How to Build an Engaged Email List with Rohan Ayyar @searchrook #vcbuzz

How to Build an Engaged with  Rohan Ayyar @searchrook #vcbuzz

Email marketing is still going strong, despite all the predictions that social media will cause its demise

Building an active engaged email list is key to any digital success: It’s the biggest asset that’s not going anywhere!

But how to still succeed in email marketing in the era when no one is willing to subscribe to anything? Let’s discuss!

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About Rohan Ayyar @searchrook

Rohan Ayyar is an experienced marketer who has worked agency side as well as in-house in the SaaS industry, developing data-driven strategies for SEO, PPC, social media, and content marketing.

Rohan has been honored by the Search community at Search Engine Roundtable and listed as a Must-Follow SEO Expert on Twitter by Search Engine Watch. He is also an avid business and tech blogger, with insights featured on publications like Fast Company, Business Insider, Fortune, and Adweek.

Questions we discussed

Q1 How did you become a digital marketer? Please share your career story!

I stumbled on to digital marketing during my role as a project manager in a web dev company. Prior to that I’ve worked as a truck driver, English teacher, network administrator, immigration agent (bordering on human trafficker), and retail store manager. :~)

Q2 Is email marketing still alive and how has it changed over the years? What’s the future?

Email marketing is very much alive, although it continues to be disrupted by new developments – social media, texts, instant messaging, push notifications, the list is endless.

The future of email is automation. Subject lines, content, timing, drip campaigns, everything will be automated.

Also, I am putting an idea out there: Emails that are dynamically updated while they sit in your inbox. So a brand sends you only one email ever on one topic.

The email is marked unread and moves to the top of your inbox when it’s updated. Think monthly bank statement.

Q3 You wrote this great article on email marketing experiments. Could you list those you still recommend doing?

Every single one of them! I’m crazy about delivering a great UX to the subscriber, bringing back every one of them that sneaks away, use coupons to the full (if I’m already losing money on the discount), and solicit feedback from customers.

Reach out to them after a trigger – x unopened emails / x days, time your email, remind them of the first interaction/purchase, offer them something relevant, attempt to build a relationship again!

Q4 How to get people subscribe? What have you seen working well recently?

I know how NOT to get people to subscribe. Do away with those pesky pop-ups with cheesy messages. NO, I DON’T want to make more money or be an awesome marketer!

One thing that always works is providing value and exclusivity. Give your subscribers insights/deals that they won’t get on any other channel – not on your website, not on your social pages, nowhere!

Some more:

  • Show a testimonial on your opt-in box.
  • Use in-line CTAs within popular posts. Or gated content if you’re really awesome.
  • Add an opt-in in your email signature.
  • Add a subscribe checkbox to your contact form.

Q5 What are your favorite email marketing tools?

Easy peasy: @Mailchimp for ease of use and simplicity @GetResponse for all the bells and whistles and integrations – You don’t need a third one :~)

The consumer is more aware (and wary of false promises). There are more tools, methods and options… And yet, some brands never tire of shouting.

Our previous digital marketing chats:


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