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Email Marketing Tips and Best Practices: AWeber Blog


Landing Page vs. Website: All Your Questions, Answered

Permalink - Posted on 2021-01-14 18:14

Landing page vs. website: All your questions, answered

“Do I need a website? What should I use a landing page for? Do I need both?”

If you’ve asked these questions, you’re not alone. Like all online entrepreneurs, you want to set yourself up for success right away.

Carving out a place for your business on the internet is a great way to start building your audience. But there is more than one way to do it.

In this blog, I’ll share the similarities and differences between landing pages and websites, how to choose which is right for you, and how to get started. 

Landing Page vs. Website: Definitions

What is a website?

A website is usually made up of five or more web pages, including:

  • Homepage*
  • About page
  • Features, services, or products page
  • Blog
  • Contact page
  • And more, depending on the business, it’s goals, and audience

*It’s worth noting that people sometimes use the term “website” and “homepage” interchangeably. For the purpose of this blog, I am calling a “website” a collection of web pages and the “homepage” the main page of a website.

Ultimately, the goal of a website is to encourage visitors to browse, learn about the company, get answers to their questions, and get familiar with what you do.

You’ve no doubt visited countless websites, but to show you how people are using both websites and landing pages, I’ll give you an example. 

Check out the website for the podcast “Foodie Buddies” below. A visitor can easily navigate around the site to learn about the podcast, listen to the latest episodes, and get recipes.

what a website looks like example

To sum it all up: websites are a one-stop-shop for all information about your business. 

But they can also be expensive and time-consuming to build. If you’re not sure if you need a website, you might want to consider starting out with a landing page. 

What is a landing page? 

Unlike a website, a landing page is a single web page with limited navigation ability. Meaning, you can’t click around to different pages on a landing page like you can on a website. 

The goal of a landing page is to drive visitors to take one, very specific action, like: subscribe to a newsletter, buy a product, or sign up to receive a lead magnet. Ultimately, that means you have one main call-to-action (CTA) on the page

You also don’t need a website to use landing pages. And you don’t need to decide between one or the other.

Remember the Foodie Buddies podcast website? Well, the podcasters also use landing pages as part of their marketing strategy. 

In this case, the landing page is functioning as a link directory. This lets them use one link in their social media bios to easily direct followers to. 

what a landing page looks like example

This is just one way to use landing pages as part of your marketing strategy. In fact, there are tons of ways you can use landing pages

What’s the difference between a landing page and a website?

When it comes to how landing pages and websites are structured, think of your website as a continent; it has many pages that are all connected together and it’s easy to navigate from one corner of your website to another. 

Now think of your landing page as an island off the coast of that continent. It stands alone, and does not connect to your continent. 

That’s how a landing page is different from a website, structurally. 

However, when thinking about the purpose of each, the difference between a landing page and a website is simply in the action you want visitors to take. 

Do you want a visitor to do one thing and stay focused on a simple task? Or do you want them to explore and learn about you?

  • If your answer is “do one thing,” then you need a landing page.
  • If it’s “explore and learn,” then you may want a website. 

But you may need or want both. Just as Foodie Buddies did, you can create a website and use landing pages. 

But when it comes to getting your business online, there’s a time and a place for both. It just depends on what you want to accomplish. 

How to decide if you need a website or a landing page

Still not sure which to use in setting up your online presence? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I need a one-stop-shop for all information about my company? 
  • What do I want my visitors to do?
  • Do I have the time, knowledge, and resources to build a beautiful website?
  • Do I want to test an idea to see if it’s viable before investing time and money?
  • What is my ultimate goal in establishing an online presence? 

Do I need a website?

If you ultimately want to give your visitors a way to learn about your business, explore all your offerings, and you have the time, money and resources to create a beautiful website, go for it! 

Keep in mind, even with a website, it may still be a good idea to use landing pages when trying to grow your email list, selling products or services, or offering a lead magnet. This keeps them focused and on task without the distractions of a website. 

Plus, you can customize the URL of your landing page so it appears as if it’s part of your website and keeps branding consistent. 

Do I need a landing page?

The beauty of a landing page is they’re usually more cost-effective than websites, especially if you’re just starting out or want to test a new idea. 

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to get yourself online, sell products, grow your email list and connect with people, then a landing page might be the best solution for you. 

Want more conversions? Create landing pages for your business.

No matter how you create your online presence, landing pages are a great tool to convert potential customers into leads. 

Get the ability to create unlimited landing pages for no additional cost with AWeber Free.

The post Landing Page vs. Website: All Your Questions, Answered appeared first on AWeber.

Make Customers Smile with the Perfect Birthday Email

Permalink - Posted on 2021-01-13 20:03

Make Customers Smile with The Perfect Birthday Email

Let’s imagine it’s your birthday for a moment …

Happy Birthday!

You roll over in bed in the morning, grab your phone to sift through texts and emails wishing you a happy day. In your email, there’s a message waiting for you with a free offer, just for you, to help you celebrate.

Can't you feel the warm and fuzzies?

Have you ever wondered if you should send automated, personalized birthday emails? If you can put together an offer that makes someone smile, then the answer is yes. 

But before you do that, you need to know how to create a birthday email that wows.

Why you need to send birthday emails to your customers

Birthday emails should be part of your email marketing strategy for one simple reason — they work!

Think of the birthday emails you get from brands — don’t you prefer to open and engage with personalized ones with a digital gift or code? Then it should come as no surprise that birthday emails have significantly higher open and click rates than regular promotional emails.

Birthday emails are incredibly effective 

Just look at the numbers from an Experian study consisting of 50 brands and their email birthday campaigns!

Birthday emails see a 481% higher transaction rate than promotional emails, 342% higher revenue per email than promotional emails and 179% higher unique click rates than promotional emails.

The numbers speak for themselves.

How to send birthday emails that stand out from the rest

You’re probably not the only one wishing your subscribers a happy birthday in their inbox. Make sure your emails stand out by avoiding three common mistakes. 

Don't send generic emails.

Birthday emails only work if they make your customer feel special. Generic, one-size-fits-all emails don’t typically cut it. 

Plus, don’t make your gift difficult to redeem or something that you regularly discount. It’s their special day — gift them something unique.

Make the focus of the email about your subscriber, not your business.

It is their birthday, not yours. Send your birthday wishes, include your gift, and that’s all you need. You want your birthday emails to come across as a nice gesture, not a blatant attempt for another sale.

Make your gift something they cannot ignore.

Give the subscriber something they’ll be excited about and something you don’t usually offer. Typically, birthday emails have a coupon code that is a special deal, free offer redeemable online or in-store. 

5 Steps to Send Amazing Birthday Emails

1. Collect birthday information

Surprisingly, many businesses do not send out birthday emails because they don’t take the time to collect that information. That means sending a birthday email is one of the best ways to get noticed in the inbox. 

AWeber makes it super easy to collect birthdays from your subscribers.

Collect birthdays on sign-up forms

Set up custom fields to collect birthdays on sign-up forms and landing pages. 

Video of setting up custom domain fields

Pro tip: Consider adding text below the birthday field that tells the customer why you’re asking for their birthday. For example, “Enter your birthday so we can send you a free gift.” People are more willing to give information if they know why you need it and how you will use it. 

Collect birthdays in an email campaign

It’s not too late to collect birthday information if you didn’t get it through a sign up form. Simply set up an email campaign to collect your subscribers' birthday information. 

Use a subject line like:

"We want to send you a birthday gift!" 


"We have a birthday gift for you, but we don't have your birthday." 

Let them know why you want to know their birthday, so they're more likely to respond. 

Plus, keep your birthday email on point and direct. Don't combine requests for their birthday with a different email request.

The email below by Ann Taylor is an excellent example of how to collect the birthday of your subscribers.  

Example of Ann Taylor birthday email

2. Make your subject line and message personal and relevant

When you get a birthday card in the mail, your friends or family address it to you with a personalized message. Follow suit in your emails. 

Subject line personalization

Simply click the ‘Personalize’ drop down in the subject line bar to add your subscriber’s name.

visual of subject line personalization drop down

Pro tip: Mention “birthday” or “happy birthday” in the subject line, and if you offer a gift or discount, mention it in the subject line.

Message content personalization

You can also personalize the content within the email message itself. 

In the toolbar directly above, click the "Personalize" button. A drop-down menu will reveal, where you can select  the subscriber’s name or other personalization values you would like to add to your message.

visual of how to add a personalization value into an email.

3. Make your special offer or discount irresistible

Everyone loves a birthday email with an irresistible coupon. Here are a few of our favorites.

Hulu sends their audience a free month.

Example of a Hulu birthday email

Nothing Bundt Cakes give subscribers an actual mini birthday cake.

Nothing Bundt Cake's birthday email example

4. Keep it short and sweet

Now is not the time to tell your company story. The message should wish your subscriber a happy birthday, explain the gift, and tell them how to redeem it. The best birthday emails are short and straightforward.

Consider using a colored button with clear directions. For example, "Redeem your birthday gift" or "Claim your $10 coupon now".

5. Use eye-catching images or GIFs

Common GIFs found in birthday emails include balloons, confetti, and cakes. Forever21 uses a fun cake gift to make their birthday email unforgettable.

Forever21 fun GIF birthday email

New Look's birthday message includes fun birthday balloons and 20% coupon code.

New Look discount birthday email

It’s easy to send beautiful birthday emails. 

Birthday emails are the best way to celebrate with your subscribers. And there is no easier way to get started than with a professionally designed pre-built email template. 

AWeber has two different birthday email series templates that are available in our template gallery. Just select one of the mobile-ready birthday email templates and customize it to fit your brand.

1. Party Animal Series

The Party Animal series uses a combination of colorful text and images to make your birthday emails stand out. There are three different color options to choose from.

2. Cupcake Series

The cupcake series uses confetti and birthday cupcakes to help your email stand out in the inbox. There are three different email template options to choose from that include different color backgrounds, icons and layout options.

Who doesn't want to be remembered on their birthday? Your subscribers have grown to expect to receive birthday emails from their favorite brands and businesses. 

It is always great to send an email to your subscribers on their birthday, but there are no hard-set rules. More than half of birthday emails are sent on a specific birthday. But a new trend is to send an email at the beginning of the birthday month to allow them plenty of time to redeem their special gift. For those that don't redeem their gift, you can always send them a reminder email at the end of the month. 

Start sending your birthday email today with AWeber Free.

The post Make Customers Smile with the Perfect Birthday Email appeared first on AWeber.

8 Easy Ways to Save Time, Boost Productivity, and Grow Your Business

Permalink - Posted on 2021-01-12 17:03

9 ways to save 7 hours each week with these integrations

You probably wear a lot of hats.

Marketing hats, finance hats, customer support hats, and even sales hats.

That's not even including all the operations and strategy work that goes into running your business. 

With juggling all these different priorities, you probably feel like there is never enough time to get everything done.

But when you add a few integrations that automate your email marketing, you'll be amazed how many hours you can save each week. With this new free time, you can focus your efforts on growing your business. 

This post will explore how you can use AWeber and a few easy-to-install integrations to save time and increase productivity.

1. Grow your list on all marketing channels 

What’s the number one regret most established business owners have?

They wish they started growing their email list sooner. 

Look for opportunities to grow your business on any channel that you interact with potential customers. 

For instance, social media is an awesome way to raise awareness and have meaningful conversations with your audience. With some key integrations, it is easier than ever to collect contact information from all of the different marketing channels you use to interact with your audience. 

Let’s look at Facebook. You might find Facebook Lead Ads a great way to grow your audience since this tool allows you to find people who may be interested in your products of services and collect information from them. You can automatically add new leads to your AWeber account and send an automated email to welcome a new subscriber. 

You can also add tags to each new contact. This lets you personalize your communication even more. Automating this integration will not just save you time but could increase conversions by 53%.

Pro tip: Consider installing new Facebook Leads through Automate.io to grow your subscriber list.

2. Segment contacts based on website behavior

Personalization in email marketing is the secret sauce to converting visitors into customers. 

80% of customers are more likely to purchase from a brand providing personalized experiences, and the best way to get that information is by monitoring their behavior on your website. Knowing how visitors navigate your website will help you understand their pain points, interests and cater your message accordingly — which is much more effective than following a one size fits all strategy.

AWeber's Email Web Analytics can help you get that information about your subscribers. All you need to do is place a simple one-line JavaScript code on your website. You can find the code on the Tracking page under the “Reports” tab in AWeber.

Once analytics are set up, you'll be able to segment your users based on pages they visit on your website. 

3. Keep subscribers on the right list

If you manage your subscribers with different lists or tags, keeping subscriber information up to date can take a lot of time. But investing the time to organize your subscriber information is important to ensure you send them relevant content. 

Some of the most popular ecommerce solutions have integrations with AWeber to make it easier to ensure contacts are up to date based on website activity and purchasing behavior.  

For example, if you have an AWeber list in place to promote products to subscribers who haven't purchased yet, it's essential to remove them from this list when they actually make a purchase. Or, if you are using one list, you need to ensure that Tags are added or removed based on purchase activity.

AWeber's integration with leading eCommerce platforms allows for advanced functions like managing what they purchased and, in some cases, even initiating an abandoned cart campaign.

Pro tip:  For a seamless ecommerce experience explore our integration with Shopify, or WooCommerce

4. Send text SMS test notifications to connect with subscribers

Timing is everything when making a sale. One study shows that a delay of 5 minutes reduces the chance of qualifying a lead by 80%.

One sure-fire way to ensure you don't miss out on potential customers is to set up automated text notifications when you receive a new contact request. 

SMS text messages are text messages sent in response to customers or prospects who opt to receive a message to their phone after an event or transaction occurs somewhere else.

SMS notifications are a great way to keep your customer informed about your business. Typically, they notify people about upcoming sales and provide coupons, keep the conversation going on social networks, or direct people to a retail store.  

Did you know that there are SMS text integrations that allow you to send a text SMS notification? 

Pro tip: Send SMS text messages via Twilio or send SMS via Nexmo

5. Follow-up with leads who cancel appointments 

Coordinating your calendar with potential customers manually takes a lot of time. Thankfully, this task is easily automated.

Consider the scenario when a potential customer doesn't show up for a scheduled meeting. Following up with them to reschedule is your next best step, but it can take multiple attempts for you to get them rescheduled.

Instead of following up manually, you can use scheduling integrations to automate tagging leads who canceled their appointments. This will add them to an email campaign in AWeber. 

Include a calendar link in your email. Then your customer can choose the date and time that works for them, and the tool will automatically schedule the events in your calendar.

This way, you can receive invites for rescheduled meetings in your inbox while you focus on other opportunities to grow your business.

Pro tip: Tag AWeber subscribers on canceled appointments in Acuity or Calendly

6. Sync AWeber to bookkeeping apps 

Let’s talk money. As a business owner, you know your cash flow and upcoming expenses like the back of your hand, right?

But keeping track of expenses can be time-consuming and tedious. Luckily there are simple integrations that connect with some of the most popular finance apps, allowing you to easily track expenses and help you determine if there are areas you need to increase to reduce spending.

