8 Tips for a Welcome Email that Delivers

Tuesday Jul 9th 2013
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Your first email communiqué can make or break your relationship with customers, and that can affect growth momentum. Here's how to write a killer welcome letter.

By Janine Popick

When it comes to marketing your business, it's crucial to establish an ongoing relationship with customers and prospects, especially when you're just starting out. And once you start collecting email addresses from folks that want to hear from you, you need to send a welcome email, stat!

The welcome email is the one you send after a customer joins your mailing list, or signs up for your service. No pressure, but this is one of the most important emails you'll send a new subscriber, so we've got eight great tips to make sure your welcome email delivers.

How to Write an Effective Welcome Letter

1. Don't Leave Them Guessing

The "from" line is one of the first things people see in their crowded inboxes, even before your subject line. If the "from" line is anything other than your company name or the person your subscribers specifically opted-in to get emails from, they might get confused or annoyed and unsubscribe. Pick a "from" line and keep it consistent.

2. Where Did We Meet Again?

Because new subscribers may not remember signing up, your welcome email is a great opportunity to remind them how they got on your mailing list or when/where they signed up for your emails (e.g., at a specific event, on Facebook, on your blog, etc.).

3. Show Your Personality

This is where you can really break from the monotony and be memorable, or start to become more than "just a business" to your subscribers. Think of how many emails you receive every day. How many are memorable? It's OK to have a personality. By using a bit of humor, an engaging image or real-life stories, you can stand out in a sea of emails and connect with your customers in a lasting fashion.

4. Be Consistent

Your email newletters should share a consistent look with the rest of your company. Is your website designed in red and black? If your welcome email is orange and green, you may be asking for trouble. Remember, the recipients might not recall who you are. Consistent visual cues will help jog their memory and make your welcome email instantly recognizable.

5. Give 'Em the Deets

Your welcome email is the prefect chance to refer new subscribers back to helpful pages on your website, like the "about us" section, frequently asked questions or your blog. This way, they can easily find more information about your company, products or services. This is really important in the beginning, when you're just starting to establish a relationship with a customer or prospect.

6. Be Social

The best welcome emails provide other ways your subscribers can connect with your business. Got a Facebook Page? Link to it. Same for Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, YouTube, Instagram, Tumblr and any other social media networks where your business resides. Don't forget your blog, too.

7. Set Expectations

Setting expectations may sound serious, but it's really about making sure your recipients know how often they'll hear from you and what you'll send them. It can be as simple as saying, "Once a week, you'll get an email from us jam-packed with (fill in the blank) ideas and inspiration."

8. Give 'Em Something

Nothing lays the groundwork for a great ongoing relationship like providing your brand new subscriber with something of value right off the bat—and for free! If you've got a great ebook, video, template or guide, give it away all day long and get your subscriber hooked from the start. The best thing you can do is provide something that's helpful, and you'll start your relationship off with a bang.

Which of these eight tips can you see in your welcome email? Share your experiences in the comments below.

Janine Popick is the CEO and founder of VerticalResponse, a provider of self-service email, social and event marketing solutions for small businesses. Connect with her on Twitter at @janinepopick.

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