The Three Golden Rules of Social Networking And Email Marketing

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If you are looking to build rewarding relationships with your prospects there are 3 things you must do well in your Social Networking and Email Marketing. It takes some time and energy to build a responsive list and one where you provide value to each other but you will both enjoy the benefits if you remember the 3 Golden Rules:

1. Quality – When growing your list of contacts it’s about quality first and foremost, not quantity. Sure you want to have a good sized list but it is not all about the numbers. More importantly you want to attract the people who want and need the products and services you have to offer. Invite those who you have met at an in-person networking event to connect with you on your online social networks. Make sure it is someone who expressed an interest in what you do, someone who you will be able to provide value to. You’ll notice on Facebook when you are about to send a friend request there is a note that reads “Please only send this request if you know him/her personally.”

2. Consistency – If you plan to use social networking and email marketing as strategies, then you must be consistent. Maintain your online presence on the social networks by making relevant posts that serve to educate your target market. Respond to any questions or comments you receive. If you are using email marketing by way of putting out a regular ezine, then ensure you have a publishing schedule that you follow. People will come to expect to see your newsletter in their inbox on a regular basis. If they don’t hear from you for a couple months or you email them a lot at once and then nothing at all for awhile, your readers will start to wonder what’s going on. Are you still in business? Is everything okay?

3. Permission – Seth Godin who coined the phrase Permission Marketing, also known as Permission Based Marketing says: “Just because you somehow get my email address doesn’t mean you have permission.” A big pet peeve of mine is when you exchange business cards at a networking event and the next thing you know you’re receiving emails from this person. Has this happened to you? No one appreciates your unsolicited messages. More often than not I will end up unsubscribing if I receive something I am not interested in or did not ask for. Remember that permission-based marketing is just that – you are sending your marketing messages to a person based on the fact that you have received their permission to do so. It is best if you have had some sort of interaction with this person, that they know who you are and what your business is all about prior to asking them to join your list. Then invite them to sign up to receive your newsletter or other updates you might send out from time to time. Always give the option to easily unsubscribe.

I found some interesting statistics on open rates based on an actual test of e-mail newsletters sent by Selling Communications Inc. to a permission-based audience versus a targeted list of individuals. (An ‘open rate’ is a measure of how many people on an email list open a particular email.) The statistics speak for themselves:

E-mail Newsletter With Permission 43% viewed

E-mail Newsletter Without Permission 17% viewed

As business owners we’ve all heard about the know, like and trust factor. By following the above rules you can ensure that your market of targeted prospects will get to know you, like you and trust you helping to build long-lasting and profitable business relationships.

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