Monday, May 11, 2009

May 15th - "Autoresponders in your World" Series, Part 4.

Using Autoresponders to Leverage Post-Purchase Customer Contact.

Business whether online or offline is about three things:

1. Relationship building.
2. Lead generation.
3. Sales Revenue.

As a business owner, you should always aim to turn one-time purchasers into long-term, repeat buyers. This process begins with prompt acknowledgement of your website orders, something that can be done automatically with an autoresponder.

Making a Strong "Second" Impression.

Marketers must have clear and concise messages at the ready when customers place an order. Today, many shopping carts integrate seamlessly with popular autoresponders, and often build their own into the payment processing systems. Autoresponders allow you to speak immediately with new customers, thank them for their patronage, and inform about other products and services that may benefit to them. Failure to capitalize on this opportunity is the surest way to leave money on the table.

Acknowledge, Thank and Offer - but not all at Once!

They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression. So, use follow-up messages prudently to demonstrate interest in your customer's well-being. Keep things simple by not merging your 'Thank You' and customer acknowledgement autoresponders. They serve distinct purposes and as such, you should ensure that your buyers focus on only one message at a time. Similarly, one-time offers (OTO) and other pitches need and deserve their distinct spaces.


- Separate the customer's email sales receipt from your 'Thank You' sales message. Make sure your ‘thank you’ is a message that is sent out by itself, so your customer can focus solely on that!

- Separate the customer access autoresponder (i.e. email that is automatically sent to grant the customer access to their purchase) from your 'Thank You' sales message.

It is acceptable however, to combine the customer access instructions with the sales receipt, especially for downloadable digital products.

Thank You Message.

Thank customers for their recent purchase without being too aggressive. Remind them how much the product will help them achieve their goals, and tell them about related products that work well or are similar to the one that they just purchased. For example, lawn fertilizer works with grass seeds. Remember to emphasize how well your product line and/or services compliment what they already value in the original buy.

Do not let customers escape without follow-up! Think about your experiences in various retail outlets. When you check out of a restaurant, pharmacy etc. many displayed items are available for sale. These last minute, impulsive purchases are often the most profitable part of the operation (e.g. "Would you like fries with that?"). Your ‘Thank you’ sales letter and OTO serve the same purpose online.


Your first-time sales give you a fabulous opportunity to build a permanent customer base. However, don’t blow it by spamming them with incessant offers! Follow proper opt-in procedures to add buyers to your list, and follow-up with a combination of content and offers. Responsible autoresponder use just makes good business sense. Make sure it handles removal requests promptly, and make sure your information is valuable to subscribers.

Rahul Majumdar is an Information Marketer specializing in article marketing, list-building, and digital product creation. Sign up for more of his insights here.

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