There are many, many ways to automate your website and there will be even more in years to come. At this point, however, it’s more important to gain an understanding of the basics; that is, how automation programs work in general and ways online marketers can use them and rather than delve too deeply into specifics. Therefore, I have divided the articles’s content into three main part and all having to do with one of the three main functions of automaton, for which are:
- Delivering products and taking money
- Tracking and measuring marketing campaigns and sales
Using Automation To Communicate Effectively
Since building rapport with prospects and staying in touch with customer is vitally important to your online business, I’ll begin with autoresponders; for those wonderful tools that put your communication on autopilot. Although they may sound complex, autoresponders are simply tools that generate and send messages back to opt-in email addresses. Depending upon the circumstances they can be sent once (single) or multiple times (sequential). Now let’s take a look at each one separately.
Although I am a strong proponent of ongoing customer and prospect communication, there are times when you’ll need to send out a single email response each time one of your visitors opts in. Single autoresponders work well when you want to:
- Thank new customers right after their first sale
- Deliver specific and or time-sensitive information to groups such as conference call phone numbers, access codes, email address or website URLs
- Send live links for downloading pages, PDFs, audios files and more
- Notify your email list regarding one-time sles, volume discounts, and promotions; that is, get the word out to hundreds with one click of a mouse.
I recommend that you purchase an easy-to-use automation program with multiple features and flexibility (such as AWEBER, which I will discuss in more detail later in the coming articles. Regardless of the program you choose, however, you can set one up using the following very basic steps:
- Create your opt-in event. Decide what you’ll give in exchange for your visitor’s name and email address (e.g., special report, teleclass, newsletter, e-book, two-month free membership, etc) when they visit your website.
- Set up and autoresponder feed that sends your opt-in responder’s contact information to a database (a file folder within the software), which you’ll create and nae. This is easier than you would imagine with the technologies available today.
- Compose a message that welcomes your opt-ins and includes the promised information.
As I said previously, there are times when using single autoresponders make sense, but most often you’ll use them to send out series of scheduled messages to groups and individuals. Now let’s move on to sequential autoresponders; your online marketing communication’s automated workforce.
Sequential autoresponders are tools that help you send chunks of information (e.g., mini e-courses, weekly email tips, reminders, etc) to various and differing, groups of people who have opted in to your email list over a certain period of time. So, what’s entailed in setting up sequential autoresponders? I’ve broken it down into five steps (which follow). You’l note that the step are similar to the ones provided for single autoresponder, although there are some key differences.
Additionally, I use my own website as an example of how yours might look. Remember, these are very basic guidelines, so don’t sweat the details! Your automation software will come with comprehensive directions.
Step 1: Decide What You Want to Deliver
Choose the type of information to include in your series of emails, such as an eight part e-course on getting traffic to a website, weekly dog training tips, or daily inspirational quotes on a particular subject.
Step 2: Give Each Email a Different Title
For example, here’s how you might title your messages. Day One: “The Three Biggest Mistake Online Marketers Make and How to Avoid Them;” Day Two: “The Two Things Online Marketers Should Do Every Day;” Day Three: “The Ins and Out of Pay-Per-Click Campaigns,” etc. Remember, once your visitors opt in to your list you can broadcast or email them with relevant offers. Keep in mind, however, that they signed up for pertinent and valuable information, so don’t risk becoming a pest by over-sending sales pitches. Not only will this will annoy your recipients, but they may even ask to be removed from your mailing list, so Balance is everything.
Step 3: Craft Your Emails
Begin your communication series by composing a letter that welcomes your respondents, reaffirms their wise choice, and generates anticipation over the wonderful content they’ll soon receive. Then once, you create the message, set a delivery schedule and bingo, it will continue being sent automatically and you won’t have to lift another finger.
Step 4: Program and Schedule Email Deliveries
Once you’ve got your letter ready, it’ time to select and program your series. When you start your sequential communication series, make sure to send your messages out regularly and consistently. They’re scheduled according to intervals. For instance, you’ll notice that the first email has 0 days delay. This means that it will be sent (and received) immediately. The next four emails will go out, 3, 7, 10 and 13 days, respectively. This is only an example, it will all depends on your approach, if you need help, just contact us and we will gladly guide you on this part. The pattern will continue until all emails are delivered.
That’s basically all there is to it! It’s probably not as difficult at you thought, is it? And remember, this is just again an example, so don’t hesitate to use your imagination or again consult with us. So once you completed the setup, you can stay with your targeted prospects and customers often, regularly and most importantly, automatically.
Next article will talk more about automation, on how to create targeted sublists and setting up bank account, shopping cart and more.