When you integrate AWeber with your finance software, you have the latest information about a customer's purchase activities at a glance. It is easier than ever to know specifics regarding the purchase if you need to address a billing query or issue a refund. 

When you integrate with your financial software, you can quickly gather essential details to understand your audiences' purchase behavior better, helping you sell other relevant products or services.

Pro tip:  Add AWeber subscribers to QuickBooks

7. Request feedback from your customers and track customer issues

Customer service can make or break your business. Gathering customer feedback lets you better understand your business' strengths and opportunities for improvement. 

But when is the best time to ask your customer for feedback? 

Gather feedback after they turned to you for help. You can use this opportunity to ask them to share their experience with your brand. Use this feedback to improve your product or service and notify them of the changes you've made to enhance their experience with your brand.

Customer service integrations that work with AWeber also let you track specific customer issues and address any complaint is essential to save a sale or keep a customer.

Pro tip: Easily get customer feedback and identify customer issues with Freshdesk.

8. Send review requests on new survey responses 

Social proof matters. 9 out of 10 consumers read reviews before making a purchase, and positive reviews can shine a spotlight on your brand and help your business grow.

Collecting reviews is easier than you might think with integrations that can automate the review process.

Whenever a customer rates you highly on a survey, you can send them an email through AWeber that asks them to review your product or service publically. 

Pro tip: Send review requests through automation with Typeform submission or SurveyMonkey.

Integrate with the apps you use everyday

No matter how hard-working, organized, or driven you are, every small business owner could take advantage of gaining more time in their week.

By implementing some of the automation tools and integrations, you can simplify repetitive tasks and prioritize projects to take your business to the next level. 

Are you looking for more ways to put your business on auto-pilot? Here are some more automations you can create when you integrate your services with AWeber and Automate.io.

The post 8 Easy Ways to Save Time, Boost Productivity, and Grow Your Business appeared first on AWeber.

4 Ways to Grow your Blog with Web Push Notifications

Permalink - Posted on 2021-01-06 17:11

4 Way to Grow Your Blog with Web Push Notifications

Every blogger knows growing a list of engaged followers takes time and effort. Even if you have a loyal readership, growth plateaus are not uncommon. 

If you find yourself in a growth rut, you may need to jump-start your interactions with your readers. You could develop awesome lead magnets or other incentives to entice them to give you their email address. Or you could try a different approach altogether.

What if there was a new way to connect with the visitors and get them to your website, even those who are not comfortable giving you their email address? Wouldn't it be awesome if you could display a message directly to one of your web visitor's browsers, even when they aren't on your website?

And how cool would it be to have an easy to use way to instantly add website visitors to a list without requiring them to input their email address? 

With web push notifications, all of the great stuff I mentioned above can become reality. In one click, they can be added to your web push notification list — making it super easy for you to start sending instant messages to your audience. 

Plus, when you combine email marketing with web push notifications, you create a targeted multi-channel campaign that increases engagement and revenue. 

And if you are an AWeber customer, web push notifications are included in AWeber Free and AWeber Pro — at no additional cost!

What are web push notifications?

Web push notifications are short, and clickable messages delivered straight to a subscriber's desktop when they have a browser open.

You've probably already seen web push notifications, even if you never subscribed to one. It's not an intrusive pop-up, but a notice from your browser, letting you know the site you are visiting would like to send web push notifications. 

Each browser may display a push notification a bit differently, but most likely, you have seen something like this:

Example of a web push notification prompt to opt-in

When you click “allow,” you become a subscriber to that website's web push notifications and are giving them permission to send you real-time notifications. 

How do web push notifications work for bloggers?

Web push notifications are super easy to create and can be done even by those with little or no technical background. 

They slide in either on the top or bottom right-hand corner of the screen, depending on the operating system. 

Web push notification example of how it slides into a desktop.

Web push notifications are incredibly effective because you are given permission to speak directly to your website visitors, even when they are not currently on your website, landing page, or reading an email. 

Once a subscriber, visitors will receive short, one-time messages on their desktop when they have a web browser open.

Web push notifications can link directly to a blog, website, landing page, sign up form, or shopping cart — basically anything with a link.

Web push notifications make promoting your blog easy

Web push notifications are one of the easiest ways to grow your business and turn your passion into profits. It lets you quickly increase engagement to reach more people and make more money. 

4 ways bloggers use web push notifications

Below are a few of our favorite ways AWeber customers are using web push notifications to grow their blogs.

Motivate customers to reach their goals with daily tips

Donna Partow is a content creator, author, and motivational speaker with a passion to empower people to accomplish their life mission. Her books have sold more than a million copies worldwide and have been translated into numerous languages. She was part of the team that pioneered ivillage.com, serving as the Work From Home coach and co-creating one of the first content providers on the internet.

Donna uses web push notifications for a specific purpose. She primarily sends them to a select group that signs up to be part of one of her challenges. The push notifications serve as both a reminder and the mechanism to deliver her content for the challenges. 

"One of the hottest things on the internet right now for content creators is running challenges to bring people into a relationship with you. I'm really excited about using web push notifications for limited-time challenges, 7-day challenges, and 10-day challenges. Each day, I send them a little reminder with a link that connects to their assignment for the day to keep them moving forward on their goal. I want them to be glad and thankful that they're receiving my web notifications because it's going to be a benefit to them."

Donna Partow
Example of Donna Partow's web push notification

Notify followers instantly when you create new content

Jennifer Reinhard, cloth diaper educator and advocate, who shares her real life experience and common sense advice to make using cloth diapers easier to understand, use and wash.  Her business, All About Cloth Diapers, for over a decade has been sharing their cloth diaper experience and knowledge with parents. Jennifer sincerely believes that cloth diapers are the best thing for babies and she wants to help spread her love of cloth diapers one fluffy tush at a time!

Jennifer uses web push notifications to share new content and evergreen content to her audience. Her goal is to encourage new visitors to subscribe, since they are the people looking to learn about cloth diapers. She hopes web push notifications make uncovering education easy for them as web push notifications will put that content right in front of them, exactly when they need it. 

"Web push notifications are another method to reach my readers. They may not read the email or see Facebook posts, but they will see the web push notification because it will pop up on their desktop when they’re online — exactly when they need it. I have not seen anyone else use it yet, and that includes retailers or any other resources or content creators. So I definitely think it would distinguish us from other people.” 

Jennifer Reinhardt
Example of AllAbout Cloth Diapers web push notification.

Drive traffic to individual blogs within digital properties

Jamila Bannister is a personal branding strategist and coach. Her business J Bannister Branding helps entrepreneurs leverage personal branding as a marketing strategy. She helps her clients create strong personal brands to become influential and convert this influence into paid opportunities.

Jamila uses Web Push notifications to drive traffic to her online magazine and individual articles within the publication.

“I have an online magazine. What tends to happen is that when I first publish, I get a lot of traffic. But after about a week, the traffic declines. So I use web push notifications to drive traffic back to the online magazine and to specific articles. So instead of writing a blog, people can click and read by using web push notifications and get my most up-to-date content. Another thing I like about AWeber's web push notification is that you can customize the icon so the notification comes up as something from me with my picture.”

Jamila Bannister
Example of J Bannister Branding web push notification.

Sell more products with limited-time discount notifications

John Grubb owns Keystone Computer Concepts (4KCC), a full-service computer company. They sell, service and repair computers by providing in-person and remote technical support in the United States, Europe, and Canada.

They also create amazing content to help educate their audience through written content and YouTube videos.  

Grubb uses web push notifications for two reasons:

1. To send out time-sensitive security alerts to his audience.

Example of 4KCC web push notification for a security alert

2. To send out notifications when there is a special offer on a particular computer or computer related product

Example of 4KCC web push notification for Cyber Monday deals

“I limit sending emails to my audience to no more than two a week. My customers appreciate it, because they’ve come to expect 2 emails per week. So the web push notifications are really important to me because I can send out something time-sensitive without an additional email. I get income from affiliate sales but many of the sales are for a very short period of time. I can’t notify my customers if it is on a day I am not sending an email, but I can send out a web push notification.”

John Grubb 

Pro tip: Looking to grow your web push notification’s list? In John Grubb’s three-email welcome series, his second email explains what web push notifications are and why they should opt-in to receive these messages. 

Web push notification best practices for bloggers

Want to incorporate web push notifications into your own blogging strategy? Follow the best practices below to create web push notifications your audience will no doubt appreciate. 

Copy is king

To keep your subscribers engaged, you need to craft compelling, concise content. Web push notifications impose character limits on the headline and the message, so pick your words carefully to make your messages compelling.

One topic per push

Be clear on the point you want to make and the action you want your subscriber to take. Clearer messages tend to have a higher click-through rate. 

It’s helpful to understand your audience and the questions they want answers to. Create content around these questions to drive readers back to your blog through web push notifications.

Create urgency wherever possible

Use scarcity to create urgency to drive specific actions. Be clear about the desired action you want your readers to take when they click their link. 

For example, rather than the saying,  “Flash Sale Today,” consider “Only a few hours left to save 25% off. This creates a sense of urgency, driving readers to consider the limited-time offer”

Include social proof

When appropriate, work in statements from your existing customers mentioning your products or services. 

For example, consider content like, “500 people have already registered today,” or “This post has more than 10,000 Twitter shares.” Include an image from your social platforms.

Get Web Push Notifications

If you're struggling to reach more people, web push notifications could be the answer. Send direct messages to your visitors’ browsers, widen your online reach, and connect with your subscribers through an easy click opt-in. 

Plus, AWeber's web push notifications are included in AWeber Free and AWeber Pro — at no additional cost! 

The post 4 Ways to Grow your Blog with Web Push Notifications appeared first on AWeber.

Want More Virtual Engagement? Get to Know Your Audience Better

Permalink - Posted on 2021-01-04 20:46

get more virtual engagement

Can you believe it’s 2021? 

After the year we just had, you’re probably breathing a sigh of relief like I am. 

But here’s the thing: The world is more virtual than ever. And being able to connect with people digitally has become incredibly important if you want your business to thrive. 

That’s why we’re throwing it back to a conversation with Chris Vasquez, AWeber’s Chief Product Officer, and Meghan Nesta, Senior Product Manager at AWeber, about getting more virtual engagement with your audience.

While this episode was recorded a few years ago, it’s never been more relevant than now.  

Why is getting virtual engagement so hard?

Algorithms, distractions, too little time...

People are busy. And when you add it all up, the conclusion is obvious: connecting with people virtually is not easy.

In fact, it takes a lot of intentional work and dedication. 

In this episode, Vasquez and Nesta answer a listener’s question about getting more virtual engagement — likes, comments, shares, opens, clicks, and more. 

Want a quick peek before diving in? Here are the highlights. 

2:20: Introducing today’s topic: how can you get to know your audience better and get more virtual engagement?

4:00: Treat virtual engagement like a consistent call to action.

5:20: Give an example of the types of engagement you want. Show your personality and be vulnerable with your audience — you might just inspire them to do the same. 

8:15: Share something about yourself so the other person feels comfortable sharing something too.

8:50: Remove the phrase “ email blast” from your vocabulary, because it’ll be really hard to get virtual engagement that way.

10:00: To have a friend you have to be a friend. 

12:00: Valuable takeaways from Jonah Berger’s book “Contagious.” How tapping into emotions can encourage communication. 

19:56: Ask less of your subscribers and encourage “micro-engagement” instead.

20:50: Conduct a survey with email marketing.

22:50: How to test your emails without split testing: Treat email like an experiment and formulate a hypothesis. Construct your email around that hypothesis.

25:00: How to get immediate feedback and temperature check your audience with a sentiment widget.

31:30: If you want to have human conversations, act like a human.

31:45: Look for virtual engagement with your customers in unexpected places.  

Want more? Check out past interviews for marketing ideas

We’ve had experts from all walks of marketing on The FWD: Thinking Show to share their expertise and guidance. Check out previous episodes and get expert advice by clicking the button below.

The post Want More Virtual Engagement? Get to Know Your Audience Better appeared first on AWeber.

22 Brilliant Lead Magnets to Grow Your Email List Right Now

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-30 15:00

22 brilliant lead magnets to grow your email list right now

If you want to maximize your email list growth, you need a lead magnet.

A lead magnet is something you give people when they subscribe to your email list. And really, it can be anything – as long as it's something your subscribers want.

The only problem?

Sometimes, it can be really difficult to come up with an idea for your lead magnet.

You may struggle to figure out what your audience would want. You may worry that it'll be too time consuming to create a lead magnet. You might doubt that your ideas are any good. Or, you may just be out of ideas.

So what can you do about it?

Check out these 22 brilliant lead magnets. Not only will you get proven ideas from 22 different businesses across multiple industries, you'll also be inspired by how fun and simple creating your own lead magnet can be.

Let's dive in.

Food blogger lead magnet ideas

Do you have a blog with recipes, cooking, or baking tips or anything culinary? These lead magnet examples are for you:

Minimalist Baker: Recipe E-book

Minimalist Baker gives their subscribers a free e-book with their fan favorite recipes for joining their email list.

food blogger lead magnet idea recipe e-book

This lead magnet pops up when someone visits their website. This is a great way to provide instant value, since visitors are coming to them in search of delicious, healthy recipes. And since lead magnets should be aligned with an audience's needs and interests, this makes it a great lead magnet.

Skinnytaste: exclusive content and recipes

You don't always need to create something big to give your audience a valuable lead magnet.

Skinnytaste, a site filled with beautiful food images and healthy recipes, offers exclusive content as their lead magnet. This works because of FOMO (fear of missing out). If blog followers don't subscribe, they'll miss out on exclusive content and recipes.

free recipe lead magnet idea for food bloggers

High Carb Hannah: A free weight-loss cheat sheet

Who wouldn't give up their email address for a 76-page ebook that teaches them something they've been dying to learn?

That's exactly what Hannah of High Carb Hannah delivers to subscribers for free once they subscribe to her email list. And it's an awesome lead magnet because it's incredibly comprehensive and packaged in one, easy-to-follow cheat sheet.

cheat sheet lead magnet idea

The Full Helping: Plant-Based Starter Kit

If you've decided to start eating vegan, you probably want some expert advice on where to begin. That's why The Full Helping's free Plant-Based Starter Kit is something site visitors would gladly exchange their email address for.

The image on the form helps people visualize what they'll receive when they join, which makes this lead magnet even more effective.

Plus, this form content explains additional reasons to subscribe, like getting accessible recipes and links to helpful articles.

grow your email list with a starter kit

Lead magnets for fitness experts

Are you a personal trainer, coach, or fitness expert? Try a lead magnet similar to one of these four examples:

Athlean-X: "24 Second Fix" video

Have you ever done serious weight lifting? If so, you know that good form is crucial, especially when you're just getting started.

Fitness Expert Jeff Cavaliere of ATHLEAN-X created a lead magnet video to help his audience correct and avoid a common weight lifting mistake.

fitness video example

By not directly stating what the mistake is, Jeff builds curiosity, making people wonder what it might be. He also emphasizes that subscribers can easily fix the mistake with his "24-Second Fix." By building curiosity and assuring people they can easily fix this mistake, Jeff makes his lead magnet video even more appealing to his audience.

