How building a data list could transform your small business

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In this article I provide an example of how building a data list could transform your business. I work with many clients in differing industries and sectors, which has given me the opportunity to witness first hand how building a data list can really transform a small business. However, I have to admit it doesn’t work for everyone. In this article I am going to share with you some of the ways in which I capture data for some of my clients and how we’ve used that data to good effect.

I’m going to begin with a client who runs a small Indian restaurant in Staffordshire, UK. We started to work with them about 6 months ago, when an existing client asked me to help. 6 months ago, they had no website, let alone, own a data list. To date we have built a data list with over 700 names and email addresses.

The reason I want to use this as an example is because it really demonstrates just how simple it has been to build a data list, and the exceptional results we’ve had putting that list into good use.

In order to encourage a website visitor to part with their name and email, there has to be a mutual exchange. One way to do this is to offer discounts and incentives, or plug what we call the knowledge gap. In this case, we leveraged both.

To build the list, we utilised their ‘dining in’ and ‘takeaway menus’ as downloads. Whilst many restaurant’s place such material on their website for all to browse, they are really missing the opportunity to gather visitor data. This is exceptionally important because 96% of visitors to your website will never by on their first visit – in fact they simply hit the ‘back button’ or navigate away to another website and never return.

In this instance, to obtain the menu download, we simply placed a form asking for their name and email, in return for the menu in PDF format. The opt in text, encouraged them to part with their personal data, not only to obtain the download, but to receive future offers and discounts.

How building a data list can make for a disgruntled user

Don’t get me wrong, not everyone has liked this tactic, but overall we’ve had a 99% success rate. We monitor the entries and we keep the database clean by removing fake or false entries. The key is to be genuine in your offer, don’t abuse the personal data, respect the individual and their inbox.

To date we collected just over 700 genuine names and email addresses. Not bad for a small Indian restaurant / takeaway in a village in Staffordshire.

We’ve recently put that data to good use by sending out a bulk email promoting a Macmillan Cancer Charity evening at the restaurant. Now I’ve never worked in the charity sector, so I have no first hand experience of email open rates etc, but I can honestly say it’s probably like most sectors which is in the region of 19% (according to Mail Chimp). curry-inn-mailer

We sent the email to 370 individuals via two data lists. a) Dining In downloads and b) Takeaway menu downloads. We kept the data separate so we can personalise future offers.  To date the open rates have been 59.6% and 56.6% respectively. Anyone in email marketing will tell you that this is an exceptional statistic for a bulk emailer. building a data list

However, the opening rate is just part of the story, what determines the success of this email is the number of customers they gained as a result of the email. The email was informing them of a Macmillan Charity event being held on 1st and 2nd Feb 2016.

Within just a couple of days, the event was sold out. Entirely, from email recipients.

One point I would like to point out in relation to open rates. This was the first ever bulk email we sent to the data list, so we would except a higher opening rate than perhaps if it was the 10th email. This is because the recipients were probably curious to have received an email from the Curry Inn, having never received one previously. This is why you should manage carefully how many emails you send out, the more you send the higher the ‘unsubscribe’ requests you are likely to have. There is no doubt, it is a fine balancing act between having something important to promote, versus an individuals privacy and time. However, we should not detract from just how powerful and easy it is to build a data list and to utilise that list to good effect. Whether your a Curry House in Staffordshire, or a supplier of some of the best industrial steps on the market, you can harness the power of data lists and email with relative ease.

How building a data list helps a Beauty Salon in London – Example 2

For my second example I am going to share details of how building a data list for a beauty clinic/salon has tripled their turnover. I’ve been working with a client in London for about 2 years now, helping them to improve their website ROI and conversions. Initially, the focus was to develop a customer and search friendly website, this involved working on technical seo, content, as well as the internal and external seo ranking factors. In two years we have developed a data list comprising over 1000 names, email address, preferred treatments etc. This is split into several data lists, primarily based on landing pages. We’ve built this data list, through offering incentives and small reductions on treatments and packages – making sure every page has a call to again. Here is an example:

Call to Action - Building a Data List

Again, it highlights, just how easy it is to built a very good data list. To build a list that contains over a 1000 names, email, preferred treatments etc for us marketeers is like cold hard cash.

We hope you found this article useful. If you like it, please do not forget to ‘like’ and ‘share’ below.

Related articles:

Why building an email data list is much better than buying an email data list

How a small beauty salon attracted 60,000 website visitors and 500 new customers in 12-months

5 reasons why you should collect website visitor data

What you should do now

If you are serious about having a great website, you should read my blog, it’s packed with ideas and suggestions to help improve your site.

If you’d like me to dramatically improve your website and bring you new customers, visit my website designs for small businesses page and then contact me for more information.

And if you have any comments or questions about this article, contact me.

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