When it comes to email marketing, what would you say is the ultimate goal of most, if not all, campaigns? If you answered “generate more leads,” then give yourself a hearty pat on the back.
When considering the sources for your leads, some of your best—if not the best—sources are actually your current customers.
As marketers, we can learn a lot from Stone Cold Steve Austin’s direct approach. One of the most popular figures in wrestling history, he won over crowds with his straight-shooting, no-nonsense attitude and his penchant for pushing the limits and questioning the status quo.
What does this mean for marketers?
How often are you sending marketing emails to your warm contacts? If you answered “rarely or never,” then you need to email them right now… ‘Cause Stone Cold said so (and also because it is a great way to generate leads).
Who are your warm contacts?
No, these aren’t the warm bodies that Stone Cold regularly opens a can of whoopass on. There is not one cut and dried definition for who exactly counts as warm contact, but you can think of your warm contacts as people who you know and know who you are. They are your current customer contacts, but could also be prospects or anyone else who opted into one of your email lists. In a most basic sense, warm contacts are individuals whose first reaction would not be “Who is this company?” if they get sent an email from you.
How can your warm contacts be a great source of lead generation if many of them are already customers?
Good question. Let’s take a look at some of the ways:
Your current customers, assuming they are pleased with your products and services, will be likely to refer your company to others. If you are regularly reaching out to them promoting any new or additional products and service offerings, they may come across something that they themselves are not interested in but they might know someone who might be.
All they have to do is forward your email to one or more person or company, and they are now sending targeted and relevant marketing emails from you to new prospects. Your customers will most likely be referring liked-minded individuals or businesses, so assuming they are good customers, you’re getting your name in front of the exact kind of prospect you want
Cross-selling, upselling and new opportunities
Assuming your company offers more than one product or service, there are plenty of opportunities for your current customers to make additional purchases. Make your warm contacts aware of other relevant products or services that might be able to help them. The key word here is relevant. Since your warm contacts are current customers or prospects that have filled out a form or given you some kind of information, you should know at least something about their needs. Make sure you are targeting them with the right information. Present them with opportunities that are beneficial to both them and you.
What are some other benefits of e-mailing your warm contacts?
Besides avoiding the wrath of Stone Cold Steve Austin, sending marketing emails to your warm contacts is both relatively easy and very cost effective.
Think about all the costs—both time and money—involved with marketing to, acquiring and onboarding new customers. Cross-selling, upselling, and reselling to your current customers is almost always cheaper than acquiring new ones. You obviously still want to acquire new customers to grow your business, but don’t ignore the ones you have as a primary source of generating additional revenue. Sending marketing emails to warm contacts also takes less time than cold emails, because your lists should already be segmented properly.
Getting your message in front of the right people
Because your warm contacts will be in properly segmented lists, sending marketing emails to them will be more effective than sending emails to cold contacts. Cold emailing usually involves more time and guesswork when segmenting your lists. Emails sent to warm contacts will generally have higher open and click through rates, and help keep your unsubscribe rates low. Your warm contacts are likely accustomed to receiving emails from you, and many of them want to hear from you. Just make sure your messaging—both in subject lines and bodies—is consistent with what your audience wants to read.
Staying in touch
Remember that every email you send to your warm contacts doesn’t necessarily have to be a sales e-mail promoting one of your products or services. You can also provide them with educational information, update them on any relevant future company plans or simply send them a holiday greeting or birthday e-mail. You want stay in the forefront of your warm contacts’ minds. Just because they may not have a need for any of your products or services when they initially see your e-mail, that doesn’t mean they won’t in the future. If your company utilizes any automated workflows for marketing emails, don’t stop using them for your prospects once they become customers. You can add them on a new workflow for warm contacts.
So, if you haven’t sent an email to your warm contacts lately, what are you waiting for? You could be missing out an excellent marketing opportunity with the potential for a strong ROI. And that’s the bottom line… ‘Cause Stone Cold Said So!
What are some of your biggest challenges when it comes to e-mail marketing? Have you tried sending marketing emails to your warm contacts? If so, what were some of your results? Whether you want to talk e-mail marketing or just let us know how big of a Stone Cold fan you are, drop us a line in the comments below.