Hey You,

It’s Lewis a.k.a. Nerd #2.

Right now I’m going through the email marketing section of a course called the 3x Conversion Formula put together by internet marketing experts Jon Benson and David Bass.

It’s a course focused on opt-in page secrets, sales page conversion tactics, up sell, down sell, and post sale, and email conversion strategies and how to optimize all of this in pursuit of getting 3x better the results you’re getting as of now.

Last night I started the first module of the course and I was HIGHLY impressed with what I saw.

So much so in fact that I decided to share the notes I took with you on the part of the course where they ninja strategies for how to manage your email list.

Most people never contemplate the idea that segmenting and managing the technical side their email list is one of the ways you can actually boost your sales and conversions – zero slicker than Vaseline copywriting skills needed.

This is what leads to people being befuddled by the fact that they’re writing emails just like Frank Kern to a big list they’ve built up but hardly anyone is opening the emails up which means that even with the world’s greatest email copy, they aren’t converting anywhere near the sales they could . . . if they could only get people to actually see what they have to offer.  

Now let’s see how to get as many eyes as possible drooling over what you send them . . .

Mistake #1: Overlooking Non-Deliverable Emails

A non-deliverable email address is one you’re going to have problems getting email to either because it’s fake, dead, or has some other kind of attribute about it that annoys email clients.

There’s more of these on your list than you think there are this is a road block that’s keeping people from getting the email you want to send them. Some email service providers won’t even let you import a list if it has too many of these garbage emails on it.

The first non-deliverable emails to be on the watch out for are role accounts.

Think of a role account as an email address multiple people could access like support@, or help@.

Email Service Providers (Aweber, mail chimp, icontact, etc.) freak out about these because they want you to only be sending to dedicated email addresses, personal accounts that only have one person accessing them.

So if you have these email addresses on the list they might not even be getting the emails you’re trying to send there or they could be playing a role in getting your account suspended for having too many on there in the instance of Net Atlantic, iContact not even letting you import a list that’s loaded with these, etc.

Action Step:

Scour your email list once a week or at minimum once a month for email addresses that have “support” or “help” in them. If you’ve got a big ass list and there’s a ton of these on there, it might be worth it to hire someone to manually shoot emails to each of these addresses educating them as to how this address is causing a problem and asking for a better one. Or, just delete these emails. Either way, fix this.

Another Kind of Non-Deliverable: Hard and Soft Bounces

Just in case you don’t know, a bounced email is one that you send and it gets sent right back to you as non-delivered.

A hard bounce occurs when you send to an email address that doesn’t exist. And your email service provider will you tell you flat out it doesn’t exist. Get these emails off your list ASAP because continuing to send to them can get you in trouble.

A soft bounce is what happens when someone sets up the “out of the office” or “on vacation” notice on their email account. Or, in some corporate settings, they actually have a limit to how many emails their inbox can hold so if it’s full, you get bounced. These guys play by the rules of accepting one bounce, seeing two as a potential to be a bad address, and three bounces being the time you seriously consider deleting the address.

You always want to keep in mind that the more emails you send that aren’t being responded to and interacted with, the lower not only your opens and conversions will be but also your email history with your service provider takes a dive.

Mistake #2: Clinging Desperately To Every Name On Your List

Playing “Hoarders” with any all email addresses on your list is a sure way to make sure you not only pay more but also that lower your deliverability.

You want to put an end to this and the first step in doing so is to delete all the unsubscribes from your list. Aweber keeps these forever and charges you for them. So make sure that if you use this service or any other, that you delete them once a week.

And DO NOT export these names to a different email service provider, unless of course you want to go jail and slow dance with Carl or pay a $50,000 dollar fine for violating spam regulations. If you do migrate all of your names from one email service provider to another, make sure you export all the unsubscribes and do-not-contacts. You want these excluded in the new system so you don’t mail to them by accident.

Ditch The Old and Uninterested Users

These guys talk about working some of the high end pros who are more concerned with having a high number of subscribers than having a profitable email list so they don’t eliminate the email addresses of inactive names. These are the same people who are concerned about their steadily declining in-box deliverability.

You think these guys are talking of their ass? Well, the proof is your email inbox – primarily the one you NEVER check anymore. Go check that and you’ll see the “pros” talking to nobody hurting their overall email deliverability scores as a result of being too lazy or too scared to delete names.

Don’t do this what these people do. Especially if you aren’t rolling in the bucks. 

Any person on your list who hasn’t opened your shit in a looong time is negatively affecting not only your conversion rates but also your email history and your deliverability with your service provider.

You don’t know what’s going on with this person. They might be dead, they may be bored with you, they could’ve upgraded and now they favor a new email service provider. I did this last instance in the past.

I have an email account with yahoo and I had signed up to a jillion marketers lists on that account. And then Gmail came along and I signed up there. I think I’ve checked that yahoo account 2 times in the past 5 years. One was to research the archives for some old emails. What these guys have found is that all the marketers who continue to mail to my Yahoo address are being hurt by doing so.

