What do you think is the value of email marketing and why should I use it?

18 replies
99% of email lists I am ever subscribed to by any method I unsubscribe. The one I have tolerated for a while is the Ticketmaster one but just thinking about the fact that I do tolerate it made me unsubscribe from that while I am writing this post. I am now unaware of any email list I subscribe to because I find them more annoying than useful. If I want to know something, I will Google it, search my own notes, or ask a friend. I never get emails that I feel are personal enough to merit my attention.

Due to this heavy personal bias against email marketing, I have been hesitant to use it in my business. I collected my list once of customer emails and I had a list of over 500. I uploaded it to survey monkey and wrote what I had intended as an email filled with helpful information and asking for their advice. Surveymonkey helped me out suspended on my first email before it sent. After two years in the online advertising and internet marketing business, I still have never executed an email marketing campaign. I believe a personal approach is the most important and I only email my customers with information strictly relevant to them with a personal email addressed only to them.

The question I have for you is based on seeing how much value others place on email marketing, what am I missing and is it worth even considering? In other words, what do you think the value of building an email list is and how do you use it in your business?

In expanding my original question based on replies, it seems list building is critical for those in the affiliate market (I guess technically we all are if we find something our customers could use and send them to it). For companies selling well known products and services such as tickets, fashion items, etc. it is clear that having a list is a huge value because it is cost effective. Whether one person like me unsubscribes to all the lists is fairly meaningless next to the millions that do since I was often not interested to begin with.It seems list building is critical for those in the affiliate market (I guess technically we all are if we find something our customers could use and send them to it). For companies selling well known products and services such as tickets, fashion items, etc. it is clear that having a list is a huge value because it is cost effective. Whether one person like me unsubscribes to all the lists is fairly meaningless next to the millions that do since I was often not interested to begin with.

For me personally, there is a key difference. I generally am selling custom solutions to challenging online advertising problems. My customers pay hundreds at a minimum and my best customers are spending hundreds of thousands on online ads. I manage hundreds of personal relationships with them which can literally go wrong with one impersonal or not well thought email. Most of them are very busy and prefer to have me just do what they need without constantly interrupting them. This is not surprising since my customers tend to be a lot like me. For me personally, there is a key difference. I generally am selling custom solutions to challenging online advertising problems. My customers pay hundreds at a minimum and my best customers are spending hundreds of thousands on online ads. I manage hundreds of personal relationships with them which can literally go wrong with one impersonal or not well thought email. Most of them are very busy and prefer to have me just do what they need without constantly interrupting them. This is not surprising since my customers tend to be a lot like me.
#email #list #making #marketing
  • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
    Banned
    More power to you, if you can make a living without it. I'm an affiliate marketer, so I wouldn't be able to do that, myself.

    Neither would hundreds of other Warriors who say so, loudly and clearly, whenever asked, in hundreds of threads like this: http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...marketing.html

    It's a good way to form trust-based relationships with potential customers. To me, most of the benefits of email marketing come more or less under the heading of "Things that you can't do without email marketing".

    And those are the things that earn me (and countless others) our livings. That's a big part of the reason why there are a few hundred threads in this forum with titles similar to "What's The One Thing You'd Do Differently If You Were Starting Again Tomorrow?". Take a look through a small sample of them, and you'll find that one of the things they all have in common is that they're full of replies from long-established, successful Warriors almost all of whom give the same answer: the thing they'd do differently, with what they know now but didn't know when they started, is "start to build a list on day 1". There are reasons for that, and they're very good and very valid reasons.

    My perspective is that of the affiliate marketer. It seems to me that most of the money in affiliate marketing comes from (a) selling repeated items to the same audience (by never disappointing them, and by building trust), and (b) by keeping your traffic returning to the sales pages (because few people buy anything much at their first visit to a sales page). Without list-building, I can't do either of those two things, myself, and without those I can't make a living. There are one or two people who claim that they can, but when you look closely at what they're doing, it always looks like they're actually making a living by selling their "information" to newbies, not really from affiliate marketing at all.

    These three threads may help you ...

    Is it a good idea to spend some time on building a mailing list ?

    Without Building a List, How Consistent is Your Income from Affiliate Marketing

    Does anyone even make money online without an email list?

    And this one also contains some discussion of the advantages of email marketing, and how they really work: What are the essential things to know about list building?
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
    Originally Posted by banwork View Post

    Due to this heavy personal bias against email marketing, I have been hesitant to use it in my business. I collected my list once of customer emails and I had a list of over 500. I uploaded it to survey monkey and wrote what I had intended as an email filled with helpful information and asking for their advice. Surveymonkey helped me out suspended on my first email before it sent.
    One third-party service gave you a rough time, so you abandoned the project? I would have used SM to host the survey and done the mailing myself, either spending the time to do it one on one or uploading my list to a self-hosted solution for the initial mailing.

