Using Search Engines For Beginners – Part One

Picture this: you visit an industry discussion list an answer a question posted by a potential customer. Two days later, your in-box is flooded with 30 different questions about your company’s services. You forward each question to the appropriate sales representative with a polite invitation to subscribe to your company newsletter. From this one post you have a batch of sales leads and even more new subscribers!

Email marketing is less about marketing than it is about building relationships. Your goal, as an email marketer, should not be about sales. Instead it should be about serving your audience. There are three keys to this important relationship:

1. Trust – the consumer is inviting you into their email in-box. Don’t abuse this relationship… nurture it. Keep their information private and protect your relationship with them.

2. Service – the key to a great relationship with consumers is to give them what they perceive as a bargain: discounts, information or subscriber-only access.

3. Sales – Money makes the world go ’round; and email on the web is no different. However, sales is listed last for a reason – it takes trust by offering an excellent service before you can sell via email.

Think about how you use email to reach your consumers. Are you offering an email newsletter, hosting or participating in discussion lists, or offering auto-responders that instantly answer a prospect’s questions? Email is a powerful relationship-building tool… when used correctly.