Jul 17, 2021
Welcome back to another episode with email marketing expert Brittany Bayley. In the last episode, we discussed how to grow our email lists and essential email sequences. In today’s episode, Brittany answers common email marketing questions.
How often should we email our list?
How many times per week should we email our list? For nurture emails, Brittany said we should be emailed at least twice a week. She recommended sending one email highlighting something external such as an interview or podcast episode we’ve done. This trains our readers to open the email and click to go somewhere else.
If a YouTuber, podcaster, or blogger publishes something daily, it is usually best not to send an email every day because we may overwhelm our audience. We can send something like a weekly summary or highlights for all the episodes we’ve published that week.
There are some situations where a daily email would be acceptable. If “daily” is in the title of our show, our audience members will likely expect to get daily emails. Or if we set it up so they know it will be daily emails, then they may not be overwhelmed. If we aren’t sure what will work well for our audience, we can test different frequencies and see how they respond.
We can also give our audience options for how often they want to receive emails or which kinds of emails they’d like to receive. When they sign up we can ask if they’d prefer highlights or daily emails or perhaps they only want to hear from us when we have a new product or a sale. Brittany said, “Segmentation is . . . a great way to show that you respect your subscriber and that you respect their time.”
How do we find the best incentives or lead magnets?
To find the best incentives and lead magnets, we need to turn to our audience and be aware of what they are going through. What experiences are they having? What’s going on in their world? How can we help them get through that?
Brittany saw many successful lead magnets related to COVID-19. She saw things like “How to deal with stress in a pandemic” or “How to take your business online in a short period of time.”
“It's much more about the intention and what you're teaching versus the container like a challenge or an ebook,” Brittany said. We need to be offering incentives and lead magnets based on what the customer needs, not based on what we want to offer or sell.
The most successful lead magnets Brittany has seen relate well to their audience. Instead of using techie business jargon, they use simple terms their customers use and understand, making it clear for the audience.
How do we write subject lines?
Subject lines should be eye-catching and pattern-interrupting without being unclear. We don’t want to just put something random in the subject line that has nothing to do with the email’s content just to get people to open the email. When we do the random eye-catching thing but don’t give them the context behind it, our audience will feel tricked and they may not continue reading our emails.
Asking questions, having statements, and using emojis can be great ways to draw attention. We can also use things like caps, parenthesis, or brackets to draw attention to the subject line. Anything that varies from the typical subject line can be eye-catching. Depending on our audience and what they’re expecting from us, lists such as “5 Ways to…” can also work.
Brittany recently received an email with the subject line, “Brittany, do you have time today? I want to run something by you?” Brittany is acquainted with the sender, so she was immediately intrigued and opened the email. The sender had written a great email and wanted responses from her list, so it was a great way to pull her readers in.
Everything with emails should be based on our benchmarks. To get benchmarks, we need to make sure we’re emailing one to two times a week for 60 to 90 days to see what they are, then we can go from there and test to see what works well for our audience.
How do we improve our calls to action?
Calls to action (CTAs) can be tricky because we want our readers to take the action but we don’t want to be annoying when we give them that CTA. Though we may want to pack everything into one email, we should only have one clear and concise CTA in each email. It should be set apart from the rest of the email, not buried in a block of text.
Brittany usually writes her emails out of order. She writes her CTA first, then she’ll write the hook. Last, she bridges those two together through the middle or main body of the email. When we’re writing our hooks, we need to keep the CTA in mind, so every word should be leading to that call to action. When we write the email in reverse it is easier to carve the path leading to the CTA and our readers will have a better time following it.
How long should emails be?
The length of our emails can also vary depending on our audience and what they’re expecting from us. If we promise them content-heavy, blog-style emails then we should be giving them those kinds of emails. If our audience wants something shorter and more to the point, we can try that kind of email.
What are the best ways to personalize an email?
One of the best ways to personalize an email is by adding the reader’s name. People love to hear people say their names and it is the same way in emails. When we are collecting their information, we need to make sure we have space for them to put their name so we can do this.
Another great way to personalize is to show them we know who they are, what action they took, and where they are in their journey. We can do this by asking them in our onboarding sequence how they are liking the specific product they purchased or the lead magnet they received.
Many technologies like ConvertKit have these personalization options built into them, so we need to ensure we are taking advantage of those.
Should we use a tactical or humanistic approach?
Email marketing is often a combination of tactical and humanistic approaches.
Through a tactical lens, we can think about things like personalization or inserting the audience member's name at the beginning of the email. We can also focus on concision and make sure our emails aren’t full of big blocks of text that are hard to read.
We can also come at it from a more humanistic standpoint by thinking about the person we’re writing to and what kinds of stories they are telling in their mind that are stopping them from taking our call to action. What is their belief system? What questions are coming up for them?
To create great, successful emails, we need a combination of these approaches.
Why should small brands use email marketing?
Brittany recently did an order bump with one of her services. She emailed her list to let them know about the bump and then went to the gym. While she was there she got all these notifications about purchases. That day she made $500 just from emailing her list.
If we have a small brand like that and we’re used to spending money on ads or in other places or we're used to jumping through hoops to get sales and doing big launches, there is great power in being able to just write an email. Email marketing gives us a line directly to our customers, so we can avoid all the hassle of other advertising.
What do we need to know about spam laws?
Spam laws can be tricky because they can change depending on the region. We must make sure to check the laws for whatever area we live in. Brittany said the bottom line for these rules and regulations is do we have permission to email them promotional or marketing material?
One thing to note is that when asking for permission it can’t be a conditional part of the purchase. The checkmark to receive promotional emails can’t already be checked even if we’re using it with a lead magnet.
What are the biggest mistakes with email marketing?
Two of the biggest mistakes Brittany has seen with email marketing are having a cold list and only emailing when we need sales or are launching something.
We need to be consistent with our email list, having a long-term nurture strategy in place. We shouldn’t freeze and not use our lists at all, and we also shouldn’t do a burst of emails, then stop, then do another burst. Brittany said, “Know what you want to say to your person, understand what they're asking from you, understand what questions they have on their mind, nurture them, and have a long-term strategy in place so that they feel supported.”
Thank you so much Brittany for sharing your stories and insights with us today. Here are some of my key takeaways from this episode:
Connect with Brittany
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