Category Archives: Email

How to Pick the Best Service for Your Email Marketing

So, you’ve decided to start using email marketing in your business or you want to step up your email marketing game. Smart move! Maybe you’ve heard that email marketing has the highest ROI of any marketing channel – generating $38-40+ in revenue for every dollar spent. Perhaps you’ve heard all the buzz about list building, lead nurturing, and marketing funnels and you want to truly tap into the power of what modern email marketing can do for your business.

Whether you’re looking to start sending a simple well-crafted newsletter or drive sales from complex automated campaigns, first you’ll need to know how to select the best email service provider (ESP) to get the job done.

An email service provider is a company that offers a web-based platform to send bulk emails or campaigns. ESPs have become increasingly sophisticated over the years and they continue to evolve into feature-rich tools that enable marketers to send and track highly-targeted campaigns using segmentation and automation. Your ESP should help you carry out your email marketing strategy by allowing you to send the most relevant messages to the right contacts at the ideal times to nurture relationships and drive sales. Continue reading

The MailChimp Opt-In Reversal and You

Welp, go figure. Just a few months after we wrote about embracing the double opt-in for email lists after switching to MailChimp, they’ve done an about-face on their opt-in policy and made all of their forms single opt-in by default.

Looking at the reaction from the MailChimp community, it seems to be a controversial move, especially since MailChimp has spent years trying to convince people that double opt-in is the one true way. Personally, I’m for it. While I believe that double opt-in is still a much more secure way of doing things, and leads to higher-quality leads, I also think having a choice to do things the way you want is better. There are certainly instances where a single opt-in, which requires no more input from the user once they enter their information the first time, leads to a much smoother user experience.

However, rather than let you make that choice on your own time, MailChimp has decided to convert all of its forms to the single opt-in unless you go in and tell it not to. They started this process early last week, but it wasn’t live for everyone until last Friday. If you’ve been using double opt-in on any of your Mailchimp forms, and you don’t want them to become single opt-in, you’ll need to take action to make sure they continue to operate as intended. Stick around, and I’ll walk you through it. Continue reading

4 Ways to Reduce WordPress Spam

spamIn the beginning the online universe was formless and void. Then lo, the internet was created and it was good. But as the digital gods rested after their glorious endeavor, sneaky little spammers crept into every shadow and crevice they could find and began inflicting us all with a constant stream of garbage.

Honestly, fighting spam can feel like a never-ending game of whack-a-mole. You block off one path, and they immediately find another. But that doesn’t mean we should stop trying to block them, right? Constant vigilance!

Luckily, WordPress has a number of good ways to make life difficult for spammers, so let’s go through a few, and hopefully we can stop those discount Viagra emails you’ve been getting. Continue reading

Embrace the Double-Optin for Email Lists!

Here at Solamar, we just finished a big switch from Infusionsoft to Mailchimp for all of our online forms / email management. While Infusionsoft is great, we just didn’t need that powerful of a system for what we were trying to accomplish with it, and Mailchimp is our total fave if you don’t need all of the power that Infusionsoft offers.

As we were thinking through the migration and how best to approach it, one issue came up — Mailchimp requires a double-optin for list sign-ups.

What this means is that when someone fills out a form on our site, they don’t automatically get entered into the list on Mailchimp. First, they get sent a confirmation email asking them if they reeeaaaalllly wanted to sign up. Only once they click the button in that email are they finally added to the list and taken to any thank-you pages.

At first, we were like, “Heck, no!” The last thing we wanted to do was add more complexity to the process for our visitors, and were afraid of losing people if the confirmation ended up in a spam folder (which sometimes happens). We wanted signing up to be as simple and painless as possible. What if they missed the confirmation email, or got annoyed at having to take another step and didn’t continue? Continue reading

6 Tips for Great Email Newsletter Design

email newsletterEmail is still going strong as one of the best ways to reach your audience, and an email newsletter (ezine) is one of the best ways to engage that audience. On top of that, we now have an incredible pool of tools and services that have been created to assist the generation of attractive email newsletters.

So why is it that I still see horribly unattractive newsletters in my inbox all the time?! Just because someone has signed up for your newsletter and given you their precious email address doesn’t mean you can take them for granted! They may have decided to receive content from you, but if you don’t deliver something they actually want to read, they won’t.

Let’s look at a bunch of ways you can ensure that your email newsletter is good-looking and effective. Continue reading

7 Tips for High-Power Personalization (Without Sounding Like a Stalker)

personalizationMarketing personalization is very, very important if you want your campaigns to succeed in 2017 and beyond. It shows how well you know your customers, enhances their experiences, and matches people to relevant content. A recent survey reveals that:

  • Virtually all (96%) marketers agree that personalization advances customer relationships. Eighty-eight percent say they’ve realized a measurable lift in business results from their personalization campaigns.
  • Currently one in three marketers (33%) relies on machine-learning personalization; that is, using algorithms and predictive analytics to dynamically present recommendations and experiences at the individual “one-to-one” level.
  • Marketers are using personalization in email campaigns (72%), as well as on their company’s website (57%), mobile site (28%), web app (20%) and mobile app (18%).

Continue reading

How to Warm Up Your Cold Email Lists

warm email listsYou started to grow your email lists with the best intentions. You heard email marketing is a profitable way to generate leads, convert prospects into customers, and grow your business. So you put an opt-in form on your website, inviting people to sign up for a free offer or to join your newsletter.

Visitors landed on your site, entered their name and email to download their freebie, and started hearing from you regularly. They were warming up to you.

But then you got busy. Your focus turned to running your business, serving your clients, and doing your work. And now the people on your email lists haven’t heard from you in awhile and have grown cold.

You want to reach back out to them, but you’re not sure what to say. Perhaps you’re a little nervous about what they will think and you feel awkward about popping back into their inbox. What if they don’t remember who you are? What if they don’t want to hear from you anymore?

If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. It’s actually pretty common. Continue reading