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ACT!ion Newsletter: Winter 2010

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ACT!ion Newsletter: Winter 2010

[ Edited ]
 ACT!            
ACT! eNews

Winter 2010

Welcome to ACT! eNews

ACT! Online Community

You are viewing this ACT!ion edition in the ACT! Online Community

Get More from ACT!
ACT! E-marketing Takes Off with Landing Pages

Listen to Your ACT! Guru
ACT! E-marketing: A Powerful E-mail Marketing Tool

Your Business in Mind
Be Smart about It! Use Tested Best Practices for E-marketing

What's New with ACT!?
E-mail Marketing in Tall, Grande, and Venti®…Well Almost

Spotlight on ACT! Customers
Charter Capital Knows Where the Business Stands with ACT! by Sage Premium

From the ACT! Vault
Introduction to E-marketing

ACT! Technology Corner
Make It to the Inbox

Get real time answers to your questions.

ACT! CUSTOMER REFERENCE PROGRAM

Showcase Your Company’s Success, Receive Discounts on Your Upgrade Today!

ACT! WEBCASTS

Attend a live Webcast or view a recorded Webcast at your convenience.

Thoughts for upcoming Issues of the ACT!ion newsletter? We invite you to share them here in the ACT! Online Community. You must be a registered member to reply or post. To reply, click on the reply link at the top of this post.

© 2010 Sage Software, Inc. All rights reserved. Sage, the Sage logos,and the Sage product and service names mentioned herein are registered trademarks or trademarks of Sage Software, Inc., or its affiliated entities. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners

                                 
Message Edited by tmergel on 01-19-2010 02:16 PM
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ACT! Technology Corner: Make It to the Inbox

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

ACT! Technology Corner:

Make It to the Inbox

The e-mail deliverability requirements are constantly changing and the first step you can take to hit more inboxes with your marketing messages is to partner with a reputable provider like ACT! E-marketing. When developing your messages, there are a few simple things to take into consideration, and a few things you should make sure to avoid.

Subject Line

  • Don’t use special characters or numbers ($#!&%). No matter how excited you are about your e-mail, don’t end your subject line with an exclamation point!
  • Don’t use all CAPS. It is OK to capitalize every word, but do not capitalize every letter.
  • Stay away from buzz words.
  • Be relevant. Not only will this increase your open rates, but Spam filters look to see if you are talking about Trucks in your subject line, but airline tickets in the body of the e-mail.
Body of the E-mail

  • Keep it simple. Don’t include 10 pictures and 15 links. Spam filters like simple messages—so do your recipients.
  • Keep it short. Simple means a lot of things and one of these is length of your e-mail. To a spam filter, an e-mail with a lot of content has a higher chance of being junked.
  • No FTP links. Only link to http or https type links.
  • Simple formatting. Don’t have four different font sizes, three tables, some bold, some underlined, some italicized text. Again, your recipients will thank you.
Other Areas to Consider

  • From address. Send from John@xyzcorp.com, not info@xyzcorp.com. This will also increase open rates as your recipients will recognize you.
  • Safe sender. Ask your recipients to add you to their safe sender list. In Outlook® go to Actions>Junk Email>Junk Email Options>Safe Senders tab.
  • SPF record. When you send through your third-party ESP, to your recipient it looks like it is being delivered from you, which is great. However, the receiving ISP (Yahoo!®, Gmail™, Hotmail®, Comcast®, Cox®, etc.) can see that the e-mail is being sent from you, but is actually being delivered by Swiftpage. This discrepancy can cause your e-mails to be junked. To combat this, create an SPF record.
  • Spam check. Get in the habit of sending your e-mail through a spam check before you send it out. It will look at your e-mail as a spam filter would and give you feedback as to what should be changed.

Dan Ogdon
Vice President of Marketing
Swiftpage

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Message Edited by tmergel on 01-18-2010 02:07 PM
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From the ACT! Vault: Introduction to E-marketing

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

From the ACT! Vault:

Introduction to E-marketing

E-marketing is the act of nurturing a customer relationship from beginning to end—from the first time a prospective customer hears about your company or your product to the point where they become loyal, repeat buyers you can depend on for business, insight, and referral. How is this relationship nurtured, exactly? By conversations with your sales and support people, certainly, but also through your Website, e-mail campaigns, advertising, social media, events, and other means. And even if you’re a very small business, these conversations are complex—not to mention unique (no two are exactly the same). How do you keep track of each and every customer in a way that matches your value proposition? And how do you maximize your resources to find and nurture your customers in the most effective ways possible? How can you measure ROI and know which of your tactics are working and which need adjusting?

