Using ToutApp for Effective Outbound Email Marketing Campaigns

In the following tutorial, I’ll review the step-by-step process for how to conduct an outbound email campaign using the app Tout.

Part I – Setting up the Campaign

You’ll need an external email list to get started.  This might be a list that you gathered, or that you hired someone else to gather, or it could be a list that was manually opted-in.

Step 1 – When you set up and sign in to your Tout account, you’ll want to import your list via the Relationships tab.  Click ‘add group’, and the app will walk you through the process of importing your contacts.  You’ll need to ensure that your csv-file title fits Tout’s criterion.

Step 2 – Once you’ve imported contacts, you’ll be able to set up Subgroups of people.  These will appear in the scroll bar on the left of your account screen.  For example, one of my subgroups is titled FII (First Internet Income) Non-Buyers.  I’ve set up my list with specific abbreviations – find what works for you.

Set up subgroups by highlighting a given amount of people – I like 200 – out of a core list of contacts (I have 734 in this example list). Repeat.  I recommend making subgroups with no more than 200 people.  This is my chosen method for split-testing email subject lines.

The logic behind the method has to do with the fact that gmail, the server that so many of us use, only allows a user to send 500 outbound gmails per day.  If you’re split testing a subgroup of 200, and you need to send two separate emails – that’s 400 outbounds.  If this is the same account from which you send other business and some personal emails, then you need to leave some wiggle room.

Step 3 – Moving on to the Templates tab.  Any time I do an outbound campaign, I create email templates and organize my emails systematically by title (you’re free to come up with a system that fits your needs).

As an eCommerce business, if I send an email campaign promoting an online course, then I’m going to have two separate emails in my left sidebar that have identical content but different subject lines, the first being titled 1a and the second option 1b.

I do initial split-tests by changing the subject line first; for one, it’s an easy change, but it also holds large potential for  moving the needle in a particular direction.  Marketing Land gives some additional split test ideas in this article.

You’ll notice that my 1a template toggles out into a follow-up email.  This can be achieved by clicking ‘edit’, which allows you to set follow-up options (1a would be followed by 2a, 3a, etc.).  Think about how long you want to space out each of these emails. Tout allows you to flexibly set a schedule.

Step 4 – When I’m finished organizing, I can return to the Relationships tab and then email the entire subgroup using whichever outgoing email template I want to use (in this tutorial, I give a more in-depth breakdown of how to build profitable email sequences).

Step 5  – Think about strategy for your email campaigns.  How many days apart do you want your follow-up emails to be spread, for example?  Maybe you start with 400 emails and split-test a 4-email campaign with subgroups of 200.  Five days later, you can restart the process with a fresh batch of 400 people, and so forth.  Once I’ve gone through this process five times, I’ve run an entire campaign across 1000 people, which is going to give a relatively accurate representation of which subject line is “the winner”.

Quick Review:

  •  Upload lists and name them appropriately.
  • Break up contacts into subgroups of 200 (keep in mind that segmentation should already be done, and you want to group contacts according to type or category i.e. similar demographics, similar interests, etc.).
  • Build automatic templates (emails 1a, 2a, etc. – however long you want email the sequence to be).
  • Split-test by email subject line.  Make sure you have follow-up emails scheduled.
  • In seven days, go back and check stats under the Emails tab (discussed further in Part II below).  Tout does require you to manually add up bounce rates, click rates, etc., but this is an important step – you can always hand this task off to a willing intern.

Part II – Reviewing Stats

Tout stats are not 100% accurate – let’s face it, as you climb the ladder, you realize that crystal clear business information is more and more difficult to obtain.  Tracking in clicks and emails has its conundrums, but Tout gives you statistically significant information that provides a pretty clear idea of which subject lines work and which ones do not.

Again, let seven days go by before checking the stats – 98% of those prospects who were going to view have probably done so by this time.

Step 1 – Under the Emails tab, we’ll look at the ‘viewed’ and ‘clicked’ or ‘opened’ rates within a particular email and subgroup.  You can also look at reply rates.

Step 2Count up the numbers of viewed and the number of clicked emails as you scroll through each page.  Manual work is required, but it’s worth the effort.

Step 3Repeat the same counting process for all split pages and subgroups.

Step 4 – Look at your numbers and calculate your percentages based on total emails sent.  Its ideal to have 800 to 1000 TOTAL people see message A, and 800 to 1000 see message B in order to get a good sense of the data.

Step 5Determine which controlled message is “the winner”.

Tout is a versatile option for many business models looking to determine the effectiveness of a particular email campaign.  I hope you’ll go out and add it to your business’ email marketing toolbox.

– Daniel Faggella
CLVboost Founder

 

About The Author

Daniel Faggella

I grow businesses with marketing automation, email marketing, and conversion-rate optimization. I've spoken on business and emerging technologies internationally and at some of America's finest schools (Yale, Stanford, Cornell, etc...). My marketing strategies have been featured in the Boston Business Journal, MarketingProfs, Direct Marketing News, and much more. CLVboost is where I share marketing strategies, TechEmergence.com is my major pursuit.