Grow your mailing list fast – with a Lightbox

One of the simplest and yet, most effective methods we have found to grow our mailing list at Creative Agency Secrets, has been with the integration of a ‘Lightbox’ or a ‘pop-up’ plugin.

For any business operating with an online presence (let’s face it, if you’re not, you should be!), one of your primary objectives should be to acquire email addresses of potential customers to sell your glorious products and services.

However, relying on customers to navigate your site and opt themselves in is like telling your dog to fetch a ball that it doesn’t know exists. You need to show them the ball and especially why they want to chase it!

Okay, what is a lightbox?

To put it simply, a lightbox is an extension programme on your website that jumps up at your visitors displaying a customised message, usually requesting visitors to supply their email address in exchange for some kind of benefit. These benefits are typically newsletter subscriptions, prize giveaways, eBooks, online courses and other free rewards.

Key factors to building an effective lightbox

  • Firstly, your lightbox needs to stand out. Web users are exposed to multiple lightboxes on a daily basis. You need to ensure yours captures their attention. Most lightbox software allows customisation of colour schemes and text which aid in making it visually appealing when it appears on your website. Aside from being eye catching, you need a powerful and enticing message that will draw them in as well as outline clearly what they get.
  • The lightbox should serve a single purpose – sign up here to receive benefit ___. If you make it too complicated, visitors will lose patience and simply close it without completing the signup.
  • Offer your visitors something that they want. No visitor is going to sign up for your offer if they have no interest in it or cannot see any real value from it.
  • Set frequency and page display settings to something reasonable that will not drive people away. Your lightbox should be a passive reminder, not an aggressive punch in the face to get visitors to sign up.
  • Associate it with your email client management software and it will directly import the email addresses it collects into that programme, saving you time and effort.

Once you have your lightbox setup, you simply launch it and leave it to acquire all those precious email addresses on its own. Easy!

bizsparkup lightbox creative agency secrets

An example of a SumoMe Lightbox on a client’s website

Some lightboxes work better than others however. Our previous (paid) lightbox on one client’s website appeared cluttered and ‘busy’ on the webpage. After some deliberation we decided we should see what else was available.

We assessed a number of alternatives across a range of features such as mail client integration, level of customisation, price and so forth. Although paid and free versions existed for most options, we discovered the benefits of many of the premium lightbox providers were not substantial enough to justify the purchase.

Our clear favourite at the end of the process was a product called ‘List Builder’ developed by SumoMe*. Their simple user interface meant it was pleasant for our visitors to engage with and the customisable colour and text allowed us to align the lightbox with our clients’ brands.

In the first few months, we saw the number of subscribers jump from roughly 20 – 30 per month to over 300! Our mailing lists continue to grow steadily and our lightbox is undoubtedly a key driver in facilitating this.

So what are you waiting for? Convert your web traffic into willing customers immediately, or get in touch if you would like us to help you get there.

*For a full breakdown of the lightboxes we compared, click here.

Anniversary marketing campaign ideas

 

Linda Horton from Bermuda makes amazing Bermudan Black Rum Cakes and is planning a 30th

Horton’s Bermudan Black Rum Cake

Anniversary Marketing event.  Here’s what we recommended

  • Create a special cake (unique box, big plus small cake in one box, different sizes, multi-buy)
  • Use your database of past customers and create a mailing campaign
  • Create a landing page on your website “30th Anniversary” – on the page talk about the history of the company and tell them there will be a contest every week during July and you’re planing a special cake edition.  As each email gets sent out, edit the page to include more and more information

Send messages as follows

  • 1 month in advance (1 June) telling them to expect something special at the anniversary.
  • 2 weeks later tell them what it will be and say you’re taking advance orders at a special discounted price for 1 week only.  [This is useful because you then know the volume you need to bake.]
  • 1 week after – send an email saying you will raise the price to the normal price on the website in 1 day [this will drive more sales].
  • On 1 July start the contest on Facebook and also run it on the website.  Include a simple entry form so you get their email addresses.
  • On 8 July announce the winner of the first week on Facebook and the website page.  Also email every person who entered and did not win offering them a special price on a cake and encouraging them to enter again.
  • Repeat each week till the end of July.
If you want to boost contest entries you can do Facebook advertising to send people to your landing page.
I am really looking forward to the cake Linda’s sending over for the team… morning coffee will never be the same again!

