7 Email Publishers Profiting From the Inbox

7 Email Publishers Profiting From the Inbox

Reader Comments (43)

  1. Newsletters are a great a great way to build relationship with your readers. Look at Ramit form I will teach you to be rich, he uses his newsletters effectively to sell his own products but he offers tremendous value in terms of great and entertaining content for free as well.

    • Kelton,

      WOW, the items on this agenda are so powerful and yet so difficult. As with the comment above, I can see what the system accomplishes and why the newsletters are a personal and intimate form of communication, like entering a client’s home through the inbox (as you said).

      Email content can be skillfully directed towards the audience in a form that just isn’t possible, short of standing face to face. I stand in the midst of “the massive clutter of the social media landscape” and try to wave my arms to slow them down. The reality of the task is that I need to separate myself from the clutter using powerful emails.

      You state eloquently that waving a shiny object as they pass by quickly is only a small start because “Keeping your prospectโ€™s attention is where the hard work comes in.” I am able to grab the attention of my clients rather well, but when I move to the challenging part of maintaining the same level of engagement on a long term basis through the emails, I fall short because of the hard work required.

      Collier mentioned that success comes through “small steps,” but the tiny bits of hard work on a daily basis really add up, especially when the examples you show are so creative and effective. I sympathize with others who comment about the difficulties and intricacies of this work, Dan Erickson below for example.

      Having stressed the difficulty, it ls not because of any failure in the piece, which is skillfully crafted. Rather we all shy at the complexity of the task and the work involved to get there. One must have the courage and dedication to work through the labor. This is my point, that I have to develop the self-discipline and ambition to endure. I hope that I can find this through your inspiring piece.

      At least the task seems possible now, and I understand the significance of it. Perhaps with this new determination I can get it done. Thank you.

      Darin

  2. A permission-based email list is something I’d like to incorporate into my blog, danerickson.net, in the future. I’m fairly new. I have a few problems. 1. I need more subscribers. 2. I don’t completely understand the technical aspects of setting something like this up. 3. Time: I’m a single dad with a career outside of writing and blogging. Any ideas?

    • The technical element is easy — you want to go with a third-party service that manages deliverability (in other words, staying out of spam filters). Aweber and MailChimp are both good options, each has their advantages and disadvantages.

      My recommendation is to get your email list set up first with a good autoresponder — that way you capture every single person who finds you, right from the start.

      You can get a lot of our more specific recommendations for email here: https://copyblogger.com/email-marketing/

  3. Yeah its all about the email list but you have to wonder what is the future holds for email?
    Everyone is flocking to social media and so many people are saying that twitter or Google + is the future.

    In my opinion email is direct marketing and everyone knows how well direct marketing works.
    However, with so much emphasis on social media how should one divide their time? 80/20 60/40?

    • You use social media to get people to subscribe by email. Maybe not directly, but your general content should give you exposure on the social networks and move them to a warmer relationship with you. Social media traffic is the “coldest” least loyal part of your audience. Got to bring them in closer, and email is still the best converting sales medium online. That’s not going to change any time soon.

      If it makes you feel any better, people were saying the same thing about email in 2004, when social media was just getting started. I obviously ignored that talk. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Let’s put it this way. Email is (by far) the most effective way to make offers for your business today, as well as deepening the relationship with prospects and customers. We recommend you keep using email until that stops being true.

      If something better comes along, you can always add it to your mix. It may be awhile. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I see Aweber and Mail Chimp constantly promoted as the go to email service providers. What about iContact? Is it not mentioned because of problems or because many A-listers started with Aweber and that is what is being recommended.

    • I’ve never heard of any problems with it. I have personal experience with Aweber & MC so I mention them because I know they both work well. As far as I know, iContact allows unlimited autoresponders, some services don’t.

      One thing to watch out for with other providers is that I (personally) wouldn’t go with a service that limits your # of autoresponders.

  5. We are just starting to research e-mail services and have yet to find one that makes it easy to tailor messages to specific customers (we sell a variety of items to very different customers). We already have a fairly large list and have always used MailChimp in the past. Any recommendations?

    • Is your list on MailChimp now?

      Every vendor is different in how they segment lists. Often you’ll want to bring a developer in to write a custom solution for you that integrates your payment or shopping cart solution with the email provider, “tagging” users with the different products. InfusionSoft was pretty much built to do this, but it’s a higher price tag and may be a bit more complex to set up.

