Quick review? The first of this three-part series is HERE.
How to tear down the wall and regain connections.
The gist of the first post was all about keeping your engagement levels alive and growing your relationships with email marketing best practices. But the statements below were a bit alarming for some. I fielded quite a few offline comments about this specific advice:
“You need to nurture your subscribers.”
“You may even offer them – right up front – the option to unsubscribe!”
Seems crazy, I know, but in this post, I will show you exactly how this strategy is deployed. It starts with making the “first-time in a long time” or “cold” contacts on your lists feel they can trust you. For best results, you must be human and personal using your voice and personality.
FIRST: they need to “recognize” you or at least get a sense of who you are and what you do. Make sure your “From” field is a recognized name or organization/company name and that the “reply to” email address is, too. Then start right at the top with a permission reminder.
It’s quite counter-intuitive! And it works:
Giving someone a chance to unsubscribe is just what they need to feel you are trustworthy. It’s one of those great ironies and even greater lessons in human behavior.
SECOND: Add branding, like the name of your business and a logo if you have one. A tag line that emphasizes your message is important, too. For artists, an example of your work is essential! Put all together, this will have a “branding” effect. Then, quickly give them the “WHY” of this email. It might look something like this:
THIRD: As you move into the next information block you can begin to tell your story. Your first line would be a greeting. You would use a built-in “personalized field function” that automatically inserts the first name of your subscriber. It’s important that they see their name right away. Most email service providers have this feature.
Odd as it seems, seeing our names deeply influences our sense of trust even though we know this is just a computer generated “trick”. Generic greetings, on the other hand, have an opposite effect. Using something like “Dear Subscriber” will kill your relationships! If you don’t have their first name, keep it simple like, “Greetings” or “News from my studio”.
And absolutely have a photo of you in this section. Even if they have never met you before, they will now!
This approach works like magic. It’s a “cold-remedy”. It’s just what the doctor ordered for lists that you have “abandoned” and let get “old and cold”. It’s also the prescription for those emails addresses of people you gathered over time at various events and have sitting in piles in notes, signup sheets, and business cards. When you do finally add them, segment and send them this email and then they can get your regularly scheduled emails on the next send-out.
While there are a few more parts to this email template, the above sections are the most important part, because:
Even if they don’t really remember you or remember where or how they met you, they will likely stay around if they see a nice example of your work and get this “friendly” reminder email. And for artists (and most of the rest of us), your clients will be wildly excited to have you chatting them up and keeping them in the loop. Especially if you have an occasional special event or promotion!
You can copy the content in this sample email. Play around and make it your own. Or copy it verbatim if it works for your situation. This is my creation on behalf of graphite artist Carole Raschella (see her great talent on her site!) She gave me permission to post this example. Carole has a plan now. She is developing her content and beginning her email marketing with my persistent, but not too pesky, prodding.
It’s the next phase that’s tricky. It’s the subject of Part Three of this series and it can be a wall too high for many; creating content. You will want to stick around for this last post in this series. I have a sure fire cure for lighting up your brainstorming cells! You will love the tools I will bring to you to help you with content creation. The walls will finally come tumbling down!
Bottom line: Your subscribers are people and they are just like you and me. We all can relate to the “to-do” list of life and we all hit a brick wall from time to time. However, if you don’t conquer this next wall, you run the risk of interrupting or just plain stopping your communications and having “old and cold” lists again. And leaving your admirers and clients out in the cold will do nothing to help grow your sales, long-term or short term.