(This post was originally published 10 years ago, and sadly is as spot on today as it was in 2008.)
Organizations ideally should talk their talk and walk their walk, right? We can cut some slack for all-volunteer organizations because they lack paid staff. But other associations and organizations do have the resources to be role models in their industries…and should, especially when it comes to email marketing best practices.
Take for example an email marketing focused organization that shall remain anonymous for the sake of politeness. The other day I signed up for their newsletter to learn more about the group. They get kudos for using opt-in email marketing. But then the experience went awry…
Right away I received an opt-in confirmation email that was as dry as dry can be: no brand, no flavor, no engagement.
Then when I clicked on the link to confirm my subscription I was taken to a landing page that said: “Thank you for subscribing.”
Period. That’s it. Nothing else. Nada. The rest of the page was just blank, a whole lotta white space, although the header for the Web site was there.
Here’s an organization focused on email marketing and completely missing the boat on the power of the “welcome” email first, and the opportunity to engage a prospect at the landing page second.
There are two ways to turn this loss into a win:
- Work that welcome email! Thank them for subscribing, reassure them that it was a smart decision to sign up, remind them of the benefit and value they’ll get for subscribing. Maybe even remind them of the frequency. Make them feel good about the choice and confident in what to expect.
- Work that landing page! Thank goodness this group is using double opt-ins, but when you do, it’s not just one more step that subscribers have to take. It’s an opportunity for you to market and get them to the next step in the sales process. Your welcome email reinforces their decision to sign up by reminding them of the benefits of doing so. Your landing page can engage them further and get them to dig deeper into your site. In this case, the organization wants to sell whitepapers and memberships. What if the landing page said something like “Thanks for confirming your subscription! You’ll receive an issue of ABC Newsletter shortly. In the meantime, you can explore our Web site for whitepapers and the benefits of membership.” And so on.
The welcome email is a welcome chance to get more from your email marketing efforts. Take it.