The article was first published on Medium.
We welcome all webmasters who monetize traffic on the Internet! The booming affiliate program in the educational niche Edu-Money is sharing useful content with you again. Today, we’ll talk about mailing lists and email marketing in general.
We receive hundreds of emails every day: work letters, automatic mailing, advertising and spam. Email marketing is a popular channel for attracting customers, which is suitable for any niche. A high-quality email campaign can attract new customers, encourage old clients to buy your product or service again, and convert a doubting lead.
Stage 1 — Getting Ready
Let’s look at the classic algorithm of an effective email campaign. We start with setting a goal, which is either to increase the total sales volume, or to sell a specific item. For convenience and clarity, let’s take an example — our favorite custom writing niche. Our sales sites have several such comprehensive campaigns to attract and retain customers. If you want an improved conversion of traffic through your website — do not neglect email campaigns. Edu-Money team will tell you how to raise your page ranking for earning money in the educational niche in one of the following articles, so do not forget to follow our blog.
After the goals are set, you need to collect your lead database. There are a lot of tools you can use to achieve this goal: a simple form on the site, pop-up windows, automatic subscription to newsletters, forms in chat rooms and social networks, etc. It should be remembered that a few people leave their email for unknown purposes, so do not be greedy and offer discounts, bonuses or useful materials in return for a subscription. For example, our affiliates can receive 15% off discount coupons for first orders of their customers in exchange for customers’ subscription.
The cases of webmasters who work with us using social networks (Facebook and Twitter) prove that people willingly leave their data to participate in contests and giveaways.
Next, determine the appropriate service for email marketing.
MailChimp — a CHIMPion among mail services. This is a convenient service with many functions, advanced campaign analytics, integration with useful programs and easy letter builders. Two thousand subscribers and 12 thousand letters per month are available for free.
UniSender — the Russian alternative to Chimp. It offers the services of professional marketers and SMS mailing. A hundred subscribers and one and a half thousand subscribers per month are given for free.
SendPulse — another great Russian service. SMS, web push and Viber notifications are available there. Full integration, constructor and unique subscription form, as well as 2500 subscribers and 15 thousand letters a month are included for free.
After entering the email list, do not be lazy and go through the database. If possible, fill in the lead information: name, gender, age and place of residence. A personalized letter is always more pleasant for the recipient. Based on our example, the place of study and the student’s course are especially important. Correct analysis and segmentation of the database significantly increases conversion. Separating American and Australian students, you get the opportunity to send targeted letters because the academic year and types of work at universities in America and Australia are very different.
Next, define a mailing strategy. Find out which letters are sent at the first registration, which are sent immediately after the action, and which — over time. Also, define which strategy and what service is sent to a specific list. Do not try to leave those who have already converted — their interest in subsequent purchases should be fueled by bonuses and sales.
Stage 2 — Forming a Campaign
We have decided on the strategy, the target audience has been selected, and now we are approaching the most interesting part. What does the recipient see first? That’s right, the subject line of the letter. Obviously, a long, incomprehensible and not catchy subject will not prompt one to open the letter itself. Depending on the purpose and content of the letter, the subject should be a trigger for opening it. Riddle — “How to prepare for the final exams.” Story — “John has prepared for the final exams,” Proposal — “We’ll get you prepared for the final exams without distractions from your job”, etc.
Next comes the design of letters. If the topic hooked the reader and they opened the letter, proceed to the more difficult task — evoking the interest of the potential buyer and encouraging them to go to the site. In the email templates that our affiliates can download from their personal accounts, we use the “Inverted Pyramid” concept. At the beginning comes a catchy headline, which is a short thesis that in a few words will make the meaning of the action, offer and news clear.
The next step is content: a more detailed description of the promotion, news or the terms of the contest/offer. Unlike the first stage of the “pyramid”, the second one must necessarily contain pictures. Most people are visuals, and nobody really likes a boring text.
Finally, the top of the pyramid is a call to action. This is, in the vast majority of cases, a button that redirects you to the site and allows you to buy a thing or read the news to the end. This button should be the end of the logical chain of writing. The message “Got a lot of work, but exams are too close ? We’ll take care of your writing piece” will get the reader hooked on. Then comes the description of the works that are popular before the finals (exams) with a brief description, terms and prices and, in the end, a “save time” button which takes the tortured student to the site with a solution to their problems.
You should not cram all the text into a letter at once — let the main points prevail in them and leave details for the site. At the top of the letter template, include the logo and name of the company, at the bottom — contacts and other communication methods.
Stage 3 — Analyzing
So we have sent the letters, set up automatic letters (we did, right?), and now let’s turn to analytics and subsequent changes (do not console yourself with the thought that everything will be fine the first time).
Here are the important indicators to rely on:
- • Open Rate — letter open rate. The main factors that influence this indicator are the correct targeting and attractiveness of the title. Try A/B testing, choose the right timing for sending letters (some studies have shown that they are best opened on Wednesday and Thursday evenings), polish your topics;
- • CTR (Click Through Rate) — this is the metric of targeted actions per page. CTR shows how many people who opened your letter went through the entire “pyramid” and were triggered by the “buy a paper ” action. To improve your CTR, add high-quality content, beautiful and appropriate images, and a clearer call to action.
- • Bounce Rate — the number of spam emails, undelivered messages and unsubscribes from newsletters. It’s unpleasant, but you can’t avoid it. You can fix this issue by double-checking the database, confirming the sender address in the mail service and including high-quality targeting.
- • CR (Conversion Rate) — the coefficient of recipients who made a purchase after being redirected from a letter. The letter can only be corrected with high-quality pictures and relevance of the offered goods.
Make tracking of your email campaigns dynamic a habit, see who opens letters, clicks and makes purchases. Segment recipients by active and passive ones and keep testing — there is no limit to perfection.
Shortening the path
At last, I will share with you several variants of the so-called “active” base collection (email scraping, email parsing). There are manual and automatic parsing options.
During the automatic database parsing, the program itself searches for, selects and saves email from sites and letters:
Parsinfo.ru — the Russian parsing email service that collects email addresses from any sites you need. It is enough to upload a file with sites and wait for the completion of work. The interface is simple and devoid of unnecessary filters and ads. The data is uploaded directly in the site parser application or in Excel format. This parser is free.
EmailGrabber.net — аn English service similar to the previous one . It shows more in-depth and better parsing results by retrieving additional information such as names of address owners. You can use it free of charge for 30 days.
Epochta.com.ua — keyword extraction, search filtering.
Manual collection of data is cheaper (free) but takes more time. There are a lot of options, and I will share with you one of the simplest which does not require special knowledge. No software needed here, just a free extension in Chrome called “Email Extractor”. After installation, open Facebook and enter “your email comment + x”, in the search bar, where x is the keyword in your niche. I personally had “your email comment + essay”. Next, apply filters by date, region, university and select public posts. Among them, we are looking for posts with a large number of comments and fully disclose them all. Then, go to Email Extractor and copy all the addresses found in a format convenient for you. Change filters and keywords and build a database. Cheap and cheerful.
Email marketing is one of the pillars of modern digital marketing and an invariable tool for lead generation / boost / conversion / retention — in general, everything you need to perform successful commercial results. While most companies and webmasters refer to email marketing as advanced methods that are not required in the first stages, you need to be one step ahead and implement these methods as soon as you start your project.
Determine the right service for yourself, collect an extensive database of leads, carefully analyze and sort them into different categories. Create a catchy and informative letter, test different options and increase the conversion on your sites. And if your sites attract students, make money with them using Edu-Money.