Email marketing if done right can single-handedly push your business or blogging career to the next level. So if you have not yet given email marketing a try, you really should. The way to get started is to use an email marketing service that helps you collect opt-in emails, send emails to your subscribers and then lets you improve your campaign by analyzing the reports.
There are a range of email marketing services out there but one of the most innovative ones that I recently came across is SendPulse.
SendPluse is by far the best services I have used. Here are some of the many reasons why I like SendPulse:
- Extremely easy to set-up and use.
- Intuitive and user-friendly layout.
- Easy to set-up automated campaigns.
- Free for up to 2500 subscribers and 15,000 emails.
- Has a range of features to personalize your emails.
- In-depth reporting to help you improve your campaigns.
- Uses artificial intelligence to understand subscriber behaviour and increase email open rates.
Let us quickly look at a tutorial on how you can use SendPulse to run a profitable email marketing campaign. In addition to explaining how to set-up the campaign, I will also give you information on the powerful features SendPulse has.
So here's how you can run an email campaign using SendPulse:
Step 1: Create a mailing list
The first step to begin your email marketing campaign is to create a mailing list. This is where all emails for a specific campaign will be saved. You can create a new mailing list for every unique campaign.
For example, a mailing list for every new website. Or a mailing list for every type of campaign.
To create a mailing list, simply click on the 'Mailing List' link in the left panel and then click 'New Mailing List', add a name and click 'Create'.
Make sure that your mailing lists are named properly for each recognition.
Step 2: Create your subscription form
The next most important step in any email marketing campaign is to get email subscribers. And the simplest and most effective way to do this is to add an email subscription form to your website.
SendPulse makes this extremely easy to do.
In-fact, I would go ahead and say that this is one of the best features I loved about SendPulse. I have yet to find such simplicity and options in any other software that I have used.
To create a subscription form, do the following:
Click on the 'Subscription Forms' link in the left sidebar and then click on 'Create a new form' button.
You now have an option to use one of the pre-designed form templates, or create a custom template using the 'Form Builder'.
The 'form builder' tab gives you options to create - Embedded, Popup and Floating forms.
- Embedded forms: These are the standard static forms that you can add anywhere on your website. For example, in the sidebar.
- Popup forms: Pop up forms appear automatically when the user performs a certain action. Sendpulse gives you option to show the pop-up when the user has scrolled down to the bottom of the page or when the user first visits a page.
- Floating forms: Floating forms appear at the bottom of the screen so they are visible at all times.
For this tutorial, let's see how to create an embedded form.
To created an embedded form, click on 'form builder' and then select 'Embedded'.
Now select the 'mailing list' that you created in 'Step 1'. Doing so will associate this form with the mailing list. This way all sign-ups using this form will be added to that particular mailing list.
Once you have selected the mailing list, click on the 'Go to builder' button. This will take you to the form builder page.
On the form builder page, you can easily modify the text, size, colors and other variants of the form. You can also add additional 'check boxes', text and other fields in-case you want to collect more data.
The default form has only an email field. It's a good idea to add an additional name field. This way you can personalize the email (subject line and body) by addressing the subscriber by his/her name. Here's how you can add a name field.
Click and drag the 'input' widget to your form. Now while having it selected make the required changes in the 'Element section' located in the right panel.
Change the label and placeholder and most importantly, select 'Name' in the 'Bind of Variable' section. Refer image below:
This way you can easily use the 'Name' variable in your emails to personally address the subscriber. We will see how this is done in Step 4.
Now, before you save the form, click on the 'Form Options' button (top right) to change text of confirmation mail and to set confirmation page URL.
The 'form options' page allows you to set the following options:
1.) Notification about subscription:
This is the text that will be displayed as soon as the user enters his 'email address' and clicks the 'subscribe button' on your website. The text tells the user to check his email and click on the confirmation link in order to confirm and activate his subscription.
The default text in fine in most cases, but I recommend adding an additional line to notify the user to check his spam folder in case the mail does not arrive in his inbox. You can also then tell the user to whitelist your email address.
So, here's the line I recommend adding:
Note: If email does not arrive, make sure to check your spam folder. Please mark the email as 'Not Spam' to receive future emails in your inbox."
2.) Text of the confirmation mail:
Your subscriber will receive a confirmation email as soon as he/she signs up using the subscription form. You can alter the text of this email using this field. In most cases, the default text should work fine, so you can leave this as it is.
3.) Confirmation page:
Once the subscriber clicks the confirmation link, he will be redirected to the confirmation page (thank you page). If you want, you can create a confirmation page on your site and provide your own URL. If not, the user will be taken to the thank you page on SendPulse.com
Embedding the email form on your website:
Finally, click on 'Save and get code' button (top right). Copy the code and simply paste it where you want the form to appear on your website.
