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Hey, Pop! We Can Do This!

February 25, 2009  

According to Kara Trivunovic and Andrew Osterday, most mom-and-pop businesses can't do much with email marketing advice that concentrates on sophisticated topics like multivariate testing, dynamic content development and data integration. For those who need entry-level advice, they created a 10-point Do-It-Yourself Primer that includes handy tips in plain English. Among them:

Be yourself. "People frequent your establishment because they enjoy the environment, the way they are treated, the quality of your product," the authors say. "[W]hatever the reason may be, your recipients need to feel the same emotion when they open your email messages." Your tone and word choice, for instance, will seem more authentic if they're similar to those your customers hear in person.

Use what you know. As you've built your business, you've probably learned more about your customers than any consultant you might hire. "Appealing to the recipient by leveraging information you know about them extends that relationship to the inbox," they note.

Offer an incentive. "[B]ecause of the relationship most small business owners have with their customer base, the incentive tends to be perceived as a 'thank you' to a good customer and not just a ploy to get an email address," they say. But beware, they warn—the cost of list-building giveaways can add up.

The Po!nt: You can do this yourself. One of the joys of email marketing is the fact that, by paying heed to a few insider tips like these, small business owners can see solid results.

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