So the other day, I was on a Sage partner website and signed up to receive an email newsletter … I do that sometimes just to see what partners are saying to their prospects and how they’re saying it.
Anyway, I get the first piece of “newsletter” communication and … wait for it … wait for it … it’s a discounted product pitch. Save XX% on Sage product. And I say to myself “Self, this is why so many businesses think that email marketing doesn’t work.”
Let’s think about this. Say I’m a prospect and I’m on their website to learn more about what they do and how they do it. I’m interested enough to sign up for the newsletter. To them, I’m just a nameless, faceless prospect …
Yet, based on the content of the first issue I receive, they assume I’m shopping for product and looking for a discount. When in reality, I’m in the early stages of educating myself about what’s out there to help me solve a business challenge. Needless to say, they’ve lost credibility and I’m either gonna opt out or mark it as Spam and not read another issue.
A Better Approach?
First, a welcome message that thanks me for signing up and provides some idea of what to expect and how often. Then, like dating, start out easy and get a feel for the new relationship. Send some educational material. Then follow up with an insightful article or valuable white paper that explains how the technology that you implement solves business challenges. Sprinkle in a couple of customer testimonials. Then, maybe send a case study. At some point, you might invite me to a webcast.
THEN, when you’ve got a good feel for where I am in my evaluation process (based on opens, clicks, visits to your website, and other communication/responses) … THEN you might offer a discount as an incentive to make it happen.
Email that DOESN’T Work?
Ask your prospects to hop in the sack on the first date with your big discount!
Let’s hear your thoughts …