 

Email Campaign Case Study: Space Saver Rowing Systems

Email campaigns are one of our specialties. One campaign we ran recently with Space Saver Rowing Systems launched their product, Wraptor Balance, exposed to a core group of potential customers.

Step 1: initial context

campaign 1Our first email blast was designed as an introduction to the product.

It had a simple design and asked all the major questions to illustrate how having this product can solve issues the customer has with beginner rowers.

Following the opening paragraph was a list of ways the product solved the issue. This, accompanied by specifications, images and  customer quotes, gave the product a well-rounded and positive image.

The email ends with a firm call to action dominating the bottom of the email – a risk-free trial of the product – as well as a warm farewell from the client.

Topping it off, we used a post script.  P.S. statements are one of the most-read statements in emails! They firmly guided readers to the product landing page and reminded them to act on the call to action.

As you can see, the results were solid with a 40% open rate and 10% click through rate. The success however, came in reply emails requesting trials which lead to sales for our client:

campaign 2

Step 2: follow up

campaign 2

One of the greatest assets to a successful campaign is the follow up email. Not only does it feel personal, it also allowed a specific offer to be made for a no-risk trial of the product.

The analytics show a smaller number clicking through, but the client got trial requests and sold product off the campaign so it more than paid for itself.

campaign 2

Are you the CEO of your business website?

Yes I’m asking you if you drive business success from your website?

Is someone in charge of making your firm’s website successful?  Making the websitedeliver business goals?  It doesn’t matter if you’re self-employed or work for a giant corporation, if you have a website we will teach you how to drive proactive success with Blogging Concentrated education.

Announcing the Blogging Concentrated New Zealand Tour

Running to five dates, we are bringing the US founders of Blogging Concentrated, Dan Morris and Rachel Martin, to NZ so we can get ahead learning how to become the CEO of our websites and drive business success.

Five dates, Four Cities, Two Leaders and One YOU.

Join us in Auckland on May 1, May 3; Wellington on May 6th; Nelson on May 7th and Christchurch on May 9th for the best, practical website marketing execution training available.

What will I learn?

Websites are the modern marketer’s best tool to build new revenue streams and grow audience engagement.  This training comes from the leading edge of best practice with two international practitioners sharing their up to date knowledge.

Learn specific techniques that will deliver outcomes including:

  • Audience engagement with clusters marketing
  • Persuasion and action techniques
  • How to tell a story
  • Using data dashboards to improve conversions
  • The copywriting words that create engagement
  • How to use custom sidebars to optimise your adverts
  • A YouTube strategy to keep viewers on your videos
  • And more….
Watch the 4 minute video Dan and Rachel recorded about the NZ sessions 
Everything taught in the sessions is based on real-world learning and used daily in Dan and Rachel’s own business websites.  They know these techniques work.
You will be learning practical solutions from knowledgeable technicians.

Blogging Concentrated Testimonials

“I think you are going to revolutionize the way I write posts – the Adsense lecture was phenomenal. We will be contacting you with more specific questions e.g. How on earth do we get the CPM per post spreadsheet – and everything else, once we decompress what we’ve learned.”  R Miller

“You know when you go to a conference and you sit through sessions that simply regurgitate stuff you already know?  Yeah, I hate that, which is why I’m so excited about being at Blogging Concentrated Atlanta, Dan R Morris and Rachel Martin have put together a ton of original content that is not just informative but actionable.  When they come to your town you should definitely sign up and go.”  Simon Salt

“Stay in front of your audience was worth the price of the conference ticket! Wow!” Penny Woodin Rogers

“@DanRMorris 16 minutes in and mind exploding with actions already!” Amie Flowerday

“Hi Dan,  Just wanted to say thank you so much for all the valuable information you and Rachel gave us this weekend.  You can not put any price on what we learned, and I am forever in debt to you both!”  Emily Luscombe

Want to pay less for the event?

The Blogging Concentrated business has 2 parts – training events and BC Prime, a subscriber community who buy training and advice by monthly subscription.  If you’re curious about the depth of knowledge these guys bring to training events – read the BC Prime page – note the huge quantity of 2014 Release Archives – impressive, eh?  6 – 10 new pieces of educational content per month…

Choose BC Prime when you book your ticket and pay less – but GET MORE.

Ready to become the CEO of your website?
Join us by booking your ticket

button register

There are two prices, one for BC Prime members and one for the public.
Avoid limp education, buzz phrases and marketing hype.  Concentrate on workable, practical solutions that you can implement immediately on your website.
You know where to come!

