08 Dec Yarn Shops: Tips to build your e-newsletter marketing list
So, you’ve got an e-newsletter for your yarn shop but maybe it’s very small or hasn’t grown much in recent months. What to do? Here are some tips to build your consumer e-newsletter specifically for yarn shops:
Tip 1: Be sure you’re gaining PERMISSION to send an email to your customer. Too many times, yarn shop owners put out a sign-up sheet next to the cash register or have a fish bowl of business cards with a sign that says “enter to win a basket of yarn” without disclosing that you are planning to enter those cards into your database and add them to your email list.
A recent study showed that 76% of consumers deleted an unsolicited email without reading it compared to 2% for permission email. People who switched to permission-based emails reported seeing click throughs jump upwards of 10%.
I certainly encourage you to collect names at the point of sale, but be sure that your customer is fully aware that by putting their card in the fish bowl means they’re giving you permission to send them your yarn shop e-newsletter.
Tip 2: Be sure your website has an automated sign-up form. Many services, including the one I use, Constant Contact will provide free, easy to use coding tools to create your sign-up form. You need only copy and paste into your website. This saves the hassle of manualy entry too! Read more about tips for creating a great sign-up form here!
Tip 3: Segment your lists. Once you begin to build a decent list, I’d recommend beginning an autoresponder program that is designed to further tailor the content and offers your readers want to see. Did you have 100 people click on your “free sock pattern” link in your last email? Those people might be great for another targeted email focused on sock yarns, sock pattern books, sock classes etc. Sending readers content they want to read ensures loyalty and that will reduce your opt-out rate.
Tip 4: Turn your “forward to a friend” into a contest. Offer a random freebie gift to a group of people who forward your email. Constant Contact allows you to easily see who did forward your email and you can choose a winner. Be sure your “join our mailing list” button is clearly visible and prominent in your newsletter.
Tip 5: Promote in your other social networks. Encourage frequent visitors to your ravelrygroup or facebook fanclub to sign up for your newsletter. Be sure your “signatures” on other forums such as knitters review, knitting daily and knitty include a link to sign up for your newsletters.
Please use the comment form to add YOUR best practices for increasing your e-newsletter mailing list! Oh, and don’t forget to sign up for mine!