Social Media Marketing

How to Reuse Content for Email Marketing

Not every email has to be entirely unique.

It’s okay to reuse content. This is probably different than other information you’ve heard, but it’s true.

Email marketing can be quite a bit of work and the smartest companies are the ones that know how to effectively manage their effort. Not every business has unlimited budgets to hire designers, merchandisers and writers to create all kinds of email.

The truth is you can get just as much or even more out of emails that reuse content.

Here’s how.

Reuse Blog Content

RSS to Email

Use blog content in your email newsletters.

Email newsletters and blogs are areas where companies double up on content. In this example we have the popular media company, Taste of Country, which is part of a larger media company that owns radio stations all over the country.

The email newsletter sends out updates every few days. The email content is built from the content on the blog.

Now, even though the content in the newsletter is reused it’s not useless. People rely on the email to get their information.

Not everyone is wired to visit the site every day. They need a reminder that there is new content on the site. They could also just browse the email for the headlines and get the latest news bites.

You can automate this with your blog. There are ways to pull in the info from the blog to the email newsletter and have it go out automatically. You can also have your email designer add a few extra elements like photos and other items to make the email a little more interesting. You could have the copywriter add a few extra details in the email to give subscribers a little something extra.

This also works in reverse as will each of these tips.

If you have an email newsletter you can easily create a blog with the same content. It’s a great way to get that content onto your site for the search engines to crawl giving them reason to send you traffic.

Reuse Testimonials

Email Testimonials

Customer reviews add social proof to emails.

As you can see above, LL Bean does a great job with using customer reviews. They put the reviews in emails, catalogs, videos and any other point of customer contact. I’m sure they even pass the reviews around internally so employees can feel good about the job they’re doing.

Most ecommerce sites have reviews. It’s a standard feature. Customers want to see what other people are buying and how satisfied they are with the products.

Well those reviews don’t have to stay only on the site. Use those reviews whenever you can in your email programs. You could create entire email themes around customer reviews.

And get creative with where you get reviews. You can use the ones from your website, but also look at the emails the customer service folks receive. There is usually some gold in there that you could use.

Reuse Social Media Content

Social Your Emails

Golf Digest was one of the first to use Instagram in different ways.

Finally we have a growing opportunity for email marketers: Social Media.

You’ll have to check with the various Terms and Services agreements, but for the most part you can reuse content from social media in various circumstances.

In the example above you see that Golf Digest brings in photos from Instagram to their website. It’s possible they have also used it in their magazine and in emails, but we can’t confirm that right now. If you find proof please leave a comment and we can verify.

The point is you can use this great content on social media in your emails.

Photos, screenshots of videos, text and anything else can be reused in emails. Use Instagram, Twitter and even Facebook material.

It can change things up and add more value to your email marketing.

Conclusion

Each of these tips is meant to accomplish two things.

First, reusing content saves you time. You don’t have to rewrite everything for your email program. You don’t have to come up with entire new concepts if you’re already creating concepts for other media like a website or a catalog.

Second, reusing content can add interest to your email program. The Instagram example above is great. Adding those photos to an email program makes it interesting. It’s different than the usual product photo. If someone buys a pair of shoes from your company you could do the regular email where you show the product photo or you could use a photo from Instagram of someone wearing your shoe brand. Just make sure they’re tagging it with a hashtag.

Are there any other ways you can reuse content for email marketing?

Share your advice in the comments.

AUTHOR: Scott Hardigree is the founder of Indiemark. You can connect with him everywhere, here.

The Real Life Social Network

Join Us at Social Fresh in Tampa

What: Social Fresh Tampa is their second event of 2010. This one day conference will have tons of fresh social media success stories and actionable tips. The content will reflect all Social Fresh flagship events with big brands, all specifically for marketing professionals. More case studies, less concept.

When: February 8th, 2010, 7am to 6:30pm

Who: Social Fresh Tampa will have 30-35 speakers split between two rooms of content, stand alone featured speakers and panels.

How: Purchase Ticket ($315)

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Email is the Preferred Method of Receiving Communication from Marketers

Eric Kirby, an email marketing veteran, delivered a keynote address Monday at MediaPost‘s Email Insider Summit, where he dismissed suggestions  that email marketing may be losing steam while urging marketers to carpe diem and capitalize on social media networks.

Email has been the marketing workhorse for a decade, and that’s unlikely to subside, he said. This endorsement, which is supported with hard data, comes as the industry has dealt with suggestions in 2009 that its long-held, top-tier role is fading.

However companies are using some inventive programs with mobile and social media to grow enhance their email efforts that marketers could learn from, he indicated. Outback Steakhouse, for example, offered a free Bloomin’ Onion to the first 500,000 people who became its fans on Facebook. And its list grew by 125,000 between Nov. 16 and 24.

This and other relieving statistics  (including Tiger Woods’ preferred media channel usage) are outlined is this well-delivered and insightful presentation.

Brian Says, It’s Time to Get Your Email On

This contribution is courtesy of Brian Massey. Brian is the Conversion Scientist™ at Conversion Sciences. He also writes about behavioral marketing at ClickZ Network.

Would you believe that e-mail marketing is still in its infancy?

A couple of graphs from MarketingSherpa drive an important point home about the use of e-mail for marketing. It works, it has always worked, and it will continue to work. You just have to know how to use it.

