A Home Builder’s Essential Guide to RSS-to-Email
Do you have a list of hundreds, even thousands, of leads that you just don’t have the time to reach out to by email on a regular basis? Are you missing out on potential sales? What if you could create an automated lead nurturing email campaign that reached prospects on their desktop, tablet or smartphone?
An RSS-to-Email campaign can do all of that.
How it Works
An RSS-to-Email campaign converts your home builder blog posts into an email that is delivered straight to the inbox of your blog subscribers. An email is delivered with a short snippet of your blog post and a link that leads back to your blog where readers can view the entire article. You can set up your RSS-to-Email campaign to send an email every time you publish a blog post, or as a weekly email newsletter that includes all of the blog posts that you’ve published during the week.
An RSS-to-Email campaign will drive prospects back to your blog and your website again and again with compelling content and calls-to-action that move buyers to the next step in the sales funnel (the on-site appointment).
An RSS-to-Email campaign is one of the most important elements of a home builder’s online marketing strategy for several reasons:
Frequency: Your blog subscribers agree to receive an email from you whenever you publish a new blog article. If you publish based on the recommended schedule of at least eight times per month, that means that you are connecting with your prospects twice per week – at their request. This gives you more opportunities to build trust, credibility, and urgency. (See: 104 More Home Builder Blog Topic Ideas)
Automation: Unlike other types of marketing, the RSS-to-Email campaign is completely automated. Simply publish your blog and there is nothing more to do. You are regularly communicating with your email list with no personnel required beyond the initial setup.
Real-Time Feedback: When you run an automated RSS-to-Email campaign through an email service provider that features real-time reporting you get immediate feedback about the topics and type of content (how-to-articles, videos, checklists, featured floor plans) that lead your buyers to take action. You can view which topics have the highest open rate, the highest click through rate, and best of all you can get this feedback at twice per week or more (see: How Often Should Home Builders Blog for SEO?)
Promotions: The other important element of RSS-to-Email campaigns is that it gives home builders the ability to embed a promotional message to a captive audience. For example, if you are building an email list for an upcoming Grand Opening you might have a call-to-action at the top (or on the side) of your RSS-to-Email template. You can change the message every week, every month, or every quarter depending on your business goals.
Tip: Use this feature with respect to your audience. Loud, overbearing messages are likely to earn unsubscribes or even spam complaints. The primary goal of your blog articles is to become a trusted resource for your audience by providing content that is valuable and relevant to their needs.
There are several email service providers such as Constant Contact, aWeber, Campaign Monitor, Mailchimp and others. We have used and recommend Campaign Monitor (best for professional design teams) and Mailchimp (best for teams that need an easy drag-and-drop design solution).
Costs for email service providers vary and typically are based on the size of your email list. Currently Mailchimp offers up to 12,000 emails free per month for lists of 0-2000 subscribers.
Email lists are a home builder’s most important online marketing asset, but an email list only pays dividends in the form of new appointments and sales when there is an ongoing, consistent commitment to delivering quality content to your prospects. RSS-to-Email campaigns are easy, affordable, and one of a home builder’s most effective lead nurturing tools.
Need help developing a blog strategy that includes an RSS-to-Email campaign? Contact us for more information about our home builder blog consulting services including writing, setup, design, search engine optimization, conversion, promotion, and RSS-to-Email setup.