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Understanding the Under Utilized Auto Responder

Undoubtedly, one of the most powerful automation andpromotional tools we have for our online businesses is the autoresponder.Auto responders work for us when we're not online, theyprovide instant info...

Undoubtedly, one of the most powerful automation and
promotional tools we have for our online businesses is the auto

Auto responders work for us when we're not online, they
provide instant information for readers, and can follow up with
prospects automatically for us over time.

However, I still believe auto responders are often under
utilized, and occasionally even used in an improper manner.


The most common uses for auto responders are information
courses and follow up messages relating to business

However, should that be the limit of their use?

Auto responders can be used in a variety of ways, and each
gives you the opportunity to have further contact with potential
customers or clients. Why not capture as many of those
opportunities as possible?

Use them to provide further information on the topic your site,
ezine, or sales letter is discussing. Provide links to related
articles, testimonials, recommendations, lists of resources or
reference materials, detailed product information, or anything
else that may be of value.

I used to get many subscribers to an auto responder on my site
that simply asked if the visitor was in a hurry and if he or she
would rather get the information about my program by email to
view later on.

Auto responder links can even be used in advertising instead of
links leading directly to your site.

Of course, you'll need to consider whether or not what you are
promoting warrants the use of an auto responder or would be
better with a direct site link. For more thoughts on this subject,
send for my article "When and When Not To Use an Auto
Responder" at:

One other thing to consider is that an auto responder link with
information on demand can be valuable for others to use as

For instance, say you have an article in an auto responder.
Besides direct person to person recommendation by people
who've read the article, ezine publishers or webmasters may
use your auto responder link along with a short description
of the content in their ezines or on their sites -- even if there is
not room to run your complete article.

In general, links are easier to pass around than complete
content, and so it can be an advantage for you.


As with the anything else, the content of your auto responder
needs to have value for the reader or you will be wasting your
time as it won't be read. This should be obvious.

However, there are a couple of other things many overlook in
regards to content. I don't know how many times I've clicked
on a link to an auto responder, expecting more information
related to what I was viewing at the time, only to get something
either totally unrelated or that's just a repeat of what I'd already

This is not only disappointing to the reader, but a waste of
time. As you write the content for your auto responder, make
sure you remind your reader not only where the email came
from, but why it was he or she requested it in the first place. In
other words, rekindle their interest. This will give your auto
responder emails a much better chance of being read in case it
spends a few days in your reader's inbox before being opened.

From there, provide additional information on the topic of
interest, not just a regurgitation of what was already said.
Reminding people of what they read previously is fine, of
course, but put at least some variety into it.


Another thing to think about is the personality or tone of your
messages. To anyone that's been online for a while, it's obvious
when an email comes from an auto responder. However, that
doesn't mean your message needs to feel cold and impersonal.
Even if it is automatic, it's still coming from you. Let your
readers feel who it is that's writing to them, just as if you
composed the message explicitly for them.


Consider also the overall goal you have for each message.
What is it you want the reader to do after he or she finishes
reading? Do you want them to re-visit your site? Subscribe to
your ezine? Get back in touch with you? Define the action you
want your reader to take and call them to that action by the end
of the message if not sooner.


Almost exclusively, you'll want the first email from your multi-
message auto responder sent out immediately. From there,
though, how long do you wait before sending the next one?

In general, if you're providing information, such as in a
marketing course, you'll want to send messages daily until
finished. If your goal is to follow up on a visit to your business
opportunity, though, you may want to spread your messages
out a bit.

Your goal in this case is not just to provide information, but to
stay in contact over time and remind your reader to look further
into what you are offering. Send your messages more
frequently in the beginning, perhaps every other day, and less
frequently as time goes by. This will give you more
opportunities for contact without overstepping your welcome.


There are many auto responder services available online.
Some of the most popular are:

Get Response


List Warrior


Send Free

As well, there are a multitude of marketing programs that offer
auto responders as part of their program.

One more thing to consider, however, is the benefit of having
your auto responders reflect your own domain name. Having
your messages come directly from your site will only increase
the credibility of your business.

To get auto responders on your own domain, you'll need to
install a CGI script on your site. Again, some marketing
programs provide auto responder scripts as a benefit of
membership. One such program is the Internet Marketing

Searching for 'auto responder scripts' will get you several
results to check out as well.


The main thing auto responders can do for you in terms of
promotion is offer repeat contact with potential customers.
Auto responders carrying good content can recommend
products or services, refer to affiliate programs, solicit ezine
subscriptions or site visitors, re-emphasize benefits of a product
or opportunity, explore further benefits, and even carry related
classified advertising along with the message.

Start by providing useful content related to what it is you wish
to promote, and then include a call to action in each message
that directs people toward what you are offering.

Auto responders are certainly an indispensable tool for online
marketers. Consider how they can play a more useful role in
your business, and you're bound to increase your profits.

To get MORE "Up To Date" marketing and promotion
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*written by Joe Bingham of the NetPlay Marketer

Article Tags: Auto Responder, Auto Responders

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