The Biggest Mistakes For Business Email Marketing

Some companies will pay thousands of dollars just for the privilege of sending out ONE mailing to a reputable rented email list. Sounds crazy, right? Know what’s even crazier? Companies have the opportunity to get a better, more targeted list of email addresses, for an unlimited time, for FREE, and are not taking advantage of it. Yet that’s exactly what businesses do when they don’t make it ridiculously easy and compelling for users to sign up for their newsletter or email updates.

Who cares how great your emails are if no one is around to get them.
Who cares how great your emails are if no one is around to get them.

Some companies will pay thousands of dollars just for the privilege of sending out ONE mailing to a reputable rented email list.  Sounds crazy, right?

Know what’s even crazier?  Companies have the opportunity to get a better, more targeted list of email addresses, for an unlimited time, for FREE, and are not taking advantage of it. Yet that’s exactly what businesses do when they don’t make it ridiculously easy and compelling for users to sign up for their newsletter or email updates.   According to email guru, DJ Waldow, this is the #1 mistake that companies make with regards to business email marketing. After all, no email addresses, no email marketing for your business.  Fortunately, this mistake is also one of the easiest to fix.

As an email consultant, Mr. Waldow sees the good, bad, and the ugly when it comes to newsletter lists. Some of the mistakes he sees most often are listed below.

Here are some of the most common ways many companies fail at signing up users:

  1. Only putting an opt-in for a newsletter in one place.   Some companies hide the opt-in for their newsletter in their website footer. As if it’s a copyright.  Instead, make sure it’s above the fold on your home page and in other places where users would organically think about requesting updates –like your blog.  If you ask users to register for anything on your site such as white papers, e-books, or webinars, make sure to include an opt-in for your newsletters within the form.
  2. Not providing a compelling reason to sign up.   Why should users sign up for your updates?  Be short, specific and compelling.  Here is one of Mr. Waldow’sfavorite examples.
  3. Requiring a double opt-in.   When you sign up for a newsletter, you assume you’re going to get it.  Why send another email saying—“Hey, just want to be extra sure this is you so click this link or you won’t get our newsletter.”  That’s just extra work for everyone and a chunk of people will never open that email.   On the extremely off chance someone entered someone else’s email address for a newsletter, that user can just hit the unsubscribe button when you send out the first email to them.  It’s far less likely that someone else subscribed for them and far more likely that they signed up themselves, but won’t open the email asking them to opt-in again.

 

When done right business email marketing can deliver a higher ROI than paid search or advertising, and has   measurable results.  But instead of buying some outrageously expensive or questionable email list, just make it easier and more compelling for users to sign up for yours.

Bonus Tip: Creating a compelling message to entice people to sign up for your business’ newsletter can be really hard. After all, who wants ANOTHER business newsletter in their inbox? Instead convince them with a piece of amazing content they really want. Offer a white paper or e-book download on your site that is chock full of great information your audience wants and include an opt-in that says something like, “Yes, I want more great content like this” in your download form.  Or, here’s a real example:  our 52 Tips, Tricks, and Insider Secrets for Handling the Holiday Rush. Get creative with your business email marketing campaign and watch your list grow.

Lead Showdown: Marketing vs Sales

The rivalry that exists between marketers and sales people over quality leads is often a major issue in businesses. Marketers work hard to find prospects for the sales team, but ultimately the leads end up being a wash. The truth is that it doesn’t have to be a negative relationship.

marketing gets qualified sales leads for business developmentThe rivalry that exists between marketers and sales people over quality leads is often a major issue in businesses. Marketers work hard to find prospects for the sales team, but ultimately the leads end up being a wash. The truth is that it doesn’t have to be a negative relationship.

Marketers tend to make some common mistakes that keep sales teams on edge. There’s no need to send every new newsletter lead on to the sales team. Dig deeper to discover if the latest e-book download is a qualified sales lead or just someone looking for some reading material. Does your new lead match the definition of quality sales lead? Wait a minute – you haven’t developed the definition of a quality lead in your organization? This is the most important step in the process, and one of the major reasons discontent exists.

By following these simple steps, sales and marketing teams can get on the same page and create a positive situation for both sides.

  • Create a Definition of a Qualified Sales Lead. Marketing teams and sales teams need to take a step back and collaborate on what a quality lead is. By working together, both sides can understand what the qualifying elements of a good sales lead are. Many times, coming to this joint understanding can help smooth the process and resolve conflict.

  • Properly Identify Where Leads Are. Not every lead will be a good candidate for the sales team. Make sure you know where on the sales process map each lead lies. Marketing automation tools can tell which content has been downloaded, which pages are visited and more. These systems help drive the lead score to determine when a lead gets forwarded to sales.

  • Test Your Assumptions. Don’t send off a lead if you haven’t looked ahead first. Test your assumptions before you send them to sales, to make sure your leads are the real deal. Tools like proactive chat allow you to reach out to prospects while they are still on your website, and once they reach a certain lead score, you can see if they’re in need of some help. The marketing and sales teams should re-group after leads have been passed on in the adjusted system, to see if things have improved and potentially refine their quality-match definition.

 

It takes a lot of work to get things back on the right track, but it’s not impossible. Instead of adopting an us-versus-them mentality, both sides need to work together in a collaborative way. The marketing team can nurture potential prospects until the leads are at a point where they are ready to be handed to the sales team. This approach allows marketers to become the facilitators of the sales process, not the enemy.

6 Ways to Make Your Customer Service 6 Times More Efficient Using Live Chat

Providing excellent customer service is a hallmark of a lasting company. It engenders customer loyalty and leads to repeat business; creating customers who become brand cheerleaders. Providing proper customer support can also be a real drain on the budget if your customer service providers are not taking advantage of these six ways to make customer service six times more efficient.

