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Free Constant Contact Templates Program

Posted on May 13th, 2010 by Matt Sampson - Colorado Web Solutions

We are happy to announce that we have finally ironed the bugs out of our Free Constant Contact Template Service and are ready to release the first batch of templates!

Our first batch of templates are 11 different color variations of an updated “Welcome Email” “Change of Interest Email” and “Profile Change Email”.

If you would like free access to these templates as well as online training on how to install them, please fill out this form.

We plan to continue to build out our template library this spring and summer and we will keep you informed via email when new templates are available once you’ve filled out the form. The next templates will be focused on the marketing emails as opposed to the informational emails.

We hope you enjoy this new Free service from Colorado Web Solutions (

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Cyber Monday Tip #13: Get your Email Campaigns Ready

Posted on November 27th, 2009 by Matt Sampson - Colorado Web Solutions

Part 13 of our month long Cyber Monday Prep Tips Series. Every day, we have been giving you one small piece of advice to check, fix or confirm within your Yahoo Store in preparation for Cyber Monday 2009. View Past Yahoo! Store Tips.

Cyber Monday Yahoo Store Preparation Tip #13: Prepare your email campaigns in advance

I could go on about email campaigns for hours, but today I’m going to just talk about a few aspects. First of all, if you do not have any email campaigns planned, it’s time to do that. Get it done this weekend. I would suggest up to 3 emails for the month of December, don’t do anymore or people will get annoyed.

Here’s a few tips for these emails you’re going to prepare.

  1. Make sure your Yahoo Store email campaigns have a point. Why are you sending it? What is the customers benefit for reading it?
  2. Be sure to have a strong “call to action”. Ask your customer to do something. Encourage them.
  3. Never ever send out an email with the same content the next week. Always change it. Even if the offers have not changed. Re-write it, re-market it. You will guarantee yourself unsubscribers from your list by sending a duplicate this time of year.
  4. Don’t overcrowd or underwhelm. Keep your emails simple, but make sure (as i mentioned above) to have a clear point and goal with your emails.
  5. Don’t send them Monday morning. If your primary customers typically shop from their homes for your products, consider sending your first email Sunday late afternoon. Just as they settle down to start shopping. If your customers typically shop from you while at work, I’d suggest a mailing either Tuesday mid-morning or possibly Monday Mid afternoon.

Ok, the list could go on forever, but I’ll stop there. If you’d like more information on our Constant Contact marketing services, please visit this link:

Be sure to get those email’s planned and implemented soon! I’ll be back next week with some thoughts on Analytics. See you all then.

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Defining Spam in the real world

Posted on December 15th, 2007 by Colorado Web Solutions - Yahoo Store Developers and Designers

This is an article provided by our partners from Constant Contact. We felt this was a great article and something worth passing on to our clients and visitors.

What is your definition of spam? There’s a good chance it might be a little different from the next person’s and that both of yours might be different from the legal definition. It’s vital that we are all aware of what the law is, as it relates to spam, but it’s also important that we understand what our subscribers see as spam.
A recent survey conducted by MarketingSherpa and Q Interactive found that 50 percent of those surveyed see emails that arrive too frequently (from people they know!) as spam. Additionally, 56 percent see marketing messages and newsletters (also from people they know) as spam. Why? Because, as the question was phrased, these emails are “just not interesting to me.”

These results show that we can’t get too comfortable in our permission-based lists. Just because someone signs up to get my emails doesn’t mean that they will always want to hear from me.

How do I combat this new, broader, non-legal definition of spam? Relevancy. I have to understand who I am talking to and what kind of information they want to get from me. I have to keep my content interesting so they have a reason to open and read my emails. And I always have to make sure that I’m meeting the needs of my subscribers first and my marketing objectives second. The good news is that it is possible to do both.

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Free Shipping is King this month

Posted on December 1st, 2007 by Colorado Web Solutions - Yahoo Store Developers and Designers

This is an article provided by our partners from Constant Contact. We felt this was a great article and something worth passing on to our clients and visitors.

Okay, there are 25 shopping days left before Christmas. That means you have 25 more days to increase your holiday website sales. People are shopping. Recent reports show that online spending is up this year. So, what can you do to get these spenders to shop with you?

One option is to offer free shipping. A recent study conducted by BizRate Research for showed that more than 78% of the online retailers surveyed will offer some form of online shipping. They offer it because they know that consumers expect it and because they’ve found it to work.

If you aren’t already offering online shipping for the holidays, and it sounds like something you want to try, you still can.

And remember, free shipping can be based on how much the customer spends. Several of the holiday retail catalogs I’ve received offer free shipping for order of $100 or more.

Try testing it with a small group of your customers and monitor the response. If you see a significant increase in sales, you can make the same offer to an additional group, or perhaps your entire list.

It’s not for everyone, but it’s something to consider. For more on the study, check this article out…

Free shipping the norm this holiday season

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The subject line elevator pitch

Posted on November 30th, 2007 by Colorado Web Solutions - Yahoo Store Developers and Designers

This is an article provided by our partners from Constant Contact. We felt this was a great article and something worth passing on to our clients and visitors.

