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Showing posts from May, 2014

CASL Basics for Small Business

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If you own a business and are using email, text messaging or social networks to promote products and services, you should know a bit about Canada's new anti-spam law (CASL), which comes into effect on July 1, 2014. The regulations, impact summary, bulletins and other resources are detailed and lengthy. I've been asked about this a lot over the past few weeks so I'm starting here with the very basics.

First, determine if your electronic message is commercial in nature. The law applies to commercial electronic messages (CEMs) only. A CEM is defined as encouraging participation in a business transaction or activity, regardless of whether there is an expectation of profit. Many messages sent in the process of doing business would be considered CEMs.

Here’s what you’ll need to do for those CEMs, starting July 1st:
Get the consent of your recipients. The legislation requires obtaining "express" or "implied" consent. Express consent means that a person has clear…

eMail Marketing has an ROI

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Unlike some of the other marketing initiatives we undertake, email marketing can have very specific measurable results.

Consider...
The marketing consultant who locked down a $5000 contract as a direct result of a call to action in her newsletterThe speaker who was asked to write a column for a national magazine in response to his newsletterThe advisor who launched a speaking career when a speakers bureau responded to her newsletterThe trainer who filled a workshopThe entrepreneurs who filled a conferenceThe therapist, the nail technician, the coach and the spa that each booked many appointmentsThe wine store, the shoe store and the health store that sold more productsThe author who sold more booksThe many sold out events!
Certainly the ROI of some email marketing campaigns can’t be measured as specifically as this. And there are lots of smaller benefits which accrue over time. If you're wondering how an enewsletter might benefit your business, contact me for a chat.

photo by vens…

The Wrong eMail Marketing Advice

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These questions about email marketing should never be answered, “It doesn't matter.”
When is the best time to send my newsletter?Do I need a sign-up form?Where do I put my sign-up form?How often should I send my newsletter?Should I use a free bulk email application?How do I get email addresses for my list?Where can I get images to use in my newsletter?How do I look at my statistics?How long should my newsletter be?What about social media posting? These are just a few of the things you'll need to know and decisions you'll have to make when you start your own enewsletter. The answers to these questions can have a significant impact on the success of your campaign. Don't let anyone tell you differently.
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Loyalty isn't Instant

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I've been keeping an eye on our blog because I know I’m approaching 250 articles and I want to celebrate that milestone. I've been feeling pretty good about that. Four years of consistent blogging is an accomplishment, don’t you think?

Now, here’s some perspective. I just finished reading this article in The Telegram (St. John’s, NL) about my aunt who recently passed away. Among her many other accomplishments, she wrote the Guiding column for The Telegram for 50 years (starting the year I was born). During that time, she wrote over 2000 columns! (The link above includes her last column.)

In a world where we now seem to measure success in months and even weeks, 50 years and 2000 articles seems rather daunting.

I have seen, though, what a long term consistent approach can do for a small business, at least as far as newsletters and blogging go anyway. When you demonstrate your loyalty to your readers by being consistent over time, they become loyal in return. Once you have loyalt…

Commit to Consistency

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Every single month since June 2011, Peter Chapman of GPS Business Solutions has been sending out an informational newsletter. It’s a shining example of commitment and consistency. I asked Peter recently to share his insights, tips and successes.

Peter is a consultant focused on increasing the sales of producers, manufacturers and retailers in the food industry. Because he’s an expert, he’s also in demand as a speaker on these topics. Now, unless you work in the food industry, you may not be interested in what Peter has to say. It’s very specific... and very valuable to folks in his target market.

One key to Peter’s success is advance planning. He told me, “I have a spreadsheet with my ideas for each section of the newsletter and I try to plan at least 4 months out. It makes it much better for me to know I just need to write it, as opposed to coming up with the ideas and then writing it. I also find there is better continuity. If you start from scratch every month there is not the same…