    Originally Posted by banwork View Post

    After two years in the online advertising and internet marketing business, I still have never executed an email marketing campaign. I believe a personal approach is the most important and I only email my customers with information strictly relevant to them with a personal email addressed only to them.
    Okay, imagine if you could do that to your entire group of prospects and/or customers. Communicate 1:1 with 500 or 500,000 at the same time. The key is in content selection and setting expectations.

    If you're using emails in the IM/MMO space to judge all emails, you're making an error. There are so many monkey-see, monkey do wannabe marketers, fake-it-til-you-make-it frauds, and churn and burn profiteers that bad emails probably outnumber really good ones 100:1 or more.

    Originally Posted by banwork View Post

    The question I have for you is based on seeing how much value others place on email marketing, what am I missing and is it worth even considering? In other words, what do you think the value of building an email list is and how do you use it in your business?
    There's a natural buying process people go through for everything but the most trivial impulse purchases. It starts with awareness of an unmet desire, progresses through a sequence of education and selection, and culminates in a purchase decision.

    Most marketers want to shortcut the process by only targeting people in the final stage, leading to a lot of people competing for the same attention, with varying degrees of competence and success.

    I believe that if you can catch people earlier in the buying process, you can guide their process where you want it to go so that when they reach that final decision point, there really is no competition. While you lead them through the education process, you build the "know, like and trust" factor that creates successful sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author Oliver Hart
    Do you need an email list?

    Nope, you don't as long as you can find, and can afford to use, some other methods to explore your commercials for your product in front of your target marked enough times to make them buy your product.

    It is scientific proven that you must explore your messages to your audience approximal eight times before they take action. Other tests in the same genre tell us that only 1-2% will act on a commercial the first time they see it.

    Big brands as Cola do not use email marketing, so it is proven that you don't need an email list to have success. They use other marketing channels as TV, etc., and they can afford it.

    The reason online marketers love email marketing is because it is a cheap and effective way to build trust, give useful information, and explore your commercial to your target audience as many times it takes to make them react on it.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by Oddvar Meyer View Post

      Do you need an email list?

      Nope, you don't as long as you can find, and can afford to use, some other methods to explore your commercials for your product in front of your target marked enough times to make them buy your product.

      It is scientific proven that you must explore your messages to your audience approximal eight times before they take action. Other tests in the same genre tell us that only 1-2% will act on a commercial the first time they see it.

      Big brands as Cola do not use email marketing, so it is proven that you don't need an email list to have success. They use other marketing channels as TV, etc., and they can afford it.

      The reason online marketers love email marketing is because it is a cheap and effective way to build trust, give useful information, and explore your commercial to your target audience as many times it takes to make them react on it.
      Judging just from my own inbox, big companies like Coke and Pepsico, and even the major car makers, are adding email marketing to the mix. They may not be using the same kind of trust building sequences that most of us here use, but they're seeing the light on customer/prospect engagement, especially via social media.
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      • Profile picture of the author Oliver Hart
        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        Judging just from my own inbox, big companies like Coke and Pepsico, and even the major car makers, are adding email marketing to the mix. They may not be using the same kind of trust building sequences that most of us here use, but they're seeing the light on customer/prospect engagement, especially via social media.
        I am fully aware that my answer was not 100% correct, but I assume you took my point
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Awes
    Originally Posted by banwork View Post

    I am now unaware of any email list I subscribe to because I find them more annoying than useful. If I want to know something, I will Google it, search my own notes, or ask a friend. I never get emails that I feel are personal enough to merit my attention.

    Due to this heavy personal bias against email marketing, I have been hesitant to use it in my business.
    ...

    In other words, what do you think the value of building an email list is and how do you use it in your business?
    The important thing about starting your own business is to give your customer what they want/expect. The best advice I can give you is put your personal opinion/experiences to one side for a moment and look at it this way:

    Yes people can search on Google for what they want to learn about but they subscribe on a list because they want to be kept up-to-date by somone that knows.

    They want to engage in some way. Even if they can't/won't reply to the email they have constant messages about new things/development/events...
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Awes
    I forgot to mention:

    Build the relationship with your email list and they will think of you as an authority.
    They will follow your instructions.
    You could point them to an offer / product for sale from time to time and many will buy just because you suggest/recommended it regardless what the product is.

    Building a list will increase your profile/brand and is a great tool for growing loyalty.
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    • Profile picture of the author James Clark
      I disagree totally! If use properly email marketing is the most profitably part of your business. Of course, you have not experienced that because you are not subscribed to THE correct list. If you to want learn about the internet then PM me and will tell you what list to sign-up for. But I'm not going to make it public.

