Here at HubShout SEO reseller headquarters we have been driving into the email marketing space for about a year. As we have evolved our private label SEO portal technology we have gotten great feedback from clients and resellers. Many have talked about the value of email marketing, especially when it's well-coordinated with other forms of digital marketing such as SEO, PPC and Social Media. We heard the feedback and agreed. Why would any business NOT be building their list? This is why we launched an email marketing module in 2010 for our direct clients and SEO reseller community.
Every business should be nurturing leads
Every business has prospects. Even in non-traditional spaces, there is always someone you are trying to influence. These are your prospects. Additionally, there is some action you want them to take. This could be to buy your product or to vote a certain way. There is always a goal, or a conversion. We all know it takes a long time to win over your customers. And this closing process (using traditional sales funnel terminology) is when a nurturing email marketing campaign is most valuable. Well-spaced, informative emails serve to remind your prospect that they need your product. It reinforces the messages you've already given them during their pitch, and it keeps you top-of-mind as they are wading through the pitches of your competitors.
Customers need to be nurtured with email programs also
Email marketing doesn't stop when the customer is one. It is well-known that the price of retaining a customer is much less than that of new customer acquisition. And for this, you need help staying in touch with your customers. As strange as that may sound, it is easy to take your current customer base for granted. No good. Email campaigns geared toward customer retention are another excellent use of email marketing technology. This means newsletters, how-to emails, webinar announcements, and product updates. All of these activities take time and effort. Another reason HubShout decided to build an email marketing module.
Customer reviews are a powerful source of referral business
In the summer of 2010, HubShout also introduced the My Customer Review product. Again, driven by customer feedback, we realized that our email marketing capabilities could be extended to automate the otherwise tedious task of soliciting, accepting and tracking customer reviews. Collecting customer reviews is a powerful marketing tool. And as you think through the individual steps, it is really just an auto-responder email marketing campaign with extra steps added onto the end.
White list email marketing
The BIG issue in email marketing is getting your emails delivered. We have all been on the receiving end of spam and know this is not the way to go. As the legal and information systems have tightened the rules for email marketing, it has become even more important than ever to keep a clean profile. As a marketing platform, this has been a particularly large struggle for us as our clients have various tolerances around this issue. We pass no judgement on anyone's particular choices, but need to firewall each reseller from another. For these reasons HubShout is moving to the Amazon Simple Email Service (SES) for all Direct Client and Reseller Email Module Campaigns. Here is how this will work:
- Each reseller / client will need to get their own Amazon SES account from Amazon via their website. The sign-up process takes 10 minutes, requires a credit card and phone number verification. Once signed-up, Amazon will supply a pair of security keys.
- The reseller / client will put their security keys in to their HubShout privately labeled portal.
- The reseller / client will verify their FROM ADDRESS by pushing a button in their HubShout private label portal.
- The reseller / client will request production access on the Amazon website.
These are the same steps used by Mail Chimp in their Amazon SES integration. While this adds complexity to the overall email marketing setup process, the benefits are VERY STRONG:
- You now will get Amazon's highly scalable, reliable and trusted email delivery service built into your private label reseller portal.
- Each reseller / client is responsible for their own email reputation management. In other words, if some joker starts spamming people left and right, it will only hurt his own quotas - building a strong firewall between resellers / clients.
- The price is outstanding at $0.10 / 1,000 emails. For mass-emailing, this is a simply unparalleled cost / email. HubShout has decided to NOT mark this cost up and leave the profit margins completely in the hands of our clients and resellers. Particularly in our seo reseller space, a healthy mark-up can be made on this product. Why are we doing this? Because we want to encourage adoption of this service as fast as possible. We believe this is a great "gateway product" for cross-selling our other SEO and SEM offerings. This is also a great tool for customer retention because it really works.
Amazon starts you off with a limit of 1,000 emails per day until you build up your reputation. The HubShout dashboard will show you your current Amazon Quota. Growing your daily total is a function of complaints by end users and ISPs. If you have a clean list with appropriate opt-out instructions, you shouldn't have a problem.
Resellers can decide if they want to allow their clients to share their Amazon email account. There is, of course, some risk associate with this, but it is a hassle-free implementation this way. Conversely, resellers can require that their end-client secure their own Amazon keys before sending any emails.
Finally, the basic email features built into our seo reseller program will NOT require an Amazon SES account. This includes monthly report emails, social monitoring alerts, keyword reports and task updates. We consider these emails as core to our program (and seo reseller plans) and they will continue to function as they do today.