Across this email marketing tutorial series I’m going to show you my personal email marketing strategy that:
Email marketing is a critical part to any business – whether your an affiliate, blogger or run an e-commerce store.
When someone signs up to your email list they are giving you permission to invade their personal life any time you want.
That is a very powerful tool to have and is something that I use to great effect, but it is also a dangerous tool if not used correctly
What Will I Learn?
Email marketing is so so important. You get instant traffic, automate relationships, it’s evergreen and very cost effective.
My #1 goal with the blog isn’t to get people to click on affiliate links but for them to subscribe to my email list.
If you have ever heard the phrase “the money is in the list” – it is true, and if you haven’t started an email list yet you are leaving an awful lot of money on the table.
The first and most important reason is having the ability to directly communicate with your audience at the push of a button.
You can reach out to thousands of people in an instant to take action, whether that is to read your new post or check out a special offer.
Here is a screenshot from my Google Analytics account for the past month, where you see a red arrow is when I sent out an email to my list-
Having the ability to control thousands of peoples attention and direct it wherever you choose is like having super powers!
One of my favourite uses of email marketing is to automate relationship building with your subscribers.
I do this through my autoresponder sequence which is pre-written set of emails scheduled to go out at set times after someone has subscribed.
I will explain more about this & how I do it later in the article along with all of the email templates I use!
No matter what happens you will always have your email list. What if one day your site gets penalised by Google and disappears from the rankings?
Suddenly 80% of your traffic is gone and so is your income!
Your email list isn’t subject to the same risks as your website and will stay with you forever.
What other form of marketing can offer all of these benefits and more for just $1?
So before showing you how you can get started with my email marketing strategy I’m going to reveal precisely how I use email marketing to drive this blog.
This strategy builds relationships, drives a constant stream of traffic, provides new user generated content, gets new social shares & generates sales on complete auto pilot.
The most important part to any email list is getting subscribers – without subscribers your email list is pretty useless.
You can get subscribers through a number of avenues-
Those are just some of the most common ways of driving subscribers to your email list and they are the exact methods that I use on this blog!
I have a number of opt in forms placed around the blog asking people to subscribe by entering their name/email address.
There are 4 different types of opt in form that I use which are illustrated below-
In The Sidebar
The first one is in the sidebar, right at the top of the blog.
The next one you will see is also placed in the sidebar but stands out much more and follows you down the page.
This opt in form is usually placed within content to catch peoples attention while they are engaged with content. Below is a live example for you to sign up if you haven’t already 😉
Subscribe to this award winning blog now to get free updates.
End Of Posts
The last opt in form you will see on the blog is at the end of posts after someone has finished reading.
As you can see I like to place opt in forms everywhere! I have them placed at every opportunity to grab as many subscribers as possible!
In fact there are a total of 8 opt in forms on my about page – that might seem like overkill but the page converts 1 in 4 visitors into a new subscriber!
I also use dedicated email opt in landing pages to generate subscribers.
This method costs me $0.63 per new subscriber but each new subscriber is actually worth $17.81 to me (more on this later).
I get a lot of enquiries via my contact page and I figured that anyone that wanted to get in touch with me, would also be interested in joining my email list.
I use the Contact Form 7 plugin to power the contact form and to connect it with Aweber.
So now when someone sends me a message via the contact form, they get an email asking them to confirm their email subscription.
Again I figured anyone joining the forum would benefit from the email newsletter and I use this plugin to do that easily!
When someone comments on the blog for the first time they get taken to a page thanking them for the comment and asking them to subscribe to my email list-
This is the perfect time to ask because once someone has taken action once (submitted a comment) they will take action again (email subscription) if you ask them to!
You will notice I’m using the in content opt in form here but the redirect to that page is done with this plugin.
When someone subscribes to my email list this is the user journey they will go through-
This is a typical journey when someone signs up to an email list. So once someone enters their name and email address they get taken to this page-
Then they have to go to their email inbox where they will find an email that looks like this-
Once they click the link to confirm their email address they get taken to the thank you page.
Now at this point most people would end the user journey, but remember when I told you that if people take action once they will take action again if you ask them to?
So I also ask people to connect with me on Google+ – you could ask people to follow you on Twitter, like your Facebook page, tell their friends or whatever you choose.
That is all there is to it – that person is now subscribed to my email list!
But that is only the start, the next step is where the magic really happens!
An email autoresponder is essentially a set of pre-written emails that gets sent to every new subscriber.
This is the bit that builds relationships, drives a constant stream of traffic, provides new user generated content, gets new social shares & generates sales on complete auto pilot.
Right now I have a total of 56 emails in my autoresponder sequence that gets sent out 1 per week keeping new email subscribers engaged with my blog for over a year automatically.
Here is a sneak peak at my email auto responder sequence-
As you can see Aweber makes it really easy to set up & schedule!
There are lots of different ways you can use email autoresponders and I’m going to show you a few of the different approaches & email templates that I use once someone has subscribed.
The first email new subscribers receive is the welcome message which is sent immediately after they confirm their email address.
