Showing posts from June, 2013

Being Opened vs. Being Read

Does a high open rate mean anything if nobody is reading and acting?

Your open rate is an indication of brand recognition. Your click rate is one indication of whether your newsletter actually gets read. (How many newsletters do you open without reading?) Getting read is what raises your reputation and prompts interaction.

Did you know that you can actually increase one at the expense of the other? That’s why, when you shoot for one goal, you have to be aware of what else you’re impacting.

Being opened, being read, and being clicked – that’s being 'read deeply'. Want to know how to ensure that your newsletter gets read more deeply? Send it at an off-peak time. When there is less available to read, people are more likely to read more deeply.

You might be thinking, “That’s nuts! My open rate would drop.” And you’d be exactly right. But the amount of reading in relation to your open rate would increase. Go figure.

Email marketing stats show that open rates are (slightly) lower on…

The Crunch

Number crunching has always been a hobby of mine. For a few months our Klout score has been stuck at 55. Being a numbers person, I’d like to see it increase. It doesn't seem to matter how often I post, how much I interact, how much my content gets shared – stuck fast at 55.

To clarify, our Twitter strategy has never been about quantity but rather quality. I've worked hard to improve the quality but that darn Klout score won’t budge. It really bugs me! It seems the only way I can increase it is to up the number of followers. While our followers are constantly growing, apparently not by enough to change that Klout score.

I can’t keep up with the 900 people I’m already following. I’m able to interact with only a small percentage of them. Maybe I feel that following someone is more of a commitment than it really is? I've been fighting the temptation to turn Twitter into a numbers game.

While I’m a numbers person, I realize there’s an inherent danger in fixating on one numb…

4 Tips for Summer Newsletter Success

It might be tempting to take a vacation from your newsletter over the summer. What excuse are you telling yourself to justify this?

You can take vacation without putting your email marketing on hiatus too.Tweet this
Here are some suggestions: Prepare in advance and use scheduling functionality. If you're using a bulk email service provider (ESP), you likely have the ability to schedule your newsletters. That means you have no excuse - you can prepare several issues in advance and stick to your regular schedule. (You might even find that this is better time management!)Send out a brief issue instead of your usual format. Cut back on the quantity of content, but not the value. Half a newsletter is better than no newsletter.Solicit guest articles. Ask your clients and colleagues to write articles - or scan their blogs for appropriate content that you can 'borrow'. Ensure you request permission and give proper credit.Re-purpose content. Summarize and collate using wrap-up artic…

This Deserves Your Attention

Now that I have your attention, I’d better earn it, right? We've all heard it said that advertising is buying people’s attention. Content marketing is all about earning that attention by providing value to readers.

There are a lot of different types of content that can mean value to readers. You have to really determine what your target market wants. And that requires gathering intelligence and strategic thinking. Not just doing it once either, but continuing to stay attuned to your readers’ preferences. Once you earn attention, you need to continue to deserve it.

Past success doesn't guarantee future success. Don't let your content strategy get stale.

How do you continue to deserve attention?
Watch your statistics. If your readership dips, be curious and investigate.Pay attention to unsolicited feedback and also seek out feedback. If you want to do better, people are generally willing to give advice and opinions. As with any feedback, don’t react without investigating fur…

An Adventure in List Cleaning

It felt like doing laundry. Throw in the dusty email addresses and out come clean ones, with all the grime left behind.

List cleaning involves 2 basic steps:
identifying email addresses in your database that no longer exist or have been spelled wrongremoving non-existent email addresses and correcting obvious typos
List cleaning was a new experience for us. We had anticipated it might be needed at some point so had done some research – enough to know that there were many options available online. We figured it should be easy to do when the need arose.

When the need did arise recently, I clicked my way to those apps we'd flagged as promising. I quickly discovered that it wasn't going to be as straightforward as I had imagined (and hoped). The first 2 apps I tried left me scratching my head in puzzlement.

With no time to waste on a big learning curve, I did a new search and decided to try ListWiseHQ. What a pleasant surprise! It was easy to see what my options were and the appli…

Thinking of Skipping the Summer?

It’s already started: people are asking if they should continue to send out their newsletter  over the summer. My reply is a definite YES.

I want to convince you to stay the course... and not just with your newsletter. If you're considering taking a break from any of your online marketing over the summer, here are some things to consider.

If everyone else thinks the same way and takes the summer off, isn't that your chance to stand out in your reader’s inbox and social media feeds? OK, so you might say there will also be fewer readers, what with everyone taking vacation. Yes, you might see a small reduction in readership. But with less content available, people are more likely to open your email and read your posts, and more likely to click – they read more deeply.

Consistency is important to online marketing success. People may not notice that you’re missing over the summer but they’ll realize it when they see you show up in the fall. Being consistent sends its own message. Mome…

Content Creation (Wrap-up #2)

Keeping your readers engaged requires content that is interesting and useful... and fresh. This article is a follow up to our previous Content Creation (Wrap-up), capturing our newer articles about content creation from June 2012 to May 2013. If you're stuck for content, you've found the right post to give you inspiration and ideas. You'll also find some thought provoking strategies to consider.

Keeping to a consistent content creation routine has big benefits. Just because you can't think of something great to write about when facing a deadline, doesn't mean you can't Plan to Give Your Best next time.

Introducing Your Very First Issue can be a little stressful. Here are some things you might want to include, as well as some examples to get you started.

Take some time to search for images that are not overused on the internet. This article provides links to a few Graphic Solutions to help get you started.

Finding an idea that inspires you can sometimes be the h…

Customer Service in a Box

You know when you land on a website and, before you've had a chance to take a breath, a box pops up over top of the text you were just reading? “Can I help you?”

How does that make you feel? Startled? Annoyed? A little creeped out?
I’m a fan of pop-up boxes, but only when I’m the one that can push the button to make them pop up. I've used them lots to solve all kinds of online problems fast.
When they pop-up unexpectedly, it makes me feel like someone’s been watching me. And it’s always too soon... before I've even formed my first question.
Recently I was searching for a list cleaning application and didn't have time for a long learning curve. After trying a couple of other sites, I went to ListWiseHQ. I was impressed to find all my options and the applicable prices laid out clearly on the home page. I was thinking, “This might be the one.” Then Gladys popped up.
Gladys was in one of those pop-up boxes. Not in front of what I was reading but down in the corner. She wa…