Yeah, they’re not getting a femoral artery punctured kind of hurt, but inactives like my yahoo address are a slow kind of cancer that gradually eats away at the health of your conversion rates – especially when numbered in the hundreds or thousands.

When you send to people who never open your email, your reputation with your email clients is diminished which affects the deliverability for every other one of your emails. Think about who you have something in common with here; no one opens messages from spammers.

A good guideline is to seriously consider deleting an email address if they haven’t opened one of your message in six months. One of the reasons you want to do this is that email service providers like Yahoo are turning inactive email accounts and they’re turning them into spam traps.

A spam trap is an email address that the ISP will put online with the purpose of serving as bait for spammers. They’ll put these addresses in places they know spammers like to scraped/harvested waiting to pounce on the people who are doing bad stuff.

Here’s a Way To Revive Some of These Dead Leads

So first, you want to segment out the list of at-risk email addresses – people who haven’t opened for 3-6 months.

Then you can send them an email where the subject line says something like, “Hey, did lose access to the internet and you’re checking this message at the library?” or “Were you the victim of a zombie attack?” or “Open up or get your ass deleted from this list” or something along these lines.

So let me show you how this subject line would roll into the body copy for a dating information marketer . . .

SUBJECT: Are you having massive amounts of sweaty gorilla mattress action with your partner?

Hey Obama,

Did you find a new hot piece of trim that been taking up any all of the extra alert attention you have by sitting itself on your face?

If so, that’s all the way cool. In fact, here’s a HIGH FIVE -SMACK!

I know how consuming new mattress action can be. And if she gets in between you and I, that’s cool with me. I won’t hate on you.

I’m wishing you the very best.

The reason I’m sending this message today is because I noticed you hadn’t opened any of my emails for some time now and I just wanted to take this chance to reach out and make sure things were still cool between you and I.

And hell, since I’m here already, I may as well give you something awesome for being with me on this journey to give massive pleasure to women.

The free gift I come bearing is entirely focused on how to ravish your woman in the back of the car (this is the comfort & pleasure position guide you’d wished you had in high school) – for those times when you two just can’t keep your hands off each other and want to be wild and adventurous. Go get your gift here…”

You keep anyone who opens this message and whoever doesn’t, gets tossed into the garbage.

The benefits of doing this is reducing the risk of you getting in trouble and saving yourself money because you’re no longer sending messages to someone who doesn’t want them. You have to see this as every subscriber is costing you money so it’s in your best interest to keep the list trimmed down.

Look at it this way:

What’s better – a 100,000 person list with a 5% open rate or a 10,000 person list with a 60% open rate?

A 10,000 person list is thousand times cheaper and easier to manage than a 100,000 person list. And if you increase your conversion rates, you can make a lot more money of the engaged 10,000 person list than you can off a bloated walking dead 100,000 person list.

If you have a 100,000 person list you’d use everything you learn here to trim it down. But the money isn’t made by being a size queen. The goal isn’t to get more subscribers but rather to increase the quality of subscribers you get and that you have.

Wrap your head around this:

You will get better results on a list of 10,000 people that you’d whittled down from 100,000 – deleting 90,000 of the dead emails on your list than you would have on this same 10,000 within the 100,000 person mailings. When you’re sending 90,000 that don’t get opened or get complained about, you’re ruining your rep with your email service provider and the email clients and taking a risk with the spam traps they set.

Mistake #3: This Is The One You Get To Be Pleasantly Shocked By . . .

This one is all about slaying sacred cow Big Name internet service provider email addresses and seeing them for the drag they can be on your conversion.

Just so you know exactly this means, the Internet Service Provider is Yahoo, AOL, Comcast, etc. Here’s how it looks in an email – dirtyjoe@yahoo.com.

Now you’re thinking, “Holy hell! You want me to get rid of all the email addresses on my list that have yahoo in them and others supported by popular internet service providers? What the hell’s wrong with you boy?!?!”

You heard me right. If you do you detective work and find out you need to put a bullet in it and put it to sleep, don’t hesitate to do so.

One of the reasons you want to look closer at all your email addresses is because some ISP’s like Yahoo, AOL, Comcast have a much lower threshold for complaints than others – complaints being someone getting an email from you and hitting the “Spam” button.

So some internet service providers get .2% of your list that hits that button and they the ISP goes to your email service provider, Aweber, or whoever and says you’re a spammer. These guys talk about how they’ve see a dozen accounts with different email service providers have their account suspended because of this.

And a suspended account means 0% conversion rate because you can’t mail anything.

The list of ISP’s you’ll see below are the ones who are known for being Nazi when it comes to spam complaints (close to zero tolerance).

They’re harsher than everyone else so you want to have a zero tolerance with them first and get these bad apples off the list that are spoiling the bunch that can hurt your opens and conversions and keep you even being able to mail your entire list effectively . . .

comcast

cs

netscape

rocketmail

sbcglobal

wmconnect

uol

ymail

aim

army

att

bellsouth

bigpond

btinternet.com

cox

craigslist

earthlink

googlegroups

Juno

optonline

roadrunner

ru

spam

sbcglobal

verizon

yahoogroups

youtube

Any MISSPELLINGS OF Yahoo

ayhoo

yhoo

yahooo

Any domain that starts with a number such as www.435cars.com.

