Are You Using an Autoresponder and Email Marketing Software?

We get a lot of autoresponder and email marketing software related questions here at Tips and Tricks HQ since the WP eStore plugin has some autoresponder integration options. In this article I have covered the answers to the following basic questions around autoresponders and email marketing software:

  • What is an autoresponder?
  • Should I be using an autoresponder service?
  • How to get the most out of an autoresponder and email marketing software?
  • Which autoresponder service should I use?

What is an Autoresponder?

An autoresponder is a software that can be used to send emails to people automatically. It can also respond to an email that is sent to it. This allows individuals and businesses to react to emails and questions without human intervention. A simple example of an autoresponder is when you go on vacation from work and you set up an automatic response letting people know you will be out of the office. Autoresponders are often used as a marketing tool for online businesses. With autoresponders you compose some pre-written emails that you want sent out to your customers (e.g. instructions after they have purchased a product, news about upcoming product releases and so on). You can specify when you want these emails sent out and to who, even if you are away from your computer the emails are always delivered. Autoresponders are an easy and efficient way to get information to your customers.

Should You Use an Autoresponder Service?

If you have an online business then yes you should use an autoresponder service. List building and email marketing is one of the fastest and most efficient ways to get your product and information out to your customer base. For an online business to compete and survive, it is necessary for you to build an email list of people who have willingly given their email addresses, so they can be informed about things they are interested in. Email marketing software can also be used to send out newsletters, upcoming product releases, online courses (you can set it so each part of the course is date released) and for any other reason you may need to mass email you customers. If you were to send out say for example 1,000 emails from your personal email account without an autoresponder only about the first few would be delivered before your email account is blacklisted for sending spam. Well known autoresponder service providers are usually trusted by the mail servers as they have a reputation of only allowing you to send emails to people who have opted in (this means the person receiving the email had to confirm that they wanted to receive emails from you). In most cases your mail will be delivered to your customer’s inbox and not their spam folders when an well known autoresponder service provider is used. You will also have access to stats like how many people opened the email, how many read the entire email etc (this could be very useful information for your business).

How to Get the Most Out of an Autoresponder Service?

To use an autoresponder you need to build an opt-in list. This is usually done by giving away useful or valuable information for free but requiring your visitors to give their email addresses before they can get the item (e.g. using a squeeze page). Another list building technique is to collect email addresses when your visitors make a purchase on your site. Make sure the emails you send have useful information and not just over done sales pitches. This will help you build a relationship with visitors and customers so they will keep coming back. You can create multiple lists, this way you can send emails to customers that are interested in a certain topic (e.g. an eBook on a specific subject, or people interested in e-commerce etc).

Which Autoresponder Service Should You Use?

There are many autoresponder and email marketing service providers out there. I couldn’t tell you exactly which one you should be using without assessing your situation and needs but here are some guidelines:

  • The goal is to get the most value for your money without compromising functionality.
  • Take a look at what each service provider has to offer.
  • Determine which features you need then look for an autoresponder service that best fit your need.
  • Try to find one that will grow with your business.

I personally recommend using one of these three autoresponder service providers simply because they offer good value for your money.

The above autoresponders can also be integrated with the WP eStore plugin (WordPress Shopping Cart) so you can easily build up your customer list on auto pilot. Also, don’t forget to read the post on 10 tips for writing an autoresponse email.

If you have any questions or comments please leave them below in the comments area.

Comments (28 responses)

  1. Ian says:

    Email auto responders have made life easier with the way we deal with emails.

  2. Tonya says:

    It is a must you use an Auto responder starting out in online business. You might only get 1 chance to capture the person who just visited your site…. How will you ever get them back?

  3. MailChimp tops it for me as it allows you to send up to 3,000 emails a month for free.

  4. Email marketing software can also be used to send out newsletters, upcoming product releases, online courses!!

  5. Michelle says:

    I am very impressed with this blog here. I would very much like to get all your plugins. I have been using GetResponse for quite a while and would like to continue to use it. Thank you for the information.

  6. nullmoon says:

    You have to make sure anyone subscribing to your newsletter never forgets you. This relational marketing strategie it’s very important.

    I advise E-goi: It’s a Multichannel Marketing Platform with several channels, much better than maichimp. – E-mail, sms, mms, fax, voice boradcasting, social media..

  7. SEM Expert SF CA says:

    Having a mailing is definitively a must form any business owner. For a guaranteed deliverability of your emails, using the services of reputable companies such as aweber makes sense. There is always a cost involve to get quality. So if you serious about harnessing the power of email marketing, invest in those email programs: the payoff is far greater.

  8. Emily | Marketing for WAHM says:

    To have a better email list management we can optimize auto responders or other email marketing software available to us. this helps create and spread newsletters,updates and promos about the product or service we offer. still we have to make sure that the content must be customized and on a conversational friendly tone AND NOT a dragging sales pitch every time they get an email from us.

