How to Keep Your Database Thriving Even If Your Tasting Room is Closed or Slow

About once a month we get a call from a client saying, “My emails aren’t performing well, I want to talk to you about redesigning them.

Our response is usually to ask questions about their database and data collection plan which confused them until we explain that the quality and growth rate of the database is the number one factor in the success of any email campaign.

When we ask about the database, the client typically responds with how large their database is. Knowing how many are in the database is helpful, but typically that is only part of the story. It is also helpful to know your growth rate. We don’t have a standard of this to share with you because it depends on your seasonality, if you have any targeted campaigns for your mailing list growth, if you are involved with events, if you have a tasting room, etc. But, we can share with you that the typical decay rate is conservatively around 24% a year. That means that you will lose 2% of your database every month. So, if you’re not at least growing by 2% every month, you are going backward.

Even if your tasting rooms are closed, you can still grow your list, so, don’t panic. Capturing leads digitally is nothing new to online retailers who don’t have a physical location – they’ve been doing this for years.

Capture Email Addresses on Your Website

You can beef up your capture techniques on your website. In a recent study by of the top 500 online retailers

  • 7.7% put email sign-up in the header
  • 44.4% use pop-ups
  • 54.3% below the fold or in the footer (56.4% using a form, 10% using links)
  • 29% of retailers incentivized people to opt-in to their email program

Capture Email Addresses on Your Facebook Page

You can also collect addresses on Facebook through a button that asks for signups. If you roll over it as an admin, it will actually help you put together an ad campaign to drive people to sign up directly on Facebook. And with everybody bored at home right now, social media usage is way up. We’re seeing great returns on our clients. So, if you have $50-$100 to spend right now, a quick campaign like this is a really good idea.

Capture Email Addresses with a Social Media Ad Campaign

Both Facebook and Snapchat have easy lead gen campaign tools where you can set up a campaign, target it to you the customers you’re looking for, and let it fly.

Lead generation ads are designed for capturing intent from everyone interested in your brand. A prospect taps on your ad and a form pops up already auto-filled with their contact information ready to be sent to you for easier, streamlined lead gen. You can place this ad in the desktop and mobile news feed and they are available only with the lead generation objective to help you capture more leads.

The lead generation ad form can be customized so that you gather all the information you need. It pre-populates contact information, but you can also add questions, which can be multiple choice or open, although they recommend you keep it very short.

You can also add an optional Context Card which I’m showing here. In this way, you can add extra information to highlight the benefits of signup. We have found anecdotally that giving people a little extra introductory information helps with conversion when they don’t know you.

You can also add an End Card: a confirmation screen after your form has been submitted with an automatically generated message

Lead generation ads ensure there is far less drop-off as the information you need is already filled out for customers. Whether you want customers to subscribe to a newsletter, or attend an event, lead generation ads make it easier for you to begin a dialogue and start a conversation between you and a prospect.

Capture Email Addresses Via Send To A Friend

And then don’t forget the send to a friend feature on your emails. We see this in our own marketing. WGM sends out news and research to our own mailing list and we always get a few signups every time we send out an email because we know the article or blog has been forwarded to somebody and they liked the content, so they signed up. You don’t get a ton of signups this way, but it does help. The best benchmark we could find was from Litmus which said the top 1% of most viral emails -so the best performers – generated 1 forward for every 21 opens

So don’t feel that list growth is hopeless if your tasting room is closed. There are several activities you can do while closed or restricted to continue growing your database.

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