WORKSHOP LESSON #2:
Welcome back to lesson #2
By this point, you should have signed up for your autoresponder service, so that you can begin to maximize your profits by simply sending emails out to your customers and prospects.
If you haven’t signed up for your autoresponder service yet, CLICK HERE, so that you can implement the steps in this second lesson.
Today we’re going to show you how to craft enticing emails, to maximize your profitability and build strong relationships with the people on your list(s). Once you have these emails set up, we’ll be able to focus on showing you how to add customers and prospects to your list, so that you can communicate with them on an ongoing basis.
Note: Before we continue, it’s best to have your autoresponder’s opt-in / sign-up form set up somewhere on your website. If you personally do not have the time or inclination to set up your autoresponder form on your website, there’s a very inexpensive solution: Simply go to the website fiverr.com and type “autoresponder set up” or “opt-in form set up” into the search bar on fiverr.com. You will be amazed at how many highly skilled people will be willing to do this step for you, for only $5! There are many people on fiverr.com who will create a beautiful opt-in form for you and add it to your website for you, for just $5. Definitely check out fiverr.com, if you’d rather not complete this step yourself, and let someone else do this for you, for less than the cost of a fast food lunch! Fiverr.com is one of those “not so secret”, secret resources among marketing professionals. You would probably be shocked if you knew about all of the high priced services that marketing professionals charge businesses, but then they just turn around and go to a site like fiverr.com, to have the actual work completed for a few dollars! Services that many businesses often pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for can often be done for $5 on these inexpensive “gig sites”, such as fiverr.com.
When you set up your opt-in form on your website (or have someone else do it for you), be sure to give your website visitors a tempting reason to sign up to your list in the first place. Your offer could be a special discount on a particular product or service, a set of coupons that you’ll email them as soon as they sign up, or simply a free membership on your “VIP List”, which might include “early bird” access to new products and services, special VIP Member Discounts, or inside information that only your VIP Members will be told about. Just be sure to think of something special that your customers and prospects would want, when deciding on what to offer them in exchange for them signing up to your email list.
OK, assuming that your autoresponder is set up and ready to receive subscribers at your website, it’s time to create some emails that will have your prospects and existing customers coming back to you, to purchase additional products and services.
Keep in mind that there are two types of emails that you can send out to your subscribers: “Scheduled” emails and “Broadcasts”. A scheduled email, as the name implies is an email that you pre-load into your autoresponder. When you add a scheduled email into your autoresponder, you decide when your subscribers will receive the email, in relation to when they first signed up to your list. For example, you could specify that you want all of your subscribers to receive a particular, scheduled email 3 days after they sign-up to your list. Once you’ve loaded your scheduled email into your autoresponder, and you’ve specified when you want the email to go out, you never have to do anything with that email again. From that point forward, all of your subscribers will receive that particular email, on the specific number of days after they signed up, as pre-determined by you.
On the other hand, with a “Broadcast” email, all of your subscribers will receive this type of email at the same time, regardless of when they signed up to your list. Obviously, the main drawback to a broadcast email is that it will only go out the subscribers who are on your list at the time the broadcast email is sent. Subscribers who join your list after a broadcast email is sent out will not receive the message, unless you send out the broadcast email again. The only problem with this, of course, is that your current subscribers will then get the broadcast email a second time. With this in mind, it’s usually best to try and focus primarily on sending out scheduled email. It’s ideal to send out broadcast emails for things that are more seasonal in nature or “one-time” type offers.
One question that often arises is how frequently you should send emails out to your subscribers. Of course, if you send out emails too often, many of your subscribers are likely to get annoyed by all of the emails and they’ll unsubscribe from your list. On the other hand, if your subscribers never hear from you, they’ll never be able to take advantage of any special offers that you send them. Many marketing professionals will attempt to make broad sweeping statements, suggesting that all businesses should email their subscribers “x” number of times per week or per month. In our view, this is a highly misinformed, blanket statement to make. All business types are different and their customers often have unique buying habits. Some businesses are seasonal, while others are not. Some businesses sell high ticket items that customers may purchase once a year, or once every few years, while other businesses offer lower ticket or middle ticket items that customers purchase all throughout the year.
The best person to determine a reasonable number of times to email your subscribers is you. It would be foolish of us to try and tell you what makes sense for your particular business or your market. You should know, better than anyone else, how often you think your customers would want to hear from you. Just to provide you with a few basic guidelines though, consider the following:
If your customers typically only make purchases from you once a year or every few years, they would not need to hear from you more than once a week or perhaps even once every couple of weeks. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if your customers make purchases from you on a weekly or monthly basis, you might want to consider sending them emails weekly, since they typically would make purchases from you on a more frequent basis.
Once you’ve determined how often you’d like to send out emails to your subscribers, the next thing to decide is what to actually include in your emails.
For the most part, all of your emails should include some “call to action” or some form of value that you’re providing to your customers. Obviously, this does not mean that you should try to “hard sell” your customers in every email you send them. At the same, though, you don’t want to send emails that lack a purpose, or else your subscribers will be confused as to why you’re emailing them in the first place.
