No matter what type of small business you own, email marketing is essential if you would like to connect with your customers and grow your business.
Not only does email marketing cost a hang of a lot less than any other marketing type but it also allows you to directly communicate and connect with each of your subscribers in a personal way helping you to build and maintain relationships with each person on your email list.
And the best part is that once someone has agreed to join your mailing list, they are just one newsletter or email away! So you don’t have to rely on social media or search engines to drive traffic to your website.
This alone makes email marketing an incredibly valuable tool! And it is also for this reason that I recommend that you start collecting email addresses as soon as you launch your website.
But where do you start?
In the next couple of tutorials, I will show you how to add a newsletter signup form to your website.
However, before we can add the form to your website, you will need a way to collect and store your email addresses. You will also need an easy way to send professional newsletters and emails to your subscribers.
Enter email marketing platforms!
Why Use An Email Marketing Platform
There are a few really good reasons why you should consider using an email marketing platform when it comes to your Email Marketing. One of the biggest is that a good platform will streamline the process of creating and managing your email campaigns. This is especially true if you don’t have the time or skills available to create professional-looking emails and newsletters.
And because most email marketing platforms are easy to use, many with drag-and-drop interfaces, it is a breeze to create, send and manage your email campaigns, especially as your business grows.
But you are not just saving time by using an email marketing platform, you are also getting very valuable information about every email that you send.
For example, if you send an email from your normal email program on your PC, you have no way of knowing if that email was delivered successfully, whether your client opened it, or if they reported your message as spam! It can also be tricky to keep track of who has unsubscribed from your newsletters. And trust me, it isn’t a good idea to send unwanted emails to anyone!
A good email marketing platform will keep track of all of this for you so that you can manage your email list well.
My Favorite Email Marketing Platform
There are stacks of great email marketing platforms out there! However, I have settled on one company that not only offers great value and features but also excellent customer support and an excellent track record – Aweber.
Aweber has been around since 1998 helping over 120,000 small businesses and entrepreneurs grow their businesses through email marketing!
And one of the things that I really love about Aweber is that they have a completely FREE email marketing package that never expires. Yes, it is free for life!
This is great if you are just starting out and are on a tight budget! But it’s also a great way to test their service if you aren’t sure which service to use.
And with Aweber’s free package, you can have 500 subscribers on your list and you can send out 3,000 emails a month! Pretty cool right?
You also get everything you need to build and manage your newsletters including their drag-and-drop email builder, email templates, professional image library plus 2/47 live support via phone, email, or chat… did I mention that this was all free? Oh, and no credit card is required 🙂
Of course, as your business grows and you start adding more than 500 subscribers to your newsletter list, you may want to upgrade to a paid package where you get more features and can send more emails out each month.
How To Sign Up With Aweber
Aweber’s sign-up process for their free plan is pretty simple and straightforward. Let me walk you through it.
Go to Aweber (will open in a new window).
Click either of the buttons to get started. Complete the form and click the “Start Growing Today” button to signup.
When your account is successfully created, you will see this screen.
Once you have confirmed your email address you will be asked to select which email package you would like to sign up for. Select the Free plan and click “Continue”.
The next couple of screens will ask for information such as your company name, website, address, what your business goals are as well as what other tools you already use in your business.
When you are done, you will be taken to the Aweber Dashboard where you will be able to complete Aweber’s quickstart checklist. Feel free to skip these if you like by clicking “Skip Remaining Steps“.
Congratulations! You’ve just signed up for your free Aweber account!
When your Account Dashboard opens, you will see a summary of how many people you have on your list, the number of new signups, scheduled newsletters, and your email lists.
Now that you have Aweber all set up and ready to go it’s time to move on to the next steps!
In my next couple of tutorials, we will create a thank you page for your email signup form so that you will have somewhere to send your subscribers once they have signed up for their newsletter (spoiler alert – your thank you page is an awesome place to impress your visitors even more!).
After that, we will go ahead and create an email subscription form in Aweber which we will then add to your website.
By the end of this set of tutorials, you will have an awesome email subscription form collecting email addresses for you. You will also have a really great way to create and send newsletters from Aweber with their awesome drag-and-drop newsletter and email generator.
With email marketing, you can build relationships, promote your products or services and ultimately drive sales all while providing valuable and personalized content to your subscribers. And this is why you can never go wrong by including email and newsletters in your small business marketing!