That’s where ACT! 2010 with ACT! E-marketing comes in.

ACT! E-marketing, a part of ACT! 20101, helps you achieve maximum efficiency with each of the major customer relationship phases—qualifying leads, identifying needs, campaigning, tracking communications, managing loyal customers, and requesting references and referrals. Each of these stages is fairly simple in and of itself—you have a target list, a message, and a medium (or two). The complexity comes from the following:

  • Managing all these tasks simultaneously
  • Nurturing each customer at their pace, not yours
  • Managing a large set of unique customers
If done correctly, E-marketing helps you know more about your customers, and helps your customers know more about you. You already know what a powerful tool ACT! is for managing interactions with your customers; ACT! E-marketing expands your reach significantly. Let’s look at some of the tasks you might perform, and measure, with ACT! E-marketing:

Our Webcast on February 3rd, 2010 will showcase how to use ACT! 2010 and ACT! E-marketing together to perform the above tasks effectively and efficiently. Use the power of ACT! E-marketing to help you automate these tasks so you can spend your time planning and developing, not executing. Help your salespeople focus on qualified leads, instead of wasting time sorting through cold leads. E-marketing puts your customers in charge of telling you what they want, so you spend less time asking and more time listening. That’s E-marketing!

Build Your Business with Proven E-Mail Marketing Techniques
Date: February 3, 2010
Time: 10 a.m.-11 a.m. Pacific Time, 1 p.m.-2 p.m. Eastern Time

Register now

Paul Buckley
Senior Product Manager
Sage

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1ACT! E-marketing requires an additional subscription

Message Edited by tmergel on 01-18-2010 02:05 PM
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Spotlight on ACT! Customers: Charter Capital Knows where the Business Stands with ACT! by Sage Premium

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

Spotlight on ACT! Customers:

Charter Capital Knows Where the Business Stands with ACT! by Sage Premium

Company Featured: Charter Capital

Industry Sector: Business Services

Product Featured: ACT! by Sage Premium

Number of Users: 10

Organization Overview
Charter Capital is a family-owned equipment finance company. Since 1977, the commercial finance company has been providing clients with customized financing solutions for their equipment and technology acquisitions at competitive rates.

Key Business Benefits
As a highly sales driven organization, Greg Miller, partner of Charter Capital, explains how ACT! provides the functionality to maintain customer relationships at a much lower cost than competing solutions, such as GoldMine® and Salesforce.com. Beyond a standard contact management solution, ACT! is easily customized to fit the needs of the sales force and organization by incorporating specific client information, such as the Dun & Bradstreet® Credit Scoring Report. Seamless integration with Microsoft® Outlook® and customized e-mail templates allow Charter Capital to direct communication and marketing campaigns at specific clientele depending on industry or vertical. With ACT!, Charter Capital is able to effectively manage its sales forecast, and as a result, knows where the business stands on any given day.

See Greg Miller talk about issuing custom e-mail templates for customer marketing (2:20 – 2:51)

See all video testimonials here

Do you have an ACT! story to tell? Join the Sage CRM Solutions Customer Reference Program.


Participating in the Sage CRM Solutions Customer Reference Program generates positive exposure for your organization, your people, and your products and services, while publicizing how your use of technology provides better business solutions and improved customer service. If you are interested in joining or would like to nominate someone, please e-mail our Reference Program Manager or call directly at 480-444-4923 to discuss program details and reference opportunities.

Ines Newby
ACT! Product Marketing
Sage

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Message Edited by tmergel on 01-19-2010 08:15 AM
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Posts: 616
Country: USA

What’s New with ACT!?: E-mail Marketing in Tall, Grande, and Venti®…Well Almost

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

What’s New with ACT!?

E-mail Marketing in Tall, Grande, and Venti®…Well Almost

As you may know, ACT! E-marketing is a cloud-based e-mail marketing service that enables you to execute sophisticated campaigns, while leveraging and building on your existing ACT! data. But, did you know there are several ACT! E-marketing service levels tailored to the level of marketing you need to support your business? Sorry to disappoint you, but they are not coffee-scented!

The Team level provides the most complete, multi-user e-marketing functionality, and Pro is the most popular. Review the options below.



Additionally, there are four Drip Marketing programs to help you nurture prospects automatically. The Platinum level is the most powerful, because it enables the most robust drip marketing campaigns. Review the options below.



If you’re interested in learning more, visit http://www.act.com/emarketing, contact the ACT! Sales Team by calling 866-903-0006, or an ACT! Certified Consultant* or Preferred Software Reseller*.

* ACT! Certified Consultants and Preferred Software Resellers are third-party vendors. Sage and its affiliates are in no way liable or responsible for any claims made related to the products or services provided by third-party vendors.

