Have you read my free download “Your Master Plan for Creating an Internet Business?” (If not, use this link to get it.) Step 6 is “Set up an email service and web form.”
In this post, I explain how to set up your email service and create a webform so you can subscribe visitors to your website. If you have already done this, you’ll find next week’s post more applicable to you, but scroll down here to see if you’re using autoresponders to your best advantage.
If you haven’t set up a list, webform and free download, you should take care of this now! It’s an essential part of creating a successful online business.
I’ll be covering the topic of how to create a successful newsletter in 4 parts:
- Part 1: Set up a list
- Part 2: Design your visual layout and content structure
- Part 3: Use your newsletter to sell
- Part 4: 3 BIG mistakes to avoid
Yes, sometimes people just see your website and immediately purchase a product or service. But that’s rare unless they’ve gotten a great recommendation from one of your existing customers or they’ve read about you in an article. Most Internet marketers say that email is the way they make most of their sales.
Usually, you’ll use email to make an offer to the people who are subscribed to your list and that’s how you’ll make most of your money. So, having an email list is very important.
How do you get people to read your emails?
Some Internet marketers just send out marketing emails and get away with it, but this strategy doesn’t work for most people.
Instead, you probably need a regular newsletter that contains valuable content. A newsletter, sometimes called an ezine, is a regular email that goes out to people who have subscribed to your list. This newsletter lets your subscribers get to know and trust you so:
- They’re more likely to tell others about you
- They’re more likely to buy from you
Setting up a list is relatively easy, but you need to go through a few steps. If this is your first time doing this, you’ll probably need to ask some questions of your email service’s Support/Help system. Here are the basic steps.
Choose an email service
There are so many, but here I compare 5 of them to help you out. If you can get a recommendation from someone you trust, that’s a great start.
Set up an account. Almost all services offer a free trial or let you start for free until you reach a certain number of subscribers. Really, this is not a significant expense when you’re just starting out.
Create your first list
All email services will then let you create a list. You can have multiple lists, but you need to start with one. People who sign up for your newsletter on your website will become part of this list. You can name it anything you want; no one will see this name.
The reason for having multiple lists is to segment your subscribers. You may sometimes want to send an email to people with a specific interest, for example.
By default, your list will require “double opt-in,” which is good. This ensures that the email address people give you is correct. Here’s how it works:
- The visitor completes the webform and clicks the button to submit the information.
- Your email service automatically sends an email to the visitor’s email address that includes a link to confirm.
- The visitor clicks the link.
- The visitor is now a subscriber and is added to your subscriber list.
After completing the information required by your email service to create a list (sometimes called “audience,”) you have a list but no subscribers. Yet.
Create a webform
A webform is a form that people complete to get on your list. All email services let you create a webform. This part of the process can be confusing and don’t hesitate to use their support to ask questions.
The webform should have room for a person’s name and email address. Personally, I like to ask for first and last name, so I can get to recognize people. Otherwise, I’ll just have a bunch of Carols on my list and won’t know who is who. You can make it simple or fancy, but don’t overdo it.
You can add some text to your webform. To maximize the number of people who sign up, you’ll want to offer them something for free — a report, video, short course, e-book, audio, etc. So make sure that the text on the webform makes it clear what subscribers will get.
But the webform should also state that people will be subscribed to your newsletter. I add the text “plus free tips.” If you don’t add something like that, people may reject your newsletter as spam, which will give you a bad reputation.
How to deliver the free download
So how do people who subscribe get the free download you promise? There are two methods and some email services use one, while some use the other:
- Via a follow-up email: Your email service may automatically send new subscribers a follow-up email (after the email asking them to confirm their email address). You can edit that email to include a link to your free download.
- Via a webpage: After your subscribers confirm their email address, your email service may transfer them to a web page. You can edit that web page to include a link to your free download.
Autoresponders & offers
In addition, all email services offer autoresponders (sometimes called “drips”). These are follow-up emails that are automatically sent to new subscribers at specified days after initial subscription. What should go in your autoresponders? Here are some ideas:
- An initial welcome plus the link (again) for your free download, in case they missed it
- A request for information about your subscriber’s interests and needs
- How to find content on your website
- Additional useful content — special tips, techniques or tutorials — even a free mini-course
- Special offers–a discount to a product at this point will definitely increase your income!
Your autoresponders will go a long way to creating loyal subscribers who tell others about you and who purchase your products. Use your autoresponders to develop a meaningful, long-term relationship with them.
Are you past this or do you need help?
Did you get this done a long time ago or do you need help? Let me know by leaving a comment or contacting me.