  9. Ivy says:

    Hi Florence at this time we do not plan on adding iContact autoresponder. Please see the following forum post for more information:

    http://www.tipsandtricks-hq.com/forum/topic/can-my-autoresponderemail-marketing-manager-be-integrated-with-your-plugins

  10. Florence says:

    Hello,
    Thanks for your effort to accommodate the above requests.
    I use iContact; is there any chance of an integration of its autoresponders with WP eStore?
    Your products are of great benefit to the online community. Thank you.
    Florence

  11. Konsti says:

    @Ivy & Admin: Wohoooowwww!! The Getresponse integration should be ready within the next 7 days? That’s FANTASTIC NEWS!!! Thanks a lot! I’m really looking forward to it!

    Konsti

  12. Ivy says:

    Hi Chris, We are actually working on the integration of GetResponce and eStore as we speak and it should be out within the next 7 days.

  13. Chris says:

    Hi Admin,

    I am very impressed with this blog here. I would very much like to get all your plugins. I have been using GetResponse for quite a while and would like to continue to use it. I would like to know whether you can show me some php tweak as to how to integrate my Getresponse to work with your plugins especially the eStore plugin? Thanks for that.

  14. admin says:

    Well this is more like an example (this is not exactly what is going to happen). The mail servers work based on patterns to identify spam before the email gets delivered to the inbox of the client. When you send thousands of emails from your own inbox some of them are bound to be flagged as spam by some user (maybe by mistake). When you do the same in a few days time some more will get flagged as spam. This is when less and less of your emails will actually get delivered to the inbox of the end client.

    Well known autoresponders (e.g. AWeber) are known by the mail servers. The mail serves already know that no one can send an email using AWeber unless the user opted in (meaning the user had to confirm that he/she would like to receive emails from this sender). This is why when you send emails using AWeber you can have some sort of guarantee that the email will be delivered to the client.

  15. miker says:

    If you were to send out say for example 1,000 emails from your personal email account without an autoresponder only about the first few would be delivered before your email account is blacklisted for sending spam

    This is a point I do not know, please tell in detail

  16. Les says:

    I use GWA Autoresponder which is a plugin for WP.
    I tried Mail Chimp but it is basically just email sending software, not a true autoresponder. All the hosted providers (Aweber, Email aces, Get reponse) require all previous customers on your hard-earned list to opt-in again. This is because you are sending emails on their servers, and they can’t take the risk of being shut down by somebody’s non-compliance with the Can-Spam Act.

    This left me with the only alternative of software hosted on my website. Because my website is built on WP, it was logical to try a WP plugin. GWA Autoresponder has good support, and after a few teething problems, works well and does everything I need.

  17. Konsti says:

    @admin:

    Thanks for the quick reply, admin.

    I’ve posted the links in the eStore forum (under general questions):

    http://www.tipsandtricks-hq.com/forum/topic/getresponse-integration#post-4396

    Konsti

  18. admin says:

    @Konsti, those links looks like what I will need. Please post them on the forum on a separate thread under WP eStore so it doesn’t get lost in the pile of comments:

    http://www.tipsandtricks-hq.com/forum/

    I will go through it later.

  19. Konsti says:

    Hello Admin, hello onlinemarketingdummy! I’m also very interested in an integration with Getresponse. And as it seems, there are more people asking for this. I’d love to help, but my coding knowledge is limited to copy-paste and then some extra grueling hours/days/weeks doing trial and error for some basic customizations.

    Anyhow, here’s maybe a starting poing:

    Getresponse API: http://dev.getresponse.com/

    Not sure about this one: http://blog.getresponse.com/paypal-integration.html

    Thank you,

    Konsti

  20. admin says:

    Yeah I plan to add getResponse at some stage.. this URL has more info on this:

    http://www.tipsandtricks-hq.com/forum/topic/can-my-autoresponderemail-marketing-manager-be-integrated-with-your-plugins

  21. Sorry to ask, do you plan to add getresponse into your integration? I have getresponse now and already use it for years, it is quite difficult for me to switch to other provider and getresponse also did the job well. So, I hope if you could consider to add getresponse into your system, as getresponse is also quite popular and very long time in the market.

  22. admin says:

    Hi Kenneth, I think it depends on an individual’s situation and business model. Starting to build your list on any stage is a good idea in my opinion. My advice is that do it properly (don’t just spam people).

  23. I certainly agree that an autoresponder is a neat service to have if you are drawing traffic to your website however if you are a beginner and have no substantial amount of traffic then I question if a person should be using an autoresponder service at this point. I would like to hear your take on this.

    Kenneth

  24. admin says:

    Yeah, AWeber can seem a bit expensive when starting out. I have used both AWeber and Mailchimp and found both of them to be very good at doing what they do though. Mailchimp’s free option is pretty good.

  25. Ivy says:

    Hi Edgar, Have you looked into MailChimp? MailChimp has some good options for smaller businesses.

    Cheers,
    Ivy

  26. edgar says:

    thanks for the great tips, I personally think awber is to expensive.

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