 

Writing a price change email for Event Marketing

Occasionally I receive the PERFECT message – well-written, timely and full of lessons to copy and adapt.  Copyblogger Media is running an event and…. well you work out why you think they needed to write this message.

Use the same paragraph topics if you need to use a similar tactic to fill your event with paying punters.

Subject line: Authority Rainmaker price drop!

We’ve dropped the price of Authority Rainmaker registration from $1,295 to $795 for a limited time. Head over now and grab your spot:http://authorityrainmaker.com

Still here?

Then perhaps you want to know why …Last year we sold out the event months in advance because we were limited to 400 people. We also had to make the ticket price somewhat expensive, because we didn’t want to skimp on anything – food, parties, the audio/visual experience, and so on.

This year things are different in two key ways.

And this is allowing us to lower our ticket prices and get this party truly rocking.

First of all, this year we sold sponsorships. Thanks to the generosity of cool companies like Moz, AWeber, Feedblitz, TopRank Online Marketing, and our Legend Sponsor, Spears Marketing, expenses have been drastically reduced. We had no idea that we would get such an enthusiastic response from our friends in the digital marketing community!

Secondly, we’re in a much larger venue that is turning out to cost us less than the 400-seat venue we had last year. Working with the team at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House has been amazing, and it’s a real treat to have such a magnificent venue without being charged an arm and a leg.

In short, if we would have known earlier how well things would go on the expenses front, we would have sold tickets at a much lower rate so no one was excluded by the high ticket price. We don’t produce this event to maximize profit … we do it to enhance the strength of our community.But it’s not too late to adjust. So we’ve lowered the registration rate to $795. We even issued partial refunds to anyone who paid more than $795!

Cool, right? The event is shaping up to be even better than our high expectations. And now it costs you less to experience it. Check out the details, but remember, the price won’t stay this low forever:http://authorityrainmaker.com

See you soon …

Brian Clark

Founder and CEO

Copyblogger Media

Get your business started with SnapChat marketing

Ever thought SnapChat wasn’t suitable for brand marketing?  Think again – there’s now a clever desktop dashboard which brand managers can use to drive communications through this popular channel.

So what is SnapChat?

SnapChat doesn’t want to be called social media. Instead, they describe themselves as content editors and artists, not for clicks and shares. With SnapChat you can share and tell your friends what’s happening right in the heat of the moment using instant images or videos from your phone.

These messages are timed by the user, often only lasting a few seconds before disappearing when viewed. So why is this so exciting? Because it leaves no trace online it’s catching on like wild fire! In addition, more and more businesses are finding ways to market to their users on the SnapChat platform in a non-invasive, interactive and fun way.

Mish Guru runs the app for SnapChat for brands

Mish Guru makes it easier for brands and companies to use SnapChat for marketing  and content sharing purposes. In short, they create online company accounts and give advice for managing them, or even take the management off your hands.

Their unique dashboard helps you manage SnapChat campaigns and monitor statistics that aren’t actually visible or available on the standalone SnapChat mobile platform itself.

Here are some screenshots.

Screenshot on Mish Guru Demotest

Screenshot on Mish Guru demotest

Screenshot on Mish Guru Demotest

Screenshot on Mish Guru demotest

What Mish Guru can offer you

  • Standard dashboard package

You get a single dashboard, there you can see all of your followers. Your whole team can reach all of your followers with direct Snaps. Mish Guru also does screenshots of all incoming snaps so you don’t miss any important snaps. Through the dashboard you can send out the same content to all of your followers at the same time, (you don’t need to manually click on every follower, as on todays SnapChat).

  • Campaign management/ advice

Mish Guru can manage your account for you, they do all the work while getting the Snaps to your followers, you just need to tell them what kind of content you want.

  • Account management/ advice

You can also manage the account yourself but you’re are while getting management advice from Mish Guru on how to best use their platform.

When you get in touch with MishGuru – please mention you heard about them from us!

So there you go – yet another marketing innovation Creative Agency Secrets has found and brought to your attention!

 

 

 

 

Email text for freelancer pitching a brand

I am working with a newly freelance graphic designer and am introducing her to possible clients.meeting reminder
This is the email she sent to follow up on one introduction and I just had to edit the text.
An introduction is the MOST favourable way of getting a new business face to face meeting.  These folks won’t turn you down, generally.  So what was wrong with this message?

