Autoresponders are highly flexible, multifaceted programs that can do so much more than simply automatically answer your email. Here are a few ideas that you can use to help you to use your autoresponder more productively and transform that casual visitor into a customer. 

Here are just a few ideas that you can use your autoresponder for...

1. Publish a newsletter. Certain quality auto responders will manage subscriptions and follow-up with interested prospects. The newsletter can keep your visitors informed about your services or products, while building your reputation as a credible expert in your particular business.

2. Publish a newsletter only for your affiliates. Inform them of current sales you are running and of promotional material that your affiliates can use themselves to increase their commissions. Include tips, advice, and techniques that your affiliates can use to successfully go out and promote your business.

3. Write reviews. Cover books, software, music, e-books, movies, etc., and put each review in an auto responder. Review your affiliate programs, using a link to your affiliate's page in your auto responder.

4. Distribute your articles. Writing and distributing targeted articles is a powerful tool to build your business credibility, bring traffic to your site, and increase your sales potential. If your articles contain valuable information, many editors will print what is known as a resource box for you. A resource box contains your bio and a brief description of your service or product. It can also contain your auto responder address. Let's say you've written fifty articles. Put them on separate auto responder
accounts and create a master list that contains the titles of each article, the auto responder address, and a brief abstract. Then promote your master list. Additionally, include your publishing guidelines so your affiliates can add their articles to your list, increasing the number of writers who are represented in your article list.

5. Create mailing lists. Inform subscribers to your articles when you've written new ones that they may want to publish in their own newsletter or website.

6. Automate your sales process. Use an ad to insure repeated exposure of your message, which has been proven to effectively increase sales. In your ad, put your Auto responder address where a visitor will be exposed to numerous marketing materials. This multiplies the chances of converting visitors into customers. For example, if you're selling a particular product, put testimonials about how spectacular it is on your auto responder, and add a detailed, enticing description of your product.

7. Distribute advertising. Let's say you sell advertising on your website or in your newsletter or e-zine. Set your auto responder to send the information about rates and how to place an ad automatically to all prospects' email addresses. Then have your auto responder follow-up. It can also send notification of any special deals you are currently offering.

8. Distribute an email course. Each day, have your auto responder send out another lesson. Just be sure that each lesson has quality content - not a sales pitch. Your content will do the selling for you, and will do it much more effectively. You can include tips centred on a different topic for each lesson, illustrating how your product will benefit the reader. Include the tangible benefits the visitor will reap by purchasing your product. Make sure to include a paragraph or two at the end of each
lesson enticing your prospect to consider making a purchase.

9. Automate a reminder about your service or product after a visitor has completed your course. This will increase the possibility of sales from visitors who have taken your course but are dragging their feet about actually making a purchase. You can also use these reminders to promote new products or services, and the products and services of your affiliate programs.

10. Distribute free reports. This gives your visitor an idea of the type of information you can provide and the quality of your product or service. Make sure these reports are not sales letters or you will more than likely lose a potential customer than gain a sale.

11. Create trivia quizzes on your site and place the answers in an auto responder. Your visitor will then be motivated to request your auto responder, and you will have a record of the visitors' email addresses who took your  quiz. Or create a contest and have any visitors that enter send their responses to your auto responder. Your Auto responder can be set-up to send them a confirmation of their entry.

12. Offer a trial version of your product. Give your prospects a sample of your ebook, course, software, membership, etc. People who are exposed to a little taste often end up wanting the whole pie. You can also capture their email addresses when you offer them a free trial from your website. Set up your auto responder to give instructions on how to obtain their free trial, and then make sure to follow-up to try and close the sale.

13. Link to hidden pages on your auto responder. For example, a hidden page could be your affiliate page that contains graphics, promotional articles, and text links that interested affiliates can make use of. Inform visitors that they may have free access to your affiliate page by simply requesting your auto responder. You will then gather a list of visitors who may be interested in becoming your affiliates.

14. Use an auto responder on your order page. Post a request form for visitors to be notified of special offers or discounts in the future. This creates a very effective mailing list that contains the names of people who are already your customers.

15. Put your links page on your auto responder. It should contain up to fifty links that would be of particular interest to your visitors. Make sure to add your own promotional copy at the top or bottom of this page.

Now that you have proof that autoresponders can be used creatively, see if you can come up with some brilliant ideas of your own!

By Sally Ormond

You're doing alright as an internet marketer.

Your blog is getting loads of visits, which means there are loads of people hanging around your website.

That's great, but are you getting any benefit from them?

Are they sharing your posts?

Are they taking a look around your website?

Are they signing up for your RSS feed or newsletter?

No, they're not.

Ah, that's a problem.

Having loads of traffic coming to your site makes your visiting analytics look great, but if that traffic is then just leaving without having interacted in any way shape or form, what's the point of it?

The problem is you're not asking them to do anything.

They arrive, they look, they go. Unless you say "oi, how about signing up to my RSS feed or newsletter?" they're not going to do anything.

It's true.

So how do you do that?

Boosting your sign ups

The best place to start is by adding a passing comment along those lines (but far more politely) in your blog posts.

Add a footnote, or something in your author's bio that lets them know you offer a newsletter, what it usually contains and how often it's sent along with a call to action to get them to sign up.

You should also be utilising your social media channels. They can be a great way to boost your sign ups. Send a tweet out or Facebook update before the next issue of your newsletter goes out urging people to sign up so they don't miss out. If you've hit a milestone (such as your 100th newsletter), shout about it.

When it comes to giving your blog a boost, if you write a series of articles announce it through social media. In fact, every blog post you publish should also go out through Facebook or Twitter. As your readers get to like you more (or want to keep up with that series of articles you've written) they'll subscribe to your RSS feed so they don't miss out.

Of course, then there's the good old-fashioned call to action. Make sure these are liberally dotted about, especially at the end of a really hot blog post. You know the ones - they've been attracting loads of traffic for days or weeks, so make the most of that exposure by placing a sign up call to action at the end.

By following these simple steps you'll see your subscription numbers soar, boosting your exposure and reputation.

Sally Ormond, Briar Copywriting, is a professional copywriter, SEO website copywriter and advertising copywriting with extensive experience in both B2B and B2C markets.

To have a chat about how she can help you send an email to or call +44(0)1449 779605.

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