Foster viral growth for your list with the use of referral pages

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If you use e-mail as the primary form of con tact with current clients, adding referral pages can help you build distribution lists and expand your client base. They are the backbone of a growing business and are used to entice readers to recommend or refer friends and colleagues to your products or services. Referral pages help because potential leads receive the referral e-mail from a trusted source, increasing the likelihood that they'll open the message and read the content.

Referral pages differ from the "forward to a friend" feature available in many e-mail marketing systems. They capture data and automatically add the new contact to a database of active contacts. The process is fully CAN SPAM-compliant, since the "friend" must confirm their opt-in.

Referral pages are only as good as the e-mail templates, metrics, reports or design being used. Too often marketers spend time and resources setting up their e-mail marketing programs, forgetting that these programs will need a little TLC (testing, list management and cleansing) to function properly. Marketers need to review their message template and clean up the HTML code in it. This is especially important if more than one person uses the account. Small changes can flag spam filters and cause formatting issues that discourage recipients from opening it.

Too many marketers forget one of the most important elements of their e-mail marketing campaign: the subject line. With spam filters furiously searching for reasons to dump your e-mail into a junk e-mail folder instead of the inbox, your choice of subject line is increasingly important.

Above all, metrics are the most important aspect of any marketing campaign. Companies need to know how successful the campaign has been and where improvements need to be made. Many e-mail marketing companies offer special tools that gauge the success of the campaign.

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