Email Marketing: Converting Offline Leads to Online Leads

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Email marketing is a cost-effective way to reach your leads and customers. Reduce your printing costs, save time, and reach your leads in a timely manner. In the digital age full of smart phone coupon apps, digital customer loyalty programs and even paying for products in brick and mortar stores with your smart phone, email marketing is an easy introduction into reaching todays consumer.

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It’s not hard to see how your business can benefit from email marketing – the hard part is perhaps getting started. How do you take the leads and customers you have and turn them into an email list? Below are a few examples to help you start collecting the vital information to building stronger relationships with your customers.

The Tried and True Fishbowl

Converting existing customers into digital leads

If you have a brick and mortar store location, place a stack of sign-up forms on the counter. On your form, include first name, last name, and email address as a standard. If you have several types of products, perhaps you can create check boxes for each kind to let your customer choose what they’re interested in receiving information about. Remember to keep your form as simple as possible, but by adding an option to check off their interests, you can create more targeted email campaigns in the future. Then leave a fishbowl next to the stack of forms for people to drop their completed form. It takes about 1 minute and 30 seconds to get a new lead, and your customer can complete the form while you ring up their order.

Remember that although these people are technically already a customer, it’s much more cost-effective to retain a customer than to earn a new one. We want to minimize effort and work smarter, not harder, to keep people in your store.

The Last Postcard

Weed out bad leads and only pay for the ones that count

If you are sending postcards to purchased mailing lists or an existing customer list because…well, you’ve always been doing it, let’s take a step back. Printing costs are exorbitant compared to smarter, digital marketing tactics today. How many of those on your mailing lists are real leads? If you’re paying for each of those leads in printing and mailing costs, create a campaign to weed out the ones that are a waste of time and money.

Create a postcard with a call-to-action to register for your e-newsletter. You can either include a URL that leads to your Constant Contact sign up form, or if your customers are more savvy, include a QR code that links to your sign up form. Those who convert (fill out your form) are engaged and want to hear from you. They essentially opted into your communication, rather than the other way around of you sending information to them without asking.

Those who do not opt into your e-newsletter list may not be a qualified lead for you. If you are concerned that not everyone wants to receive an e-newsletter, create a different call-to-action that you think will resonate with your customers, such as “sign up to receive our exclusive digital coupons.” The point is to phase out high print campaigns in favor of cost-effective digital marketing.

Edit Your Sales Process

One last step to earn a customer for life

Our last tip is for those of you who may not necessarily have a brick and mortar store or do postcards. If your business has more of an established sales process, make the final step an opportunity to opt into your e-newsletter list. For example, if you are selling insurance, you walk your prospect through your sales process until they choose an insurance plan and sign up. As part of the final sales process, ask your customer if they would like to sign up for your e-newsletter campaign that offers preventative measures to reduce costs and to essentially never hopefully have to use their insurance. Your e-newsletter offers added value and positions you as an expert who cares to dissuade them from rate switching in the future.

About the Author

Katrice Svanda is the Director of Business Development and Founder of Digital Impact Agency, an interactive media and inbound marketing agency.

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