list means a stronger bottom line.

Follow this one tip now to start boosting your email marketing subscribers. You’ll see results!

Send a Newsletter – Regularly

Yup. Newsletters have been around for years and for good reason: they work.

The key is to establish a consistent schedule so that you keep your subscribers engaged. Most companies send sporadic email messaging and promos, using email only has a way to drive referral traffic or sales. However, by just pushing out marketing messaging, companies are missing out on an opportunity to build a stronger customer base and loyalty. Offering value through email is the missing link that can make or break a company’s email success. Newsletters are one way to do just that.

Here’s an example of newsletter marketing in action: Israel 365 is a company that used a regular newsletter as part of its email marketing campaign. After initiating the newsletter and a couple of other updates to its campaign, the non-profit achieved a 25% increase in subscribers in one day and a landing page of 1,813 visitors and 974 conversions. There are countless other case studies out there that show its power. If you haven’t invested time into this tactic, now is a good time to start.

Provide Value and Interest

When creating your newsletter, don’t just focus on promos and coupon codes or pushing your next product. Create a newsletter that features useful and fresh content that’s interesting, even exclusive, to subscribers, so that there’s an incentive to join your list. Value add-ons like free product, coupons, or other deals for signing up for your newsletter can also be a great incentive, but brainstorm ways to give back to your subscribers and implement that content alongside product offers in your newsletter.

You’ll also need consistency. We’ve already talked about how consistency is key to any marketing tactic’s success, and email marketing is no different. Establish a regular send schedule and stick to it. Send more when seasonality or newsworthiness requires, but don’t go overboard. The minute you spam, you ruin your potential of building a strong email base to market to and build relationships with.

Getting Started

Online tools are available to assist with this venture, including TinyLetter, MailChimp, Constant Contact and other carriers. Choosing an email marketing platform is something for another post, but really, it all comes down to what your needs are as a marketer. Decide what you want in a platform, look at how large your list is, and what your potential is for growth. From there, design a professional template that can convey your messaging and branding effectively.

Start the process by using a simple template that features a blend of exclusive content written just for email subscribers and existing content that’s already accessible (in case they haven’t picked up on it on your other channels). Include excerpts of recent blog posts or content creations so that subscribers will know what they are heading to. Add some additional resources, like links to pictures, videos, or landing pages specific to a product, service, or other topic, as long as you focus on its value in a way that’s unique – and not a total sales pitch. Finish with a call to action at the end and maybe include an incentive, such as a contest, a coupon code, or something else to “sweeten the deal” when needed. Really, newsletters should be about news – i.e. what makes your organization tick. Choose topics that build trust and show a more human side of your business. Featured employees, stories, videos, and media promoting your culture are always popular, as are links to blog posts or exclusive insider information. Eventually, as you grow your list and your content strategy work on creating exclusive content entirely just for the newsletter so that subscribers are getting value from what you’re sending.

Finally, make sure it’s easy to sign up for your newsletter by creating sign up forms across your site and social media channels. Make them accessible, simple, and attractive. After all, you’re inviting yourself into their inboxes – an incredibly personal place. You want to make the right impression.

Takeaway: Send newsletters that add value – and send regularly.

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Consistency: The Secret to Successful SEO, Social Media, & Email Marketing

Social Media, SEO, and Email: Consistency is Key!

Social Media, SEO, and Email: Consistency is Key!

If you were to ask your marketing team what the most important part of a successful SEO, email marketing, or social media strategy was, what do you think their responses would be?

  • Is it solid design?
  • Compelling copy?
  • Engagement, engagement, engagement?

What would surprise you is that while all of these responses contribute to a successful campaign, they’re not the actual foundation. So what is it? The answer lies in your calendar.

Take a look at your marketing calendar. Are there a rhythm and a pattern for communication? Do you plan out your messaging in advance? Is there a finite task list to have work completed at regular intervals? Scheduled promotions? An overarching strategy to guide it all? If you answered “yes”, then you’re already on the right path. If not, you’re lacking the secret ingredient to a successful online marketing campaign: consistency.

Consistency, while not as flashy or exciting as the design elements that usually bring a campaign to life is critical to any communications effort. When you’re consistent, your audience can not only become accustomed to receiving communication from you, but it also invites trust and even an expectation of receiving your message. Just think about that – your customers EXPECT to hear from you. This is huge.

Much like the relationship you have with your marketing team, your customers – once they opt in to receive your messaging – come to depend on regular communication to motivate them to action. They actively seek deals or coupons, they check their inbox before shopping, or they do a quick search of your site, social media channels, and Google to see if there’s a new item or a new deal to be taken advantage of. When you establish a regular rhythm of communication, a comfortable relationship can form, which is the ultimate goal for any marketer – a long-standing, trusting, and mutually beneficial relationship.

But let’s look a little bit deeper. What other value does consistency bring to the table?

On Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram, or whatever flavor of social media your organization prefers, consistency allows for conversations to occur. If users can expect your updates at certain times, that opens the door for engagement. They’ll know that they can ask a question, tweet a response, or give feedback and there’ll be someone there to respond. That engagement is what makes or breaks a brand’s reputation, not to mention, enhances the overall communication and customer service process. If you give your audience a chance to get your message and respond, you can build that relationship you’re looking for. (Plus, having an active social media presence often correlates with higher search rankings and improved online visibility). You should also note that consistent messaging in tone and type can help you build a brand persona, which can further facilitate trust and authority.

Consistency also means producing regular, fresh content for indexation and for search engines, the freshness factor matters. In fact, it’s baked right into the algorithm so that content that is new, timely, and valuable tends to get preference in rankings – even if it’s only for a short period of time. That short period of higher ranking may be just enough to get the notice you’re looking for. Additionally, consistency in optimization approach (meaning that you have a consistent format for UX, navigation, meta tags, content structure, code, etc.) can make your SEO process more organized and even more impactful.

Tracking results is also easier when you have a consistent calendar to go from. Utilizing data from your social media management tools, Google Analytics, URL tracking systems, or other sources can help you evaluate what works and what doesn’t in your timing, approach, or audience segment. It’s easier to report success when you have a consistent pattern to work from. The more sporadic your messaging, the more difficult it can become to assess what’s working and what isn’t. Track EVERYTHING. The time something is sent, the duration of the conversation, the day of the week, the time of the month or year, the channel, the audience segment targeted. The more data you have on these key metrics, the easier it’ll be to make decisions on your overall online marketing strategy.  Plus, this gives you the edge of being able to make soft predictions of what will happen in future marketing efforts.

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