Lead generation is one of the necessary skills to master in email marketing. A popular method is a blog providing free information focusing on the particular products you sell, but not necessarily exclusively. It’s a useful route to encourage subscribers to your email marketing list. It’s not necessarily particularly cheap, and there are other methods, from sign up forms at counters upwards, but blogs are tried and tested, and give results.
Ask yourself the following questions:
1/ Do your competitors publish blogs?
If most of your competitors do so, and they are of a high standard, probably better then you can manage initially, ask yourself if it’s worth the investment. If they don’t, is it because the type of person you want to subscribe to your email marketing list is unlikely to be interested in a blog? Otherwise, go for it.
2/ Is there is enough new material available to feed your blog?
The purpose of a blog is ostensibly to provide information about your products and company to potential customers. If such information is freely and easily available online there’s little point in them bothering to read your blog. However, some blogs are little more than a collection of information from a multitude of different sources, and this can be very useful as a sort of digest. It can be very time-consuming checking various sources, as you’ll discover. Make sure the likely benefits justify the expenditure.
3/ Do you have sources of information not available easily to your customers?
If so, a blog is custom-made for you. Many people love to have knowledge that their friends and colleagues are unaware of. You have to ensure you’re correct as nothing puts people off more than false rumours, no matter how exciting.
4/ Can you afford the hours that will be required for creation of the content?
Writing entertaining copy requires experience. Information alone does not generate repeat visits and the content needs to be attractively presented, in an interesting and exciting way. It also requires time. Most well-written copy is rewritten a number of times.
5/ Is it likely potential subscribers will read your blog?
A blog must be targeted as accurately as any segmented email marketing list. It’s no good having hundreds of visitors if none of them are interested in the products you sell, or unlikely to become subscribers. How many you get to sign up is the only test of success.
On the assumption you ticked all five boxes, you need to discover the best way of encouraging subscribers to sign up to your email marketing list. One of the simplest and most successful methods is to have a hybrid system. Have a free-to-all blog designed to attract the people you want, and then have click-throughs to further information where they have to join by giving their name and email address. Once they do that you have a captive audience. You can give them their ‘free gift’ with every publication, and put in signup forms, giving reasons for them to give it a go.