How to Build an Email Marketing Funnel that Drives Massive ROI

All hail the humble email.

It may not be as trendy as Snapchat and Instagram, or as flashy as PPC ads, but it is quietly getting things done. It’s effective, powerful, and consistent.

And in the digital marketing age, that’s the trifecta you want more than any other.

In fact, it’s so good at what it does, that it rarely gets the accolades that its younger, hipper counterparts (Facebook ads, social media, Adwords) receive all the time. We take email for granted.

Let’s face it: email is popular. Very popular. Total worldwide email users is expected to hit 2.9 billion by 2019. And in the marketing game, popularity is step one. You need to utilize the platforms that everyone loves.

Roughly 205 billion emails are sent daily, and the average office worker receives about 121 of them each day. 42% of us check our email in the bathroom (and the other 58% just don’t admit it). We read them in bed, while watching tv, while driving (yikes!), at work, at home, and on vacation.

Email, email, email. We just can’t get enough.

But email is more than just the cool kid at school. Well-known and accepted, yes. But it goes beyond that. It’s a marketers best tool, secret, and weapon.

Almost three-quarters of American adults cite email as their preferred communication channel with companies and brands.

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According to the latest email benchmark report from Experian, the average open rate across all industries in the third quarter of 2016 was 25.7%, with a 2.7% click rate. Not bad, right?

Obviously, those numbers vary – sometimes higher, sometimes lower – depending on your specific industry. You can easily find current industry averages online. MailChimp, for example, provides a regularly updated database arranged by industry and company size.  

Email: More Than Meets the Eye

In only about twenty years, email has revolutionized the way we communicate, and its place in the annals of history would be safe for that reason alone.

But it didn’t take long for marketers to hitch their wagon to the Email Express. It was, is, and will likely remain the most cost-effective and powerful channel in the digital age.  

Don’t believe me? Consider just a few relevant statistics:

There’s no shortage of incredible email stats.

Email can turn your marketing funnel into a well oiled and fuel efficient machine. And a strong funnel is the foundation of a strong business. The email marketing funnel is the one funnel to rule them all. [click to continue...]

30 Must-Do Post-Publication Content Promotion Tactics

Writing content can be one of the most time-consuming marketing tactics, but it’s just a small part of an effective content marketing strategy. In fact, it’s a common position that marketers should spend more time on content promotion over writing.

Some even shoot for a lot more: Derek Halpern uses an 80/20 model for content promotion, with 80% of his time spent promoting the content he writes.

If that makes you feel ashamed about your approach to content marketing, don’t let it bother you. A lot of marketers fall short of that. That’s why, despite more than 80% of marketers using content marketing, only about 1/3 of them find it to be effective.

You have to promote what you produce to see results, and not just a little. You need to push hard.

Ready to start putting up big traffic and share numbers? I’ve pulled together 30 of the most effective, must-do content promotion tactics that you should be using when you publish new content.

1. Weekly Roundups

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When sites are looking to build out their list of weekly roundups, they’re typically using tools like Buzzsumo or major aggregator sites like AllTop to find what’s popular at any given time. But that doesn’t mean they’re not open to solicitation.

If you’ve recently created a high value 10x piece of content, reach out to the relevant sites that often post roundups in the manner and ask for yours to be considered for inclusion.

Find the best ones by doing searches on social media using keywords related to your niche and “roundup.” Send a personalized outreach email (don’t copy and paste) that compliments their blog, roundups, and includes a link to your content with a clear ask to be considered for inclusion.

2. Update Old Content

There’s likely to be overlap in topics and relevancy when you’re producing content, and you can leverage that to help promote your newest content.

Check your analytics to keep tabs on your best performing content and the topics. When you’ve written a new piece you want to promote, find an older piece of content that relates. Find a way to tweak the content to work in a link to your new post.

Not only will this drive some traffic to the newest content, but you’re building on your internal link structure to establish relevancy. You’re also keeping that old content updated, which boosts its freshness score and keeps it from growing out of date.

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Your analytics can tell you which of your posts gets the most traffic, and you can use tools like Buzzsumo and Social Crawlytics to see which of your posts get the most social shares and engagement.

