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The Definitive 2014 Holiday Email Sending Schedule

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With the holiday season upon us, now is a great time to prepare for your holiday email marketing campaigns. During the 2013 29-day holiday season, eCommerce sales topped $20.6 billion. Consumers are avoiding the long lines and spending more time browsing and buying from the comfort of their home. With a successful holiday email marketing strategy, you too can have a piece of this pie.

Since we’ve already discussed why keeping a clean list plays an important role in ensuring email deliverability this season and we’ve talked about how to write effective subject lines, today I want to focus on exactly what days to send during the 2014 holiday season. (more…)

Improve Your Email Deliverability Rates With These Tips

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With the holidays approaching, we can start to anticipate the volume of emails that will soon invade our inboxes. We can also anticipate a high amount of email deliverability issues. That is why it is important to be proactive about managing your member lists before the holidays to ensure successful campaign delivery.

Understanding Sender Reputation & Blacklisting

black-list-support-group

This is not the group you want to be in.

When sending out an increased volume of emails during the holidays (or in general), not only do you take the chance of sending out to the inactive members, unsubscribes and outdated emails in your database, you also put your sender reputation at risk and affect the ability to effectively communicate with customers and prospects in the future.

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7 Steps to a Lasting First Impression

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First impressions never die...

First impressions never die…

Businesses who send welcome emails will see on average a 50% open rate, making them 86% more effective than email newsletters. So, if you haven’t included a welcome series into your email marketing strategy, you probably should start doing so.

Since email is one of the most easy and cost-effective marketing channels to build relationships, sending a welcome email can set the tone after someone has shown interest in your business. Most importantly though, it makes for the perfect opportunity to introduce your business and create trust with your new subscriber. Because as the saying goes “you never get a second chance to make a first impression.”

Another great thing about a welcome series is that it is easy to set up. With the convenience of marketing automation (when an email is automatically sent to a subscriber after a triggered activity), you can provide a well-timed hello within seconds after a new subscriber has signed up to receive your emails. (more…)

6 Ways to Boost Your Google PageRank Today

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With the abundance of free website builders, lower cost of entry into business and an infinite amount of resources available to start-ups, it has become increasingly easier for a business to have an online presence. This of course means an increase in competition no matter your industry.

With this oversaturation of the market and Google continuing to push organic search results further down the page in favor of paid listings it is becoming more and more difficult to get noticed on search engines without paying Google.

Why do you need to improve PageRank?

The #1 result on a search engine results page receives 30% of all clicks.

To understand why you need to improve your PageRank, you need to understand what PageRank is. Though it’s true that Google recently announced they will no longer update the ‘PageRank Toolbar’, PageRank will still be a factor in where your site shows up in a search engine results page (SERP).

PageRank is Google’s system for ranking web pages. A page with a higher PageRank is deemed more important and is more likely to be listed above a page with a lower PageRank.

Google describes PageRank: (more…)

What’s The Best and Worst Time to Send Email?

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The Best Day and Time to Send Emails

open-emailThe question “What day and time is best to send an email?” seems to be one we are asked quite often. And since we are constantly staying on top of the latest email marketing trends and have compiled a lot of research and data on this topic, we thought we would share with you some general email marketing trends that will help have a positive impact on your next email send. (more…)

10 Unique Content Ideas for Your Next Email Campaign

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Traditional Marketing

“Traditional marketing talks at people. Content marketing talks with them.” – Doug Kessler

I am a firm believer that the success of an email campaign is highly dependent on its content. As someone who has been both the marketer and the marketed, I can rightfully say that if you aren’t writing content that is relative and has value, then you can expect your emails to quickly find their way to the spam junkyard.

However, writing good content can sometimes be challenging. I can most definitely attest to that! After putting together many email campaigns, I still encounter writer’s block because I get stumped with what to write. Usually when that happens, I realize that it is time to come up with some fresh new content ideas.
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Why Spam Is Gross (and why not to do it)

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What is Spam?

