Dedicated email marketers are always looking for news about the industry’s best practices coupled with useful examples from real companies. So, I’m focusing this post on one specific company that has demonstrated how to win customers by implementing a specific email marketing strategy.
I’d like to introduce you to Edgar, a social media tool that individuals and businesses can use to manage the distribution of their content. From the logo, Edgar may also be a squid with a vision problem, or perhaps a visual representation of an elderly Jamie Hyneman from MythBusters… I’m not quite sure.
My disclaimer: we do not currently use Edgar, nor are we providing endorsement of the company or their offerings in any way. We have not been paid to write this and our doing so does not imply that we prefer sea animals over land animals. We also don’t have any contacts at Edgar and are not partnered with them in any way (for all we know they could really hate sunshine, hugs and glitter) so you should make up your own mind about them.
Now that we’ve got that legal mumbo jumbo out of the way, let’s deep sea dive right in and take a look at what they’re doing and I’ll explain why it works.
When you arrive on Edgar’s website, the very first thing that you notice is the “Start My Free Trial” sign-up button. Of course, starting a trial also opts you into ongoing communication from the company related to their social media management platform. Just like a more traditional email sign-up, this offer includes the key elements of a clear value proposition (“the only social app that stops social media updates from going to waste”) and a strong call-to-action (“Start My Free Trial”).
In addition to having a compelling offer prominently featured at the top of the homepage, Edgar makes use of this same offer elsewhere on the website as well. By reiterating the offer over and over, they are creating multiple opportunities to sign-up for a trial, which increases the likelihood that a visitor will do so before leaving the site. You want to make signing up for your email just as convenient for your audience!
Sign-Up Thank You Page
Usually when you sign up for emails or a free trial, you’re taken to a simple thank you page confirming that you signed up successfully and explains that you should start receiving emails soon. However, Edgar uses a double opt-in strategy for their sign-ups. This means that once someone provides their contact email for a trial, they also have to confirm their email address from their inbox before they can receive further communications.
Double opt-in is an excellent way to increase email deliverability and engagement. (For more information on the benefits of using double opt-in, visit my post on How To Keep Your Email List Healthy.) However, not everyone is familiar with the process of having to opt into an email list twice, so Edgar follows best practices by educating visitors on what will happen next and what’s required of them while still staying true to their inky brand.
This visual explanation of next steps and how to finish signing up makes sure that people will be on the lookout for the opt-in email and will know what to do when that email arrives.
Simply stating that an email is coming and reminding people to click on the link it contains can be very boring, but Edgar takes it a step further by drenching it with personality! Making the text funny encourages people to actually read it fully and gets people excited about their upcoming interactions with Edgar.
Double Opt-In Email
A double opt-in confirmation email should arrive in a user’s inbox quickly and provide completion of the task. Beyond simply completing the sign-up process, this email is yet another contact with a new user — which means it’s a great place to provide additional information as well.
You don’t want to muck this email up with too much ink and distract from the main purpose of getting a user to click on the email validation link. However, you can still sprinkle some personality and character! Edgar chooses to restate their value proposition in a way that’s compelling:
“Confirm your email address, so Edgar knows where to send your invitation.
Yes, subscribe me to this list.
Once you give that button a click, you can expect your invitation to arrive right here in your inbox when it’s ready. Remember how those days feel, because once Edgar stops your status updates from going to waste, you’ll never look at social media the same way again!”
Once users have verified their email addresses, they are taken to a thank you page to confirm their successful sign up. Many companies leave this page really bare and just insert some generic text explaining that a user is now signed up and promising to send valuable content their way soon. But Edgar takes a different approach by providing great content immediately in the form of a demo video. They also take the opportunity to put their own tentacle-y spin on yet another page that would have been otherwise mundane.
This thank you page is also an excellent example of how to use a really functional page to market your product. They reiterate their value proposition once more in the hopes that Edgar will really suction onto people. The page also offers up some customer reviews to help really sell people on the quality of their offerings. The content is fun and encourages social sharing easily by providing a click-to-tweet box so that users can easily share about their experience (which equates to free advertising for Edgar). They strike an excellent balance between providing lots of great content and not overwhelming visitors.
Like any good email marketing campaign, Edgar uses automated trigger emails to communicate with subscribers in the following situations:
- When free software trials are ready
- When several days have passed after software trials have been extended and no action has been taken
- When email trials have actually begun
- When free trial periods are about to expire
Taking the time to set up automated trigger emails is a great way to customize your message for different segments of your subscriber base. You can still blast out mass emails to different segments of your email list based on their preferences, but using trigger emails based on recent and past actions is a great way to take this targeting a step further. For help with setting up your trigger emails, check out Creating Your First Trigger Marketing Campaign.
With this great example of email marketing done right to help guide your efforts, you’re now armed with ideas and you can try out some of these tactics. They will take your email marketing to the next level! And, we’re always here to lend a helping hand (not tentacle) if you need any assistance with setting up your email campaigns or managing your email list.