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The webinar is the marketer’s party. Okay, these learning and lead-generation gatherings probably aren’t as fun without the punch bowl and perfect playlist — but at the planning stages, there’s the same fear. What if nobody shows up?

For webinars (and, presumably, parties) — it all comes down to the invitation.

Email is simply the most effective channel for promoting webinars. 2012 data from BrightTALK show 58-64% of people attending thanks to email and direct invitations. The 2013 ON24 Webinar Benchmark Report states that 80% of registrations come from a combination of email and site promotions.

Your webinar invitations also deserve their own emails. Justine Jordan, VP of Marketing at Litmus, advises that you go beyond tacking on promotional mentions on regularly scheduled marketing messages:

[S]end a stand-alone email! We used to send newsletters with webinar registration links inside, but have found that sending dedicated emails for each webinar results in many more registrations.

Georgiana Laudi, VP of Marketing at Unbounce, also reports: “70% of all our webinar registrations come via our invitation emails.” For our own upcoming welcome email webinar, we can thank our dedicated invitation emails for 76% of registrants so far.

That’s all to say — your invitation emails are vital to a successful webinar! Let’s look at how to make them super effective to bring more people to your web party.

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Churn is a SaaS company killer. With 5% churn monthly, you’re losing half of your customers every year. That means you need to bring in half the number of the customers you have every year just to stay flat.

At iDoneThis, the easiest way to run a remote daily standup, our churn could get as high as 10% on a monthly basis! That made growth extremely challenging, and we knew we had to cut it down significantly.

After months of hard work, we were able to reduce our churn to 3%, about a third of what it was at its peak. That’s still too high, but putting a dent in that dreaded rate made all aspects of running the company feel easier.

Here’s how we did it.

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There’s a neat arts event in my Brooklyn neighborhood one weekend every year where local artists open up their studios to the public. You get to see incredible art and talk to artists where their magic happens. This year, as I found out, there were over 300 artists participating.

Even with a handy map and directory, really, where does one begin?

At the last minute, I bought a ticket to the weekend’s final curator-led tour, and I was so glad I did. Instead of hunkering down in front of my laptop that afternoon, I met 5 incredible artists, a great curator, and a very smart grade-schooler who asked all the best questions.

What does this have to do with email? Well, it’s the challenge of action in the face of overwhelming choice.

With so much to do, it’s easy to default to nothing or too much. Most of you know that lifecycle emails can provide much-needed momentum to propel people through your various funnels. But like most endeavors worth doing, we tend to want to do “all the things.”

all the things mentality

Too often, that means getting overwhelmed and stuck not doing much — or trying to do everything at once, not doing any one thing well, and losing steam.

We see this often at Getting started can be a struggle. So here’s a quick guide to getting started on planning effective lifecycle emails and getting your first 3 campaigns out the digital door.

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Ever feel that tiny emotional tingle, that little rush, of getting a notification on your phone for a new message, an Instagram favorite, a Facebook tag?

If you’ve been a long-time Facebook user, you might’ve felt the buzz from Meenal Balar’s work firsthand. Meenal was a growth manager at Facebook from 2009 to 2014 during the company’s stage of massive global growth — and her job was to get everyone, everywhere using Facebook every day.

While email and mobile push notifications were foundational to Facebook’s engagement, Meenal’s team quickly learned that the deluge of social activity triggered notifications that had worked so well early on started to wear off. And when notifications don’t seem helpful, impactful, or delightful, they feel spammy, leading to opt-outs, unsubscribes, and even the dreaded churn.

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Email is alive and kicking, wonderfully effective and still evolving, too. Yes, the many reports of email’s woeful death have been greatly exaggerated.

In fact, email is the most effective channel for marketers in terms of return on investment. A 2015 report from the Direct Marketing Association found that email has an average ROI of around $58 for every $1 spent.[1]

Email simply works, but it’s important to understand why in order to wield it well. Let’s take a step back to dig into why email marketing is such an essential tool for growing your business — and what that means for how to approach it:

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