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52 Days : The Cancer Journal is available

52 Days:The Cancer Journal
52 Days: The Cancer Journal
As you know, fortunately there is more to life than email and digital marketing.  There are real issues that we all must inevitably face no matter who we are. Unfortunately cancer is one of these issues.  I have written a book called 52 Days : The Cancer Journal to help you, and your loved ones when you are facing the monster known as cancer. 
Please tell your friends, family and loved ones about this book.  It will provide comfort, support and information when you and they need it the most.  There is always hope!

I welcome your questions, comments, stories and inquiries.

Coming Soon: Jordan Lane's new book 52 Days The Cancer Journal

“There are only a handful of exceedingly rare diseases whose diagnoses can engender as much fear and anxiety as the diagnosis of cancer.  The word “malignancy” alone is so pervasively menacing as to conjure the image of a malevolent being crawling through a loved one’s body…or the darkest of poisons seeping through their veins.” ~ Shane Dormady, MD, PhD

52 Days The Cancer Journal is the true story of one woman’s heroic battle with a rare and aggressive cancer that persistently sought to take her life and left her in a coma for two weeks.  This awe-inspiring story is told through the eyes of her son-in-law who fastidiously documented the emotional stages that a cancer patient and her loved ones navigated through from disbelief, helplessness, despair, fear and sometimes hope.  52 Days The Cancer Journal is a must read for anyone who has been touched by cancer’s pervasive grasp.

Please visit for more information.

Email Marketing Don'ts

It's difficult enough getting the word out and attracting the right attention to your campaign. Whether it's for a cause or a way to help generate business and attention, you don't want to put out the wrong message. Otherwise, you could be doing far more harm than good. It's important that you take the right approach and learn from the mistakes of others.

Here's a list of some of the biggest don'ts when you're devising an email marketing campaign:

Begging for Patronage
You want to constantly make people aware of your products and services, but if you beg someone for their patronage, you run the risk of really turning potential business and clients off. Instead of begging, which comes across as needing or desperate, think of ways in which newsletters and information can seem more like an update to what's happening in your business. Sometimes letting people know that your company or organization is still active and taking new steps can be enough to keep them interested in your products or services. Don't bombard people with endless attempts to sell yourself.

Some might argue that spamming is an overall effective approach to business, but by no means should you do this – and do not associate with these people. Do not send spam emails regardless of what anyone says. If you're just throwing email addresses that you come across onto your email list, you're likely to get deleted quickly and harm your online reputation. Instead, get in touch with the people who really want your services. If you're not sure who your specific demographic is, then use a company like SurveyHead that will put you in touch with those who really want your business.

Graphic Heavy Content
You don't want your emails to seem stagnant, but there's a big difference between adding a few well placed images that spice up your message and making your emails look like a cartoonist threw up on them. Having flashing banners and animated gifts can send the wrong message to people you're trying to do business with. You want to come of as professional. So remember, less is usually more.  (There is, however, a definite time and place for a well placed animated.gif)

These are some common email marking mistakes that people often make. You want to ensure that you're taking the right approach with your business. Otherwise, you may have had the best of intentions, but you could end up shooting yourself in the proverbial foot with some bad approaches.

Please share your thoughts!

Tell Me What You Want:Email Preference Centers

After you get a subscriber you want to keep them.  Let your subscriber choose what emails they wish to receive from you and how often.  This is not only a great best practice but can also save potential unsubscribes.  Here is a great example of an email from GE toting their preference center. So Tell Me What You Want, What You Really Really Want!

Mobile Sign-Up in Direct Mail

Here is a direct mail example from Dick's Sporting Goods where they promote their social media and Mobile Sign-up.  This is a great example of using direct mail to promote online endeavors.

Do you have other examples?
What has worked and not worked for you?
Do you use mobile for your marketing Campaigns?

Transactional Emails Can Provide Big Returns

A transactional email is an email that is sent in response to an action. The most common types of transactional emails are order confirmations, ship confirmations, and order tracking emails. Transactional emails are generally high performers. On average they have seven times the open rate and four times the click rate when compared to bulk email. Also, transaction rates (i.e. purchases) can be four to eight times higher in transaction emails compared to bulk emails.