Don’t forget that your “cost” to email your subscribers is extremely nominal and you can contact them as often as you want, for the very low monthly cost of your autoresponder service. In consideration of how relatively inexpensive your autoresponder service is, you don’t need to factor in expensive advertising or marketing costs, when deciding on the type of deal or special to offer your subscribers. In other words, the low monthly cost of your autoresponder service provides you with the flexibility to offer a more enticing offer to your subscribers, as compared to if you had to run an expensive ad in the newspaper or send out a costly print mailing. Clearly, only you know your profit margins and what you can and can’t afford to offer your customers. Naturally, though, the more enticing your offer, the better response you’re likely to get.
Also keep in mind that you have the right to place specific terms and conditions on any special offer that you send out to your subscribers. Many businesses make the mistake of thinking that they can’t send out special offers, because certain days or times are already busy, and so they don’t want to lose revenue, by making offers to customers who already pay full price. By simply including some basic terms and conditions into your offer, you can solve this issue entirely. Some examples of terms and conditions you could include are:
“For first-time customers only”
“Offer valid on Monday-Wednesday”
“Offer valid between the hours of 9:00am-12:00pm”
“Offer valid between the hours of 2:00pm and 4:30pm”
“This offer can only be used once per customer, per household”
“Not valid on weekends”
“Valid on purchases of $100 or more”
“Valid when an item of equal or greater value is purchased”
As you can see, there are many different types of terms and conditions that you could include in your offer. These terms and conditions can allow you to virtually eliminate the risk of losing current profits, while achieving your specific objective. Whether your objective includes bringing in new paying customers, increasing sales on a specific day or time of the week, or increasing sales of a particular product or dollar amount, you can easily target your specific goal, by simply including some basic terms and conditions.
The next thing to consider is perhaps the most important part of the email that you send your subscribers: the subject line. The subject of the email is what your subscribers will see when they log in to their email and they see an email from you. A good way to think of email subject lines is like headlines for traditional print ads. If the headline or email subject line is not exciting in some way, the person is not going to continue reading the ad or, in this case, open the email. Your email could have the best offer in the world, but if the email’s subject line is poorly written, very few of your subscribers are going to take the time to open the email.
The good news is that writing effective subject lines is rather simple, once you understand how. The main thing to keep in mind, when it comes to email subject lines, is that they should tell your subscriber “what’s in it for them” if they open the email. To illustrate, here are two email subject lines. You should be able to tell, right away, which subject line is effective and which one is unlikely to get a good “open rate”:
1.) Check out what we’re giving you, our valued subscriber
2.) We’ll be closed on Monday for renovations
Hopefully, you see that #1 is a better email subject line. Of course, you might think that it would be important to send out an email, to let your customers and subscribers know that your store will be closed for a day. In reality, though, people only care about one thing: “What’s in it for me?” As a matter of fact, if you were going to be closed for renovations, you could still use subject line #1, in the example above, and then just mention that you’ll be closed for renovations in the actual body of the email, along with the actual offer that you’re providing.
Just make sure that your subject lines are exciting enough to pique the curiosity of your subscribers, so that they open the email. It should go without saying, of course, that the information in the email itself should be consistent with the exciting subject line. In other words, you never want your email subject lines to be misleading or deceptive or else you’ll virtually guarantee that many people will begin to unsubscribe from your emails.
With respect to the content in the actual emails that you send to your subscribers, remember this: less is more! In other words, you don’t want to send out 2,000 word emails that are pages and pages of information that your subscribers have to read through. Keep the email brief and cut right to the chase, to let your subscribers know what you’re offering them and how they can take advantage of your offer. On a related note, you may also want to include an expiration date or timeframe in your terms and conditions, to get your subscribers to take action sooner than later.
Here’s an example of a simple, but effective email that you could send to your subscribers:
Subject Line of Email: Can we give you [the name of one of your products or services]?
As our way of saying thank you for being our valued subscriber, we’re sending you this email voucher, so that you can receive a free [the name of one of your products or services] when a purchase of equal or great value is made.
We will be extending this offer to all of our subscribers for the next three days (expires month/day/year).
Simply print out this email today and bring it in between now and (last day of offer).
The Name of Your Company
Your Phone Number
The above email may seem rather basic, because it is. At the same time, however, it contains all of the important elements of an effective email: It tells the subscriber exactly “what’s in it for them”, it includes a timeframe in which they can take advantage of this offer, and it tells them exactly what to do, to take advantage of the offer [e.g. “Simply print out this email today and bring it in between now and (last day of offer).”].
Most importantly, though, the email is quick and to the point. Obviously, we could have made the email above hundreds or thousands of words longer. Doing so, however, would greatly reduce the response rate. As you probably realize, just about everyone is crunched for time these days. They don’t have time to read long emails. They just want the facts and, more accurately, the benefits that they will receive by following clear and simple steps. By just making sure that your emails follow these simple, common sense guidelines, you’ll have far happier subscribers, many of whom will look forward to your emails.
One final thought to keep in mind is the following: Any time you send out an email, no matter how good it is, you’re always bound to get some people who unsubscribe. This is unavoidable, regardless of how well your email is written or how good the offer is. Of course, the important thing to focus on is getting more people subscribing than unsubscribing from your email list…and that’s exactly what we’ll be covering in the next lesson: Getting subscribers who are interested in your company’s products and services.