How To Market To Your Leads
How to Market Your Leads: Tips for Advertising by Email
When done correctly, email marketing is a very powerful advertising tools. While the conversion of a lead into a customer is never assured, even those new to online marketing can take steps to increase their success. This article is a primer on how to market to your leads through email. It provides a starting point for beginners and a checklist for more experienced advertisers.
Why Email Marketing?
Email is considered a “medium-length” communication. It is typically longer than a status post or tweet but shorter than a conversation. It is also one of the most effective ways to communicate details briefly and concisely. Yet, many beginning advertisers forget this form of communication is the most common across age demographics. The concise written word is currently at a premium.
Rule 1: Flood the Market
No, this does not mean spamming potential customers into the next century. This cardinal rule of advertising means you should pursue all the angles and avenues you can. Don’t just rely on a single form of advertising. Also, don’t discount older marketing avenues like print and message boards.
How do you flood the market through email? Consider who may take your emails seriously. Now, expand that audience. You never know when a certain phrase or wording will grab someone’s attention. That being said, don’t just rely on email. It needs to be backed up by other media forms (Twitter, social networking, print, a good website, and word-of-mouth).
Rule 2: Make It Personal
People do not enjoy being “talked at.” They enjoy being “talked to.” It means the speaker is acknowledging them and their needs. Better yet, they love being “talked with.” This last phrase implies equal involvement, an exchange. It is not a lecture. It is a conversation. Your emails should never feel like a lecture. They should never feel generic or impersonal, because then the reader will assume you aren’t serious about them or even your product. The point here is called “prospect conversion.” The people who have given you their emails, in whatever way, are called “prospects.” When they show interest, they are usually called “leads.” In a successful sale, you convert the potential customers (prospects and leads) into real, buying customers. To do that, you have to show them you are ready to pay attention.
While you cannot always anticipate a consumer’s needs, you know your own. Put yourself in their place. Describe what you went through when shopping for a similar product. Describe your “journey” from need to purchase. This can be a great segue into why your product is the best, and why you got into this business in the first place. For more on the “consumer’s journey,” look to people like Adele Revella of the Buyer Persona Institute. You can find more information at www.buyerpersona.com. Their “5 Rings of Buying Insight” is especially helpful in developing your need-to-purchase narrative.
Rule 3: Strike a Balance between Clear and Chatty
While you want to make things personal for the prospective buyer, you don’t want to take that too far. Remember that time spent talking is usually not time spent buying. Be personal but get to the point. Tell them exactly what your product will do for them. Tell them what problem it will solve. Tell them what aspect of their lives it improves.
Along these lines, you also want to avoid copying language from one media to another. For example, emoticons, emojis, and hashtags accomplish nothing in an email. Think about what email does. It has replaced the postal service as the fastest conveyor of written information. People who read your email will expect their information at the speed of cyberspace. Give it to them.
Rule 4: Be the Champion of Your Product
Speak about your product with utter confidence. Never say what your product “can do” for customers. Say what it “will do” or what it “does.” Avoid passive voice, sidebars, reverse psychology, and timid phrasing. Projecting confidence is a way to tell consumers you care about them and the product. Of course need this. Of course this does this. Of course this is the best.
The above being said, always back up your “of courses.” This feeds into all of the other rules in this article. Provide evidence, statistics, anything that shows your product is superior to the others. Above all, remember that consumers do not care what your product is not. They care about what your product is.
Rule 5: What’s the Next Step?
When consumers are ready to take the plunge, they need to know where to dive in. Always include a clear call to action in your emails. How can the consumer get the product now? Do they call? Do they go to this link? Do they simply click here? Make it easy for the consumer. The next step should always be about conversion.
The next step usually involves direct contact with the seller. Make sure responses to email inquiries are prompt. This is called “lead followup.” If you aren’t there to answer questions or take orders, the consumer will quickly move on to someone who will.
Rule 6: The First Email Doesn’t Have to Be the Only Email
If a consumer doesn’t respond, it doesn’t always mean he or she isn’t interested. Consumers sometimes overlook emails. They sometimes end up in a spam folder. A second or third email can increase your product sales by helping you grab those clients you missed on the first pass. You can raise the stakes in a second or third email by offering a higher discount or additional deal. Just don’t appear desperate.
The rules above should give you a start on your email campaign. One final bit of advice: keep researching the best marketing methods. Stay current. Don’t assume customers will always come to you. Gather demographic information, then actually use it. Perfect your marketing skills with the latest research about your product and selling practices. Refining your approach can only improve your chances of success.