Nerd Fitness: NF Rebellion Starter Kit and free tools!

Geared towards nerds who want to get fit, Nerd Fitness is one of the coolest and most unique fitness sites I've ever seen.

In their email sign up form, they promise a free NF Rebellion Starter Kit as well as free tools, downloadable guides and tactical articles for anyone who signs up. Wow! That's a lot of stuff.

By offering so much to their new subscribers, they make joining their email list a simple decision.

examples of good fitness lead magnet

Tony Gentilcore: deadlift quick-tip guide

Beyond promising weekly fresh content, Personal Trainer Tony Gentilcore gives subscribers a deadlift quick-tip guide.

Properly executing a deadlift is tough, and very technical, so this guide is a great resource for resolving a common lifting problem. And lead magnets that help solve your audience's common problems are the most successful.

Tony's site has a unique writing tone, which he incorporates in his sign up form and lead magnet. This helps display his personality, and may increase email sign ups, because people love personality.

fitness guide to grow email list

Betty Rocker: 30-Day Challenge video workout series

High value lead magnets get the most subscribers. And Betty Rocker's 30-day workout video series is definitely very valuable.

Anyone who fills out this form, receives 30 emails containing 30 video workouts over 30 days. For those fighting to get fit, this is valuable. And she's giving it away for free!

Betty Rocker free fitness challenge

Plus, she's able to demonstrate her expertise and teaching abilities throughout the 30 videos, which will make people more likely to purchase one of her paid video courses in the future.

Lead magnet ideas for consultants

Do you offer advice on growing or marketing a business? Check out these examples from other people just like you:

Enchanting Marketing: writing course

If you don't want to create a guide or ebook, there's another simple way to deliver written content to your subscribers: an email course.

Copywriter and Marketing Consultant Henneke Duistermaat of Enchanting Marketing offers a 16-part copywriting email course as her lead magnet. She delivers each lesson in a short, snackable email, and subscribers get all of the lessons in under a month.

email course lead magnet for consultants

An email course is a great way to deliver a valuable lead magnet to your subscribers while establishing a relationship with them in the inbox.

Smart Business Revolution: 72-word email template

Everybody loves something that saves them time and gets big results. And that's what John Corcoran of Smart Business Revolution promises people who subscribe to his list.

His lead magnet is a "magic email template" that helps people connect with influencers and VIPs. Templates are great lead magnets, because they're easy for your audience to quickly use and get value from.

template lead magnet idea

Your lead magnet could be an email, blog post or video script template – or even something as simple as a Facebook ad template!

Melyssa Griffin: Quizzes and free workshops

If you have a collection of exclusive, educational resources, they could be the perfect incentive to convince people to subscribe to your email list. Plus, you can use more than one — different lead magnets could appeal to different people.

Melyssa Griffin, a business consultant and online course creator, promotes a quiz to website visitors — just sign up to get access to a customized path based on your quiz results.

quiz lead magnet example

She also promotes free trainings on a range of topics. In order to access the free training, all you have to do is enter your email address.

free training lead magnet

This works well because her audience of entrepreneurs are often business newbies looking for advice on a wide range of business topics. And that's exactly what she offers – for free!

 Jeff Bullas: The Ultimate Guide to Website Traffic for Small Business

Great lead magnets seek to help your audience solve a problem. Jeff Bullas delivers an ultimate guide to help his audience get more website traffic.

Ultimate guides are valuable lead magnets because they promise a ton of value to readers. The words "ultimate guide" alone it's the only information you need to accomplish whatever your goal is. In this case, Bullas wants to help small businesses get more website traffic.

ultimate guide example

Bonus tip: On the sign up form for your own lead magnet, mention the good results that people can get from your lead magnet. This will increase your sign up form conversion rates.

Amy Porterfield: choose between 3 different cheat sheets

So this is cool.

Business Consultant and Marketing Expert Amy Porterfield has options on her website. Visitors can choose between three different lead magnets with three different topics (or download them all!).

example of 3 different lead magnets on a landing page

With three options, people will be more likely to find a lead magnet that aligns with their interests, which means they'll be more likely to subscribe to her email list.

And because cheat sheets are short and easy to create, you could easily write three of your own cheatsheets and give people options on your site as well.


Have you written a book and you're wondering how to promote it? Try email marketing. You just need to grow your email audience first. Here are a few lead magnets that help other authors grow their lists:

Candace Payne: wookie coloring sheet

This one's unique.

Ever seen the viral Chewbacca mom video? After the crazy success of this video, Candace Payne continues to delight her audience with great content. She even wrote a book called Laugh It Up.

To grow her email audience and promote her book, she uses a creative lead magnet: a wookie coloring sheet. Her subscribers can join her list and color in her wookie lead magnet. This fun lead magnet aligns well with the tone and purpose of her website, to bring  joy to people's lives.

fun email list growth

Your lead magnet doesn't need to be an ebook, guide or video. It can be something as creative and simple as a coloring sheet!

Self-Publishing School: 20+ free resources

Chandler Bolt, a best-selling author and online course creator, presents a free, online workshop to anyone who subscribes to his list.

During the workshop, he shows people how to become successful authors themselves. This helps him build an email audience for Self-Publishing School, where he sells access to his online courses and his books.

author email list growth example

If you're a good public speaker, workshops might be the perfect lead magnet.

The Art of Non-Conformity: top blog posts

Here's a simple, yet effective, lead magnet example:

Send your subscribers a curated list of your best blog posts in your welcome email. You won't need to create any new content for this lead magnet, and you'll introduce your subscribers to your blog.

Chris Guillebeau, author and founder of The Art of Non-Conformity, does this on his website sign up form. Notice the bottom of his form where he writes, "Subscribe now and you'll get the best posts of all time."

sign up for the best blog posts example

eCommerce businesses

Honestly, eCommerce lead magnets are probably the easiest to set up and create, because they're often product discounts. Check out these real-life examples to get ideas for your own eCommerce lead magnet:

Magnolia Market: 15% off

Chip and Joanna Gaines' online store Magnolia Market sells home goods. They offer 15% off one purchase to anyone who visits their site and subscribes to their email list.

On top of that, their email subscribers will also receive exclusive updates, flash sale emails and inspiration.

sign up for email to get discount

Levi: 20% off and free shipping on first order

Beyond a product discount, you can also offer free shipping to people who subscribe to your email list.

Levi offers both to their site visitors. Check out their simple form and lead magnet below:

new subscriber discount

Sierra Trading Post: free shipping and a chance to win a $1,000 gift card

You don't need to limit your eCommerce lead magnets to free shipping and discounts. You can also offer things like gift cards or free products.

Sierra Trading Post gives their subscribers free shipping on their first order, plus a chance to win $1,000.

Travel bloggers

Love to travel and blog about your trips? Here are some lead magnet ideas you could use to grow your list, too!

Nomadic Matt: your best content

Believe it or not, emails can be your lead magnet. For example, you could send a weekly educational newsletter or educational automated email series.

simple sign up form

Nomadic Matt sends his subscribers his best blog content through email automation and one-time emails. This serves as his lead magnet.  

Be creative! As long as it's something free and valuable to your audience, it's a lead magnet.

The Blonde Abroad: Exclusive tips and giveaways

Similar to Nomadic Matt, The Blonde Abroad gives subscribers exclusive travel content, plus access to top blog posts, when they subscribe.

Pro tip: Notice how this sign up form mentions that 200,000 other people read The Blonde Abroad's content? This is called social proof, and it's a great way to increase sign up form conversions.

get email subscribers with giveaways

Go and create your own lead magnet!

I hope these 22 examples from other businesses inspired you to create your own lead magnet!

Don't forget to check out our 16 proven sign up form ideas to grow your email list.

Ready to grow your email list with your own lead magnet? Get started with AWeber Free and have all the tools you need to build a loyal audience.

The post 22 Brilliant Lead Magnets to Grow Your Email List Right Now appeared first on AWeber.

Build Custom Email Templates with AWeber’s Smart Designer!

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-28 15:08

Build custom email templates with AWeber Smart Designer

If you are looking to achieve brand consistency across your marketing assets and get instant brand recognition, you should give AWeber’s Smart Designer a try.

AWeber’s Smart Designer is a free, intelligent design assistant that lets you automatically create an amazing-looking, branded email template in seconds. That’s right: seconds!  

In a snap, AWeber’s Smart Designer analyzes your website or social media account for logos, imagery, and colors, and then automatically builds a gallery of ready-to-use, custom email templates for your business. 

Plus, AWeber’s Smart Designer is now accessible directly in AWeber's Drag & Drop Email Editor, making it easier than ever to connect with your audience and drive success for your business. 

With AWeber’s Smart Designer, you can:

  • Drive more sales: Branded email templates stand out in the inbox, which means more subscribers will engage with your content and click-through to your landing page or site. 
  • Get instant brand recognition: Achieve brand consistency across your marketing assets with free, auto-created custom email templates built exclusively for your business. 
  • Save time and money: Spend less time designing emails or paying someone to do it for you. AWeber’s Smart Designer can do the design work in seconds, so you can get back to focusing on other important, revenue-generating aspects of your business.

AWeber’s Smart Designer is super simple to use

AWeber Smart Designer is even more powerfully-simple than ever as customers can now access the Smart Designer in AWeber's Drag & Drop Email Builder or the Email Template Manager page. 

How to use Smart Designer gif

How to get started with the AWeber Smart Designer

Create a Smart Designer email template in the Drag & Drop Editor

  1. In your AWeber account, go to green "Create a Message" button and select the Drag & Drop Email builder option.
Image of Create a Message button

2. Next go to the template galley by clicking the blue "Templates" button

Image of templates button

3. Enter your URL or public social media account in the Smart Designer box. Then click the orange "Create Template" button. Sit back, relax and let our intelligent design assistant do the work.

Image of Smart Designer input box in the AWeber Drag & Drop Email Builder.

4. Smart Designer analyzes your website or account for logos, imagery, and colors. 

5. Seconds later, check out your gallery of ready-to-use, branded email templates!

6. Save your favorite custom-built template to your AWeber account.

Create a Smart Designer email template in the email template manager

  1. In your AWeber account, go to your message tab menu.
AWeber Message Tab dropdown image
  1. Select the “‘Email Template Manager” option.
  2. Click the  “Use Smart Designer” button.
Email Template Manager dashboard
  1. Enter your URL or public social media account. Sit back, relax and let our intelligent design assistant do the work.
AWeber Smart Designer home page
  1. Smart Designer analyzes your website or account for logos, imagery, and colors. 
  2. Seconds later, check out your gallery of ready-to-use, branded email templates!
  3. Save your favorite custom-built template to your AWeber account.

Whichever way you use the AWeber Smart Designer it is simple, fast, and brilliant. 

What AWeber’s customers are saying about Smart Designer

Here’s what real small business owners and entrepreneurs said about AWeber Smart Designer when viewing their unique templates for the first time.

“AWeber Smart Designer not only provides me value upfront, it is setting me up for success before I even start with AWeber. I’ve worked on various email platforms, and I’ve never seen anything like this.” – Amanda Gobatto, Digital Girl Consulting

“Thank you! This looks amazing…” – Heather Hargrove, By Grove

“YES!!! I love it!” – Kim Beasley, Kim Beasley Consulting

“I wanted something different. I was trying to create a theme consistent across my website, logo, and email template. I was able to keep everything branded using AWeber’s Smart Designer”  –  Marko Elgart,  EastVille Comedy Club 

EastVille Comedy template created with Smart Designer

Give it AWeber’s Smart Designer a try for yourself. Like what you see? Click the tweet below to share it!

Get started with the best free email marketing software

AWeber’s Smart Designer is just one way to create beautifully-stunning emails with AWeber. You can also browse our 700+ ready-made, mobile-optimized email templates. 

Ready to get started with email marketing? AWeber’s mission is to deliver powerfully-simple email marketing tools to help small business owners and entrepreneurs — like you — grow your business.

AWeber Free is our completely free email marketing and landing pages plan — perfect for those who are just getting started or kicking off a passion project. We'll give you everything you need to start building your audience today.

The post Build Custom Email Templates with AWeber’s Smart Designer! appeared first on AWeber.

The 6 Most Common Subject Line Mistakes to Avoid

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-23 12:30

The 6 Most Common Subject Line Mistakes to Avoid

Advertising legend David Ogilvy once said, “Five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”

Like a headline for a blog post or news article, the subject line for your email needs to capture people’s attention and convince them to open your message. A subject line can make or break the performance of your email, so it’s important to spend extra time crafting one that’s memorable and effective.

Good subject lines get to the point, create a sense of urgency and are relevant to the subscriber, but it’s easy to make mistakes when writing them. 

Committing these subject line sins can drastically reduce your open rates, but avoiding them is easy if you know what to look for.

Here are six of the most common mistakes people make when writing email subject lines, as well as tips to improve them and boost your open rates.

1. Using ALL CAPS 

Imagine receiving an email with a subject line like this in your inbox: GET 40% OFF YOUR NEXT PURCHASE RIGHT NOW

Chances are you would take one of three actions: ignore it, delete it, or mark it as spam.

Before pressing send, keep in mind that USING EXCESSIVE CAPITALIZATION CAN SCARE AWAY SUBSCRIBERS AND KILL YOUR OPEN RATES. It can come across as though you are yelling, which can have a negative impact on your email performance. So you should use caps in subject lines very carefully.

Do this instead:

Using caps in an email can be effective if you use it on a single word in a subject line. But it also needs to be the right word.

Dick’s Sporting Goods does a good job subtly calling out “MORE”, “BIG” and “NOW” in the subject line examples below.

Example subject line example subtly using all caps for a call out
Example subject line example subtly using all caps for a call out
Example subject line example subtly using all caps for a call out

Related: Your Guide to Writing the World’s Best Email Subject Lines

2. Using too much punctuation!!!!

Taking the example we used earlier, imagine we added punctuations - a lot of them: GET 40% OFF YOUR NEXT PURCHASE RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You have limited real estate for your subject line, and multiple exclamation marks can come across as spammy. Special characters such as * % & # and ^,  have been known to trigger spam filters, so be sure to use them sparingly as well. 

Do this instead:

Now that we’ve gone over the punctuation mistakes to avoid in your subject line, you may be wondering which characters lead to more open rates.

The answer? Question marks, exclamation points and periods. 

According to Touchstone, 2-4% of email subject lines end with a full stop or a period. They also found that subject lines with exclamation points can expect an open rate 1-20% higher than average – just as long as they’re not used in every message.

While this can vary depending on your industry, your audience, and the content of your messages, test multiple subject lines to see which forms of punctuation your subscribers respond to.

Here’s an example of a subject line from Enchanting Marketing:

email subject lines example

By using simple language, asking a question, and using proper punctuation in her subject line, founder Henneke Duistermaat piques the reader’s interest and entices them to read the message.

Exclamation points, periods, and question marks are all part of a healthy email marketing strategy, so don’t be afraid to mix up the punctuation you use in your subject lines.

3. Using Spammy Words

Adding certain trigger words to your subject line can activate a recipient’s spam filter, even if the message you’re sending is legitimate.

