A Guide To Automated Email Marketing

By: Michael Southon

You've probably heard the expression, 'the money is in the list'. It's become a bit of a cliché - but it's the key to successful web marketing.

About 95% of visitors will not buy on their first visit to your website - in fact, most of your customers will have to see your message 7 times before they buy.

Many people starting out on the Internet believe that their main marketing tool is their website.

In fact, your main marketing tool is your mailing list. A website is just a way of building your mailing list - by collecting the email addresses of your visitors.

Here are some examples of how to use mailing lists as part of your marketing strategy. You could send:

  • a customized newsletter to your subscribers

  • sequential autoresponders to prospects

  • your Articles to Ezine publishers

  • offers for other products to your customers

However, managing your mailing lists can quickly become an organizational nightmare if you don't have an Automated Email Marketing Tool.

An AEMT is a program that merges personal data into a form letter, schedules follow-up emails, and handles subscribes and unsubscribes automatically.

Server Side or Client Side?

The first thing you'll need to decide is whether to use a Server Side or Client Side program.

A Server Side program is a script that sits on your server, whereas a Client Side program is an application that sits on your PC.

In general, Client Side programs are capable of much more advanced email management than Server Side programs.

But Server Side programs do have some advantages:

  • With a Server Side program, people who join your Newsletter receive an instant 'Welcome Message'

  • Server Side programs include an unsubscribe link at the bottom of your Newsletter. The reader just clicks on that link and the cgi program removes them from your mailing list.

  • With Server Side programs, you don't need to be connected to the Internet while your Newsletter is being mailed out. You just click a button on a web page and you can then go offline - the mailing is being performed by your server.

Here are some tools for automating your email marketing:

Subscribe Me Pro (Server Side)

This is a popular program amongst Newsletter publishers - it mails out your Newsletter and provides automatic subscribe/unsubscribe functions.

Subscribe Me Pro gives automatic mail-back confirmation when people subscribe or unsubscribe and you can include automatic Add or Remove links in each e-mail, so users can add or remove themselves.


Auto Response Plus (Server Side)

This program gives you unlimited follow-up autoresponders. It allows full personalization of subject lines, headers, footers, ads - every part of every follow-up message can be personalized.

Auto Response Plus gives you full control over the scheduling of your follow up messages - you can set an interval between messages or schedule them to be sent on certain days of the week.

Although this program is designed primarily for sequential autoresponders, it's also quite capable of mailing out your Newsletter and managing subscribes/unsubscribes.


Mailloop (Client Side)

This application includes a newsletter server, web form processor, bulk emailer, customer database management, and autoresponders.

As with other Client Side programs, Mailloop allows you to merge an unlimited number of fields into your e-mail message (for example: first name, last name, e-mail address, product purchased, date of purchase, etc).


World Merge (Client Side)

This is another application that allows you to merge personalized data into form letters.

Depending on your modem and the quality of your ISP connection, this program will send approximately 8,000 messages per hour.

WorldMerge is excellent value - it's about a quarter the price of similar programs.


Postmaster (Client Side)

Like other Automated Email Marketing Tools, this program allows you to create a form letter and merge personalized data into each letter. Your letters are addressed to 'Dear Michael' instead of 'Dear Customer'.

Postmaster acts as a List Server, sends out follow-up Autoresponders, and manages your database of contacts.


To sum up, in a successful web marketing strategy, your website is merely the first point of contact. You then need to:

  1. build an opt-in email list of potential customers (your website visitors)

  2. use automated email marketing tools that allow you to follow up with your site visitors.

If you aren't building mailing lists and using automated email marketing tools you could be losing up to 90% of your potential sales.

(c) 2002 by Michael Southon

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