Tools of the Trade: Autoresponders

This post takes a closer look at email autoresponders to help online entrepreneurs get started using them.

If you don’t know what an autoresponder is, just open up your email inbox. Unless you’re extremely vigilant about hitting the “unsubscribe” button, you’ll find emails from businesses and influencers introducing themselves to you and inviting you to interact further. Those are autoresponders.

Sometimes people call them “email drip campaigns.” Regardless of the name, it’s a set of pre-written emails arranged in a sequence that is sent to anyone who gives you their email address. Usually, they come with a 1-3 day delay between each email.

Judging by our email inboxes, it seems like most businesses make use of email marketing and drip campaigns to some extent. In fact, you should consider creating one for your online business too.

If you want to see my autoresponder campaign, simply follow this link. You’ll even get a FREE e-guide detailing my profit-generating secrets out of the deal!

Revenue and Relationship on Autopilot

The reason you still see so many email campaigns is because they pay off. They increase revenue through building awareness and relationships.

The best email campaigns begin building a relationship between the customer and the business. They introduce the recipient to your business, possibly give some backstory, and then invite the reader into a deeper relationship with your brand. The best email campaigns winsomely explain the mission of the business and start building trust right from the get-go.

They also make the customer aware of products, deals, and promotions. A good email campaign has one laser-focused objective, one next step they invite the recipient to take. Many of them include promotions that encourage the customer to take action. All of this leads to more sales once a good autoresponder is set up.

The second benefit is: these campaigns are automatic. Because they operate automatically, once a customer gives their email, you don’t have to think about them. There’s no need to keep track of your communications with each individual customer or time your responses because it’s taken care of for you.

You will certainly revise and update your autoresponder over time, but generally speaking, it’s fire-and-forget. I don’t know about you, but I like tools that passively boost my revenue without any ongoing effort from me.

An autoresponder is one of the many tools for growth you should consider using. When you use the right tools at the right time, you can expect results!

How to Succeed In Your First Autoresponder Campaign

That being said, here’s how you can get started on the right foot in the world of automatic emails.

  • Choose the Right Tool For the Job

Some reading this may be tempted to Google “Best autoresponder tool” and select the one that appears at the top of the list. Don’t do this.

Instead of selecting the most popular email platform, select the one that’s right for you.

For example, when my business partner Nick and I were just starting out, we used a tool called Aweber. Why? Because it was simple. We didn’t need all the bells and whistles that came with a complex email platform; we just needed a basic autoresponder campaign. Chances are if you’re just starting out, that’s all you’ll need too.

Once we started to grow our audience, we wanted to segment it further and run multiple drip campaigns at the same time, so we switched to Active Campaign. This one has been serving us well ever since, but it wouldn’t have been a good idea to start with it.

  • Decide on Your Campaign’s ONE Purpose

One “beginner’s mistake” we see with email campaigns is when they invite the recipient to too many next steps. The audience feels pressured into all kinds of different things and has difficulty understanding what’s important. This, of course, leads to poor results on the campaign.

For best results, choose one purpose for your campaign to fulfill. What is the single most important next step for a member of your audience to take? It could be them choosing to buy your course, sign up for a consultation, or set up a coaching call… you name it.

Whatever it is, make sure the call to action is clear and prominent. Don’t expect to get a ton of results if you ask the recipient to do five different things, all of which sound important.

  • Hire a Professional Writer

Email campaigns have to be engaging and persuasive.

Think of it this way: when you open your email inbox and have so many random promotional emails in there, you’re just looking for an excuse to stop paying attention, hit the delete button, and move on.

Your emails have to be masterfully crafted to deliver value to the recipient. They need to hold onto the attention of the reader long enough for them to learn something and see the invitation into something deeper. Unless it’s your forte, consider bringing in a professional to help write your campaign. You never get a second chance at a first impression, so this is definitely an area to invest in.

To summarize, find a simple autoresponder tool, decide on your campaign’s purpose, and bring in a writer to help you craft your first sequence. As your business grows, consider expanding your toolset and setting up multiple campaigns.

For more secrets the so-called “gurus” won’t tell you about making money online, check out my Podcast.

About the Author
Tom is the host of What's the Secret podcast and co-founder of Offlinesharks.com

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