To prevent this from happening, avoid certain words, phrases, and symbols like “$$$,” “100% free,” “cash off,” “cheap,” “weight loss,” and “serious cash.” Even if your email makes it into the inbox, it can come across as spammy to your subscribers.

Do this instead:

To ensure your readers take your emails seriously, choose the language in your subject line carefully by avoiding some of the trigger words and symbols listed above.

Finding the right verbiage for your subject line can be tough, especially with the sophisticated spam filters out today. What works for one industry may not work for another. Be sure to try different variations of words to see what resonates best.

I also recommend focusing on specific words that tie back to the content in your email. Check out this example from our friends at Social Media Examiner:

subject line mistakes

The subject line tells you exactly what you’ll get by opening up the email. And by focusing on that, it eliminates the risk of including words that might appear spammy.

Bonus Tips: Occasionally adding phrases like “Free” or “Act Now” have been shown to improve open rates, but I recommend using them sparingly to avoid diluting their impact.

4. Making It Too Long

Consider the environment in which your subscribers are reading your emails. Chances are, they’re on-the-go or quickly scanning their inboxes between work meetings.

Since you have only seconds to capture their attention, you want to make sure your subject lines aren’t wordy or redundant.

Long subject lines look spammy and get lost in cluttered inboxes, especially if readers are using mobile devices.

Do this instead:

Aim to get your message across as quickly as possible and cut any unnecessary terms or phrases. Our AWeber team of email experts analyzed the top marketers’ emails and found their email subject line averaged slightly under 44 characters.

As important as it is to get your message across quickly and clearly, make sure it expresses a complete thought and offers value to the reader – you don’t want to write a subject line that’s too short, either. Avoid one-word subject lines and strive to be helpful and relevant to your subscriber.

Professional photography blogger Courtney Slazinik conveys her message concisely with the following subject line:

writing subject lines

By building a message around a numbered list and including the word “secrets,” Courtney offers value and creates a sense of mystery around her content. As a result, this subject line is easily skimmable and irresistibly clickable.

Related: Get Higher Open Rates with 22 of the Best Email Subject Lines

5. Writing misleading content

Let’s say you send an email with the following subject: Get an exclusive 50% discount on our entire inventory!

But when the reader opens the email, it’s a pitch to sign up for a webinar or free online class.

Not only is this tactic dishonest, it also tends to backfire. No one likes to be deceived, especially when they receive an email that promises one thing and delivers another. You might get people to open your email initially, but this alienates subscribers and can hurt your open rates and spam rates in the long run. If your subscribers lose trust in your emails, they’re more inclined to ignore future emails and mark you as spam.

To build and maintain trust between you and your subscriber, make sure to align the content of your email and your subject line.

This also applies to emails that include RE: or FW:. These tend to trick the reader into thinking the email was part of another conversation, which doesn’t leave a positive feeling with subscribers.

Not including this text also gives you more room to work with in your subject line, which can be used to convey helpful and relevant information instead.

Related: The Secret to Writing Addictive Email Content

6. Including spelling or grammar errors

Subject lines (or any other content in your email) with typos, misspelled words, and misplaced punctuation look unprofessional and can hurt your open rates.

Emails are an opportunity to establish your brand as a helpful source of information. Subject lines with spelling or syntax errors make a bad first impression, and undermine your ability to establish trust with your subscribers.

Do this instead:

To optimize your email open rates, be sure to review your emails for grammar and spelling prior to hitting send. No one will take the time to read your email if the subject line is loaded with grammar mistakes, but basic copy editing can prevent these errors from slipping through the cracks.

Related: 3 Ways to Test Your Emails before Hitting ‘Send’

Crafting subject lines that sweep subscribers off their feet

The subject line is one of email’s most important components, so it’s essential to get it right before you send your emails. And by avoiding the mistakes above, you’ll be well on your way towards improving your email engagement.

Related: Email Authentication: A Powerful Way to Help Get your Emails into the Inbox

Ready to use these tips to write better subject lines? Sign up for AWeber Free today to start writing amazing subject lines.

The post The 6 Most Common Subject Line Mistakes to Avoid appeared first on AWeber.

21 Creative Email Ideas for People Who Don’t Like to Write

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-22 21:22

21 creative email ideas

Need email ideas? You don’t need to write a 1,000-word blog post to have content for your next email newsletter or automated email series. In fact, you don’t need to write anything at all.

Creative emails can include anything from videos, to podcasts, quotes and so much more. Forget about writer’s block for good with these powerful email content ideas.

Try one of these 21 creative ideas for email. They’re simple, easy, and proven to work — the pros use them all the time!

1. Videos

Adding video to your emails can increase click rates by 300%, according to one study from MarTech Advisor. To put that in perspective, if you average 1,000 clicks each email, adding a video would increase that to 4,000.

Photographer Jared Polin shares his videos on email and social media — in fact, we spoke with Jared to hear the strategy that helped him grow his YouTube following to 1.27 million and his email list to 260 thousand subscribers.

email and social media list growth

Related: Your Guide to Brainstorming Creative Video Ideas

2. Podcast episodes

Have a podcast? Add it to your next email newsletter to increase downloads. Notice how Productivity Expert Michael Hyatt uses a captivating story to introduce his latest podcast episode in the email below.

Example of a podcast episode email

Did you know that subscribers can actually play and listen to your podcast episode directly from an email? With AWeber’s Curate app, you can simply add your new episode to a newsletter, and the app will automatically generate the code for you.

(And, if you use AWeber Landing Pages, you can use the Smart Content element to embed rich media like podcast episode right on your page!)

You can see this feature in action below with the Would You Rather Newsletter, a weekly message that presents “Would you rather… ?” scenarios.

email with a video

Related: 4 Easy Ways Podcasters Can Use Email to Grow Their Audiences


Quotes are a great email idea. People love inspiring or motivating quotes. We know, because we include a quote in many of our FWD: Thinking newsletters, and our readers love it. And many of the most successful newsletters mix quotes into their content as well, like financial newsletter Finimize with this quote from Pearl S. Buck.

Want to get some extra reach with your quotes? Make them shareable with a fun design and let your readers know they’re welcome to share the images on their social media.

Need quote inspiration? Check out BrainyQuote. It's like an encyclopedia of quotes.

4. Webinars, tutorials, and workshops

What's the #1 way to get people to register for your webinars? For us, it's email. A single email can contribute hundreds, even thousands, of registrants.

Email is what other experts rely on too. Below, Joanna Wiebe, Founder of Copy Hackers, promotes her workshop with an email that explains the key takeaways subscribers will get.

Email is what other experts rely on too. Below, Joanna Wiebe, Founder of Copy Hackers, promotes her workshop with an email that explains the key takeaways subscribers will get.

webinar example email

Related: The Not-So-Secret Tactic to Growing Your Email Audience Really Quickly

5. Curated news or updates

You’re an expert in your industry, whether that’s fitness, writing, nutrition, travel, or business. Subscribers join your list to learn important information about your industry, like the latest news and updates.

For example, if you’re a fitness expert, this might be a brand-new meta-analysis or research study that further proves the science behind high intensity interval training.

The Hustle, a daily business and tech newsletter, includes ‘snippets’ of news from other outlets that they know readers will be interested in.

email example from The Hustle using snippets of news

6. Instagram posts

Creative email writing can actually include writing you did for other channels: like your Instagram. Repurpose your Instagram posts in your next email newsletter. Your post will get more exposure, and you won’t need to hope and pray that Instagram’s algorithm will display it in your followers’ feeds.

Take a look at how Marketing Expert Gary Vaynerchuk links off to one of his popular Instagram posts in the email below.

Pro tip: You can use AWeber's Curate app to drag Instagram posts (or any content!) into your next newsletter in seconds. Plus, embed podcast episodes on your AWeber Landing Page with the Smart Content element.

7. Facebook live videos

If you create Facebook live videos, promote them in your email newsletters.

More people will watch the video. (Facebook loves that.) And you can save time by reusing your social content for your email newsletter. (You love that.)

Fitness and productivity expert Chalene Johnson gets thousands of people to watch her Facebook live videos. Her secret? She promotes her videos on social and in her email newsletters.

8. Tweets

The lifespan of a Tweet is 18 minutes. Which means your carefully-crafted Tweets gather cobwebs after only 18 short minutes. What are the chances your followers will actually be on Twitter during that brief period? I wouldn't bet your business on it.

Increase the lifespan of your great Twitter content by talking about it in your next email newsletter.

You can even include Tweets from other successful companies, like Brass Ring Daily — a newsletter for career, productivity, and writing advice — does below.

Related: 9 Ways to Grow Your Email List with Twitter

9. Social campaigns

Sharing social content isn't the only way to use email to get more social engagement. You can also encourage your subscribers to post about your brand on social. Ask them to share a testimonial on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Or, get them to post with a hashtag on a social platform, like travel company Topdeck does in this email.

Running a contest on social media? Be sure to tell your email subscribers about it. While the goal of many social media contests is to drive social followers into your email list, it can work in reverse, too.

10. Subscriber information

People love to see their name in lights. Mention subscribers in your newsletter if it's their birthday or when they take a certain action.

The daily newsletter theSkimm has millions of subscribers. Yet, in every newsletter, they still call out their subscribers' birthdays and highlight people who are doing great things.

Want to celebrate your subscribers' wins? Morning Chalk Up, a newsletter for the CrossFit community, highlights subscribers’ personal bests in the gym in every daily email.

newsletter for the CrossFit community, highlights subscribers’ personal bests in the gym

11. Pictures

Have beautiful or funny photos and an audience who would love to see them? Put them in your next newsletter.

Buzzfeed has a weekly newsletter about cats. Readers send Buzzfeed pictures of their cats, and Buzzfeed adds them to the newsletter with a brief description. Talk about a great email idea!

Related: How to Create Amazing Photos for Your Emails on Zero Budget

12.  Book recommendations

If you like to read, this email idea is for you! Recommend the good books you're reading to your subscribers. If the books are relevant to them, they'll appreciate it. Plus, it's an easy newsletter content idea for you.

The Brain Food Weekly Digest is a newsletter dedicated to helping you become a better version of yourself by sharing educational content. Shane Parrish, the creator of the newsletter, often shares what he's currently reading.

13. Questions and answers

Do your subscribers ask you certain questions again and again? Answer one of those common questions in your next newsletter. This will increase engagement by making your newsletter interactive.

See how financial newsletter Finimize adds a question and answer to their email below.

14. Special offers or deals

If you have a limited-time or can't-miss deal, add it your newsletter so subscribers don't miss out.

Liberty Travel always includes vacation deals in their popular email newsletter.

15. Events

Events, whether they're virtual or at a physical location, take a lot of preparation and effort. Make the most of all that work and fill more seats by promoting your next event in an email newsletter.

Nomadic Matt, a successful travel blogger, promotes all of his Travel Meet-ups with email.

16. Stories

Calling all authors! This idea for email is all you. Your subscribers love to read. Share short stories, poems, or chapters from your book in your email newsletter. It’s the perfect email marketing content for your bookworm audience, and can help increase your book sales or downloads.

Publisher Penguin Random House sends a newsletter with one section from a short story inside. You have to read the next email to continue the story, which keeps subscribers coming back for more.

17. Tools

Great newsletters solve their audience’s problems and answer their questions. That’s why subscribers continue to open and read them.

While educational email content is an excellent way to teach your audience, it doesn’t help them actually do the work to resolve their problems. Tools, on the other hand, make it easier for them to accomplish tasks.

For example, we created a tool called Smart Designer to help our audience design custom email templates in a few minutes. They just plug in their webpage URL, and the tool generates email templates.

If you know of a tool that could save your subscribers’ time, whether you created it or someone else did, link off to it in your newsletter.

In a recent TotalAnnarchy newsletter, MarketingProf’s Chief Content Officer Ann Handley dedicates an entire section to useful tools she used that week.

18. Plans or steps

If your subscribers would like to accomplish something and they're not sure how to do it, add a plan or detailed steps to your newsletter to show them how.

Every week, Food blogger and founder of Skinnytaste Gina Homolka sends her subscribers a meal plan filled with healthy recipes. It makes her subscribers' lives easier. Instead of spending hours planning their weekly meals, they can use Gina's simple plan.

19. Quizzes, polls, questions or riddles

Asking questions in your newsletter is a great way to increase engagement. Instead of simply reading your newsletter, your subscribers will interact with it.

In a recent email, we asked our audience about their biggest marketing goal in the New Year. Not only will our readers’ answers help inform the type of email content we create in the New Year, it gives us valuable insights into who is interested in what content.

AWeber survey email

If you want to get really creative with your email ideas, try AMP for Email. Here’s an example of an interactive quiz we included in our newsletter, FWD: Thinking.

AMP for Email Quiz

20. Courses

According to Global Market Insights, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the growth of the online course market rapidly. In fact, online course creation platform Thinkific reported a 221% surge in new course creation in the earlier part of the pandemic

Thinking of dipping your toes in the waters of course creation? Try it out with email — it could help inspire weeks of email content.

Build an automated email series with 1 or 2 days between emails. Then, each email in your series can be 1 lesson of your course. The entire lesson could be within the email or you could link off to a video or landing page that hosts the lesson.

Talia Wolf, conversion expert and Founder of GetUplift, promotes her email course as a lead magnet (a.k.a freebie) on her email sign up form. Once people sign up, she delivers the course lessons through a daily message.

email example highlighting course outline

Related: How to Create Your First Email Course or Email Challenge

21. Blog posts or articles

"Wait a minute ... At the beginning, you said I didn't need to write a blog post!"

You don't. Include great blog posts and articles created by other companies in your next newsletter. This is called curation, and it saves people time because they don't need to search the internet to find the content. It's delivered right to their inbox.

Dave Pell writes NextDraft, a successful newsletter with thousands of subscribers. He fills each email with educational blog posts and articles.

The surprising part? The majority of the articles aren't written by Pell. They're written by other people. But they're still valuable to his subscribers, which is why they keep reading.

Related: How to Craft Irresistible Newsletter Content

Put these email ideas to the test

These 21 ideas for email prove that you can add any kind of content to your next newsletter, as long as it’s valuable to your subscribers.

Now that your creative juices are flowing, it's time to try these ideas out! Create a free AWeber account today and get started.

The post 21 Creative Email Ideas for People Who Don’t Like to Write appeared first on AWeber.

Ring in the New Year with Free, Animated Email Templates

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-21 14:34

Ring in the new year free animated email templates

So much time and energy goes into strategizing, planning, and executing Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and holiday email promotions. But have you thought about what happens when the gifts are wrapped and shopping is done?

Well, the holidays aren’t quite over just yet. The New Year celebration brings yet another new opportunity to meet your year-end sales goals. 

Plus, running a New Year email campaign can be a great way to connect with your customers and thank them for their patronage this year. 

To help you save time this holiday season, AWeber’s design team created email templates with a bit of extra sparkle just for your New Year's email campaigns. Plus, they’re animated!

Log in to your AWeber account — or get started with a free AWeber account today — to access the templates. 

Examples of New Year’s Email Newsletters 

Animated Seasons Greetings

Animation is eye-catching, particularly when combined with fresh, simple graphics. The shimmering tree animation is simple but effective without being overly distracting from your message.