      A benefit is what it does for YOU.
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  • Profile picture of the author coderrichar
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    • Profile picture of the author igorGriffiths
      So you have in effect 2 lists
      Your buyers list with the 500 people you really do not want to lose
      and
      a prospects list who need to be educated about why they should become customers of your company.

      This is the power of email marketing taking prospects and developing them into loyal, long term customers.

      As for your buyers list, you need to keep them informed regarding new innovations in your business, new problems in the industry that you have solutions for. Also at a frequency you think will work, affiliate products that enhance your customers experience with your solutions and related issues in their lives and businesses.
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      • Profile picture of the author banwork
        Based on what you have suggested and combined with what I know, it appears the best action for me to take is to communicate individually with my buyer's list via email as I have been but to do it a little more often. For people that are earlier in the buying stage, I need to have a method for building their trust and allowing them to follow me without me actively having to communicate with them throughout the entire process. Either email marketing or a substitute. I am opting for YouTube views, subscribers, and remarketing now instead of email. Perhaps I can get email subscribers via my YouTube videos and send my newest videos to the email list.

        I appreciate your feedback and will continue to keep my eyes open for ways to successfully add email marketing AND watch for companies that do email marketing right. There are so few of them it is hard to find one to emulate. I would even expand on the 100:1 bad:good email marketing and go 1000:1.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rory Singh
    If you send traffic to a sales page, usually 95% or more of that traffic doesn't buy immediately. Look at this forum as an example, there are many members who admit to lingering around the forums trying to learn for years. Not all the traffic is going to buy (most won't) but a percentage of your list will buy your present product later.

    And some will buy something else later down the road.

    For example: I made a 10K sale that netted me $5k right into my bank account just by sending out a broadcast email from my Aweber.

    All I did was tell the truth - I was at a resort vacationing with my family and was just about to take my two sons out to the pool.

    One of my subscribers replied to that email that day that she would like a lifestyle like that and that she was going to join my opportunity.

    She did!

    She also came in and actually did some work, her first sale that she made netted her $5k as well.

    And she did this all from her spare time on a US base while there was a war in Afganistan (that is a success story in itself don't you think?)

    And if I didn't have an email marketing campaign, I would have lost a big sale and a Producer/Partner.
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    • Profile picture of the author banwork
      You all have finally convinced me. I have read this thread now several times and thought about what you each said. I finally made a new MailChimp account and have integrated email marketing on my website. My new list has just 78 sign ups since I launched in June 2014.

      Thank you all for giving me your recommendations about email marketing and I look forward to seeing what opportunities I build as I continue increasing the size of my list.
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  • Profile picture of the author DavidTile
    Email is probably best for retargeting customers back to your site. Also, email is more effective with older demographics.
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    • Profile picture of the author dreamhobbiz
      How does one engage the people on the email list in order to build relationships?
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      • Profile picture of the author banwork
        Originally Posted by DavidTile View Post

        Email is probably best for retargeting customers back to your site. Also, email is more effective with older demographics.
        My data so far definitely support what you have suggested!

        Originally Posted by dreamhobbiz View Post

        How does one engage the people on the email list in order to build relationships?
        While this could be a thread for another topic, it seems the most successful approach is to be very personal with the email communication. Start every email with the person's name if you collected that and clearly communicate why they are receiving each email.
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  • Profile picture of the author Stuart Walker
    My email list sends a 3rd of my monthly traffic to my site.

    It allows me to build up trust and a relationship with my subscribers.

    It allows me to recommend products to them.

    I can have conversations with them via email.

    I can do all this automatically and once it's done once it's all set up forever.

    Makes for passive traffic and sales.
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    • Profile picture of the author banwork
      Originally Posted by Stuart Walker View Post

      My email list sends a 3rd of my monthly traffic to my site.

      It allows me to build up trust and a relationship with my subscribers.

      It allows me to recommend products to them.

      I can have conversations with them via email.

      I can do all this automatically and once it's done once it's all set up forever.

      Makes for passive traffic and sales.
      That is what I am hoping to setup for my website too. I just started email marketing which leaves less than 5% of my traffic coming from email marketing now. Still, my list grows for free each day and I know the only reason I didn't start earlier was because my MailChimp account got suspended when I first tried email marketing and made the mistake of using an amazon affiliate link in the email.

      That said, poor email marketing I would guess is a good way to waste a lot of time and money. I have a friend spending over a thousand a month to do email marketing and yet he hardly makes any money from it. Why have a ton of subscribers if you don't monetize them?
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