Why Spam is Gross

No, not this kind of Spam.

Besides being a beloved meat treat in Asia and Hawaii, it is an email communication that is unsolicited and unwanted. The CAN SPAM Compliance Act threatens up $16,000 per violation for a number of email no-no’s, however these are rarely enforced and it is Email Solution Provider that suffers from the sending of spam like communications.

From my experience, the worst a company has to deal with by sending out spam is the cancellation or suspension of their account. While this can be costly and disruptive to an organizations marketing, it pales in comparison to the damage mass amounts of spam can cause an ESP.

Email IP Addresses that are whitelisted and “seasoned” are hard to come by and take a long time to develop. It only takes one bad apple to ruin it for the bunch. So, if you want a strong partnership with your Email Solution Provider be aware of what you are bringing to the table or your relationship will be very short lived. (more…)

How much is too much when it comes to Email?

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In the immortal words of Gordon Gekko…

Gordon Gekko, Greed is Good

The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right, greed works.

Well then, when is greed too much for your contact lists and when is the line crossed that enough is too much?

As an email consultant, one of the most common questions I receive from new and potential clients is, “How often is too often to send?”

If you simplified email marketing campaigns into their most basic elements, you as the marketer are looking for the highest level of engagement from your contacts. The more opens and clicks, the further down your contacts go in the buying process. If you can push as many contacts far enough down the buying road your revenues and ROI will go up. So why isn’t unlimited email frequency a standard business practice?

Simply put, because consumers have the right to Unsubscribe. They can actively vote if your communications are worthy of their time and attention. If you have developed your email list organically, then you know your contacts want to receive information from you. It is important to not abuse this position of respect from the consumer by betraying their trust and overwhelming them to the point of annoyance. There needs to be a balance between their interest and your passion for conversion. (more…)

35 Subject Line Formulas to Boost Your Open Rates

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What’s the easiest way to get your audience to open your emails?

jump_to_downloadWrite better subject lines.

Of course, you need to have a permission based email list of interested and engaged customers. Your audience’s inboxes are an endless stream of promotions, alerts, notifications, and spam. No matter how great the content of your email is, you’ll need to learn how to write subject lines if you want your audience to open your emails.

Or, you can skip to the bottom and download our “35 Subject Line Formulas to Boost Your Open Rates” guide.

Subject line writing is key to all internet marketing

Subject line writing is key to all internet marketingTrue, writing better subject lines will boost your email open rates, but that’s just the start. Understanding the psychology behind what makes an engaging subject line is the secret to successful email marketing. It will improve your results in nearly every aspect of your marketing, including:

  • Social media headline writing
  • Blog post titles
  • Sales page headlines
  • Presentation titles

The key to understanding how to write great subject lines is about understanding what causes a person to take a certain action. Why they say, “Yes.” And if you’re in the business of marketing – you are in the business of getting people to say, “Yes.”
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Purchased Email Lists: The Ugly Truth

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Building an email marketing list can be challenging and time consuming, especially if you’re a new business that is just getting started or trying to grow quickly. Unfortunately, many marketers take the easy road (or so they think) and purchase email lists to help grow their business without knowing the consequences that lie ahead.

Purchased Email Lists: The Ugly Truth

What is a Purchased Email List?

Purchased email lists are a collection of “non-opt-in” email addresses compiled by third-party vendors who then sell the list to a business or individual for a fee.

There are a few methods that third-party vendors use to build these lists. One common method is through banner advertisements placed on websites that offer a prize. And in order to claim the prize, these ads ask that you provide information such as your email address, which is then segmented into categories where you become a “target” for marketers.

Another method vendors use to collect email addresses is through buying email lists from industry trade shows (or other events) where it is common for people to provide their email information during the registration process.

And then there is email harvesting. This sneaky method uses “bots” to scour the web and collect email addresses from websites, forums and comment sections. (more…)