Build Connections, Not Transactions

by Guest Expert

When I asked for the bill at a restaurant we dined at last weekend, I was pleasantly surprised to see them include a contact form for us to fill out:

The same happened at another restaurant last month - this time with the added incentive of entering a competition:

 

Of course, the obvious question is ...

 

Are YOU collecting your customers' e-mail addresses?

 

In fact, are you asking all your Web site visitors for their e-mail addresses? If you're not, you're missing out on a huge marketing opportunity.

E-mail is 40 years old this year, but it's still one of the most powerful marketing tools you have. Sure, we're getting a lot of e-mail now, but that's because it works! And if you have permission to be in your reader's in-box, you've gained access to one of their most trusted spaces on-line.

 

If you don't believe me ...

 

Let me ask you a question: Would you sign up to a company that told you it would send you an advertisement every day? No feature article, no gifts, just an ad every day.

 

You'd probably say no, right?

Well, I have six words for you: Groupon. Scoopon. JumpOnIt. Spreetz. CatchOfTheDay. DealsDirect.

These are all companies that send an ad every day, and thousands of people scramble to sign up for their daily deals.

 

Why? Because they get consent and provide value.

Consent and value are the two cornerstones of successful e-mail marketing.

First, get their consent (permission). This should go without saying, but rarely a week goes by that somebody doesn't add me to a mailing list without my permission. Always get permission. In many countries (including Australia), it's not just a good idea - it's the law.

Second, make sure you always provide value. Value is in the eye of the beholder, so give them what they want, and use that to build a strong connection with your customers, clients, prospects and the rest of your network.

Gihan Perera

 

www.Gihanperera.com

 


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