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Direct email Marketing Tips

7 Tips for Responsible, Direct
Email Marketing

Are you reluctant to use unsolicited email to contact new prospects? You should be. The last thing you want is irate people launching terrible 'flame campaigns' against you.

But - if you use email the right, non-intrusive way, you can make a lot of money and keep perfectly safe in the process. In this section we'll reveal how to use email to your profitable advantage, without getting flamed.

The Right Way to Use Email for Marketing

There is only one 'right' way: use it with a list of prospects who have contacted you first. Here's why...

Your contacts will not complain about receiving valuable information from you. They welcome the opportunity to receive:

- 'last minute' reminders
- special offers
- hot information about new products
- news 'from the front lines' of their industry

The following is a list of key tips to keep in mind.

1. Capture Addresses

You can only email your customers if you have their addresses, so start collecting them now. Make sure there is a prominent place for an email address on all customer response forms you use - online and offline.

2. Use ASCII Text Only

Keep it simple. Include lots of white space in your messages. Use headlines and sub-headlines. Don't overuse WORDS IN ALL CAPS. Make it easy to scan and to read.

3. Use Wide Margins

Limit yourself to 64 characters or less per line.

4. Deliver Your Most Important Information First

Key benefits and sales points must be communicated in the first screen people read.

5. Make The Subject Line Your Headline

This is what people see first. If it's strong, crisp, and compelling, they'll open your email. Concentrate on this all-important element.

6. Short Is Better

Unlike other kinds of sales writing where long copy outsells short copy, the standard for email is different. Think about the way you sort through email, especially when you have a backlog of messages. Online, time is often too short. Respond to this new business medium.

7. Test

Gauge your response by testing one element of your email at a time. Start with the subject line. Test headlines, body copy, layout, and the PS. at the end. Successful marketing copy is always tested, one element at a time.

Today the largest companies online including Apple, Excite, Intuit, Microsoft, Symantec, Yahoo! and many, many more are using acceptable and responsible commercial email. If they can do it, YOU can do it.

*Author Scott T. Smith writes Web sites and online marketing communications for clients worldwide. Visit his service center on the Web at http://www.copywriting.net.

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