Stephanie Spangler
ACT! Product Marketing
Sage

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Message Edited by tmergel on 01-18-2010 02:03 PM
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Posts: 616
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Your Business in Mind: Be Smart About It! Use Tested Best Practices for E-marketing

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

Your Business In Mind

Be Smart About It! Use Tested Best Practices for E-marketing

Reaching customers and prospects through e-mail marketing campaigns is rapidly becoming the most effective and preferred marketing method. It nets the best results for the least cost. Fortunately, many marketing professionals have already tested and discovered what works and what doesn’t, so you can take full advantage of the knowledge that’s already available.

Here are tips for creating successful e-mails:

Subject line: An interesting, benefit-oriented subject line is essential to getting recipients to read your e-mail. These are probably the most important words you’ll write!

Shorter is better, but only if you can get across the offer or benefit. A rule of thumb is less than 12 words and 60 characters (with spaces). Test it by e-mailing the subject line to yourself and see if you can read it at a glance as it comes into your inbox.

Get to the heart of your offer and why it is valuable to your audience. Consider these subject lines for a store selling discounted designer shoes:

New women’s shoes now in stock

Just in! The latest women’s shoes straight from top designers

Deep discounts on women’s shoes just in from top designers

The third subject line would be our favorite because it gets across the idea of discounts, new designer shoe selection, and an element of urgency. However, if customers aren’t interested in discounts but want the chance to buy designer shoes before anyone else, the second line might work better. Obviously the more a subject line can pull a reader’s interest, the better it is, which means you need to know what motivates your audience.

Testing subject lines is recommended if you can. Divide the e-mail list in half and keep everything the same except for different subject lines. See which subject line gets the higher e-mail open rate. Learn from that experience so you can obtain even higher open rates the next time.

From line: Make sure you use a recognizable company name, and possibly even a person’s name and e-mail address. This reassures recipients that you are a real person or business and not trying to spam them. Using the example above, the “from” would be the store name, or perhaps the manager’s store e-mail address.

Preview pane: The preview pane is the top three lines or so of your e-mail. It shows up at the bottom or side of the recipient’s e-mail client without the recipient clicking on the e-mail. Like the subject line, grabbing readers’ interest here will motivate them to open the e-mail and read it in full.

If you use only images in the top of your e-mail, many e-mail clients will disable the images and show nothing. Better to have an image and a (separate) compelling headline that explains the offer or benefit, perhaps with a link to more information. This also aids the growing number of people who read e-mail on the small screen on mobile devices.

Main copy: If you don’t remember anything else, remember this: concise and benefit-oriented. Don’t write lengthy paragraphs that would look overwhelming to the reader; limit yourself to two to three sentences per paragraph. Use bullet points that can be read at a glance to explain the features and benefits of your product or offer. Keep to one main offer (two at the most) so readers understand what you want them to do. And make sure the offer/call to action and contact information or links are repeated, perhaps once in the heading and once in the body copy.

Most of all, put yourself in the recipient’s position, getting e-mail in the middle of a busy day. What would you want to know? What wouldn’t you want to know? Explain only what the recipient needs to know to take action. If you think more information is necessary, then link to a Web site or information sheet for more detailed information.

By incorporating best practices into your e-marketing campaigns, you create a better opportunity for success.

Joyce Ethridge
Senior Copywriter
Sage

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Message Edited by tmergel on 01-18-2010 02:03 PM
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Posts: 616
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Listen to Your ACT! Guru: ACT! E-marketing: A powerful E-mail Marketing Tool

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

Listen to Your ACT! Guru

ACT! E-marketing: A Powerful E-mail Marketing Tool

Relationship building is the backbone of today’s modern marketing tactics. With the ever increasing “noise” that bombards each of us on a daily basis, E-marketing has the ability to cut right through the noise and deliver relevant content to the right contacts at the right time. ACT! E-marketing, a fully integrated product of ACT! by Sage 2010, has combined e-mail marketing with surveys, reporting tools, and the ability to automate sales and marketing processes so that businesses like yours can target leads and continue building lasting relationships with your customers.

ACT! E-marketing gives you the tools to:

Reach your contacts
Inform, invite, and nurture build relationships with e-mail marketing to ultimately drive more revenue. ACT! E-marketing allows you to send marketing messages to defined targets directly from the ACT! environment and automatically records what happened with each e-mail that was opened and clicked.

Grow your database
ACT! E-marketing Surveys allow you to gather information to grow a quality database. Surveys are a great way to invite people to sign up for your e-newsletter, register for your event, update contact information and gauge your customer’s satisfaction. With ACT! E-marketing the responses will automatically be brought back into your ACT! database.

