Optimize your welcome letter

By APSIS

2012-12-03

Congratulations! You have a new subscriber. Someone who wants to know more about your business, your products and your services. Someone who has shopped from you or even taken the time to find their way to your website and who has given you his or her email address.

You have made contact with someone who is interested and sympathetic.

Now, it is time to manage this opportunity. What can you do to get your new subscriber to feel welcome? How can you build a long term relationship?

Get a good start – give your subscriber something valuable

The first step is to make sure that you send a welcome letter.
Welcome messages generally have a very high open rate and the first letter sets the tone for all future communications.

Send a nice letter with a layout that follows your graphical profile. Start with a sincere "thank you." As in most relationships, the tone is important. It says you have to support your brand, and all subsequent messages must meet subscriber expectations.

Take the chance to make a good first impression! If possible, send some form of immediate reward as a thank you. A voucher, the ability to download information or anything else that suits your business.

The goal is to start a relationship that turns prospects into loyal customers and brand ambassadors. The key is to provide more than what is expected. The ideal is to get new subscribers to look forward to the next letter.

Remember that a good welcome letter can be used not only to increase your revenue, but also to save on expenses. If you provide relevant information to help your customers, you could get results in the form of reduced support costs.

Here are some good points to consider when you develop a strategy for your welcome letter!

 One letter - or several? A single welcome message can be effective, but a series of welcome letters can give you the opportunity to tell more. You can prepare everything in advance and create a trigger flow that automatically sends out letters with an appropriate frequency.

Segment. It may be helpful to send various welcome messages depending on where and how the new subscriber signed up. If it was in connection with an online purchase, you can focus on member benefits, information on return shipments or surveys on customer satisfaction. For those who subscribed without purchase, perhaps on your website, you should focus on promotions, case studies, reviews, or similar.

Educate. No lessons, but everyone likes a good story. What makes your brand unique?

Learn more. The more you know about your new subscriber, the more you can personalize your mailings. Be sure to tell what you will use the information for. An easy way to gather more information about your new subscribers is to use a poll question. It might not give you as much information as a large survey, but it is easy to answer a single question – and it is not intrusive in any way.

Set specific goals. The main goal of your welcome letters should be to engage your followers and strengthen your brand, but each message should have its own goal - something that is measurable.

Expand. Give your subscribers other opportunities to meet your brand. If you are active in social media, tell them you are on Facebook or that you have a Twitter Feed.

Include any login information. If the subscriber has registered a username and password, make sure that these are included in your welcome. Your letter will probably be saved for reference.

Automate. Use triggered letters to automate the process. Each letter will be sent to the right recipient at the right time. All letters can be created in advance and will be sent out automatically, saving time and resources.

Share. Use materials that you have already created for your website or other channels. Movies, articles, manuals, tips and reviews - link to your great content.

Give advice. If your new subscriber has not made his or her first purchase yet, customer reviews and ratings may help influence the decision.

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