Axe Murder The Following Domain With No Prejudice:

 @Ushi.cn

Put these ones under the investigation you see below . . .

aol

hotmail

Live

MSN

Yahoo

PAY ATTENTION TO THIS:

The email addresses from AOL, Yahoo, and Hotmail should definitely be considered for removal when migrating your list to a new email service provider (example: Aweber to Icontact).

Otherwise decide for yourself. The decision gets even easier if you see these addresses in the inactive file.

The reason you want to delete these addresses especially when migrating is to ensure you’ll be able to mail everybody else on the list and get as high a deliverability rate as possible.

One thing you can do before you delete these guys is to mail just this segment of your list and see if you even have a problem. When you do this, each ISP gets it’s own segment. So Yahoo gets one, AOL gets one, Hotmail gets another on and on. Later on you can fold these all into one list but for you want to test individually first.

So now you’d mail to each list and if there’s no problem this proves to you that you’re doing your list right and they like hearing from you. But if after you mail, Aweber comes back and tells you your account is suspended then there’s a good chance the ISP complained.

ANOTHER OPTION:

Ship these dangerous ISP email addresses to Australia – their own email service provider.

When you do this you want to segment all the different ISP’s into their own lists and send them an email just for them. To make sure you get the maximum amount of people opening this, you’ve got to make sure your subject line kicks ass and that what’s inside the email is going to be awesome if they open up the email to come get it.

You could have your subject line say something like, “It’s probably not your birthday today but I’ve got a gift for you inside anyway . . .”

And for the body of the email you’d have it say something like,

“Hey Indiana Jones,

We’re moseying on over to a new service that will make sure your access to this newsletter will be consistent. And while I’m here anyway I wanted to give you this moving-in bonus for asking you to go through to trouble to verify your email address . . . [then you sell all the benefits of this free gift] . . . ”

Now for the “Click Here” action link, you create an opt-in form to another service provider and place it on the page you direct them to for their gift.

So you’re asking them to opt-in to a new service provider (example Infusion to Aweber) and you’re making it worth their time to do so. In a fifteen day window, you want to mail this at least twice and then mail again a month later to anyone who hasn’t responded.

After this, all your threatening ISP emails should be exiled in their own email service provider so then you want to delete all of them from your primary ESP. Just do this and this alone and you’ll have increased your conversions because you’ve boosted your deliverability.

ANOTHER OPTION:

Segment this part of your list and mail them less often. These service providers usually look at 15 day periods so it’s the amount of complaints within a 15 day window that they’re monitoring.

So if you’re mailing 5 times a week, you’d kick it back to once or twice a week – half the number of times you mail to everyone else, and only send the most important or best performing emails to these people.

This is the lazy man’s way to reduce your exposure to the hyper sensitive ISP’s.

Mistake #4: Are You Doing All The Right Things To Get Yourself Blacklisted?

What is a black list? It’s a list of domains that have been reported by people because they’re believed to be spam or bad.

You can end up being blacklisted as a result of people complaining about the messages you send. When you get blacklisted, all your email with your site attached to it (example: tonyrobbins@tonyrobbins.com) ends up going into the spam folder of even your most rabid fans. And in some cases it won’t even hit the spam box because the ISP will delete it before it even gets there.

To make sure you stay on top of being wrongly blacklisted use tools http://www.mxtoolbox.com, which at one time was checking 147 blacklisting sites, to see if you’re on any of them. Another site you can use is www.surbl.org.

If you find your site is listed by one of the blacklist sites, you want to personally contact the representative for the site. Getting them on the phone is best but if no phone number is available, email is next best.

Just the gesture of you reaching out to them and showing them you’re a real person pretty much will always get you off the list. They talk about having themselves taken off several lists personally just by doing this.

One Way To Find Out If Your Emails Are Reaching The Inbox

Another way you can enhance your conversion rate is to make sure your emails are actually being seen by your audience.

One tool that can reveal if your emails are hitting the inbox or not is Green Arrow. This is a system does a lot of the detective work for you in finding out whether your emails are flying in the safe zone or not.

These guys believe that the more they mail (they favor mailing once a day), the more money they make so they’ve have to painstakingly do everything they can to make sure the hundreds of thousands of emails they’re spending money to send are earning their keep by making it to their intended target.

So make sure you heed what you see here if you want optimize your email marketing efforts. And be sure to be back for Part 2 of these notes.

Talk soon,

Lewis LaLanne a.k.a. Note Taking Nerd #2 a.k.a. L.L. Cool Nerd

PS. These notes have covered a ton of the technical under the hood strategies that make sure your messages aren’t being shot down before they arrive at their chosen destination. Now if you’re interested in what to actually say in your email marketing that gets people to click and buy, you’ll definitely be interested in these notes here <—–

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