Seasons Greeting email templates with animated snow.
The "Seasons Greetings" template is located in the template gallery under Holiday

Animated Happy New Year’s

The confetti animation is guaranteed to bring a smile to your subscribers’ faces. In this template, there are two different design options to select from with different font treatments and icon options. Choose whichever version works for your brand. 

Happy New Year’s Fireworks

If animation isn’t your thing, don’t fret. Sometimes, your audience prefers simpler email design (remember to A/B test your messages to uncover what content your audience loves!) 

The New Year’s fireworks email complements a clean and crisp, uncluttered layout with eye-catching graphics that will get your reader’s attention.

Happy New Years firework template
The "New Years" template is located in the template gallery under Holiday

Rooftop Merry Christmas & Happy New Year

It’s not too late to send a holiday message to your audience. The “Wishing You a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year” email template series is festive enough to work for both holidays.  There are two color variations to choose from depending on your preferred color palette. 

Get your New Year's email ready today!

New Year’s emails can be full of glitz and confetti or just a simple, genuine seasonal greeting.  A New Year’s email campaign is a perfect opportunity to connect to your audience, offer a special end of year discount,  and share how much their support has meant to you and your business.

The post Ring in the New Year with Free, Animated Email Templates appeared first on AWeber.

Email Automation 101: How To Use Email Marketing Automation

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-17 20:55

how to use email marketing automation

“Email automation.”

You hear the phrase again and again.

Email automation is powerful stuff, but if you’re new to the email marketing game, you probably have a few questions about it. 

After all, automation can increase leads, conversions, and revenue, and it can save you time. The stats prove it:

Automated email messages average 70.5% higher open rates and 152% higher click-through rates than other marketing messages, according to Epsilon Email Institute.

So, to help you get a better grasp on what it is, why it’s important and how it can help you get the incredible results you want, here’s a quick guide to email automation and how to use it in AWeber.

What is email automation?

Some marketers send every subscriber the same exact message with one-time emails.

The thing is, this generic content isn’t necessarily relevant or valuable to subscribers.

But, with the creation of email automation, messages send themselves. And, they can be segmented and properly timed, which will make them more relevant too.

But how does it do all of that?

Simply put, email automation is when you set up a series of emails to send automatically to subscribers at a specific time.

With it, you can connect with a person at every stage of their buyer journey (a.k.a. the marketing funnel) — from lead to customer to brand advocate. You can build a relationship with an individual over the long term.

And the best part? It runs on autopilot, creating connections and increasing revenue while you work on other aspects of your business.

You can set up a single series automation — where a person subscribes to your list and is automatically sent email 1, then email 2, then email 3, etc. in a sequence.

In the example below, La Colombe Coffee Roasters uses email automation to welcome new subscribers after they sign up:

Automated email welcome example

But there’s no limit to how you can use automation. It can be used to trigger emails or email series that send based on almost any action: a newsletter sign up, an eBook download, a purchase, etc.

Why email automation works

1. Email automation gives you a direct line of contact to customers

There are 3.7 billion email users worldwide, and about 27% of them check their emails as soon as they receive a new email notification.

And 66% of online consumers have made a purchase as a result of an email marketing message, a higher conversion rate than messaging through direct mailings or social media.  This means that email gets you better conversions and overall results.

Want some more statistics? We thought you’d never ask. According to VB Insight,

  • 80% of marketers reported increased lead generation with email automation.
  • 77% saw conversion rates rise with email automation.

Simply put, email marketing automation works!

Learn about AWeber’s email automation platform, Campaigns.

2. Email automation helps you send messages your subscribers want

Email marketing automation allows you to segment your list of subscribers based on their interests, purchase history and even actions they take on your site (this is called action-based automation, and I’ll get into this more in depth later in this article).

Want to send an email to all the vegans on your list? The September birthdays? The webinar registrants? The sweatshirt buyers?

You can!

For example, let’s say you’re a fitness trainer. You could then send an automated email based on the skill level of the trainee: beginner, intermediate or expert.

This way, you can send each customer targeted information to fit their individual needs.

And you can do this in AWeber with tags.

When consumers get emails with information that’s relevant to them, they’re more likely to click through your email. Plus, relevant content reduces the risk of your message getting deleted or ending up in the dreaded spam folder.

3. Email marketing automation saves you time

When you’re running a small business, you don’t have time to write and deliver emails to each individual subscriber.

Luckily, email automation can do all that work for you!

With email automation, you can set a schedule for when your emails go out and to whom. And your email marketing platform will send those emails for you at the right time. This gives you more time to craft relevant and effective messaging, which is the key to boosting click-through rates, conversions and overall consumer engagement.

Email automation gives you a unique and convenient way to nurture the connection you have with your audience. And that is the key to maintaining engagement with your subscribers.

Need help figuring out exactly what to write in your emails? We’ve created 45+ email copy templates to solve this problem! Download them now.

Types of automated emails

Now that you know why automation is so important, discover how you can use it.

There are a ton of different types of automated emails series that you can use for your business. Let’s cover some of the most important ones so you can get ideas for your next series.

Automated welcome email series

Your first point of contact after a subscriber signs up to your list …

Your time to make an amazing first impression …

Your chance to get more opens and clicks than any other type of promotional emails …

Yes, your welcome email series is a big deal! But it’s actually one of the easiest automated email campaigns you can send.

Here are some things to include in your welcome series:

  • Thank subscribers for signing up. Try using more than just words ― say it with a gift! Offer free bonus content or a discount.
  • Introduce yourself and your company. How will you solve your subscribers’ needs?
  • Let readers know what kinds of emails they can expect from you in the future.
  • Tell readers how often you’ll be emailing them.
  • Share where they can find you on the web (include social channels, website, blog, etc.)
  • Give them helpful and relevant blog posts they can check out.
  • Ask them to whitelist you. (This will add you to their email address book and can improve email deliverability.)

Below is an example of a welcome email that Eddie at ReallyGoodCopy sends to new subscribers, letting them know what to expect and when.

email automation example

Educational email course series

Do you have a ton of experience and wisdom to share about a specific topic?

Are there questions your audience asks that you find yourself answering time and time again?

Consider an email course!

Here’s how you can use automation to set up an email course:

  1. Write a welcome email that delivers the first lesson.
  2. Set a wait time of one or two days between each lesson.
  3. At the end of the course, encourage social sharing to increase course sign ups and continue the cycle.
  4. Ask for feedback so you can deliver more relevant content, resulting in more valuable emails.

In our What to Write in Your Emails course, we follow this exact pattern. In one of the last emails of the series, we ask subscribers to share feedback in a survey:

automated survey email example

Customer onboarding series

You can send this automated email series to new customers to keep them engaged and encourage them to become repeat buyers.

To inform and convert subscribers into paying customers, include these resources in your series:

  • How to get started
  • Training videos and help-based articles
  • FAQs
  • Information about new products and how they solve problems
  • Exclusive deals that only subscribers can get
  • Educational resources and how they solve problems

Remember, when trying to promote a new product, focus on the value to the buyer.

Advanced action-based email automation

Instead of automatically sending everyone on your list the same series (email 1, email 2, email 3, etc.), each individual subscriber gets to pick which emails they’re sent through various actions they take.

While it’s more advanced than a single automation series, action-based automation can skyrocket engagement and sales. That’s because you are able to target segments of our audience with the exact content they needed. It’s an amazing feeling when you can put a solution right in the hands of your subscribers.

See action-based automation in action: This podcast host uses automation and tagging to let podcast listeners create their own adventure.

Need a way to visualize your email automation? Try an automation map. They’re a handy tool you can use to map out your first automated email series, especially if you plan to use more advanced strategies. 

Start with email marketing automation today

With AWeber, you'll have all the tools you need to create automated email campaigns. We even prebuilt automated email campaigns for you. Check out these pre-written campaigns to save time and market your business 24/7.

The post Email Automation 101: How To Use Email Marketing Automation appeared first on AWeber.

4 Steps to Plan Your Email Marketing for the New Year

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-15 15:38

4 steps to plan your email marketing for the new year

Phew, what a year!

I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels 2020 was quite the whirlwind. I don’t know about you, but I’m certainly looking forward to a fresh start.

The global pandemic brought about unforeseen challenges for small businesses — and many felt the impact on their marketing. In fact, of the 79% of marketers who have a content marketing plan, 70% adjusted their plan due to the global pandemic.

So as we look forward to a new beginning, reflecting on the year behind us can give us a lot of insight. Spend some time before the end of the year to take a step back and reflect on what worked, what didn’t, and what should change going into the New Year. 

In this blog, I’ll walk you through how to evaluate your email marketing results and make changes in the New Year. 

Don’t have an email marketing strategy in place? Pop on over to read how to create an effective email marketing strategy here before diving into this post. 

4 steps to plan your email marketing

Step #1: Evaluate your goals 

If you set goals going into 2020, now’s the time to evaluate whether you accomplished them.

Reflect back on the goals you set for yourself in 2020 and answer the following questions:

  • Did email marketing help you grow your business?
  • How much of an increase in sales did you see as a result of your email marketing?
  • Did you build relationships with your subscribers? How?
  • Did you grow your email list? 

Use the answers to these questions to guide your SMART goals in 2021. This is a critical first step to plan your email marketing for the year ahead.

SMART stands for:

  • Specific: Be exact when setting goals and expectations. 
  • Measurable: Make sure you set checkpoints to measure your progress. 
  • Achievable: You need to make sure your goal is ambitious, but attainable with your current budget, time, and skillset.
  • Realistic: Your goal should be challenging, but within reach. 
  • Time-bound: Give yourself a due date to complete your goal.

Want to grow your list? A solid SMART goal could be the following: I want to grow my email list to 300 subscribers within the next 3 months.

Step #2: Analyze your ideal subscriber

Chances are you have a specific target audience you want to buy your products or services. We call that your ‘ideal subscriber’ or ‘persona.’

But marketing personas can change over time. Even if you had a defined persona to guide your email marketing, it may be time to look at whether that persona is still the best reflection of your ideal audience. Without an idea of who you're marketing to, you can't plan your email marketing to the best of your ability.

To evaluate your persona, consider the problem you’re solving in your email content, products, or services. Are you addressing their pain points? Who has joined your email list recently? Did anything major change for them in the past year?

It’s important to have a solid understanding of the person you want to target in your marketing. It will guide all your content creation and email marketing planning. 

Step #3: Understand your audience's current problems, wants, and needs

People’s needs naturally evolve over time. The problems they faced in the past may not be the same problems they face now. 

Think about that. How have your ideal subscribers changed in the past year? How can you help them solve their problems now?

To get the answers to these questions, you might need to do a little bit of detective work. Conduct interviews with your customers or subscribers and hear firsthand about the problems they’re facing, what kind of content they need to help solve their problems, and how your product or service solves these problems. 

You can also simply ask in your email marketing. Include a sentiment widget at the bottom of your email (like this one) and get specific feedback about what they liked — or didn’t like — in a message. 

email sentiment widget example

Your email analytics can also tell a powerful story and give you an idea of what content they need and want. Look at your open rates and click through rates — what type of content is the most desired? Create more of it.

Mapping out your content ideas in advance with an editorial calendar can help you figure out what you’re going to send and when. It can also help you plan new lead magnets and build out email campaigns around each.

Step #4: Determine your ideal email sending frequency

How often do you send your audience emails? Does that frequency seem to be working? If so, awesome! If not — or if you’re getting feedback that you’re sending too often or too little — it’s time to take a step back and do some research.

If you’re not sure what email sending frequency is reasonable for your business, take a look at what other marketers are doing in your industry. Do you think it’s working for them? What do you like or not like about the emails they’re sending?

Remember, quantity is not always the way to go. More emails does not mean better emails. Find a rhythm that works for you and your subscribers, and write it down on the calendar.

At AWeber, we’ve found that consistency is extremely valuable. For instance, we send our weekly blog digest newsletter, FWD: Thinking, every Thursday afternoon. Our subscribers know to expect a newsletter jam packed with awesome content to help them get better results with emails, and they appreciate the consistency.

If you don’t know what the best frequency is, test it! Email A/B testing, or split testing, is a marketers best friend. Test what days of the week yield better results, time of day, and even how often you send. With split testing, you can test anything in your email and make data-informed decisions to improve your marketing. 

Set yourself up for success in 2021

Kick off the New Year with this expert-built email marketing planning and tracking template from AWeber. Organize, track, and measure the results for all of your campaigns, broadcasts, and tests in one, easy-to-use place. Plus, we already put in formulas for you to be able to analyze your email results with ease. 

The post 4 Steps to Plan Your Email Marketing for the New Year appeared first on AWeber.

How to Get Better Open Rates with Email Preheaders

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-14 15:33

get better open rates with email preheaders

Less than three seconds.

That’s the average amount of time you have to capture a subscriber’s attention in his or her crowded inbox. Talk about a short window.

So what’s an easy way to make an impact and stand out? Include an email preheader in each message you send. 

What is an email preheader?

When viewing a message in your inbox, an email preheader — also known as the Johnson Box or preview text — is a snippet of text shown next to or underneath the subject line.

example of a subject line and pre header

How long is the ideal email preheader text length?

The email preheader length will vary by device and which Internet Service Provider (ISP) like Gmail or Yahoo! subscribers use. However they are typically between 50 to 100 characters or about 6 to 11 words. 

Below, you can see an email preheader example on a desktop inbox, and another on a mobile inbox. 

example of email preheader text

Why is an email preheader important?

When written well, an email preheader is a powerful tool to improve your open rate. 

Unfortunately, many email marketers don’t take advantage of the preheader. They spend lots of time crafting the perfect subject line, but barely think twice about this very important piece of text. So they leave it blank, or fill it out with some generic information.

In fact, here are a handful of common email preheaders examples I found in my inbox.

“Click here if you are having trouble viewing this message”

“You are part of an email list, you can unsubscribe here

“This message contains images, please enable images”

"View in a web browser"

preheader text showing the first line of email text being used

You may be wondering why these messages are pulled into the preheader field. ISPs will automatically populate this field with the first line of coded text in your email. If you don't customize your preheader, you're leaving it up to the ISP to determine your second most important line of text.

And looking at the examples above, do you think any of these messages make your subscribers super eager to open the message? No. So what kind of preheader will make your subscriber click open? And how do you set it up properly?

5 Email preheader best practices

Below are five ways to write an email preheader that will skyrocket your open rates. 

#1: Sum up the content inside

Add more context to your subject line with your preheader text. In it, give a short summary of what the reader can expect to find inside the message. This may further entice your subscriber to click on the message so they can read the full content.

Example: Google Home

Subject line: Lauren, welcome to your Google Home Mini

Email preheader: 3 ways to get the most out of your new Mini

#2: Make your subject line and preheader text compliment each other

Paul McCartney & John Lennon, Laverne & Shirley, Han Solo & Chewbacca, Bert & Ernie — what do these great duos have in common?

They complement each other. Alone they are good, together they are amazing.

Subject lines and preheaders are the same. To get the highest open rate and engagement for your email campaign, these two critical email marketing elements should play off each other. Use your preheader to build on an amazing subject line.

