One of the major benefits of using an autoresponder is its immediate response—24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year—providing immediate gratification for the recipient. This is particularly valuable in any online business where the faster the response, the better the chance you have of getting the business.
Autoresponders are a real time saver, eliminating the need for manual responses for many mundane and routine requests. They also enable you to track responses to various offers to assist you in your ongoing marketing efforts.
One big advantage with today’s autoresponders is the ability to schedule multiple messages at predetermined intervals. The first response can go immediately, with a second message timed to go two days after the first, a third message to go five days after the second, and so on. Market research shows that a prospect needs to be exposed to your message multiple times to become a motivated buyer.
Today’s autoresponders are getting even more sophisticated in terms of mail list administration. These programs gather the email addresses of people requesting information and store them in a database. The program adds new names to the database and eliminates email addresses that no longer work.
Today’s autoresponder programs also provide reports about site visitors requesting information. This technology is very cost-effective when compared to manual responses by a human, not to mention the associated telephone and fax costs.
Personalization is a standard feature of today’s autoresponder programs. Autoresponders are used to send all kinds of information, including:
- Articles on your business, products, or services
- Trivia about your business, products, or services
- Weekly gardening tips, ski tips, or other tips of interest to your target markets
- Movie of the week or featured film series
- Checklists appropriate for your target market—for example:
- Moving checklists
- Sailing checklists
- Wedding planning information, where you send a list of items that need to be taken care of, in the month they need to be taken care of.
You can provide a copy of your newsletter so people can read a copy before subscribing, or anything else in which your target market might be interested.
Why use an autoresponder when you could just provide the information on your Web site? There are many reasons. With the autoresponder you have the interested party’s name and email address; you don’t get that from a visitor to your site. The autoresponder also provides you with the opportunity to send multiple or sequential messages to your potential customer.
You can incorporate viral marketing tactics into your autoresponder messages as well. Use this opportunity to encourage recipients to tell others about the information they are receiving, or present a way for them to provide
a copy of the information to their friends. It’s important when using viral marketing to provide the recipient with the opportunity to subscribe to receive your information.