How do I create a successful Email campaign?


I'm trying to figure out the best way of sending out an email campaign to alert potential customers about my desktop software application for fostering agencies and organizations.

I have looked at Mail Chimp and that seems easy enough to use and is free for the amount of emails I want to send (approx 200) and I have all the email addresses ready. But that isn't my problem.

My real concern is structuring the email in such a way that I make the content interesting enough to read (content writing is not a strong area of expertise for me) and don't alienate potential customers with a naff campaign that either nobody understands or is worded in a manner that's deemed pushy or too focused on sales. Of course the long term objective is to generate sales, but at the minute I'm more interested in getting people talking about the application and interested enough to want to know more.

As well as alerting customers to my product, another aim of the campaign is to enlist the help of some fostering professionals who can help me with the application. Ideally, I would be looking for someone who is interested in contributing ideas and suggestions without there being a formal process around it. The application is 35% complete, so I can't sell it right now, but my aim is to create a following that will eventually lead to sales when the product is finished. How do I persuade people to be interested in my application enough to want to participate? People who contribute to this website do it freely and passionately. That is what I want to achieve, but it has to be targeted to people who know the fostering profession.

How do I proceed with this?

  • Do I just write the email and keep changing it until I am happy?
  • Do I enlist a third party to check over the content and give feedback (anyone care to offer!)?
  • Do I send it out to all my potential customers or select a portion of them?
  • Does the content need to be more focused on enlisting support from readers or should it be more focused on features.

I know it may sound odd, but if I could sum up the reaction I'm after once the email drops in their in-box, it would be something like "Wow, that looks like a cool application, I can see it's not finished and has a way to go, but it sure would be fun to get involved."

What are the potential pitfalls that I may face and what advice do people have to offer?

Sales Strategy Email Newsletter

asked Jan 6 '10 at 13:44
Smart Company Software
1,190 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll

2 Answers


I think you're trying to do too much in one move. I'd also say, you're also trying to do the wrong things.

Let' me explain:

  1. Most people are not going to talk about stuff they haven't seen or used yet -- unless you're already important or known to make exceptional stuff. I doubt that's the case, here.
  2. It's rather easy, however, to get some people to follow your advancements -- provided your app sounds interesting or useful and following is easy (which usually means subscribing to a email newsletter or Feeds/Twitter for a more technical audience).
  3. A small amount of users is often involved enough to provide feedback and ideas for improvements. However, this presupposes that they can really use your software. Most people have better things to do than thinking about an abstract concept ... but that's what your software is to them, right now: an abstract concept!
My Suggestion: I'd do the following if I were you:

  • Provide a "Coming soon" homepage with an newsletter subscription.
  • Sent out the initial mail to get them to subscribe to your newsletter.
  • Sent regular updates to the list once per month (or maybe twice, if you think your software is ready soon).
  • Offer Alpha downloads for your software to list members, provided you can call them for an interview. Offer a reward for their time (a free full version, maybe).
  • Later, offer Beta downloads of your software to the list members and use an easy to use feedback opportunity (issue tracker, user feedback sites, etc.)
  • Meanwhile, engage in online conversations with other potential users, so your newsletter subscriptions increase.
About Copy Writing: First, getting a professional copy writer is usually not cheap. It pays if the copy is supposed to bring in revenue but that's not the case here.

Second, most online marketing is basically writing. It pays if you get used to it. So, why not use the initial mail to get started? It's not that complicated.

I'm a member of a mutual and free Copy Writing Feedback group, where you can submit your copy and have it reviewed. You can also review other people's copy which helps you to get better, too.

Subscribe today and you'll have your mail in a week or two. ;-)

Hope this helps.

answered Jan 7 '10 at 06:04
Claus Schwarm
1,599 points
  • Claus, The Copy Writing Feedback group isn't in English ;) – Baraider 14 years ago


If you know that content writing isn't a strength of yours, then I would recommend finding someone who is a great content writer and ideally has some in-depth knowledge of the fostering industry and your business. If you can't afford to hire someone, try reaching out to some of your contacts in the industry or family or friends who are good writers.

answered Jan 7 '10 at 01:50
230 points

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