Appearing on page one of search engine results is is one of the primary goals of an online marketing strategy. But it’s not enough.
Gaining the initial page views from online visitors is a necessary goal that should always be supplemented by a follow-through strategy. This strategy takes the form of email marketing. With an average of 4,300% ROI for U.S. businesses (source), email marketing is an incredible asset that requires simple setup, A/B testing, and consistent management in order to succeed.
The Importance of Gaining a Subscription Base
Once you have put effort into developing a content strategy for your business, it goes without saying that a subscription option should be readily available. Putting the effort into writing great content is being underutilized (and the ROI is tanking) if the only traffic you depend on is being pulled in organically.
Personally, I have a large variety of items on my to-do list. Saving website links doesn’t always happen.
Encouraging online visitors to sign up for email blasts ensures that your visitors will receive periodic reminders of your company, your services, and the great resources that you are able to offer your clientele.
Companies using email to nurture leads generate 50% more sales-ready leads and at 33% lower cost. And nurtured leads, on average, produce a 20% increase in sales opportunities compared to non-nurtured leads. (source)
First Stop: Capturing the Email
To capture an email, some type of call to action form must first be designed, then programmed into the website. There are a few different ways to do this.
The generic call to action “subscribe to our blog” option that is typically offered as a free option with most websites. This widget is a easily placed on a sidebar and offers a gentle urge to readers.
The popup is also becoming a lot more popular as software has become extremely advanced. There are some greaet plugins available (the more intricate ones are available at a cost) that are customizeable to pop up after the visitor has spent X amount of time on the website, or has visited X number of pages, etc.
A variety of tactics can be utilized to help capture the lead’s email at various points throughout their visit to your website. (Some common lead capturing/email newsletter software options come from Mailchimp & Aweber)
Take Time to Design
Take advantage of your initial “WOW”ing of your online visitors by capturing their fancy with a beautiful subscription button. And, since you have only 3-4 seconds to pique the interest of your reader, it is important to hit all of the major contact areas with strict attention to detail and constant testing.
The additional time spent on design is well worth it. An email, unlike the URL of a blog post, is easily forwarded to a friend, earning your company a free referral service. This includes the use of social sharing buttons within emails (and the blog posts themselves). In fact,
Emails with social sharing buttons increase click through rates by 158% (source).
The Importance of Tracking
There are many benefits to using third party lead capturing applications. Many come with built-in CRM integration that can track the engagement of that particular lead. With this additional feature, your road map becomes increasingly visible and more easily analyzed for a better conversion rate.
The Double Opt In
The call to action on your website should be simple and streamlined: a verbal offer of the subscription’s benefits and the invitation to submit an email address.
The less information you ask for, the more likely it is that the form will be filled out and submitted.
Once the subscription has been filled out, utilizing a double opt-in email will help ensure that your emails don’t get marked as spam in the future. Encouraging the subscriber to confirm a subscription drastically reduces the probability that they will mark your emails as spam in the future.
Why is this important? The percentages may differ, but one study reports that major email campaign accounts are locked out after 0.5% of the emails were marked as spam.
Tips: Use the double opt-in to reduce the risk of your emails being marked as spam by subscribers.
Maintain Loyal Subscribers
Customer retention is a huge challenge for businesses. You may be tempted to think “either they like me or they don’t” But you know, that’s not true. Everything point of contact you make with your potential and current clients helps to nudge them from having a good experience to having a great one.