Example: Netflix

Subject line: Coming Monday, December 14th...Tiny Pretty Things

Email preheader: Get a first look today

#3: Request an action

Use the email preheader to make your readers take action. Tell them what you want them to do!

Do you want them to open the message? Do you want them to click on a link? Fill out your survey? Let them know what you want them to do and why you want them to do it.

Example: Ulta Beauty

Subject Line: Take a look at your ultimate rewards statement, Lauren!

Email preheader: Check out these beautiful offers, too. Open to see all the ways beauty loves you back!

#4: Use FOMO

The “fear of missing out” or FOMO is a powerful psychological trigger. If you want a subscriber to take advantage of a special offer or deal — such as free shipping or a discount code — tell them about it in the preheader. They’ll be tempted to open right away if they know the offer is exclusive or a limited-time.

And you want them to open right away! Chances are, if they don’t open when they see the message for the first time, they won’t come back the next day or next week to do it. 

Example: Michaels Craft Store

Subject line: Last Day: Summer Cyber Sale! An Online Bonus Coupon and Free Shipping, no minimum

Email preheader: Drop-What-You’re-Doing Doorbusters and Deals. Don’t miss out!

#5: Get creative

Your subscribers want to do business with people they know, like, and trust — as opposed to a faceless corporation. Humanize your preheader text to increase connection and engagement with your subscriber. Use the small block of text to show your company is likeable and relatable, and your subscribers will be more likely to open the message.

Example: PECO

Subject line: PECO can help you keep cool for less this summer

Email preheader: Rising temperatures make it harder to stay cool and comfortable inside. But don’t sweat it!

How to add a preheader to an email campaign

There are three ways text can be inserted into your email’s preheader.

#1: Automatically

This is where the ISP your email is being sent, takes the top text in your email. If you have an image as the first element in your email, then the ISP will take the alt text you give your image.

So if your email service provider doesn’t provide you a dedicated section for a preheader, then you need to make sure that the very first text you put in your email has the text you want to appear.

#2: Hidden preheader text HTML code

You understand the value of a preheader but you don’t want this copy to be the first thing your subscribers see when they open your email. If you’re comfortable with coding your email you can put the below code as the very first element in the HTML portion of your email.

hidden preheader html text code

#3: Add text in message preheader in AWeber

Adding an email preheader to your message in AWeber is super easy. All it takes is just the click of a single button.

Simply create a message using the drag & drop email builder.

aweber drag and drop email builder

From within the message editor directly under “message properties,” you can add the text you wish to display with your subject line when the message is sent. It’s that easy.

example of email preheader text using AWeber's platform

If you want to personalize your email preheader for your subscriber to include their name, email address, or any other of their subscriber information, you can do so as well! You can accomplish this using personalization snippets within the ‘message preheader’ text box directly.

example of how to personalize an email preheader

Ready to write fantastic email preheaders that grab a subscriber's attention in less than three seconds? Then create your FREE AWeber account today. 

The post How to Get Better Open Rates with Email Preheaders appeared first on AWeber.

The 10 Best Ways to Use Landing Pages

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-09 19:45

The 10 best ways to use landing pages feature image

In fact, many of our customers at AWeber are business owners just starting out by selling on marketplaces like Etsy or Amazon. Some are content creators, bloggers, or podcasters who have ideas to share with the world. Others are restaurant owners, local shop owners, mechanics, and so much more.

While it sounds like these business owners are very different, they all have one major thing in common.

They want more people to know about their business. 

And while it can sound like a big task, increasing brand awareness doesn’t have to be difficult. You just need to make it easy for your customers to find you and take the desired action. 

That’s why having an online presence is so important. Think about it: what’s the first thing you do when looking for a product, service, or information on a company? You search for it online.

I’m not saying you need an elaborate website. For some companies, a website isn’t necessary. But if you don’t have a website, then you absolutely need a landing page. Even if you have a website, there are still situations where you may need a separate landing page.

Landing pages let you simplify your message while keeping your customer focused on a desired action.

There are several uses for your business or side project. We’ve highlighted the top 10 ways you can build the perfect landing page.

Facebook landing page

Set up a landing page for people who click on your Facebook ads. While driving people to a landing page from a Facebook ad is a bit more passive than a Google ad, it’s an effective tactic to grow your email list. 

The goal when building the Facebook landing page will be trying to figure your visitors’ intent. If you’re promoting a downloadable guide, their intent may be easy to figure out — they want the guide. But in other cases it may not be as obvious. This is where you’ll need to test different content to see which converts better.

Example of a Facebook landing page

Promote a webinar or event

Virtual events — like webinars — are a great way to educate your audience and to get them engaged with your brand. These are no small tasks to put together. A lot of your time and energy is spent on the planning and execution of these events. But without a webinar registration landing page, your hard work will go unnoticed.

The features that your event landing page needs to have are:

  • Headline with your event name
  • Sign up form
  • Copy explaining why someone should attend
  • Dates and time (make sure to include your time zone)
landing page promoting a conference

Ebook landing page

Many aspiring entrepreneurs are looking to make money by selling ebooks online. By producing the ebook and selling it online, many business owners are bypassing the traditional publishers, print presses, and distribution centers.

However in order to have control of every aspect of your ebook, you will need a landing page to sell your product.

Who needs Amazon or Barnes & Noble to reach potential customers? Promote and sell your ebook on your very own customized landing page.

Example of selling an ebook on a

Sell a product

AWeber has customers who start off selling their products on marketplace shops such as Etsy. But eventually after they build a loyal customer base, they will create an ecommerce landing page to sell their products, eliminating the marketplace’s transaction fees.

This can work if you find a platform that allows you to create unlimited landing pages, such as AWeber.

Start off by building a landing page with your highest selling product and see how it goes. Eventually, you may find you’re more successful by moving your entire store to individual landing pages.

Example of a selling a product on a landing page

Lead magnet

Lead magnets are a great way to incentivize a potential customer to provide you their email address. But in order to capture those email addresses, you need to create a lead magnet that provides a desired value for that individual. 

Once you’ve created your incentive, the next step is to build a dedicated landing page to capture that email address. Your communication needs to clearly explain the freemium they will receive and the main benefits of that lead magnet.

After you have their email, you can now begin marketing your product or service.

Example of a lead magnet

Landing page for lead capture

Lead generation landing pages are a great way to increase your subscriber base. If you have a blog or regularly produce content, you should be informing your audience every time you publish new content. If you don’t, your readers may never know when you have something really important to say.

So create a dedicated landing page to capture these emails. Be clear in terms of why someone should sign up for your list and how often you plan on sending emails. If you’re clear about your intentions up front, this will decrease the likelihood of unsubscribes or even worse, someone marking your emails as spam

Landing page for lead capture example

Promote your podcast

Podcasts have become one of the most popular mediums. In 2013, 10% of the population listened to a podcast monthly, and that number increased to 30% in 2019.

There are over 30 million podcast episodes. Standing out from the rest becomes a lot easier once you have  a landing page to promote your podcast.  You can no longer rely on listeners finding your podcast on one of the streaming platforms. To be successful, you can have a summary page for each podcast episode.

Learn more about promoting your podcast with email marketing in this guide. 

Landing page example of Office Ladies podcast

PPC landing page

One of most important things to keep in mind about paid ads is to make your landing page is relevant to the keyword being searched. 

Imagine a potential customer searching for “best italian restaurants near me” and the page they click is about the best italian food recipes. Not a very good user experience. 

And it will certainly be a waste of your money. Given the search term was for ‘best restaurants,’ it’s safe to say they’re not in the mood to cook tonight.

So every keyword topic you want to bid on, you need a relevant landing page for your Google Ads or other search engine.

For PPC (pay per click) ads, making sure your landing page is relevant is not only important from a conversation (or desired action) standpoint, it is also necessary to improve your quality score. A better quality score in Google often leads to lower prices and better ad positioning.

PPC landing page example

Thank you page

Did you set up a webinar sign up landing page or how about one to capture email addresses? If so, then show your appreciation with a dedicated landing page to thank them for signing up for your event, downloading your lead magnet or purchasing your product.

This page doesn’t need to be complicated. A simple thank you along with next steps, depending on the offer, is all you need.

Here are a couple of thank you landing page examples:

AWeber thank you page example

General uses

What’s great about a landing page builder is you can pretty much create a dedicated page for anything you can think of. I’ve seen restaurants who don’t have a website use landing pages for their menu, other corporations use them for social media highlights, as a linktree, for a job posting. The uses are only limited by your imagination.

Example of how a restaurant uses a landing page for their menu

If you’re not sure where to start, log into your AWeber account and begin using one of our customized templates. These drag-and-drop templates let you easily brand and set up your landing pages. 

Don’t have an AWeber account? No problem, you can get started for free today.

The post The 10 Best Ways to Use Landing Pages appeared first on AWeber.

Drive More Referrals with the New Marketing Funnel

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-07 16:35

drive more referrals with john jantsch

In the first 5 minutes of this episode of The FWD: Thinking Show, John Jantsch — Founder of Duct Tape Marketing — said something that could shock a lot of marketers.

“As marketers, we’re not in charge of getting people to buy from us or creating demand,” said John.

But as he went on, his meaning became more clear.

“We need to organize our buyers’ behavior and create content that addresses that behavior.”

Jantsch created the concept of The Marketing Hourglass™ to explain how marketers can organize their buyers’ behavior in a way that improves their marketing strategy.

In this episode of The FWD: Thinking Show, Jantsch discusses how marketing has changed over the years, and how marketers can apply the new marketing funnel to gain audience trust, especially through email marketing. 

Episode summary

There’s no doubt marketing has changed over the last decade, but Jantsch explains the thing that’s changed most about marketing is how people buy. 

The stats speak for themselves:

  • 61% of mobile searches are more likely to contact a local business if they have a mobile friendly site.
  • 80% of potential customers won’t consider a business with low ratings.
  • 64% say watching a marketing video on Facebook has influenced them to make a purchase in the last month.
  • 92% of consumers will visit a brand’s website for the first time for reasons other than making a purchase.
  • 82% of small business owners claim their main source of new business is referrals.

Jantsch says that creating content that addresses customers’ and potential customers’ needs at each step of the customer journey ultimately drives more referrals and helps grow your business. 

Of course, a powerful part of creating and distributing valuable content is through email marketing. Listen to the rest of John’s conversation to hear his best email marketing tips and strategies for business growth. 

Podcast timestamps

3:40: Stats every marketer needs to know. 

7:45: As marketers we need to organize behavior.

9:00: Why referrals are just human nature. Create a journey so everyone who comes to learn about the company comes to be a referral source.

11:00: Content is one of the greatest ways to move people along the customer journey if you understand their goals and objectives around each stage.

12:00: What is the Marketing Hourglass™? 

16:18: What are some ways businesses can give value to people and use content marketing to build trust?

20:00: How do you transition from providing your audience value to selling?

21:45: How to find your customers’ pain points with interviews and reviews

26:30: How to make your buying experience seamless.

28:50: What role does email marketing play in creating an awesome experience and build trust?

32:00: How to make sure email automations feel personal. 

36:10: Why not everyone should be authentic.

38:15: The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur: a sneak peak.

Episode Resources

John Jantsch is a marketing consultant, speaker, and author of Duct Tape Marketing, Duct Tape Selling, The Commitment Engine, SEO for Growth, and The Referral Engine. He is also the founder of the Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network. His latest book, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur: 366 Daily Meditations to Feed Your Soul and Grow your Business, is a daily reminder to entrepreneurs that a better you makes a better business. 

Learn more about The Marketing Hourglass (and download the worksheet) here.

Follow John Jantsch on Twitter, and check out his company Duct Tape Marketing.

Check out interviews with marketing experts

We’ve had experts from all walks of marketing on The FWD: Thinking Show to share their expertise and guidance. Check out previous episodes and get expert advice by clicking the button below.

The post Drive More Referrals with the New Marketing Funnel appeared first on AWeber.

Email Marketing vs. Social Media: Which is Better?

Permalink - Posted on 2020-12-02 19:50

Email marketing vs. social media: which is better?

Email marketing vs. social media.

"Email marketing is dead."

"That social channel is old news."

How many times have you heard phrases like this, pitting tried and true marketing channels against each other like gladiators gone to war?

I know my answer: too many to count. 

So called ‘experts’ have a bad habit of killing off marketing channels that have been around a while in favor of the ‘latest and greatest’ tactics and tools. 

But there’s a reason those older channels have been around so long. They work. 

This was the narrative that came on the scene when social media was just gaining popularity. Now that social media marketing is no longer new, we wanted to revisit the conversation of email marketing vs. social media, and explore how they’re different, how they’re similar, and how you can use them together to drive more awareness, engagement, and sales. 

Email marketing vs. social media: similarities and differences.

Email marketing and social media are both fantastic channels to engage your audience. While they both encourage two-way communication, the biggest difference is with email marketing - you own your list. You do not own your followers on social media. 

Even though your social following may be larger than your email list, there are more barriers to overcome with social media. For instance, social algorithms change all the time — which means it’s never guaranteed that your entire audience will see your message. 

And while it’s a scary thought, you also run the risk of a social platform shutting down and you losing all your followers. Think: Vine circa 2016. Those creators needed to rebuild their following elsewhere. Imagine if they grew their email list alongside their social audience…

Let’s break down a few more similarities and differences. 

How is email marketing different from social media?

One of the best things about social media is that it lets you reach new fans and audiences in a very public way. People can search for your topic or area of expertise and stumble upon your page at random or through a friend or family member referral.

But social media can get crowded. If you’re not investing in paid advertising, there’s a good chance your posts won’t get seen (let alone by the right people).

The good news? Engaging your audience is easy – all you have to do is add email to the mix!

The even better news? Your subscribers are likely to be more engaged because they opted in to hear from you.

You can set the timing and frequency of when you want to deliver content to your prospects. There’s no algorithm to work around. With email, it’s super easy to track who your content is reaching and how it performed. (And if you’re using a trusted email service provider, there’s no question about whether or not your content is actually getting delivered). 

Plus, according to emarketer.com, email marketing is the most effective channel for customer retention

 Email marketing is the most effective channel for customer retention

How are email marketing and social media alike?

Despite their differences, email and social media work better together.

Social media is a great way to reach new audiences and communities of people. Email is how to keep them engaged and nurture the relationship. It’s a win-win!

Plus, both social media and email marketing make great customer engagement channels. Stay competitive and use social media to provide quick responses to inquiring customers

Leverage both of their strengths to really amp up your marketing strategy as a whole.

3 social media strategies for email marketers

If you’ve been focusing on email marketing as your primary channel, here are some ideas to help you amplify your marketing on social media. 

  1. Invite them to your social media. Have a lot of email subscribers? Summon them to your Twitter feed. Big audience on Facebook? Request the pleasure of their company on your blog. Each person probably has one platform they’re most comfortable with. But they may initially encounter you on other channels. Give them the option to follow you where they prefer, or they may drop you altogether.
  2. Run a contest. Hold a contest related to your brand. You can do something as simple as asking for new product suggestions. Have your readers submit their answers either through email or social, wherever your audience is largest. Tell them you’ll announce the winners on the channel you’re trying to grow. Link to a place where they can sign up to meet you there!
  3. Incentivize engagement across channels. You may already have a large, active audience on Facebook or Twitter and be looking to grow your email subscriber list (or vise versa). Collect comments and requests from them on one medium and address them on the other. People who see your responses may click over to see what all the chatter is about.