This email is simply to welcome them to the newsletter but also to set expectations of what they will be receiving from me each week.
I also ask people to connect with me on social media so I have another way to reach my subscribers.
The next email goes out 2 days later and invites the subscriber to ask me any internet marketing question they like!
This email is designed to do a number of things. Primarily it helps to create a stronger relationship with the new subscriber by offering to personally help them.
But what is also does is drives people into the BBPress forum which has a number of benefits like creating new threads/pages which get indexed/found by Google.
It also gives them a reason to keep coming back to the site and getting involved with the hidden community on the blog.
Even if people don’t join the forum to ask a question, they fact that you have reached out and offered to help them really sets the tone of the relationship.
The vast majority of the emails in my autoresponder sequence are used to breathe new life into old content that would otherwise be buried away deep in the archives.
Not only does this keep people constantly engaged with my blog it also provides a steady stream of traffic, comments, social shares & affiliate clicks across every post on the blog.
Without an email autoresponder most of these posts would just be collecting dust – but now they are a powerful business asset I can use over and over again.
I’m always on the look out for new content ideas and thinking about what I should write next. But really the best people to ask for content ideas are your readers-
Not only does this email provide a constant stream of new content ideas every week, it also helps to strengthen the relationship with subscribers further.
People really appreciate the fact that you are listening to them and a lot of the tutorials I have published on this blog are the result of people replying to this email and asking for them.
There is always room to improve your site and again, the best people to provide that are the people that actually visit your site.
By simply asking for 1 thing they like about the blog, 1 thing they don’t like and 1 thing they would change immediately you get some amazing feedback.
That feedback has helped shape the direction of the blog while strengthening relationships with subscribers at the same time!
After someone has been subscribed for a while I also ask them to provide a testimonial for the blog.
It is amazing to read the testimonials people provide and how the blog has helped them – in some cases tutorials have helped change peoples lives!
I haven’t published any of these testimonials yet, but I have a huge library of them ready to go when I need them!
It is also important to show your gratitude to your subscribers & thank them for supporting you.
Some of the responses I get from this email touch me right in the feels to say the least!
I hope you are starting to understand why my #1 goal with the blog is to get people to subscribe to my email list.
The benefits are huge creating strong relationships while driving traffic, comments & social shares to old post. At the same time it provides new content ideas, testimonials & feedback to improve the blog.
You can start your email list for just $1 right now and start collecting subscribers for your email list.
Everyday that you are not doing this – your are missing out in a big big way.
The first thing you need to do is sign up to Aweber – it will only cost you a dollar to get started!
I have always used Aweber because they are easy to use, very affordable, offer great deliverability and lighting fast support. They are the best email marketing service provider in my experience.
You can also create separate email lists for each website you own using a single Aweber account.
Once you have done that, login to your account!
Now you need to setup your first email list. I create a separate email list for each of my websites as it only takes a few minutes.
First click on Create and Manage Lists–
Next Aweber will take you through the setup wizard to finish creating your new list.
It is really easy to follow-
It will also ask you for an address, this address will get shown at the bottom of each email you send to comply with the Can-Spam act.
If you don’t have a business address and are worried about using your home address, you may want to use a different address.
You will also be asked at this point to provide a sender email – this is the email the emails will get sent ‘from’ so make sure this is an active email address that you monitor in case anyone replys, which they will!
Next you’ll be asked to give your list a name & a short description-
As you can see it doesn’t have to be anything special.
Last but not least you need to setup your confirmation message. This is the email confirmation that people receive when they sign up to your list to confirm their email address.
This is what mine looks like-
Once that is done – you have successfully created your first email list!
Now all we need to do to start collecting email subscribers is to create an opt in form and add it to your site.
To do that click on Sign Up Forms and then click on Create Your First Sign Up Form.
The first thing you need to do is pick a template that you like, Aweber provide an endless amount of designs for you to choose from!
Just scroll through them all until you find one you like – you can even customise it if you want.
Once you have done that move through the rest of the steps leaving everything at default and save your form.
There are a few different ways to add the opt in form to your site.
If you use Wordpress you can just use the official plugin which makes it really easy to add the opt in form to your sidebar.
If you get stuck with the plugin then check out Awebers guide on how to set it up properly.
The plugin will also add a tickbox that allows commenter’s to sign up to your newsletter as well!
If you don’t use Wordpress then you can just take the code that Aweber provides and paste it into your sites template where you want the opt in form to appear.
If you aren’t comfortable with doing that – there is also the option to email the code to your developer in 1 click so they can add it for you!
That is all there is to creating your email list & creating your first opt in form.
Once you have deployed the opt in form on your site it will start collecting email subscribers for you instantly!
Feel free to give it a test yourself and see how everything fits together to help build your understanding.
To help avoid information overload I have broken my email marketing guide into a small series of posts.
Once you have learned my complete email marketing strategy above, you are ready to move on to the next part in my email marketing tutorial series to learn about-
You can read the next part of the email marketing tutorial series to learn about building an effective email autoresponder!