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Tips For Beginners Starting To Do E-mail Marketing

April 5th, 2010

I got a question recently on e-mail marketing that made me realize that even though I’ve talked about the basics of e-mail marketing I’ve never pointed out why you don’t want to do e-mail marketing through your regular e-mail provider. Here’s why you want to use a e-mail marketing service that is designed for e-mail marketing:

  1. Your regular e-mail provider (Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, Comcast, etc) has restrictions designed to prevent Spammers from using their services. Here’s a good example of the Gmail limitations. In general, you will risk loosing your e-mail account if you do marketing with it.
  2. When you are sending agents e-mail you want to provide a “opt-out” link so those that choose not to remain on your list can click on a link and automatically be taken off your list. Doing this yourself is non-trivial. Doing this with e-mail services is very easy.
  3. It’s not very easy to build good looking HTML formated e-mail normal e-mail interfaces but e-mail marketing sites have nice HTML e-mail editors.
  4. I is nice to know how many recipients of your e-mail piece open the e-mail and how many click on links in the e-mail. E-mail marketing sites provide these kind of statistics.

OK, I’m sure you are convinced. What are some choices for e-mail marketing services:

  1. MailChimp.com: Store up to 500 clients on your list and send up to 3000 e-mail a month for free.
  2. VerticalResponse.com: Pay for only the e-mails you send.
  3. ConstantContact.com:  $15/mo for up to 500 e-mails.
  4. Aweber.com: Many sophisticated features. $19/mo for 500 subscribers.

I’m sure readers can suggest other e-mail marketing services that they use and like.

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8 Responses to “Tips For Beginners Starting To Do E-mail Marketing”

  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Rob Armstrong, Larry Lohrman. Larry Lohrman said: Tips For Beginners Starting To Do E-mail Marketing http://goo.gl/fb/Gy9Z0 […]

  • This is a great start. For #3, while email service providers have good tools (at least they should), you’ll still want a customized template for your brand.

    We just put out our email checklist and white paper – definitely worth a download if you’re reading this and thinking about your email marketing. http://bit.ly/bVfLwC

  • Whatever you do, DO NOT use iContact. Their back end is atrocious and makes me pull out my hair every time I have to use it for work (my full time job that is).

  • RatePoint is another good service to try.

    Michael

  • +1 for MailChimp. They are highly innovative, user-friendly, and make the process about as fun as email marketing can be.

  • I also recommend mailchimp, however if you have a huge mailing list, getting started will be tedious. Mailchimp, and any other U.S. based mail provider is ( and should be) following the CANN anti spam laws and regs. You will have to manually check off each contact in the list you upload as they have given you permission to add them to the list. Not a big deal when its 200 people. A really big deal when it is 2000.

    Something else to consider with mailchimp, I do not have this problem, but they monitor your unsubscribes etc and trend you as an email marketer. If their computer thinks your mail looks, sounds acts spammy (even if you dont think it is) they can be overzealous about warning/locking you out temporarily. Much of this loosens up on the paid accounts for obvious reasons.

    Their analytics for campaigns is second to none. You can also copy the email campaign to twitter when you send it. Another plus is the rating system they give your contacts based on opens and click thrus. You can target small segments of your list very easily after a few campaigns to allow data trends. It also integrates with google analytics to track those click thrus on your site. They will show you stats for each campaign( opens, bounces, unsubscribes, etc) and compare them to industry standards/numbers, with specific industries like photography.

  • Jason, you can import in a whole email address list and only have to give permission once to add all of them to the list.

    I LOVE MailChimp.

  • Dreamhost.com provides email list services with their web hosting. You don’t need to pay extra. It’s pretty simple to send text-only email messages to your list or you can design your own custom html messages. The service provides the ability to add a form to your site which sends an opt-in email invitation so users must confirm that they want to be added by clicking a link. This makes your list smaller, but ensures that you aren’t sending unwanted email. Also, if you are going to do email marketing, it is important that you know the CAN-SPAM rules and abide by them: http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/business/ecommerce/bus61.shtm

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