Hi

I hope this finds you well and the new year has got off to a good start for you!
I wanted to get in touch with you following Rebecca’s introduction in December last year, as I am now in a position where I am able to provide brand packaging design on a freelance/contract basis.
I’ve attached my CV and portfolio of work with this email. If it suits you, I’d love the opportunity to come in and introduce myself and have a chat. There would be no commitment required, just an opportunity to see if there is a fit between my skills and experience and your company.
Kind regards,

Elements of email to improve

So what was wrong with that message?  The first paragraph is fine.  The second leads off with the right information in the right order but it uses too many words to make the point.  Making it two sentences is punchier.

The mention of the portfolio being very short is deliberate – don’t show everything until you have a commitment to meet.  You are more impressive face to face than showing finished work.  So just send a taster.  Select products that align with the recipient’s likely needs.

Then move onto a focus on them – talk masculine words like ‘investment’ and ‘role of design’ – philosophise a bit – you learn a lot about their attitude to good design if you can find these things out in a meeting.  And that will inform your likely future work more than just showing a portfolio – discuss how design can help them achieve their business objectives.

Email introductions that get meetings

 Here’s my suggestion of a re-draft of the email which may get better result outcomes.
I hope this finds you well and the new year has got off to a good start for you!
 
We were introduced by Rebecca in December last year, and you said I should “get in touch in the new year”.
 
I am now providing brand packaging design on a freelance/contract basis.
 
I’ve attached my CV and a very short portfolio of work with this email
 
Understanding XYZ’s business is very important if you are to consider working with me.  And so I would like to invest my time learning more about your products, markets and the role of design.
Can we meet during the week of 15th February?
 
I will call you on (name date) to discuss fixing a date and time to suit you.
 
Kind regards,
So, can you see what I’ve done with the text?  I removed all the “maybe” and “if it suits you” and “no obligation” words.  These are very cautious.
You are good at your job, you will not be wasting their time meeting you.  Sound and communicate your confidence that you are the best thing that’s happened to them and that you will help them achieve their business objectives.
Let me know if you try both which comes out best!

 

Cluetrain Original

Cluetrain has New Clues – time for newbies to read the original!

I listened to the FIR podcast #790 and found that Cluetrain has been updated!

Cluetrain Original

Cluetrain Original

New Clues published in January and numbers 52-67 apply to our marketing communications world in particular. [see below]
Oh, and also pay attention to number 100
You want to know what to buy? The business that makes an object of desire is now the worst source of information about it. The best source is all of us.
It will be hard to adhere to them – because marketers are busy fouling their own nest, much as we did with banner adverts, SEO and oh-so-many other internet tools which we over-exploited so the makers ended up changing the rules to exclude our actions.
Seems to me ever more of a message about the quality of content, ease of discovery and honesty of presentation.

Your marketing strategy for 2015

If your marketing strategy for this year even remotely resembles what you did for the past 5 years tear it up.  Forget it.  The businesses who will thrive understand Cluetrain, they present their wares at least in part in a Cluetrain-format and will reap the $$ rewards accordingly.
Just call us if you think you want to change and don’t know how.

Rant over.

Now, what do you think?
I’m going to get my whole team to read Cluetrain original next week as their homework!

New Clues for Marketers

The New Clues that directly relate to the practice of marketing. Numbered from the original. Read more

Writing a cold email that gets response

It’s difficult – I know what I want from you when I send a cold email, but it is very hard to get you to respond.

Here’s a great tip – don’t ask for what you want.

Yes, seriously, don’t.  I know this sounds counter-intuitive, but trust me, I’m going to show you an insider’s trick.

So what do I ask for in a cold email?

Start with offering something for the recipient.

Take a read of this example from Chris Hines.

Cold Email text example

Cold Email text example

Do you see how Chris leaves you in no doubt about what he wants (it’s in the P.S.) but because he starts by offering me something I would value, when I get to reading the last lines my frame of mind is set to take up his offer.

The Principle of Reciprocity is a fundamental human value found in most societies, Chris uses this because he offers me a service (introducing me to his contacts) first knowing that when I get to reading the PS I will interpret it as a reciprocal requirement to complement his offer of service.

Cleverly written.

Now, can you use this in your business?

Buy a Workshop on how to use email for your business marketing.successful selling with email