Qualify your leads
There is no need to place another cold call—ACT! E-marketing helps you know which contacts are most interested based on their interaction with the e-mail messages you have sent them. Deliver a ranked list of qualified contacts to each sales team member to start closing business with the people that have expressed interest in your product or service.

Automate your business
ACT! E-marketing allows you to create a multi-step marketing plan by automatically segmenting contacts into campaigns specific to their preferences. A campaign consists of any combination of e-mail, call lists, postcards, and more. You set up the sequence and it will automatically run on time. You can also set conditional actions that will send different messages to contacts based on their previous actions. The recipients that clicked on a specific link will then be sent a follow-up e-mail specific to that link, and so on. The automated marketing part of ACT! E-marketing is perfect for launching a new product or service, retaining and upselling your current customers, driving contacts to events, and managing and converting new leads.

Annie Cooley
Social Media and Content Coordinator
Swiftpage

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Message Edited by tmergel on 01-18-2010 02:02 PM
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Posts: 616
Country: USA

Get More from ACT!: ACT! E-marketing Takes Off with Landing Pages

[ Edited ]

Welcome to ACT!ion

ACT!ion

Winter 2010

ACT!ion > Winter 2010

Get more from ACT!

ACT! E-marketing Takes Off with Landing Pages

ACT! E-marketing is set to launch several new features; one of the most exciting is the addition of landing pages! Landing pages can be easily added to your e-mail campaign, which gives you greater ability to present information clearly to your customers and prospects, and helps you be efficient in organizing your campaigns!

A landing page is the bridge between an e-mail you send to your recipient and the Web page (or pages) you want them to browse. Why is this significant? Because the landing page becomes part of your campaign. You can easily design the landing pages to look as much like your e-mail as you’d like. Now you have the opportunity to simplify the content in your message, and provide a landing page for more detailed information and other call to actions. You no longer need to cram your entire message and call to action into the e-mail; you can use the e-mail as a teaser to direct recipients to one or more landing pages. Your call to action is easier to facilitate and measure, by knowing when a recipient clicks through to a landing page.

Landing pages help you achieve higher click-through rates and better results.

The new landing page feature allows you to create and edit landing pages in exactly the same way as e-mail templates. Launch them just as easily with the click of a mouse. Now, you can make your e-mails clearer and easier to read—which will entice recipients to click one of the links in your e-mail and visit one or more landing pages. The landing page can look exactly like the e-mail (background colors, branding, images, etc) so the experience is as if they’re still browsing your e-mail! But now, you have them on a Web page and can serve them more information—text, documents, images, or even links to other pages. And you know when they transition from an e-mail to a landing page, so you can measure your campaign effectiveness easily and even follow up individually!

The best part about the new landing page feature is that the pages are hosted for you by Swiftpage™1. They’re as easy to create as e-mails, and you can have a Web presence launched and hosted in minutes!

You can easily link these pages to your own company Web page or join several together. Either way, you can launch them in seconds and they’re hosted by Swiftpage. No need to work through your ISP or Web hosting provider. You now have the tools to quickly and easily create a Web presence to complement your e-marketing activities.

Now you’ll be able to take your E-marketing campaigns to a whole new level. Crisp, clear messages in your recipient’s inbox will result in a stronger response. Create powerful, flexible campaigns that integrate Web pages in minutes–change them and reconfigure them quickly and easily. No additional Web authoring or hosting costs involved! You know when customers click through to your landing pages, and you can control the experience they’ll have when they get there. Flexibility, power, and control—at an extremely affordable price!

Take off – with landing pages!

Paul Buckley
Senior Product Manager
Sage

Did you find this article useful? Let us know by posting your thoughts here in the ACT! Online Community. You must be a registered member to reply or post. To reply, click on the reply link at the top of this post.



1Swiftpage is the service provider of Sage’s ACT! E-marketing service. ACT! E-marketing requires an additional subscription.

Message Edited by tmergel on 01-18-2010 02:01 PM
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Re: Get More from ACT!: ACT! E-marketing Takes Off with Landing Pages

I don't see how to access the landing page option. Can someone tell me where this is or how to access? Thanks,. Jaime Raskulinecz
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Posts: 124
Country: United States

Re: Get More from ACT!: ACT! E-marketing Takes Off with Landing Pages

Jaime,

 

The new features have not gone live yet, but will be turned on very soon.  You will receive email notification when they do.  Thanks for checking!

 

Regards,

Paul

Paul Buckley
Senior Product Manager
paul.buckley@sage.com