The most valuable asset of the online marketer is, "Time!"
Time's an asset, that for the most part, is taken for granted. It's invisible, odorless,
tasteless and something that goes unnoticed, until you begin to run out of it and learn
how much it truly costs!
Overview of Autoresponders
The key to becoming a successful online marketer lies in the ability to accomplish
multiple, or redundant, marketing tasks at the same time. Wouldn't it be nice to have a
clone, sitting next to you, sending out sales letters, welcome and thank you letters,
order confirmation letters or any other email tasks you deem necessary? Well, you can have
just that, and it's called an autoresponder.
Let's begin by taking a moment and explaining what an autoresponder is. "An autoresponder is simply a program that runs through an email
program that's designed to automatically respond to any email message sent to it with a
pre-determined response, usually a sales letter, to the email address of the person who
originated them response."
Autoresponders are also known as mailbots, automatic email and email on demand.
Autoresponders were fashioned from the huge success of fax on demand used in the offline
Autoresponders are becoming a very popular tool in the online marketers toolbox and it's
my belief that autoresponders can increase your profits by as much as 20-25%. The
advantages of autoresponders far outweigh any disadvantages of utilizing this powerful
So let's rake a look at autoresponders and their essential components, the advantages and
also the disadvantages of utilizing autoresponders.
Not all autoresponders are created equal. There are thousands of companies
online that offer an autoresponder service and there are just as many options and pricing
structures. Here's my list of the essential components you'll need to make sure your
autoresponder service offers to ensure your autoresponder is an effective online marketing
tool and a valuable partner in your online business.
You'll need to be able to have quite a bit of flexibility in the naming of
your autoresponders. In order to have an effective advertising campaign, you'll need to be
able to track the responses to your advertisements. Utilizing the naming feature allows
you to have complete control over your online marketing and advertising efforts. Make sure
you have a wide array of options available in naming your autoresponder. You want to be
able to name your autoresponder something that pertains to your product or business and
also for tracking your advertising effectiveness.
Make sure you select an autoresponder service that offers unlimited length
for the text of your autoresponders. This may seem like a bit of overkill but this gives
you the flexibility when preparing your sales materials. There's nothing worse than having
to cut down a successful sales letter to fit the autoresponder.
Autoresponder Free/Unlimited Updates:
Make sure you select an autoresponder service that offers free and
unlimited updates or changes to your autoresponders. In the online marketing world you
absolutely need the flexibility to be able to provide up to date product information to
your prospects and clients. Charges for changes to your autoresponders adds up very
quickly! You need to have total control and be able to add, remove or change your
documents as many times as you wish, yourself, without having to pay any extra for doing
Many autoresponder services require your prospects to put a keyword
into the subject line or message body. Your potential customers may simply forget or mistype something and they'll never receive your
document. Make sure to chose an autoresponder service that doesn't require the use of keywords.
This is vital to your follow up efforts. This is simply an email
notification sent to you that someone has requested information from your
It provides the prospects email address and any of their comments inserted into the body
of their email request. This is simply a must have option for any serious online marketer!
ADVANTAGES OF AUTORESPONDERS
Here are a few of the primary advantages of utilizing autoresponders in your online marketing and advertising efforts:
This is why using autoresponders is vital to the success of your online
business. We live in a now environment and the Internet only throws fuel on the fire. When
we want information, we don't want to wait for days, hours or even minutes, we want it
now! This is especially true when we're answering an online ad and requesting more
information. A well written online advertisement will touch prospects emotions and elicit
a response, requesting more information. When emotions are involved in the mix, it's
essential as online marketers to respond with that additional information
immediately. By doing this you'll get your sales message read in the best possible
environment, by a hot prospect. This is exactly why I mentioned earlier that an
autoresponder can increase your profits by 20-25%!
It costs nothing for a prospect to look at your online advertisement and
request more information. Unlike other advertisements that ask for a prospect to send a
SASE or possibly $1-$2 for an additional report, it costs nothing to send an email.
You're dealing with a base of approximately 75 million who have email access and since
they usually have a single monthly rate, they're not paying for each email. So there is no
cost for sending or receiving a single email message.
Using With Your Web Site:
This is an excellent opportunity to provide a number of ways to integrate
autoresponders into your online marketing strategy. A problem almost every webmaster faces
is how to get vital information on the visitors to their web site, their visitors! You can
get this vital information in an number of ways, such as, via guest books, online order
forms, ezines subscriptions and especially by offering additional free information via an autoresponder. You can offer via
autoresponder, updated price lists, product listings, or any other information you wish to
distribute. When a visitor uses this "mailto" link they'll receive your
marketing information and you'll capture their email address.
It Automates Your Online Marketing:
As I mentioned earlier, time is a valuable and vital asset to every online
marketer! Anything that an online marketer can do to automate daily tasks makes them even
more effective. Using autoresponders is the easiest way to automate the selling process!
If you don't have to spend hours going through your incoming email and manually
sending out your replies. If you use autoresponders in your online advertising, your
prospects will get the information they want immediately and you'll have be able to
utilize your time for additional online marketing efforts. Now your marketing like the pro's and are
essentially doing two things at the same time. Then once a day sort your requests in your
follow up folders and you've just opened up a large chunk of time to use more
DISADVANTAGES OF AUTORESPONDERS
There are hardly no disadvantages of using autoresponders in your online
marketing and advertising but here are a couple that might become minor disadvantages:
It's Almost Impossible To Personalize Your Autoresponder:
Since you're basically mass marketing with your autoresponder you can't
personalize each response. There are many services out there that do include a simple
addition of the requesters email address in a hello line but it's still not personalized.
You want to make sure you check the body of incoming autoresponder requests for any
additional or specific requests for more information and reply to those as soon as
possible. You can also tell your prospects that they are requesting information from your
autoresponder in your advertisement which tells them that they are going to get immediate
information from your autoresponder.
Spammers Collect Your Autoresponder's Email Address:
When you begin marketing online you'll find that occasionally, your
autoresponder's email address will get collected by the spider software used by those who
collect and sell email addresses. Then an Internet newbie buys these email addresses and
sends out their bulk email message and doesn't hide the email addresses, your
autoresponder's email address is now exposed.
Then an upset recipient sends his reply back to the originator of the spam
by using their "reply to" button on their email program without deleting the laundry list of other email addresses. Your autoresponder sends your sales
letter to the sender and they just think they were spammed by you too! Multiply this by 10
and can you see the possible disadvantage? This has happened to me. It's fairly easy to
fix by emailing any of the recipients who complain to you and explain what happened when
they send their reply to the entire list and you might add they could also be accused of
spamming by their actions. This will usually do the trick.
A FINAL THOUGHT
You can take advantage of autoresponders in any number of ways. These are
very powerful online marketing tools that increase your productivity, provide a means to
automate tasks and free up your time, provide immediate information for your potential
customers, provide customer service and can increase your profits. If your not currently
utilizing this valuable asset in your online marketing and advertising your costing
yourself potential sales and creating more work. When you consider the cost for this
resource, I think you'll agree that there isn't another online marketing tools that
produces these benefit for the price.
Copyright 1998 By Terry Williams & Associates. All Rights Reserved