Believe it or not, email is still your ace in the hole when it comes to lead generation. According to the Content Marketing Institute, “31% of B2B marketers say email newsletters are the best way to nurture leads.” (https://tinyurl.com/unxuzho)
But, avoid falsely believing that email marketing is easy. It’s not. If you get the subject line wrong … wham! You’re hit with an opt-out request, or worse, being ignored, even before getting started.
What can you do with your email program to help drive leads and keep them coming? Here are five tips.
Using behavior-triggered, email drip campaigns gives you an opportunity to speak directly with leads about their pain points. For example, if they open an email about Cash Flow, then performs a trigger, such as fills out a form, clicks a link, or visits a specific web page, the process has begun. Once triggered, the automation performs the next task defined in the drip campaign, like sign up for a webinar, download a document, or attend a course. Tip: Email automation works really well for webinar announcement drip campaigns.
These are not just any responses to an email request. They are meant to be targeted based on what has been requested. For example, if a person requests more information about payroll outsourcing, you can include in the response email a link to your payroll outsourcing client case study. The download would include additional information and, possibly, a free or low-cost consultation.
3. Write Open-Worthy Subject Lines
Do you struggle to write great subject lines? You’re not alone. Here’s a tip that works wonders for email subject lines (and just about anything, including social media posts) – online headline generators. They are free and help you start with a keyword term or phrase that produces dozens of ideas. Search for “headline generators” and click on some until you find one that meets your needs. I like and use Sumo.com, Title-Generator.com, and SEOPressor.com tools. HubSpot also has a subject line guide with over 100 examples and formulas you can emulate.
Remember to keep the most important term near the front of the subject line. Also, consider its length. Email subject lines under 65 characters or seven to nine words work well.
Example: 5 Simple Cash Flow Tips to Pump Up Your Sales or 9 Ways to Improve Cash Flow. Now who wouldn’t click on those?
I’ll tell you who – people who aren’t having cash flow problems. That’s why the follow-up email is based on a trigger. You can then narrow the audience and define their needs all at one time. Plus, you can create content specifically for this pain point that leads will want.
4. Design Matters
Consider ways to focus the email on your main objective. Filling an email with five stories is a newsletter, not an email. Make the most important point stand out with graphics, complementary colors, colored links, arrows, call to action, or a simple banner. Use only one at a time or it will look like the early PowerPoint slide days – you know what I mean. Also, preview the email on mobile and desktop so you know what viewers will see on their device.
Keep it simple and straightforward. Time is of the essence in email. Grab them with the subject line, lure them in with the call to action graphic, and sell them on the why. Here’s how:
- Use bullet points to highlight benefits;
- Bold or color important words/phrases to ensure they’re seen; and
- Include a clear and appropriate call to action, e.g., you’d say listen to a podcast versus read it.
When done well, email can be a very productive component to your lead generation marketing funnel. It demonstrates that you understand your prospect’s pain point and that you’re interested in building a relationship.
Becky Livingston is the President and CEO of Penheel Marketing, a NJ-based firm specializing in social media and digital marketing for CPAs.
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