Tech-savvy dating coaches and matchmakers often encourage singles visiting their websites to sign up for a free e-newsletter for more advice. It’s an easy ask, and collecting email addresses allows them to target people who are interested in dating services but aren’t ready to pay just yet. But knowing what to say to those folks can be tricky.

Entrepreneurs in the dating industry may want to increase their conversion rates, but they shouldn’t rush into an email campaign without thinking because sending a poorly worded email can turn people off and undermine the overall brand.

If you want to convince future customers or clients to trust you with their love lives, you have to send the right email at the right time. A successful email marketing campaign is all about knowing your audience and understanding how you can meet their needs. Below, you’ll find the six steps to effectively market yourself and your services via email.

1. Set Clear Expectations & Follow Through

First of all, how you ask for someone’s email is an important part of building trust with potential customers. A vague or brief “Sign up for my newsletter” isn’t going to cut it. People don’t know what they’re signing up for, so they’re unlikely to opt-in for a mystery email.

Many internet users have learned to be wary of unknown websites and information requests, so they need assurances that you’re not going to spam them with messages or sell their information to a third party. You should clearly state what specific information you’ll send via email (dating tips, event invites, match suggestions, etc.) and how frequent those emails will be.

“Make sure you’re meeting customer expectations and not bombarding their inboxes with content they didn’t want.”SalesForce

Setting up a regular email schedule is a great way to stay on the radar of potential customers without being too intrusive. You can send messages every week, every other week, or every month — it’s up to you. What’s important is that you tell people when they can expect to hear from you and then follow through on that promise.

2. Avoid the Junk Mail Folder by Being Whitelisted

Getting someone’s email address is like snagging someone’s phone number at a party — it’s an honor. That person did not have to let you into his/her life and allow you to keep in contact, so don’t take advantage of that privilege, or you may find it quickly revoked.

Flooding a person’s inbox with daily emails is going to make you look like a spammer, and you’ll soon find your messages going straight to the Trash folder. In a 2014 survey, 42% of American consumers said they delete promo emails without looking at them. While that number is lower than it was just four years earlier, it’s still a good reminder for marketers that just showing up in the inbox isn’t enough. You have to catch the person’s eye to get them to open the email.

The dream scenario for online marketers is to earn their way into the consumer’s whitelist, a list of email addresses or domain names that receive a golden ticket out of the spam or promotional folder and into the primary inbox.

Kissmetrics recommends prompting users to add you to their address books by putting instructions at the top of the email. According to these marketing experts, “Getting whitelisted is the most effective way to ensure that your emails get delivered properly.”

3. Send Targeted & Compelling Messages

A one-size-fits-all approach to email marketing may be cheaper, but it’s like sending the same message to 100 people on a dating site. Not a classy move. People can sense when you’re not talking to them specifically, and they don’t like it.

Online ads have become increasingly personalized as technology evolves because targeting the right person with the right message is the most effective way to make a sale. Studies show that segmented email campaigns lead to an overall increase in revenue for the company.

You can use segmentation tools provided by professional marketing services, such as MailChimp or AWeber, to set up distinct groups and send tailored messages to those groups.

You can choose to separate your audience by gender, orientation, relationship status, or whatever groupings make sense for your brand. These categories allow you to stay organized and make sure you’re sending a positive and helpful message that resonates with people.

4. Provide a Call-to-Action at the End

What’s the purpose of your email? Is it to highlight an event? Is it to give single women a pep talk? Is it to convince people to sign up for your coaching services? You should have a defined goal in every email — otherwise, why send it at all?

Dating experts should always end their emails with a pitch to the reader. It can be as easy as tagging in a line like “If you want to hear more of my thoughts, check out my book” or “You can consult with me to learn more dating tricks.” You can empower individuals to change their lives by giving them an action they can take or a solution they can use. They likely signed up to your email blasts because they were looking for help, so you don’t have to be shy about plugging resources that can help them.

“Above all, emails must contain a meaningful call-to-action,” according to a HubSpot article. “After all, if brands are taking up subscribers’ time — and inbox space — with another email, every message must have a point to it.”

5. Schedule Future Content Using an Autoresponder

Once you’ve gotten someone hooked on your content, it’s important to be consistent and be an authority they can rely on for tips, information, and other resources.

An autoresponder tool allows businesses to set up an automated system to respond and send emails to subscribers. For instance, you can arrange for an introductory email to automatically go to new subscribers. AWeber’s autoresponder tool has assisted over 100,000 small businesses and entrepreneurs in a variety of industries.

Screenshot of AWeber's website

Since 1998, AWeber has provided email marketing tools to small businesses and entrepreneurs.

According to AWeber, “It’s now easier than ever to leverage professional automation and create multiple autoresponder campaigns in your account.”

6. Use Analytics to Understand Your Audience & Impact

You can stay on the pulse of the dating scene by keeping updated analytics on your audience. Reviewing real-time conversions and click-through rates can give you a good sense of where your customers are coming from. Maybe an email on Valentine’s Day was particularly effective. Maybe a blog about breakups resonated with your subscribers. Knowing how singles and couples interact with you online can help you build a marketing strategy and develop products that appeal to your audience.

MailChimp, a marketing automation platform, can help self-starters in the dating industry put together an effective email marketing campaign and see how it’s working. The paid service includes easy-to-read analytics that show business leaders what they’re doing well and how they can improve.

These marketing experts really know their stuff. “Whether it’s your grand opening or your company is already well-established,” said a MailChimp blog post, “an effective email marketing plan is key to promoting and growing your business, increasing revenue, and selling more stuff.”

Build Your Brand With a Strong Email Campaign

Email campaigns allow businesses to essentially become pen pals with customers and offer a personalized pitch to individuals interested in what they have to offer. Dating experts can use email marketing techniques to build trust with singles and couples in the dating scene and provide a much-needed support system for people struggling with emotional issues.

We see the inbox as an extension of applications,” said Joe Teplow, Founder and CEO of an email marketing startup called Rebel. “It’s one of the most powerful online environments today.”