If you are using wordpress and your theme supports widgets, you can do the following to add this form to your website's sidebar.
Simply drag a empty text widget and paste your code in it.
Step 3: Create your email campaign
SendPulse gives you the ability to run two types of email campaigns as follows:
- Manual campaign: A regular campaign where you send emails to a list of subscribers.
- Automated campaign: An automated campaign where the system automatically sends emails based on per-set conditions, like an action taken by the subscriber.
Send a manual email campaign
To create a manual campaign, click on the 'My Campaigns' link in the left panel and then click on the 'New Campaign' button.
In the screen that follows, select a 'mailing list' (the one we created at Step 1), a name and a subject line to use while sending the email.
You can personalize the subject line by clicking on the 'Personalize the email subject' link and then clicking 'insert' for any variable that you want to insert.
For example, you can insert the 'Name' variable (that we created in Step 2) so the subject line addresses the subscriber by his/her name. Personalized subject lines can definitely increase your email open rates.
You can also add a condition to check if the 'Name' is available and what to do if in-case it is not available. To do this, click the 'Add criteria' link and then select a condition to use while framing the subject line.
For example, if the variable 'Name' is 'empty', then send the email without 'Name', else send the mail with the 'Name'. Refer image below:
Once done, click 'Next' and in the screen that follows, select from 'Template layouts'. Select the basic template if you want to insert your company logo, or the 'Text' template to send a plain email. Once selected, you will be taken to the editing dashboard where you can customize your layout by adding text, images and social media links.
As you did in the subject line, here as well, you have the option to add variables and set conditions (criteria).
Note: You can also select from 'Existing Template Designs' which are pre-designed templates.
Once done, click on the 'Save and Continue' button to be taken to the send form.
The send form gives you the option to send the emails immediately or on a specific date.
You also get the option to 'Follow up to unopened messages' by automatically re-sending the mail on a specific date. For example, if you send the email on the 2nd day of a month, you can set to re-send the mail on the 5th day to all those who did not open the mail. This can drastically increase your email open rates.
After configuring all these options, you can now send a test email to select recipients or click on the 'Start' button to start sending the emails to all subscribers.
This is how you can send a manual campaign. Now let's see how you can send an automated campaign:
Send an automated email campaign
SendPulse allows you to create an automated email campaign where-in mails are sent depending on certain pre-set conditions.
To start an automated campaign, click on the 'Automations' link in the left panel and then click on 'Create an automated series'.
The following three options are available:
1.) Automated series: This allows you to send a series of emails after the user subscribes to your list. For example, one email every week.
2.) Special date: This option allows you to send email to your recipients on specified dates. For example, on a recipient's birthday.
3.) Triggered email: This option allows you to send automated email depending on an action. For example, send an email if the user clicked a link within the email.
Step 4: Check your campaign reports
SendPulse gives you in-depth reporting and analytics of your email campaigns.
To check for reports, click on the 'My Campaign' link from the left panel and then select the campaign that you wish to see the reports for.
You will be able to see the following reports:
1.) Campaign statistics: This tab gives you an overview of your campaign including percentage of emails sent and emails opened.
2.) Opens by location: This tab shows you all emails that were opened based on their location.
3.) Clicks map: This tab tells you which links in the email were clicked the most.
4.) Devices: This tab gives you information about the device, browser and operating system used to open the mails.
5.) Error statistics: This tab gives you details of email delivery errors if any.
6.) List of recipients: This tab gives complete details for every individual email address. Delivered, read, clicked a link. You can also view the location and device used to open the email.
Other amazing reasons to use SendPulse
Here are a few other amazing features offered by SendPulse:
1.) Free for 2500 subscribers and 15,000 emails: Most email marketing services offer a free quota, but it's hard to beat SendPulse's 2500 free subscribers and 15k emails. This is great for beginners wanting to test out email marketing.
2.) A/B Testing: SendPulse allows you to conduct A/B testing to see which Email opens get the most opens and which ones attract the most clicks. You can easily track subscriber behaviour and make informed decisions by testing two different versions of the same email campaign.
3.) Web Push Notifications: With a bit of configuration that requires you to add a piece of code to your website, you should be able to send web-push notifications to your subscribers. These are notifications that appear on their computer screen and are a powerful way to attract attention to your product/service.
4.) SendPulse Artificial Intelligence: SendPulse studies behaviour of your subscribes to come up with a strategy to maximize email open rates. This AI calculates when your recipients are most likely to open their emails and sends the email at that precise time. This way, you email is always at the very top of the recipient's inbox. This is done for each individual email. According to SendPulse, clients utilizing this technology have seen more than 65% open rates.
This feature is only available to paid customers.
So there you have it, SendPulse is an promising service and you should really consider giving it a go.