House List Email (as opposed to purchased list email) continues to get results for marketers.
House List Email (as opposed to purchased list email) continues to get results for marketers.

In this graph, “Emailing to house lists” falls behind “Web 2.0 (social network marketing).” However, since fewer marketers are reducing the use of house list email, it should be #1.

I’ll go so far as to state this:

If you don’t have your email marketing efforts nailed, you have no business investing in social marketing.”

Social marketing has its place, and is not a fad. But, we know so much about good, permission-based email marketing, that it is criminal to ignore it. Don’t let superstitions drive your marketing strategy.

The more sophisticated a marketer you are, the more likely you are to use house list email marketing.
The more sophisticated a marketer you are, the more likely you are to use house list email marketing.

MarketingSherpa has some choice interpretations of this graph:

“Those that see the effectiveness of their email programs diminishing are much more likely to have short-sighted organizational attitudes toward the tactic.

Organizations with investment-oriented views of email reap the rewards. They have higher open, click and conversion rates. In addition, they are much more likely to have a metrics-based grasp of how email works for them. Those with the “email is free” view, on the other hand, are more likely to fall into the group that doesn’t track conversion.”

It is so easy to measure email’s effectiveness, that I would argue that you can’t call yourself a marketer if you’re not watching your results. We call you a spammer.

You’re not marketing if your not measuring.

Essential for any Considered Purchase

If all of your customers buy spontaneously on their first visit and never buy again, then you may not need to invest in email marketing. I don’t know of any business like this.

If your customers take weeks or months to come to a purchase decision, you cannot ignore email. Email is the biggest social network on the planet. Even retirees use email.

Your House List is the list of people who have given you permission to enter their inbox. This means they want what you have, and should be given every opportunity to opt out.

Email Isn’t Promotional, It’s Social

Don’t use email purely to promote sales and discounts. Use it to educate, inform and entertain. If you have a blog, send your most interesting posts via email. Most of us aren’t using RSS. Email is your ticket to growing your blog readership.

Then simply advertise in your own emails.

Get Started Now

It does take time to build your house list, so start now. Email can be fun if you’re sending content that reflects your passion for your company, your industry and your brand.

Then you can start investing in the smaller, less intimate social networks out there.

Read more at http://conversionscientist.com/wordpress/email-marketing/its-time-to-get-your-email-on/

mFormer Content Submissions

mFormer is now accepting 3rd-party content for inclusion in its weekly e-newsletter, Marketing Source Weekly. (see example newsletter)

Submissions can include original articles, white papers, webinars and podcasts.

Submission Check List:
→ Relevant to direct or online marketing
→ Timely and unique
→ Hosted or your company website or blog (no direct links to PDFs)
→ No overly promotional language
→ Content summary (200 characters or less)

How to Submit your Content:
Please send a link to your submission as well as a content summary to editor@mformer.com. If approved, we will include a summary of, and a direct link to, your content in the weekly newsletter.

About mFormer:
As the leading source direct and online marketing user-generated content and resources, mFormer’s readership has swelled to approximately 20,000 marketing decision-makers, from Fortune 500 and medium-sized business, as well as 4,000 marketing suppliers.

Marketing with Social Media 101

Social marketing is on my mind and by the look of things I’m not alone. You can’t get a feed or pick up a trade publication that doesn’t make reference to social media and its applications for marketers.

From traditional media outlets desperately trying to catch up to the most prolific smores (social media whores). They all have a stance, tip, or prediction.

It’s no wonder, as new users flock to social media and its usage rates soar (especially in the business sector), audiences are getting big, fast.

So you’re interested in social media as a marketing tool? Remember this “you get what you give” has never been more true than in this arena.

In direct marketing, advertising, and online marketing it’s all about the push. Direct mail, email, print, SEM. Push push push. That’s not going to change any time soon. Why should it? It works. It’s necessary. But if you’re going to find marketing success in social media you’ve got to pull them in.

Social media users simply will not tolerate pushiness or thinly veiled solicitations. They don’t have to. There are thousands of credible voices out there willing to offer up their feedback, opinions, and recommendations in near real-time.

So what are hungry marketers to do? Try this. Instead of buying that same old media use tools such as Twitter or LinkedIn Groups to surround yourself with your prospects and give. Your time, your feedback, your expertise, your samples.

Are you a consultant? Offer up free advice to those in your target market. Selling a email solution to non-profits? Pro bono a charity that’s close to your heart.

In this world of hyper sharing and distribution you’ll discover that those you help will sing your praises over and again. Choose wisely and they might even be your next, best customer.

Has social media killed the email newsletter?

Has social media marketing diminished the power of the email newsletter?

I’d like your input on this. You’ll be able to see how other people in my LinkedIn network and groups voted. 

Take LinkedIn poll: http://polls.linkedin.com/p/14899/zgkre

View Results: http://polls.linkedin.com/poll-results/14899/zgkre


Facebook Pages for Marketing Companies

As Facebook grows to embrace more commercial endeavors. Facebook “Pages” represent an inexpensive way for marketing organizations to establish a social networking presence. 

It’s been said that early adopters often reap the rewards. Here’s an introduction for those of you who want to understand how Facebook Pages work and how they differ from other Facebook marketing channels.