Grow your email list with social media

So how do you get your followers to sign up for your email list? The answer is surprisingly easy!

You can share lead generating resources or content upgrades, like a webinar, PDF guide or ebook, as an incentive in exchange for their email address.

Another simple way to boost your list growth is to host a contest or giveaway with a valuable, relevant prize. Just remember to state that entrants will be added to your email list (or give them the option to opt-out).

If you’re wondering which social media platform is best for email list growth, there’s no one answer – it’s really dependent on where your audience is.

Twitter and LinkedIn are good places to start because they are the most “landing page” friendly. However, don’t overlook channels like Pinterest and Instagram. Both are really good places for finding new audiences through search.

If you’re willing to invest a little, Facebook ads are a great place to promote your list. You set the targeting and budget for your ads. You can also create lookalike audiences based on the profiles of your current email subscribers.

Related: The experts at Sendible answer your questions about social media marketing. 

Build a powerful marketing strategy

Now that you understand the benefits of both social media and email marketing, it’s time to create the perfect marketing strategy for you.

Need more help getting started with email marketing? Get the full experience by checking out How to Grow Your Business With Email Marketing

The post Email Marketing vs. Social Media: Which is Better? appeared first on AWeber.

Understand Email Tagging: The First Step to Segmenting Your Audience

Permalink - Posted on 2020-11-30 21:06

Understanding email tagging the first step to segmenting your audience

It’s no secret that sending personalized emails is the best way to make sure the right content gets delivered to the people who want it most. But to understand personalization, we first need to understand tags. 

But what are tags and how do you use them? Getting started with tags can seem a bit overwhelming at first, especially if you have not used them before or have grown your lists without tags.

Thankfully, there are several easy ways to update your list to utilize tags that will help you build deeper connections with your audience and ultimately grow your business.  

What is an email tag?

A tag is a label composed of a few words to help organize and classify your contacts. Think of tags as virtual sticky notes about a specific subscriber that tells you more about their interests, likes, and behaviors.  

Email marketing tags can be added automatically when a person takes action on your website, or interacts with your email, sign up form, or landing page. You can apply specific tags (or labels) to each of your subscribers to send more targeted broadcasts and trigger automated campaigns

How to organize email lists

There are numerous ways you can tag the subscribers on your email list. You can tag based on how they are connected to you and their behaviors and interests.

For example, Blog readers can be tagged by the type of content links clicked and subscription date. Customers can be tagged by the products they purchased, coupons used, and their location (city or zip code). Prospects can be tagged by the content they download, website pages visited, subscription date, webinar or event attended. Donors can be tagged by their donation tier.

What is the difference between an email list and an email tag?

An email list is a group of people who have opted-in for your emails because they have an interest in your content or products. You can set up one list and tag your contacts based on what you know about them. Or you can set up multiple email lists based on different sign up forms or landing pages.

The downside of having multiple lists is that you can have the same contact on different lists. For example, someone is on your product list because they brought a product, but they are also on a lead magnet list because they downloaded a piece of free content. If you send the same content to different lists, people on more than one list may receive duplicate contact.

But using one large list without tags can be risky, too. Without categorizing your subscribers appropriately you run the risk of sending irrelevant email content to some of your subscribers.

To avoid these mistakes, you can combine multiple lists into one list. Then apply tags to identify the people on your list based on interests, behaviors, and how they joined your list.

Remember: Tags let you send the right message, to the right person, at the right time (not multiple times) — so you can reap the rewards of sending a targeted email that will grow your business.

How to segment using tags?

Email segmentation divides people on your email list into different parts or segments based on their actions or behaviors. 

While there are many ways to segment your subscribers in AWeber, one of the easiest and most flexible ways to segment subscribers is with tags. You can search for subscribers who have a single tag, multiple tags, or any variety of tags. You can even search for subscribers who don’t have a specific tag.

To segment, apply a search filter to find a set of subscribers that have something in common. You can apply a segment to multiple lists or one list.  Watch the video below for step-by-step instructions on  a segment using tags.

Creating more targeted segments (or groups) of subscribers can help you achieve higher email open and click rates, better email deliverability, and more sales.

How to personalize your emails using tags and segments

Tagging lets you send highly personalized email content and set up segments that let you deliver the right message to the right people at the right time. In fact, segmenting your list with personalized content can increase your conversion rate by 760%. But how do you use this information to drive your email campaigns?

Let’s say you are a non-profit. You could identify who donated last year and who did not. Then, send an email to each group. You can create two different email campaigns: one for those that sent you a donation and the other that did not. The first email in the series warms up your audience based on prior behavior before asking them for a donation in the second email.

While segmenting your emails by two different types of donors may seem fairly basic, it can profoundly affect your donation totals. Let’s look at how this campaign could look:

Campaign #1: Sent to subscribers who donated last year

Email #1: Thank you for donating last year. I wanted to share how we used your money to change lives.

Email #2: Can you be a lifesaver again this year? Please consider donating.

Campaign #2: Sent to subscribers who did not donate, but downloaded a guide

Email #1: I wanted to share a new video on how we are changing lives with a new technology that is now available for free.

Email #2: Did you enjoy the video? Can you help us save more lives with a tax-deductible donation? 

The example above is for a non-profit, but the same principles apply if you sell products, services, or create content. 

5 ways to use tagging in your email campaigns

There are numerous ways to tag subscribers within AWeber, but five of the most popular methods are outlined below.

1-Categorize your subscribers into groups

You can search for anyone that meets specific criteria and tag them all at once. For example, tag subscribers who haven't opened an email from you in the past 30 days, anyone who clicked on a particular link, or those who joined  from a certain web form or landing page. 

If you have multiple sign up forms, you can apply different tags to subscribers when they fill out separate forms. This way, you'll know all the content they are interested in to send them the right message. 

Sign up forms tag and tracking fields

Related: How to tag an AWeber sign up form

If you add custom fields to your sign up forms or landing pages, you can collect additional information about your contacts' interests and preferences. For each custom choice, a tag is added to that person so you can send more targeted and personalized emails.

example of a custom form field

Related: How to tag a custom field in an AWeber sign up form

2-Trigger personalized campaign automations

Tags also integrate with AWeber’s automation platform, Campaigns, so you can trigger an automated sequence of emails to send to a specific segment. 

Let's say you're a food blogger who's planning a webinar on the vegan diet. When you create your sign up form for your webinar, make sure everyone who signs up to your list receives the tag "vegan-webinar." By tagging subscribers this way, you'll know who joined your list and what content they’re likely interested in.

When the tag “vegan-webinar” is added to your list, you can set up an automated welcome series to trigger to let them know they are registered and what to expect. Since you know these subscribers are also interested in vegan-related content, you can send targeted information about other vegan resources, like a few free recipes to keep them engaged in your welcome email series.

3-Send personalized content in a broadcast email

After the webinar is over, you can send a one-time broadcast email to tagged subscribers with more content. Simply search for subscribers with the tag “vegan-webinar” in Manage Subscribers, create a new segment, and send.

Vegan webinar tag search

Share an invite to download another bonus incentive, such as a vegan meal plan or promo code to purchase a recipe book. Add as many emails to your campaign as you need to maintain regular communication. Your subscribers will remain engaged with content they’re interested in, and you can nurture them to become loyal customers.

4-Create multiple campaigns in a single list

With Campaigns, you are not bound by a single automation series per list, and you can apply tags at any point during a sequence. Create multiple campaigns in one list, and trigger them with specific tags through AWeber web forms or landing pages.

When subscribers are tagged with a new tag, they'll receive the appropriate campaign, even if they're already subscribed to that list. Below, we'll walk through when this might be helpful and how to set up tags to trigger your campaigns.

Here's an example of when this concept might apply: delivering multiple lead magnets but keeping subscribers on one list.

Let’s say you’re collecting subscribers on your food blog using a lead magnet, the Paleo Quickstart Guide. 

These subscribers would be added to your list and entered into a Welcome Campaign. As you can see below, this campaign will be triggered by a tag ‘paleo’ associated with the web form you used. 

Tag applied for paleo
Close up of Tag applied tag form

Let’s say every six months you also run a 30-day Paleo Challenge. This is a lead generation effort to get people on your main list through other means. It’s built for new leads, but you want existing subscribers to be able to opt in, too.

Let’s do it with Campaigns!

Create a second campaign titled “30-day Paleo Challenge.” Trigger this campaign on a specific tag called “challenge.”

Tag applied for challenge
Tag applied close up form

Load up the emails you plan to send during the challenge.

Now, we simply need to attribute this tag to any signup form or landing page that promotes the challenge.

Direct your current subscribers to the landing page or form, and if they enter their email address, they’ll immediately receive the same series as prospects.

Have a new lead magnet? Running an email course? This method will apply. You no longer need to spin up a new list every time you need to deliver a new series.

5-Tag on click automation

You’ve written a compelling message, formatted it perfectly, and crafted a high-converting email. You’ve loaded it into your automated campaign, and some leads and sales start rolling in.

But more probably could. 

Making sure your subscribers who open (or didn’t open) your emails receive the perfect follow-up is key to keeping your prospects moving towards a purchase.

Tag subscribers who open your messages in Campaigns, opening up new opportunities to segment subscribers, trigger automated re-engagement emails, and build the perfect marketing funnel.

Tag your subscribers “opened-second-email” if they open the second message.

Campaign if opened-second email

But if they don’t open your emails. You can set a wait time of three days and then apply a new tag: “send-to-non-openers.”

Apply new tag "send-to-non-openers

Create a campaign that is triggered when a subscriber has the tag “send-to-non-openers” but does not have the tag “opened-second-email.” 

Delivering a new campaign to subscribers after that three day wait time if they didn't open the second message.

Campaign when tag "opened-second-email" is applied.

You can also create a variant of this to send a custom email to subscribers who did open the second message, simply by setting your trigger criteria to include the tag applied after the wait and the tag applied for opening the second email.

Keep engaged subscribers happy by delivering more useful and contextual content, and re-engage non-openers with the perfect follow-up message at the right time.

How to make an email tag with AWeber

There are multiple ways to apply tags to your subscribers. Below are some of the most common options.

Bulk tagging: Update on Import

If you have a number of subscribers, you want to tag all at once — you can tag the group of subscribers all at once with just a few clicks.

Using bulk tags, you can apply labels to your subscribers to group them by interests or behavior. 

Go to the Subscriber tab and select “Add Subscribers.”  On the "Map Subscriber Info" step, you can select if you would like to add only new subscribers to your list or update new and existing subscribers.

Update on Import Map Subscriber Info

Selecting "Add new and update existing" allows you to edit your existing subscribers' data in bulk. You can use this function to add new tags or update custom fields and subscribers' names.

You can also bulk tag your subscribers and add them to an automated email campaign. The video below shows you the easy step-by-step process.

Apply tags in a sign up form

When building a sign up form, create and add a tag to ensure it's applied to subscribers who opted-in to your list. You can add any tags to the form in the "Form Automation" box on the form builder's left-hand side.

Tag automation form for sign up forms

You can also build your form and apply tags to subscribers based on information they select in a custom field.

To send specific subscribers an email, create a new segment in Manage Subscribers based on the tag. Create your broadcast email and send it to your new subscriber segment.

Apply tags in landing pages

AWeber’s landing pages are a single web page that lets you promote your newsletter, promote a product or service, or offer a downloadable resource. 

Easily apply tags to subscribers who sign up through the form on your landing page to track where they signed up, trigger specific campaigns, and help segment your list to send targeted broadcast messages.

When you are on the form in the landing page builder, select the Submission tab to add any tags.

Landing page form to add tags

Apply tags through an integration 

Want to know what your customer purchased so you can send them similar products or discount coupons? Providers like Shopify, WooCommerce, PayPalClickbank, ThriveCart, 3dcart, and DirectPay allow you to easily add your customers into your AWeber account and tag them, so you know who purchased from you.

AWeber’s WooCommerce and Shopify integrations even allow you to apply unique tags for each product your subscribers purchase or left in their abandoned cart. 

More pro tips on tagging

We only scratched the surface of all the cool things you can do with tags and segmentation. 

If you are ready to learn more about segmentation and tagging, there are two AWeber resources that I suggest you check out:  23 Ways to Tag and Segment your Subscribers and 16 Ways Email Segmentation Can Boost Subscriber Engagement + 4 Bonus Ecommerce Segments.

The post Understand Email Tagging: The First Step to Segmenting Your Audience appeared first on AWeber.

20 Holiday Email Subject Lines to Inspire Merry Messages

Permalink - Posted on 2020-11-25 18:24

Holiday Email Subject Lines to Inspire Merry Messages

The holiday shopping season is in full swing! And that means everyone's on the lookout for the best deals from brands they love.

But shopping may look a bit different in 2020 than it did in year's past. Instead of shopping at brick-and-mortar shops this year, many could turn to the internet as their preferred shopping method.

In fact, many holiday promotions have already begun. And people are already scouring their inboxes for the best offers.

So how can you compete for attention in subscribers' inboxes this busy online shopping season? Try adding a dash of holiday cheer to your emails!

To inspire your own merry messages this holiday season, we pulled together our 20 favorite holiday email subject lines from real brands. Plus, get tips for writing your own festive subject lines.

How to write festive subject lines for holiday emails

Make sure your emails stand out in a crowded inbox this season.

Whether you’re running a special promotion, or just want to send a little holiday cheer, don’t miss this lucrative opportunity to connect with your subscribers.

Here’s our checklist to make sure your next email subject line is holiday ready:

Highlight your offers

Everyone loves savings. If you're running a special sale, make sure to highlight it in your subject line.

Offering email subscribers a special gift or promo code is a great way to engage them during the holiday season.

But your gift doesn’t have to have a cash value to be successful. Why not gift them your latest ebook or video course? Learn more about creating incentives people love.

Understand your subscribers' pain points

It's much easier to know how to gain your subscribers' attention when you understand their pain points. In creating your offer and holiday email messaging, consider the following questions:

  • Who are your subscribers shopping for? For themselves or for others?
  • Are your subscribers strapped for time?
  • What do they need help with this season?

When you understand your subscribers' pain paints, you can position your offering as the solution. Not sure where to start? Learn how to find your customers' pain points.

Bring the holiday cheer

Getting a little "punny" or referencing Classic Christmas sayings is bound to bring a smile to anyone's face this time of year. Here are some ideas to make your subject lines extra delightful.

  1. Puns. They're fun to write and fun to read. Almost guaranteed to make your readers feel a little more joyful, puns are a great way to bring some humor to your subject lines. Case and point: I laughed out loud reading subject lines #5 and #8 below. Get more punny inspiration over at this list in Country Living.
  2. Classic Christmas references or songs. Who doesn't love Christmas music this time of year? Reference common sayings or pop culture in your subject lines for instant recognition that your email is related to holiday savings.
  3. Emojis. Give your holiday email subject lines some extra flair with emojis. We found that 6.9% of subject lines use emojis, so including one could be the difference that makes you stand out in the inbox.

