The following is a sponsored post by ThinData. The Email Authority.
We’ve all seen those “Tell a Friend” buttons on websites. But how well do these friendly prompts really work?
According to recent research, marketers across industries can achieve an impressive “lift” in the magnitude of 15% or more in their campaigns by adding a well-designed and thoughtful ‘viral email’ feature.
However, achieving such success depends on the ability to manage expectations and build trust with current and prospective customers. Follow these five steps and you will increase the success of all of your “Tell a Friend” email efforts:
1. State Your Purpose. Be very clear about your intentions and about what you plan to do with the email addresses that you will be collecting.
2. Respect Personal Information. Keep in mind that the addresses you collect are not subscribers until they choose to subscribe themselves.
3. Reduce Risks of Abuse. Use a CAPTCHA in the form that collects the email addresses. CAPTCHA’s are those letter and number jumbles you often see on forms. They help prove that form users are human and reduce the potential abuse that spammers can inflict.
4. Clearly Identify Yourself to Referrals. When you send a triggered message to the email addresses entered by the original referral source, use your email address as the “from” address as opposed to the referral source’s email address. In this way, you are demonstrating that you respect the referral source’s email identity.
5. Answer the Question: What’s in it for me? Go beyond just sending the referred friend a link. Rather, describe concisely why they are receiving the email and the value of taking action.
Here’s an example of points 4 & 5 in action: Lisa Smith has discovered ThinData’s whitepaper The Marketers Guide to Successful Email Delivery and referred it to her friend James via a “Tell a Friend” form. James receives the following email:
From: ThinData [mailto:ThinData_Tools_for_Marketers@e.thindata.com]
Sent: Today’s Date
Subject: ThinData’s Marketer’s Guide to Successful Email Delivery
Lisa Smith thought you would be interested in downloading ThinData’s whitepaper entitled The Marketer’s Guide to Successful Email Delivery.
This guide includes best practices to address email deliverability challenges and an action checklist that you can use immediately in discussions with your I.T department and/or email service provider.
The result: Your email campaigns will be far more successful.
One final thought: keep in-mind that according to Canada’s privacy laws and email best practices, you can only retain the referred email address (i.e. the new friend) once you’ve gathered consent from them.
For other practical tools and advice to grow the success of all of your email marketing campaigns, visit www.ThinData.com/greatideas