More and more IM’ers and bloggers are starting to awaken to the possibilities of focusing on email marketing. It’s definitely one of the most important aspects of my online business, and something that I recommend everyone do once you get past the point of relying solely on Adsense for monetization.
However, from time to time, I come across IM’ers who are somewhat resistant to the idea of using email marketing in their business. I can kind of understand why – once you decide to make the jump from Adsense to selling a product, it’s tempting to just rush right into developing that product so you can start selling it more quickly.
But let me take a minute to show you some of the benefits that you get from email marketing. Far from being a needless distraction, email marketing can help you sell more and keep you from wasting time on a product that won’t sell well.
1) Turn Traffic Into Readers – Want to know when you really start to move away from having a website and move towards running a real business? When you turn traffic into readers. Think of all the searchers coming to your website every day from Google and Bing. Do any of them ever come back to your site?
If you’re doing a good job of answering their questions with your content, then probably some of them are. How do you capitalize on that? Get them signed up on an email list so that they automatically receive all of the new content that you develop.
2) Get Your Content To Your Readers – On a related note, the easiest way to get your content to your readers is to send it directly to their Inbox. This way they don’t have to hunt you down to see if you’ve published anything new lately. Your new article/video/podcast is sitting right there in their Inbox, and they’re only a click away from reading/watching/listening to it.
3) You Can Send Them A Full Course Of Content – Have you ever had a reader email you a question about a topic that you covered a long time ago in an old blog post? If you haven’t yet, you definitely will at some point. Here’s the thing: when someone finds your website for the first time, they’re not going to read back through all of your archives. As your website gets older and bigger with more content, that’s a lot of articles and blog posts that your new readers probably aren’t going to see.
With email marketing, you can set up an auto-responder series to make sure your new readers get
all of your great content. You can send them your most popular old blog posts, you can write some new articles for them to read, or however you want to go about it. The point is simply to give your new readers some great content to read so that they know you know your stuff. (I talked about this point more fully in my post on how to develop an email marketing strategy.)
4) More Likely To Buy – Readers who sign up for an email list are more engaged, more likely to respond to your content, and more likely to buy your products than someone who finds your website through Google or who just visits your site from time to time.
Why are they more likely to buy? People don’t like to give out their email. So if they’re willing to give that to you, you know two things right off the bat: A) they already trust you to some extent, and B) they are interested enough in your niche to subscribe to your list. Knowing these two things makes it much easier to sell them something down the road.
5) More Than One Chance To Ask Them To Buy – Another reason email subscribers are more likely to buy is that fact that you get more than one chance to ask them to buy. The typical searcher comes to your website once, reads an article, maybe sees your ads, and then leaves. But with email readers, you have a captive audience. Sure, they can unsubscribe at any time, but if you’re providing value with your emails, chances are really good that they won’t.
I’ve read that you have to ask the typical internet user to buy something 4 to 7 times before they’re going to buy it. That’s easy to do if you’re sending out regular email newsletters.
6) Get Testimonials Easily – Never discount the importance of social proof. If potential buyers know that other people have bought your product and loved it, they’re much more likely to buy. How do you get these testimonials? Why don’t you email your readers and ask them to send you one? You can even offer them a new freebie in exchange for the testimonial.
7) Free Market Research – I hesitate to call any of these benefits the most important, because they’re all super awesome, but free market research might possibly be the most super awesome.
Before you develop a product, you need to make sure that you have a market for it. Listening to the questions that you get from your readers, asking them what solutions they’ve tried, offering new ideas for them – this is all market research. You find out what works, what doesn’t, and what you can develop to help your readers.
8 ) Easier Product Development – Once you’re to the point of developing a product, having some guinea pigs to try it out and give you feedback before it hits the market is invaluable.
Email your list and ask for volunteers to help out with your new project. You’ll probably get more responses than you can use.
So there you go. 8 awesome reasons to use email marketing in your online business. Have I convinced you?