Use power words in subject lines

Some words incite more action from readers than others. In fact, the next time you want to see major engagement from your subscribers, try using one of these 8 power words:

  1. Now
  2. You/Your
  3. Thanks
  4. New
  5. Easy
  6. And
  7. Free
  8. [Insert subscriber's name here]

Learn more about the most powerful words to use in your email campaigns.

20 inspiring holiday email subject line examples

Get inspired by these 20 holiday email subject lines from real, recognizable brands:

  1. Instacart: Check-off your holiday shopping list with Instacart gift cards
  2. Toms: Your holiday style guide 🎄 | 35% off ends tonight
  3. Francesca’s: Last Chance To Get It Under The 🎄 for 50% off!
  4. Groupon: Holiday stress? How ‘bout a nice massage?
  5. Bed Bath & Beyond: 🎁 5 most-wanted gifts at prices YULE love.
  6. Dollar Shave Club: This gift is great for people with follicles
  7. Drybar: ‘Tis the season for blowouts!
  8. Michael’s: Happy Haul-days! Fill your cart with daily deals 
  9. Trek Bicycle Store: Win the holidays with our best-loved gifts
  10. Wine Insiders: 40% off to get ahead of the holiday rush
  11. BroadwayBox: A cure for your post-holiday blues
  12. Target: 2 days ‘til Christmas & still need to shop? We can help.
  13. Paper Source: Wrap up your holiday shopping 🎁
  14. J. Crew: Image a world where all your holiday shopping is done early…
  15. M.Gemi: Shimmer or shine? 4 shoes to glam up your holiday
  16. Greetabl: Consider those stockings STUFFED
  17. Decorist: Alert: the holiday season is here, is your home ready?
  18. Bombas: Merry, Bright, And So Colorful
  19. Karma Baker: Still need a pie for Thanksgiving?
  20. JetBlue Vacations: The Black Friday Sale: Up to $400 off

Want to add more holiday cheer to your emails?

When you sign up for AWeber Free, you'll get access to tons of professionally-designed holiday templates — making it easy for you to spread some holiday cheer this season.

The post 20 Holiday Email Subject Lines to Inspire Merry Messages appeared first on AWeber.

How to Create a Winning Call-To-Action on Your Sign Up Form

Permalink - Posted on 2020-11-24 19:06

How to create a winning call-to-action for your sign up form

You’ve poured your heart into creating the perfect incentive to attract subscribers and build your email list. Now the only thing between you and greatness is your sign up form call-to-action (CTA).

While there are several key components that go into creating an effective sign up form, one of the most critical is that little button that screams, “Click me!"

Your call-to-action (CTA) button is the last step that stands in the way of having a thriving email audience.

When building an email audience, your sign up form CTA can make or break your chances of converting website visitors into email subscribers.

Your sign up CTA carries a lot of weight in the decision to subscribe, so it’s important to avoid taking shortcuts and apply the following best practices.

What makes a good sign up CTA?

Creating an effective sign up form is easier than you think. Here are some best practices to consider when writing the CTA for your sign up form.

Button Size

The size of your CTA button has an impact on its ability to convert visitors into subscribers. Does it get noticed right away? Make it big and easy to see or click.

Remember, many people will see your sign up form on a mobile device, which means a lot of people will be clicking your CTA with their fingers instead of a small cursor.

Button Color

Color can have a potentially big impact on whether someone subscribes. Red buttons tend to convert best, followed by green. But regardless of what works for others, make sure you stay consistent with your brand. Don’t use a color that clashes with the other colors of your website.

Also be sure to use a color that contrasts with what surrounds it. You want it to be clear that it’s your sign up form CTA button.

Copy Length

Keep the copy on your CTA button brief and easy to read. If your potential subscriber can’t quickly read it and decide to take action, you’re likely going to lose them. Try to keep your copy to less than 40 characters in length.

Voice & Tone

Your CTA button should align with your overall brand voice and tone. Consider your ideal audience: How would they respond? How would your CTA make them feel?

The key here is to write in a way that feels human and authentic. The usual “Submit” or “Sign up” copy feels dry and – dare I say – robotic. To bring some personality into your CTA copy, try using informal, humorous, or more common language like “Count me in” or “Let’s do this.”

Descriptive Language

The way you phrase your CTA copy can have a significant impact on its ability to convert your visitors into subscribers.

The text on your CTA form should take one of two approaches: relate to what your new subscribers are about to receive, or what action you want them to take.

Let’s talk about the first approach: making the copy relevant to what they’re about to receive. If you’re giving away a free ebook for subscribing, for example, your CTA button could say, “Send me my ebook!”

It’s tempting to try to entice people with offers of “free” stuff. But sometimes using the word “free” isn’t always better. Be sure to test this against something that doesn’t use the word “free.” (More on split testing later in this post.)

Now let’s look at the second approach: making the copy relevant to what action you want your would-be subscriber to take. There seems to be a negative stigma around using the phrase “Click Here” or something similar. However, in many instances, the phrase continues to outperform its counterpart.

In fact, CopyBlogger tested this approach and found that using “Click to continue” produces a click-through rate of 8.53% while “Continue to article” only produced a click-through rate of 3.3%.

First-Person Language

Using first-person language, such as “me” and “my,” can help your subscribers feel a sense of ownership of your offer. Since it makes it seem as though the incentive you created was made specifically for them, it can increase the chance that they will sign up.

Our own tests at AWeber have found that using first-person possessive words like “my” and “me” is an effective way to increase conversions. In one case, using possessive language on a CTA button increased clicks by 90 percent!

Oli Gardner from Unbounce also found this to be the case in a test he ran: “Get my free ebook” versus “Get your free ebook.” The CTA with the word “my” resulted in a 12.76% click-through rate, and the one with “your” produced a 8.85% click-through rate.


There are several ways to create urgency with your potential subscribers. Offering something for a short amount of time or creating scarcity with a limited supply can be a great motivator for action. Yes, FOMO (or fear of missing out) is real, and it’s powerful.

So if you’re offering a webinar or a course, stress that there are limited seats in your CTA button to increase the feeling of urgency. Or if you’re offering a discount or special pricing on a product, emphasize the limited-time nature of your offer.


You know that feeling you get when you go somewhere for the first time and everyone treats you like royalty? Feels pretty good, huh? First-timer offers or deals are a great way to motivate potential subscribers to sign up – and get a taste of what your business is all about.

To add exclusivity in your CTA form, try including a special offer for new subscribers.

Examples of effective sign up CTAs.

With those critical elements of an effective sign up form CTA in mind, let’s have some fun by dissecting a handful of sign up form CTAs to see these principles in action.

Related: 16 Proven Sign Up Form Ideas to Grow Your Email List


The first example of an effective sign up form CTA comes from TOMS. Most people know TOMS for their philanthropic, giving nature: for every product you buy, they help a person in need (which they refer to as their One for One program).

When you first visit their website, you’re presented with this pop up form, offering you 10 percent off your next purchase when you subscribe to their email list:

TOMS Sign Up Form Call to Action

What makes this sign up form CTA so effective?

There’s a lot to like about this sign up form, but we’ll specifically look at the CTA button, since that’s what this blog post is all about. Let’s run through our checklist to see what stands out about this CTA button:

Size: The button itself is very large and the text is done in all caps giving it an even larger appearance. There’s no way you can miss it.

Length: They kept the text to 17 characters, well below the 40 character goal.

Voice/Tone: The voice and tone TOMS is going for here is inspirational, which aligns very well with their brand and philanthropic efforts.

Color: Green FTW!

Descriptive language: While the CTA copy doesn’t specifically reflect the 10% discount you’re getting by subscribing, I think by focusing on the TOMS cause, they’re encouraging their subscribers to become part of something bigger. Being part of a cause while saving on some TOMS shoes gives you a pretty nice feeling, doesn’t it?

Exclusivity: Notice how the discount is given to those who make their first purchase. This is a great way to entice visitors who might be on the fence about buying to just go for it.

Marie Forleo

The next CTA example comes from entrepreneur and author Marie Forleo, whose website is dedicated to helping people become who they most want to be.

Marie offers her website visitors a free audio training to help you learn some simple ways to accomplish your dreams. Let’s check out the CTA:

Marie Forleo Sign Up Call to Action

What makes this sign up CTA so effective?

Marie’s doing a lot of things right with her CTA, so let’s break it down:

Size: Even though the size of the CTA isn’t as large as other CTAs I’ve seen, it is still easy to spot and click (or touch on a mobile device).

Length: She kept her CTA length nice and short at 10 characters.

Color: While she’s not using one of the better-performing colors (according to industry best practices), her CTA does have good contrast against the lighter background and aligns well to the branding on her website.

Urgency: Although there’s no limited time or availability with what Marie is offering, she creates a sense of urgency by using the word “now” in her CTA.

Nerd Fitness

Next up is Steve at Nerd Fitness, a website dedicated to helping “desk jockeys, nerds and Average Joes” — sounds a little like me :) — get healthier and fitter and feel better about themselves.

One of the many resources Steve offers his website visitors is a free ebook called 15 Mistakes Newbies Make When Trying to Get Healthy.

Nerd Fitness Sign Up Form CTA

What makes this sign up form CTA so effective?

I really love how well his sign up form matches his website design and brand. Let’s take a look at his sign up CTA and see what’s working:

Size: The button itself is small, but on mobile it is actually easy to touch on the screen.

Length: At only seven characters, this is by far one of the shortest CTAs I’ve ever seen.

Voice/Tone: Although it’s short, the CTA copy reflects his voice and tone, and speaks to his ideal audience.

Color: While it aligns well with the branding of his website, there’s not enough contrast between the button and the background, making it hard to see for the website visitor.

First-person: Great use of first-person language.

Exclusivity: Using the phrase “I’m in!” creates a sense of belonging, like you’re now part of an exclusive VIP group.

Not Your Average Runner

And finally, let’s look at Jill from Not Your Average Runner, a website that provides women with training and resources to start or improve their running so they can feel good and stay in shape.

Jill offers her website visitors a free 6-week training plan to help them get started with running:

Not Your Average Runner Sign Up CTA

What makes this sign up form CTA so effective?

Let’s have a look at what makes Jill’s sign up CTA so good:

Size: First off, the CTA is large and noticeable. You can’t miss it!

Length: She stays within the ideal length with 30 characters.

Voice/Tone: The voice and tone she uses reflects her own personality, and is perfect for her ideal audience.

Color: This CTA certainly pops, and that’s because she the pink button against the white background adds good contrast. Plus, it matches the overall branding of her website.

Descriptive language: You know exactly what’s going to happen when you click the CTA button.

First-person: She incorporates “my” into her CTA copy to help her subscribers feel ownership of the training plan they’ll receive.

Split testing for greatness.

With any of these elements I’ve covered, it’s important to test them. After all, what works for one marketer may not work for another. You never know if you’re using the most effective approach unless you’re testing it.

To help you do so, here is our guide to split testing your sign up forms.

Start creating effective sign up forms.

Don’t take shortcuts when it comes to your sign up form CTA. Be sure to apply the principles outlined above and you’ll start seeing your email list grow in no time.

Also, be sure to check out our eight ways to improve your call-to-action copy to get more subscribers, as well as 16 proven sign up form ideas to grow your email list.

What have you done with your sign up form CTA that have worked for you? Share in the comments below!

The post How to Create a Winning Call-To-Action on Your Sign Up Form appeared first on AWeber.

Deck Out Your Email Campaign – 6 Free Holiday Templates

Permalink - Posted on 2020-11-23 13:54

Deck out your email campaign with 6 Free Holiday Email Templates

The holiday shopping season is in full swing! And you know it's bound to be a busy one. 

In fact, some businesses report that up to 30% of their annual sales occur during the holiday season. 

But when it comes to sending marketing emails around the holidays, how can you get noticed in very crowded inboxes? 

Adding a touch of holiday cheer to your design can make all the difference. That's why the AWeber design elves created these professionally-designed holiday email templates that will help you stand out in the inbox. 

Free holiday email templates

Keep the momentum going past Black Friday and Cyber Monday and capitalize on all this holiday shopping by planning your holiday email promotions now. And use these beautiful, predesigned templates in your email campaigns.

These HTML holiday templates are all mobile responsive, so they will look great no matter how your customers view them. 

They are perfect to:

  • Send a festive seasonal greeting
  • Inspire shoppers with a gift guide
  • Promote a holiday sale
  • Share holiday hours or shipping deadlines
  • Drive traffic to your website

1. Gift Guide email template

A gift guide is a perfect way to showcase your awesome products and services during this holiday season. Quickly populate the Gift Guide template with your products in a matter of minutes. 

There are three visual and color palate options, so you can choose one that most closely matches your business and brand.

Green and Red Gift Guide Email Template

The Gift Guide series even includes a matching, customizable landing page.

Gift Guide Landing Page

Easily add discount coupons

Holiday shoppers are often on the hunt for discount codes. 

All of AWeber's templates allow the option to add a discount coupon or code with the coupon widget. Simply click on the coupon widget and drag a coupon over to your template to customize.

Add Coupon using the Coupon Widget

2. Nature holiday series

If you're looking for an eye-catching holiday template that stands out in the inbox, consider the Cardinal series.

It is perfect for sending a holiday greeting, showing off a few products, or sharing blog posts with your audience. There are three different color pallets to choose from.

Green Cardinal Nature Email Template

3. Festive Season's Greetings email template

The Christmas season is ideal for strengthening relationships with your customers by sending out a season's greetings email.

This HTML email template with its holly motif makes your seasonal and holiday email campaign a little more festive. It's the perfect email to keep your audience engaged this season. 

Holly Motif Season's Greetings email template

4. Traditional Merry Christmas email template

If you are looking for a more traditional email template, consider the Merry Christmas template. 

Additional content sections like coupons, product highlights, headlines, and buttons can be added in the drag and drop editor sidebar.

Traditional Merry Christmas email template

5. Happy Hanukkah email template

Are you looking for a Hanukkah email template?  Celebrate the festival of lights by using our free Hanukkah HTML email template.

Send a greeting to your subscribers, include a special Hanukkah offer, or simply thank them for being a subscriber for another year. Easily customize it with your brand's logo and holiday message.

Happy Hanukkah email template

6. Happy Kwanzaa Email Templates

Kwanzaa is a 7-day holiday celebrated daily from December 26th to January 1st to honor African heritage. You don't need to be African-American to commemorate Kwanzaa principles of Unity, Self-Determination, Collective Work & Responsibility, Cooperative Economics, Purpose, Creativity, and Faith.

This HTML Happy Kwanzaa email template is perfect for sending on Kwanza's last day to engage with your customers. 

Happy Kwanzaa email template

Wishing you and your family a festive holiday season 

We wish you and your family all the best this holiday season! Use these templates as a free gift from AWeber when you sign up for AWeber Free.

The post Deck Out Your Email Campaign – 6 Free Holiday Templates appeared first on AWeber.