Providing excellent customer service is a hallmark of a lasting company. It engenders customer loyalty and leads to repeat business; creating customers who become brand cheerleaders. Providing proper customer support can also be a real drain on the budget if your customer service providers are not taking advantage of these six ways to make customer service six times more efficient.

Be Like a Boy Scout and Be Prepared

The best way to ensure customer service efficiency, whether you are using click to call or live chat software is to be prepared. Provide your customer service team with the resources they need to answer customer questions: information, toggle screens, quick account lookups, and live chat application tools that make providing live help faster, more efficient, and more comprehensive.

If You’re Not Using Live Chat, Start Now

Want to immediately see an improvement in your revenue totals & averages? Introduce live chat support to your customers. Not only can chat applications help you respond more quickly to customers and reduce wait times, but you can better track service issues and trigger necessary follow-ups, ensuring efficient responses with more comprehensive service and better results.

Back Channeling: It’s Not Just for Good Marriages

Back channeling is a communication technique in which you provide acknowledgment of what the other party is saying, validating their concerns and making them feel heard. It’s great for husbands and wives but even better when providing live support. There’s nothing worse than already being frustrated and then staring at a blinking cursor, waiting for a customer service rep to respond to your live chat request or problem. Make your customers feel wanted, needed, and listened to by acknowledging their concerns and advising them about the next step you’ll be taking. It will save time because the customer will not feel the need to repeat the issue – or escalate it.

 

Be All Ears

Your team can’t solve problems without listening skills – and listening skills, a.k.a. reading between the lines, are just as crucial when using live chat software as it is on the phone. Regardless of how your team delivers service, it all starts with a sharp focus on what the customer really wants or needs and then responding appropriately. This will minimize misunderstandings and assumptions that lead to longer service times and lower quality.

Empower Customer Service Teams to Make Decisions

Nothing infuriates a customer more – or adds more pain to your revenue totals & averages – than a customer service rep who has to run to a supervisor every time a customer wants something even slightly out of the ordinary. Empower your customer service reps to use live chat services as the tool it was intended to be: a rapid response to customer need that ensures you long-term customer satisfaction

Ask the Right Questions

Training your customer service teams to stay in control of the conversation and ask the right questions is crucial to maintaining efficiency in any live chat environment. Providing excellent, efficient customer service means striking the perfect balance between getting to the heart of the matter and making sure customers don’t feel like they’re just another ticket to be resolved. Your customer service team needs to maintain control of the call or live chat, using live support software to efficiently gathering the details necessary to resolve the issue and making decisions that will lead to a satisfactory resolution for the customer.

Customer service should not be considered an obligatory requirement of the business but the first – and best – opportunity to transform potential customers into loyal brand ambassadors. The experience your customers have with your live support services will determine their opinion of your company – not just in the moment, but forever.

Are you interested in implementing live chat software for your company? Check out this white paper on How to Select the Best Live Chat Provider for your organization.

How Long Will They Wait

Every wonder how long someone is willing to wait on hold for customer service? So did we! That’s why we ran a survey to get to the bottom of this topic, once and for all. Here you will find an infographic that displays our findings. The results might shock you!

Every wonder how long someone is willing to wait on hold for customer service? So did we! That’s why we ran a survey to get to the bottom of this topic, once and for all. Here you will find an infographic that displays our findings. The results might shock you!

infographic, customer service

Survey Says: Consumers Hate Being Put on Hold. Here’s How to Fix That

Here at Velaro, we recently conducted a survey to determine just how long customers would wait on hold for service. Turns out, almost 60% are not willing to wait more than one minute and 32% won’t wait any time at all.

“Your call is important to us. Please continue to hold for the next available agent.”

Here at Velaro, we recently conducted a survey to determine just how long customers would wait on hold for service.  Turns out, almost 60% are not willing to wait more than one minute and 32% won’t wait any time at all.

This is good news if your customer service reps pick up the phone immediately for every caller.  If that’s not the case for your company, here are some ways (including live chat software) to keep customers from hanging up on your business.

  1. Pre-emptively answer questions on your website.  Is there a “greatest hits” of questions that your customer service reps get all the time?  Questions like: What’s your return policy? Where can I download a postage paid label? Do you offer gift certificates?  Even if these questions are answered on your site, they may not be prominent enough.  Make it crystal clear where customers can get those answers on your site.
  2. Make the shopping process extremely intuitive.  If you create a streamlined, “idiot proof” buying process on your site, your customers will be less likely to feel the need to call your customer service department to help walk them through making a purchase. You can find out more details about this in our free e-book 52 Tips, Tricks, and Insider Secrets for Handling the Online Holiday Rush.
  3. Add live chat to your site.  We are passionate about live chat, not only because it is what we do, but because it greatly increases the speed and effectiveness of customer service. A customer service rep can handle up to four customers simultaneously by utilizing live chat online but can only talk to one customer at a time on the phone.  In today’s digital age, many consumers, especially younger ones, prefer live chat over talking on the phone.
  4. Give customers the option to leave their number for a call back.  If your customer service reps can’t answer the phone right away, why make your customers wait on hold for any longer than a minute?  Give them the option to let you call them back and assure them that they won’t lose their place in the queue.

 

Finally, remember that when you lose one customer because they were forced to hold too long to get service, you may not be losing just that customer.  They may decide to vent to all of their Facebook friends, a.k.a. potential customers, about their terrible experience.  Following the tips above is a great way to prevent that from happening and show them that their call really is important to you.