5 Steps To Email Marketing via @hawaiibusiness

Aloha readers of idaconcpts.com,

5 steps to email marketingMy blog is Hawaii based and I am proud to announce that I was interviewed by Hawaii Business Magazine on the topic of email marketing.

You can find an article on 5 Steps to Email Marketing at HawaiiBusiness.com. You can follow them on Twitter at @hawaiibusiness.

Mahalo for reading,

Damian Davila
Founder and CEO, idaconcpts.com

Keeping Up with the Community

online community[This is a guest post from Amy G. Howard, Founder of Raleigh Special Tonight. Follow her at @amgenove.]

Running a hyper-local website about daily specials can be quite grueling. In order to keep readers, you need to update at least once a day, or people will stop visiting your site. Raleigh Specials Tonight averages about 600-800 hits per week and 50% of that traffic is returning. I have very loyal readers and I am grateful for that, but I know I need to keep coming with the content if I want it to stay that way.

Where do I find daily content for my site every day? When I first started the site about a year ago, it was tough. I had to seek the information myself by going to individual restaurant websites. I still do that occasionally, but here are some tools I use to keep up with my community so I always have fresh content:

4 Tips for a Successful Email Newsletter

mailchimp logoThrough LinkedIn (find me at http://www.linkedin.com/in/ddavila) and Twitter (@idaconcpts), I receive a lot of questions about marketing and web analytics.

By far, most business owners and marketing consultants have questions regarding how to get started with an email newsletter.

Often I direct them to these 4 Steps to Get Started on Email Marketing. Once email marketing practitioners have a solid foundation and have mastered the basics, then we can start talking about content creation.

Here are 4 tips on content creation for a succesful email newsletter and how 4 companies (Facebook, Shutterfly, Bing and Evernote) implement these tips.

Continue reading “4 Tips for a Successful Email Newsletter”

Average Email Campaign Stats of MailChimp Customers by Industry

Given that E-mail Permission Marketing: it works!, at idaconcpts, we’ve discussed about E-mail Permission Marketing Fundamentals and how to get started with your e-mail permission marketing campaign.

After you’ve learned how to Measure the CTR of Your E-mail Permission Marketing Campaign with Google Analytics, you will need some email marketing benchmarks by industry to be able to properly evaluate the performance of your campaigns.

On July 2009,  eMarketer provided a list of e-mail marketing open and click-through rates worldwide by industry and list size.  Here’s an important update to these e-mail stats via Mailchimp.

Continue reading “Average Email Campaign Stats of MailChimp Customers by Industry”

Good and Bad Birthday Emails

happy birthday emailYesterday was my birthday.


I received gifts!


I received one great birthday gift via e-mail and I felt like the kitty going “nom nom nom”.

I received one terrible birthday gift via e-mail and I felt like the kitty going “nooo it are my birthday”.

Here’s the story of one company that sucks at doing birthday themed e-mails, and another company that got its stuff together.

Continue reading “Good and Bad Birthday Emails”

How Shutterfly Does Email Newsletters

Playing Scrabble online?

There’s an app for that.

Finding great local concerts?

There’s an app for that.

Writing great e-mail newsletters?

Sorry, there’s no app for that.

Actually, if you or your company thinks that there is an automatic way to do e-mail newsletters, there’s none.

That is why we need to learn from the pros and if there is one organization that is doing e-mail marketing right, it is the Shutterfly’s Wink team.

Continue reading “How Shutterfly Does Email Newsletters”

How Facebook Does E-mail Newsletters II

Does Facebook roll you the welcome mat?

In October 2009, we analyzed an e-mail newsletter from Facebook titled Ads Manager Announcement that was directed to the  Facebook Ads users. This newsletter is a great example of how to implement permission marketing, how to avoid the brochure mentality, and how to do seamless product placement.

Below is a snapshot of another newsletter release for Facebook Ads users on January 19, 2010:

Continue reading “How Facebook Does E-mail Newsletters II”

4 Steps to Get Started on Email Marketing

On early December 2009, a marketing intern at a Fortune 500 contacted me via LinkedIn and asked me how to get started on e-mail marketing. While responding to his message, I realized that it would be a good idea to share it with the readers of idaconcpts.

The first step is to get acquainted with the tenets of permission marketing and how to apply them to create permission-based e-mail marketing campaigns.

Continue reading “4 Steps to Get Started on Email Marketing”

How Facebook does E-mail Newsletters

On 10/23/2009 Facebook sent out an e-mail newsletter titled “Ads Manager Announcement” to its Facebook Advertising users.

This newsletter is a great example of how to implement permission marketing, how to avoid the brochure mentality, and how to do seamless product placement.

Continue reading “How Facebook does E-mail Newsletters”

Are you deceived by your email campaigns?

Measuring the success of your permission e-mail campaigns is often oversimplified.  Marketing managers are often happy to see rising open rates and click-through rates. (If you have no idea on how to measure the click-through rates of your e-mail campaigns, here’s an easy tutorial using Google Analytics). The problem of being content with just measuring open rates and click-through rates from our e-mail campaigns is that we are victims of the brochure mentality.

What’s the problem with the brochure mentality?

The brochure mentality is the mindset that tells us that as long people get our brochure, open it and browse it for a while; somehow they will get “aware of our brand” or that they will “eventually act on it”. Notice that how exactly the readers of a brochure become aware of the brand or act on it is not really defined, it is just left to, yes you got that right, pure chance.

I am sure that newsletter services and talented newsletter writers will challenge the above statement. But think about it for just a second. When discussing with a graphic designer or an e-mail newsletter, how often do you discuss about the actual objective of your e-mail campaign defined in one sentence and whose success can be tracked with one simple measure?

I am not talking about how many people click on your “read more” link or how many people open your “Labor Day Blowout Sale!” e-mail. I am talking about how many people actually end handing you cash in exchange for the product or service that you offer.

Let’s take a look at what Avinash Kaushik has to say on this (Web Analytics: An Hour a Day, p. 220):

Before you start your analytics, it is important to understand, at least at a high level, that there several important steps to the process of executing e-mail campaigns:

  • Define business objectives and how e-mail fits into them.

I just quoted the first step out of 4 to emphasize the importance of this concept.  If you’re a frozen yogurt shop, are you in the business of selling frozen yogurt or are you in the business of making people open e-mails? If you’re a humane society that protects animal rights, are you working hard towards increasing the number of people adopting stray dogs or are you working hard that people click on a YouTube video of a sad dog looking for a home?

Before jumping into e-mail (and social media, for that matter) campaigns, you’ve got to have a clear idea of what objectives you want out of it. A clear one sentence objective that can be tracked with one measure.

Here are some great real life examples that I have encountered during my online marketing practice:

  • Bake shop: Sell my daily excess inventory of red velvet cupcakes, about 14, before they spoil.
  • Online coupon service: Generate 5 paying customers during a week.

Not so fast, monkey!

There are several e-mail newsletter services that work great (e.g. MailChimp), but before you sign up for any of them,  do your homework. Even though some offer free trials, hold off signing up for them until you have figured out your one sentence objective whose success can be tracked with one measure.

Helpful Links: