How hard…or how easy…is it to sign up to receive your e-mail updates, newsletter, or the RSS feed for your blog?
Is your sign-up request easy-to-see, located in the top right hand area of your blog, sales page, or newsletter?
Does it have prominent colored arrows…or some other device that calls attention to the opportunity to get interesting, valuable, and FREE information? Information that you have persuasively demonstrated will improve their life in some way?
Does your sign-up process ask simply for their first name and e-mail address? Something really simple and quick to get them started.
Does it promise NO SPAM; no regular solicitation; no sharing of their e-mail address?
Does it reassure them they can opt-out: “We respect your time and privacy, and will not abuse that. If you decide you no longer want to receive e-mails from us, simply click on the link you are provided in each e-mail, and we will immediately remove you from our mailing list.”
Are you using HTML format, or some other medium that allows you to use enhanced graphics, including fonts, colors, photos, different typefaces and illustrations?
If you do all of these things, you will be following the path set by the experts. These processes have been tested and refined many times.
Most importantly, they work.
Now, if you want to go “above and beyond”, and you can afford the cost…or have the expertise to create your own…consider adding rich media to your e-mail messages…and let your prospects or customers know that you’ll be including this in their e-mail messages when they sign up. Many on-line users, are now accustomed, and prefer, audio or video or both, so the ability to provide this service will be considered by many as a “value-added” design.
Another tactic that works, as long as it includes an easy opt-out process, is to ask the prospect if they want to sign-up, or invite, their friends to sign up at the same time. This type of opt-in can help built your e-mail list quickly. However, it also needs a confirmation link to confirm that the friend also actually wants to receive your e-mails. This will help keep it from being bounced by the SPAM monitors, and not immediately reported as SPAM if it makes it through the filter to e-mail delivery.
Surprisingly, for all of the information available on creating a memorable e-mail sign-up process, there are many on-line marketers who stick to plain text, or have an opt-in that requests a whole page of information before “allowing” a prospect to receive an e-mail.
Given the choices available, and the competition to speak directly to the marketplace through direct e-mail marketing, making sure your e-mail sign up process is memorable seems like a “no-brainer.”
When you recognize that e-mail marketing typically delivers twice the response rate of direct mail, at half — or less — the cost, it really makes a lot of sense to make sure your sign-up process is easy, enticing and memorable.
The more memorable your sign-up process is, the more likely you are to get an improved click-through rate. And it goes without saying, the higher your click-through rate, the higher your marketplace opportunities.
Check your opt-ins. Is your e-mail sign-up memorable? If not, it’s time to do a little tune-up.