The Secret Email Strategy That’s Increasing New Orders for Niche Publishers

The little-known email strategy that tests copy and offers until they succeed over and over again

six sigma email strategy email revenue

We often talk about using Six Sigma as an email strategy for selling online magazines and memberships, but it’s helpful to have evidence to show it works. So today, I’ll review some of our top-performing publishing partners.

First, let’s recap how the Six Sigma email strategy works, and then we’ll give you the results of our analysis.

Most of our clients work with us to develop a Six Sigma email spotlight program focused on selling more premium memberships.

As a part of this adjustment, we typically increase the number of promotional spotlight emails sent each week and introduce an editorially-driven creative to alternate between offer-driven creative.

All of the spotlight emails vary in either copy or offer and alternate during a cycle. Our goal is to identify the best performing spotlights and the worst-performing spotlights. We keep the winners and include them in the next cycle, and we replace the losers with new creative.

The tests may not just be for copy; it’s often testing offers. For example, you can run one offer for four weeks and run a different offer for the next four weeks.

Six Sigma email marketing can be flexible based on the resources you have.

Download a FREE copy of Best Email Subject Lines for Selling Premium Subscriptions and Memberships and discover an extensive list of email subject line frameworks that are consistently proven to sell and boost revenue for publishers.

The results of Six Sigma email marketing

We recently analyzed the overall results of our publishing partners’ six sigma campaigns. One partner saw a 148% increase in new orders after 90 days of using Six Sigma email management, along with a complete revamp of their free-to-premium member acquisition strategy. 

Another partner, after one year of following the method, saw a 274% increase in new orders. The primary levers here were active offer testing and the introduction of library previews to highlight content from their Special Collections library.  

Other partners, who’ve been using Six Sigma email testing for two years, had a range of new order increases in the single digits up to 116%.

How to get started with a Six Sigma email strategy

While Six Sigma direct marketing has been around for a long time, the complexity of the discipline was simply too much for most independent publishers. After several years of intense testing and research, the adapted Six Sigma email marketing methodology we describe above improves the process for publishers of digital magazine content. It makes it approachable so that it can be used effectively by organizations of almost any size.

After piloting several programs with our publishing partners in 2017, where we saw the substantial subscription revenue increases you see above, we are now making this program available publicly to subscription-based publishers looking for an outsourced solution to grow their audience, revenue, and profits.

Our Six Sigma program has three components: offer testing, creative testing, and audience development. The audience development component combines our blockbuster management, email capture optimization, and database append and import programs. Offer testing and creative testing change the way your products are presented in cycles, garnering response rate lift, and weeding out marketing failures from successes. And this is all powered by our Haven Email Marketing System.

Subscription marketing is a complex business process that requires many specialized skills and a disciplined business framework. A well-optimized email marketing program can generate revenue and orders that are many times higher than the output of programs run by most independent publishers.

If you have a strong brand, deep content archive, and substantial audience database, you already have the makings of a successful digital media library that can power your brand for the next 100 years. Do you know how to market it using Six Sigma email marketing? Stop letting your content go to waste. Schedule a time to talk with us.


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