      • Thanks Sonia. Yes, we have a couple of different lists on Mail Chimp.

        Our current top contenders are Aweber and Bronto. However, we’re not crazy about the double opt-in option with Aweber that means we would basically be starting over, as I understand it. Bronto seems geared towards e-commerce so that seems promising. I have not heard of InfusionSoft but will check into it, thanks!

  6. Thank you for the encouraging examples. I would stress the importance of using a double opt in like Aweber. Our company is less than 2 years old and we thought we were starting out smart with inbound marketing on the HubSpot system (sigh). That didn’t work for us for a number of reasons but as we try to move our list from HubSpot to Aweber we found we had a large number of bad email addresses because the email address didn’t have to be confirmed to get the free content. So we are starting over. Working on a new strategy for auto responders and lists at the moment.

    In the last few months we have been consuming nearly everything Copyblogger as we just transitioned off of HubSpot. We went live with out new Genesis + Optimal theme + Premise + Scribe + hosted on Synthesis in November. We are still working on everything as we did the conversion ourselves (with redirect help from the rockstar Synthesis support) in a short period of time. We are also in Teaching Sells and Jon Marrow’s Guest Blogging so we are drinking from a fire hose! You guys give tremendous advice and I’m sure with your guidance on A) how to write and B) everything else we are going to be in great shape real soon!

  7. Maybe it’s just the universe giving me a sign, but 2013 is my year of list-building. And all this stuff about emails just reminds me how important it is to create a killer opt-in, which is now the goal for the rest of December.

    Thanks for another awesome post, and some great ideas of enewsletters to look to for inspiration!

  8. Being a history blog – loved the reference back to telegraphs! Anyways – we use Campayn.com for our e-mail marketing and they have been extremely helpful in guiding us down this new path. Your advice is really great and is reminds me even more to put focus on great content!

  9. Thanks for the great info. I just had this conversation with a non-profit board who wants to get rid of enewsletters in favor of blogging. Still trying to convince them to stay with email communications.

  10. 2013 should be the year every-one builds their list. ๐Ÿ™‚ There are so many great nuggets of gold in this post. List building is so important. I had a similar story to sara above, in that I had poor quality subscribers. This wasn’t down to not having double opt-ins but because when I started out I hadn’t properly figured out my niche. Now I am so passionate about ensuring people figure out their niche early doors. You don’t want to get so far down the line to find you have a lot of bad eggs on your list who don’t really know if they should be in your basket or not.

    Beth ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. So at the end of the day what matters is providing great content and actually working hard to make sure that the people who come across that content get the hint that you want to continue your relationship with them, via email.

    Liked the examples you included.

  12. That’s a lot for the mind of a beginning marketer to absorb! But isn’t it not just about the numbers but the quality of those numbers? I mean you could have a list of 100,000 people but if those people aren’t interested in what you’re selling aren’t they just wasted space or am I missing something?

    • You’re not missing anything. As a form of content marketing, your list should be built with content that is closely related to what you sell. Or, listen to your list as to what they want to buy, and build that thing.

  13. Fantastic stuff. I’ve been blogging about expat life in Norway for 18 months wondering how I can turn it into a business. Four weeks ago I launched an email newsletter for English-speaking foreigners in Norway and it’s taken off big time… my subscriber numbers have been increasing by 20% each week, and the click rate within the emails is phenomenal. I’ve already had advertiser interest without even soliciting any… the only way is up for email marketing as far as I’m concerned.

    Listen to these Copyblogger folks, they really know their stuff ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Another great article CopyBlogger! Even though E-mail is one of the older technologies still in use today you can’t deny that nearly everyone uses it. Thats why it is so effective!

  15. Thanks for this article.

    Some of the tips are really insightful. I liked how you’re mentioning that someone who’s being engaged in a conversation gets a higher buying temperature. I would like to read an article that covers the psychology behind this.

    I’m wondering what your view is on preformatted emails versus plain text. I realise that the visual aspect of an email can be valuable. Big buttons are more easily noted and thus more frequently clicked. On the other hand you’re mentioning that the content of your email is what makes the email valuable. And a whole plethora of graphic fireworks can and probably will distract from that.

    I realise there can also be a middle ground here. A minimalistic design perhaps.

    So my question is, how do you rather recieve your emails. Pretty graphics but distracting, or plain but informative?

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