Here are a few reasons why these types of emails perform so well are:

  • Transitional emails are sent to already engaged (purchasers) email addresses.
  • The recipients in most cases are expecting an email after a transaction and then interact with it once it arrives.
  • Since the recipients are already engaged with your brand, they have a higher chance of making another purchase from the transactional email.
10 Transactional Email Best Practices:
  1. Say "Thank You" in the email
  2. Send optimized transactional emails using HTML
  3. Include your branding
  4. Include dynamic product cross-sells using product recommendation engines, or seasonal offers
  5. Provide a link to track order and shipping status
  6. Include some site navigation in the email creative
  7. Test the Inclusion of an offer ($ off, % off, free shipping, etc.)
  8. Include links to all of your Social Media efforts
  9. Promote email sign up
  10. Do not include an offer in the subject line or as the main message
Let me know when you are ready to begin or enhance your Transactional Emails!

Bank of America Steps It Up To Stop Spammers

It is a sad reality that there are unscrupulous folks that send spam and fishing email. Some of the most authentic looking and most dangerous spam I have seen in my in box have been from fishers trying to replicate Bank of America Emails. These fake emails usually notify me that my account has been frozen and then encourages me to click on a link or to reply with personal information.

Today I received a legitimate email from Bank of America. This email introduces updates they are making to their emails. This includes a new look, personalization, a security checkpoint, alert information and more. I am sure the flood of B of A spoofed emails has been a headache for the bank. Hopefully these changes will solve the issue and stop the spammers.

Here is the email I received from Bank of America:

Here is more on the B of A alerts:
What do you think about the changes Bank of America is making? Do you think an email redesign will slow down the spammers? What else should businesses do to stop spammers? Share your thoughts!

Email Client Market Share : Report On The Top 10 Email Clients

Fingerprint recently released a report on the top 10 email clients.

Right click the image to see a larger version.

Data was collected from 250,000,000 email recipients using the Fingerprint analysis tool. This chart shows the top 10 email clients by market share. This wasc Compiled February 24th 2010.

The Top 10 are:

Email client  (Market share)
1- Outlook (43%)
Outlook 2003 and earlier ( 34%)
Outlook 2007 (9%)
2- Hotmail  (17%)
3- Yahoo! Mail  (13%)
4- Gmail (5%)
5- Apple Mail     (4%)
6- iPhone  (4%)
7- Thunderbird      (2.4%)
8- Windows Live Mail (Desktop)                (2%)
9- AOL Mail  (1.2%)
10- Lotus Notes    (0.4%)
Others (8%)

Does anything in this list surprise you?

Email clients are recorded when images are loaded within an email. Some email clients block external images, or are not capable of displaying HTML email. That includes non-current models of Blackberry, and other mobile devices unable to view HTML email. As a result these are not tracked and do not appear in the report.

Furthermore, the report only shows the top 10 email clients detected. In total there are over 3,000 different clients. Because of this diversity we recommend analyzing your own mailing lists to gain the most accurate information, since results can vary greatly depending on your lists' demographics.

Invitations In Email: Make It Fun and to the Point

From time to time you might want to send an invitation to your subscribers. Maybe there is a private event, a new store opening, a special sale or other event that you would love your subscribers to attend.

I recently saw a great invitation email from Shutterfly.  Shutterfly uses a template very similar to personal event email invitations (namely “e-vite”) to promote their “exclusive sale”. It gives the user a more personal, special feel, just like they are being invited to a special party by their friend. Simple, personal, and straight to the point. Nice!

The Subject Line is: Feel the love. Save 20% at our invitation-only Insider Sale.

How To Get More Clicks: The Secret Revealed

Email Marketers are always trying to find ways to get openers to click their emails.
  • Does a 20% off coupon parlay more clicks than Free Shipping?
  • What day of week generates the best results?
  • What about time of day?
In a recent email Urban Outfitters took the direct route – they asked for the click.  The email below is giving their subscribers an “Exclusive First Look” at their new styles.  To seal the deal they make it clear that items are only available by clicking the main image from the email.

Giving email subscriber an exclusive look is a great way to reward them for being part of the Urban Outfitters email list.  UO makes their subscribers feel special.  This will hopefully convert non-clickers into clickers and then purchasers.

Well done.

Here is the creative.
The subject line is simply Exclusive First Look
P.S. Is it just me or do the Urban Outfitter models make you depressed?  I love the brand but whenever I see their gaunt models I wish I were able to tell them a joke to make them smile and then feed them something hearty.