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Abbie's Column : Email Marketing

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Here are 8 Keys to Online Success

By Abbie Drew
Apr 26, 2006

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The buzz online is that business is good. Very good! The woes of the dot com bust are long gone and businesses are optimistic about the future.

Online advertising revenues are up and hitting new records. Businesses are reporting online sales are growing at a faster rate than either catalog or store channels. Email marketing is hot and making money. No longer is their fear that spam is going to wipe out legitimate emailers. Or that email filtering will ruin returns. Email lists are growing. And email response rates are good.

So when I hear from readers that they're struggling to make sales and their email marketing isnít working, I know their business model and marketing campaigns must be missing some critical elements.

While I can not go into specific detail about all of the factors crucial to online business success in this short space, what I would like to do is review the marketing tactics of one of our very profitable SendFree members. This customer uses our SendFree autoresponder service.

I will not be disclosing the name of the member or the exact details of his products, but Iíll share with you 8 key elements of his business model.

1) The SendFree member has created several of his own products. He is not a reseller of other's services. He is not involved in a pre-made business opportunity or a networking marketing business.

Too often I see individuals trying to run an Internet business that just sells another's product / service. These individuals have no unique selling proposition for their businesses. They are competing with everyone else reselling the same products. As a result they more often fail than succeed.

Developing your own products / services is the first key to online success.

2) The SendFree member has a separate web site for each of the products he sells.

The benefits of having a web site for each type of product / service you sell allows you to focus the sales message of each site. For example if you sell tracking software and Internet marketing books, you would want 2 sites. Having separate sites, avoids having a prospect become confused about what you offer.

I frequently see sites attempting to sell many different products / services with no clear message. The result is the site is difficult to follow and I end up not knowing exactly what the seller offers.

Further, I see individuals with no site of their own trying to use a generic company site to resell a product / service. There is little chance of success, when your site looks like everyone else's site who's involved in the program. What differentiates you from the next guy? Nothing!

Having your own web site with your own domain is the second key to online success.

3) The SendFree member's products have a high perceived value as they fill desires we all have. One product fills the desire to make money. The other product fills the desire to save money.

Just creating a product / service is not sufficient. Your product / service has to be desired or it will not sell.

Fulfilling a want or need is the third key to online success.

4) The SendFree member markets his sites predominately using pay per click sponsor ads like Google's AdWords. And his campaigns are continuous. He does not advertise, then stop, then start, then stop. The member understands ongoing advertising is essential to keep driving traffic to his site.

The success of his site is not due to AdWords. Rather it is the consistency in his marketing.

Ongoing promotion is the fourth key to online success.

5) The SendFree member sends all prospects from his marketing campaigns to an entry squeeze page for each of his site. The prospect must fill in a web form with his/her name and email in order to enter the site.

The SendFree member uses a powerful offer to receive a valuable resource just for completing the form. Giving away the resource encourages visitors to fill in their contact details.

Simply sending prospects to a page of your site with no offer to sign-up for your email list wastes valuable promotion. Your site should try to capture the email address of every visitor to your site. Either placing a sign-up form on each page of your site or by using an entry squeeze page.

Lead collection is the fifth key to online success.

6) Upon entry to any of the SendFree member's sites, a prospect will find a persuasive sales letter. The sales letter includes testimonials of past purchasers, free bonuses for purchasing and a time sensitive offer to buy right away.

I frequently encounter web pages which do not persuade me to purchase. The page simply shows the product / service with no sales copy. Prospects need encouragement to buy so make sure your site provides it.

Good sales copy is the sixth key to online success.

7) The SendFree member's web form completed by each prospect in order to enter his sites, triggers an immediate email message. The email includes the promised valuable resource while also reminding the prospect to visit his web site.

The immediate email follow-up with the desired information builds trust and rapport for the SendFree member with his prospects. The SendFree member delivered what was promised. A prospect then believes that if he/she purchases the product offered he/she will receive it.

Develop trust is the seventh key to online success.

8) The SendFree member sends follow-up emails to those prospects who do not purchase his product. Each email encourages the prospect to buy. In addition, the SendFree member sends follow-up emails to all those who did purchase his product. The emails have information about his other products.

These follow-up emails make additional sales. They remind prospects about the products available and drive visitors back to his site.

No follow-up is a classic mistake marketers make. Autoresponders make sending out a series of email messages easy so use them.

Follow-up is the eighth key to online success.

You may be wondering is the SendFree member I've discussed real. And if so, how successful is he?

Here's the answer. This particular SendFree member has so much traffic and hits to his autoresponder that he needs his own server to handle his email and house his prospect and customer databases.

That's right I had to set-up a dedicated server just for this one SendFree member! (If your business is similar to our members and could benefit from a premier dedicated autoresponder/list management server let me know. Drop me an email.)

As shown by our SendFree member's example as well as indicated by the buzz online, business is booming. So consider the business model outlined above and be sure your business is incorporating the 8 key elements of online success.

Abbie Drew
DEMC Editor

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