DM’s Summer List Optimization Checklist

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(Yes, I know this title’s redundant) Stock brokers have a saying, “Sell in May and go away.” And while you may see dozens of articles debunking this age-old saying on popular finance websites, it certainly would have been good advice to follow this May… and last May too.

All economic calamities aside, summer is traditionally a slow time for business. It’s when school is out and family vacations are taken. It’s when even the most tenacious online marketers take a breather from the deal-making and product creation cycle…

That’s why summer is the perfect time to focus on internal factors like list optimization. Frankly, it’s one of the few time of the year when you might possibly have the spare time.

Here are a few of the best practices for summerifying your list:

Put Non-Buyers in the Bucket – Unfortunately, not everyone who opts-in to your list converts, even after multiple followups… It’s a shame, however, it isn’t a lost cause. It’s actually an opportunity.

To realize this opportunity, you’re going to have to do something kinda tedious: Segment your list. At DM, when we get subscribers that don’t convert over a period of time, we put them into an autoresponder series we call “the bucket.” This is where we send them the most attractive affiliate offers that are related to their interests.

We segment these users, because we don’t want to broadcast these offers to our entire list each time we mail.  Non-buyers may not want your product, but they may want a similar offer. Buyers are put on another list that I’ll talk about in the next bullet point.

– Work to Turn Buyers into Repeat Customers – All the data shows that once a customer has given you money, they’re many times more likely to do so again. Any longtime marketer knows the 80/20 rule: 80% of your sales come from 20% of your customers. Repeat customers are where the real money is made.

That’s why you want to work to provide buyers with only the most thoughtful, high-converting offers WITHOUT becoming annoying. That last part is why you most segment your non-buyers onto their own list.

Here are few guidelines for what to offer:

  • Speed & optimization – Products or services that speed up or automate the product your customers already bought (this should also be the upsell in your sales funnel).
  • Similar products – Your buyers have shown an interest in a certain type of product. Don’t assume that, just because they already have one, they don’t want another extremely similar product. In fact, assume they do want more of the same.
  • Subscription service – If you don’t have a continuity training/support program in place, summer is a good time to start planning one.

– Drill Down a Level Deeper – Go back to your analytics and look for similarities between buyers. The more you can segment your subscribers, the better you can personalize their offers. Compare not only what they purchased, but how the came to the offer. Was it a free report? A video?

Use this information to create more efficient lists that will help you target subscribers better in the coming year.

About Josh Loposer

Josh is the managing editor of Digital Marketer, as well an aspiring novelist. Find out more about what Josh is working on on Facebook, Google, or on his website.
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