Saturday, December 11, 2010

How often should I email my list?

So you're using TrafficWave and some excellent pre-built squeeze pages from adkreator to build your opt-in contact list.  Excellent.  That's what you should be doing!  But then the question arises, 'How often should I email my list?'  Your relationship with your subscribers, what you share with them and the style with which you do it  are critical, as far as making money in your home business is concerned.  But in particular, this post is really centered on one aspect:  frequency of mailing

There are a lot of opinions on this subject, and mine isn't necessarily better than anyone else's.  I'll give you an example.  I get a few new subscribers a day through the OceanSwell Team Ads, but I also probably lose one subscriber a day as well.  Do I care?  Not really.  They weren't going to do anything anyway and the purpose of acquiring my list (at least this particular one) is to explain our Team co-op, provide marketing tips for Team Members, make notifications about Team Updates and similar things.  Very rarely, I will broadcast an idea/biz-opp of some sort, but it's related to helping Team Members with TrafficWave (or in some other way) 99% of the time.  But that's an important thing to remember when broadcasting to your list - i.e. what brought them in to begin with?  Any messages you send out should generally be on that subject alone, or you risk running people off.  That's why, over time, you will likely end up having multiple 'lists'.

Some people believe that you should never broadcast at all, and that your autoresponder should do all the work.  They'll set up an AR series that runs for a year!  They'll never send a single broadcast.  For the most part, I think that's what I tend to do.  The upside to this is that it's pretty much a hands-free process that runs on autopilot.  With your messages spaced out every few days or once a week, you're less likely to drive people away than with relentless sales messages.

Other people take the exact opposite view.  Their take on it is since everyone else is blasting offers every day, so should you.  Otherwise, your competition will get the sale first!  I believe that this approach is better suited to mass lead-generation techniques aimed at generic 'bizz opp seekers', rather than those who subscribe for a specific reason.  Personally, I don't like it because it's the equivalent of clear-cutting a forest or strip-mining the side of a mountain.  It's also bad for the industry as a whole.  Not that anyone cares... which they don't.  You may win now, but not in the long term.  You’ll burn through your list fast with high unsubscribe and complaint rates - which ultimately can get you blocked by major ISPs. Generally the practitioner of this hard-ball tactic lives and dies by their lead flow.  Because if it drops from one month to the next, so will their quick-turn profits.

The third approach is obviously some combination of the first two.  You'll have a baseline autoresponder sequence and commit to bi-weekly or weekly broadcasts as well.  Some marketers, such as myself, also like to do a personal welcome message, outside of the AR sequence.  In my humble opinion, this is better than the first two ideas alone for the beginning entrepreneur.

Honestly, I think the main thing is to be consistent and stay on topic with both your AR series and inter-mediate broadcast messages.  It's my opinion that daily sales messages are a big mistake, but that's just my opinion.  This is a post that I'd really welcome comments on.