3. SumoMe Shares

You could drown in the sea of apps and plugins designed to make it easy to share website content like blogs. I’ve tried dozens and found most to be clunky and even unusable on some platforms. The one that consistently performs, in my opinion, is SumoMe’s share app.

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It’s completely free and I’ve always loved it’s free-floating position off to the side that seems to attract the user’s attention. [click to continue...]

How to Reduce Mobile App User Churn: 5 Strategies for Success

When it comes to your customers, few things are worse than churn.

Never having a customer? That’s obviously less than ideal. But having a paying customer cut ties and leave you? That’s rejection. That stings.

You’ve invested time, energy, and money into getting them in the first place, and then they get up and go.  

And if that’s not bad enough, you’re probably familiar with the ubiquitous stats about cost of acquiring versus cost of retaining (but just in case you’re not):

Good business is all about keeping the customers you have. That should be your top priority.

The mobile app arena is no different. Marketers and companies once looked at number of users and total installations as evidence of success. One million downloads? Yippee!

But installing an app is not the end of the story. In fact, 23% of users uninstall an app after using it just once. That’s about one in four. Their download still goes into the tally, but no one would call that a happy ending.

Churn in the app world can be devastating. Like any business, you’ve got to measure and manage your churn rate. And the best way to “manage” it is to reduce it.

Here are five ways to do just that.

Churn Rate?

Before we go any further, though, let’s get everyone on the same page.

The churn rate is the percentage of paying customers or users that break ties with a company during a defined period of time, typically by month, quarter, or year (the opposite is the retention rate, or how many customers stay).

Tracking the churn rate is a great metric for quickly assessing overall health: if it’s going down, whatever changes you made are working. But if it’s going up, it’s time to head back to the drawing board.

The formula for calculating it is very simple: the number of customers who left during a set period divided by the number at the start. That’s it.

Number of Customers Who Left

Number of Customers At Start

Now, I should point out a couple of things here:

  1. Churn is what’s known as a lagging indicator, meaning it’s already happened. Many consider that a serious drawback. By the time you see your churn rate go up, you’re already anywhere from a few weeks to a few months past when you failed your customers in some way.
  2. This type of churn calculation works very well for subscription services and other monthly or annual recurring fees, but gets a bit more complicated when it comes to, say, ecommerce. They require more complex formulas. Some ecommerce platforms, for example, adhere to the assumption that most repeat customers return within X days (varies depending on the niche) of their first purchase, so anyone not buying again in that timeframe is labeled as having “churned”.
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How Efficient is Your Digital Marketing Spend?

Welcome to the new frontier: the online channels and tactics you use to reach people around the corner and across the globe. Social media, email, PPC, and content are the digital arenas where savvy brands battle for supremacy. It’s a brave new world.

Businesses are throwing buckets of time, money, and effort at digital, but not enough are tracking whether it’s boom or bust. That fancy infographic series looks great. Those email newsletters seem quite popular. You’ve got 50,000 followers on Twitter. And?

No one wants to be left behind. Consumers have migrated to the web, so businesses are diving right in…and plan to learn how to swim later. That’s a great way to drown, not succeed. [click to continue...]

The 10 Things All Product Pages Need to Drive Conversions

Ecommerce retailers live and die by their ability to convert website visitors into buyers.

Unfortunately, success selling online isn’t as simple as more visitors = more sales.

As you likely already know, getting traffic to your online store isn’t always the problem. Where many online retailers struggle is getting that traffic to convert and actually buy some product.

With average cart abandonment rates sitting at approximately 68%, you need to button down your product pages – and your sales funnel in general – to get more of those customers to complete the checkout process.

This is especially important as it’s becoming increasingly more difficult to achieve revenue growth as competitors pop up more and more often – competition that stems from the fact that more consumers are shopping online than ever before.

One comScore survey revealed that consumers are doing more than 50% of their shopping with brands online. That’s up from 47% in 2014.

Not sure that your product pages are pulling their weight? Below, I’ll walk you through the 10 things consumers need to see on every product page if you’re serious about lifting your conversions and growing your revenue: [click to continue...]