How important are your subject lines to the overall success of an email campaign? I did a little digging and here are some stats I discovered…
69% said they make the decision to click on the “report spam” or “junk” button using the subject line, according to the ESPC. – Email Sender and Provider Coalition (2007)

35% of email subscribers open messages based on what is in the subject line. – Jupiter Research (2006)
So, we know subject lines are important, but what can we do to write ones that people want to open? A study done by ReturnPath during the December holidays last year sheds light on this question.

What Kinds of Subject Lines Most Attract Your Attention?

* 55.2% – Clearly State the Offer
* 49.6% – Discount or free shipping
* 48.8% – Brand name or sender
* 33.8% – Curious
* 30.3% – Promise immediate answers (download or survey)
* 18.7% – Short
* 15.2% – Promise to solve a specific problem
* 14.1% – Funny
* 11.0% – Has my name in it

Want more ideas on how to improve your subject lines? Earlier this year, Gail Goodman did a two part series on how to improve them. In the first article she covers 5 tips for writing great subject lines, and in the second article gives some different approaches you can take (ask a question, tell it like it is, etc.).

A favorite subject line I received recently was “Do you hate jazz or what?” It was from a local restaurant (that I love). When I opened the email, I found a short survey meant to help the management determine if they would continue to hold live jazz on Wednesday nights or not. I thought this subject line was pretty clever. It got me to open!

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Don’t forget your Welcome Email

Posted on November 2nd, 2007 by Colorado Web Solutions - Yahoo Store Developers and Designers

This is an article provided by our partners from Constant Contact. We felt this was a great article and something worth passing on to our clients and visitors.

Did you know that your welcome letter may be the most-read email of any you send? According to Ramesh Lakshmi-Ratan, Ph.D., the Direct Marketing Association’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, “… welcome emails have significantly higher open rates than regular emails…” What a great opportunity to connect with your new subscribers!

Earlier this year, we featured an article by our CEO, Gail Goodman, in Hints & Tips about this very subject. The idea to focus on the welcome letter was inspired by a presentation we attended at the 2007 Email Marketing Summit sponsored by Marketing Sherpa.

At the conference, Marketing Sherpa’s president, Anne Holland, told us about a test they conducted prior to the summit. Her staff signed up for the email lists of all the companies who were coming and waited to see if they received a welcome letter. They wanted to see if we (the attendees) were taking advantage of the power of this first email.

Interestingly, they found that within 72 hours they had received welcome emails from only 55% and only 36% had content beyond “welcome.” The obvious point was, wow, what a missed opportunity!

I was so inspired, I came back and made some changes to the Hints & Tips welcome email. If you missed the article, or need a second reminder, here are some tips that can help you make the most of your welcome email. They only take minutes to implement and can make a big difference!

Tell them what to expect – Your sign-up form doesn’t tell subscribers much about what they will receive from you. Sell them on the value of being a member of your list by highlighting the content, from great events to money-saving discounts, your future emails will include.

Reward them instantly – Subscribers are at the height of their interest when they sign up for your list. Validate the wisdom of their decision to subscribe with an “instant reward.” If your emails are educational, provide links to past articles or past issues that you have on your website. If your emails are promotional, offer a discount or an incentive to encourage them to take immediate advantage of what you have to offer.

Lead them back to the website – You’ve worked hard to make your website a great place for visitors to get information. Make sure your welcome email links them back to helpful information on your site that might interest a prospective or new customer.

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The importance of being relevant

Posted on October 30th, 2007 by Colorado Web Solutions - Yahoo Store Developers and Designers

This is an article provided by our partners from Constant Contact. We felt this was a great article and something worth passing on to our clients and visitors.

Sometimes you can hear something 1,000 times, but you still need to hear it again. For example, you know you need to drink a lot of water. You hear it on TV. You read about it. You hear the people around you talking about it. But do you do it? I have to admit, I’m guilty in this area (in fact, I’m going to go get a drink of water right now!).

It’s the same thing with relevancy. If you read our email newsletters or any other email marketing-focused blog or publication, you know that your emails need to be all about your audience—what they want, need, and are interested in. And, really, this is common sense. But even with all that, it so easy to get away from this and to communicate about what you want them to know.

So, I’m here to remind you. The best thing you can do for yourself when planning your emails and creating content is to think about your audience. Put yourself in their shoes. Who are they? What do they want from you? What can you give them in the way of information, discounts, or advice that will make them read, smile, and even better, take action?

The people on our lists are busy. They don’t have time to look at communications that offer them no value. And they aren’t going to spend the time to dig through our emails to find value. It needs to be evident up front—even in the subject line.

Sending irrelevant communication is they best way to lose people all together. When someone signs up for our email list, we only have one or two (if we are lucky) opportunities to show that we’ve got something of value to share. You have to prove that your emails are going to be worth opening—that there is a pay off. For more on being relevant, read Gail Goodman’s article, Why Am I Getting This?

The key ingredient for relevancy is knowledge of your audience. If you don’t know who they are, you can’t possibly stand in their shoes. Sounds like a great topic for next time!

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