Five emails to include in ANY Funnel

More often than not, when I speak with clients it’s about setting up a funnel for their business. While everyone wants a funnel, it seems that no one has ANY idea what to say in them. 

Outlining the content of your emails can feel really overwhelming. So, to make matters easier, I wanted to outline the 5 types of emails I include in every single funnel I write.
 

  • Testimonial/ Case Study Email – Anything you can do to give your readers social proof for why your product is worth investing in will be gold. Case Study and testimonial emails are often overlooked in beginning funnels but can be a really powerful opportunity to get your readers to trust you quickly. Always use them.  

  • The Big Guns (also known as the ‘Come to Jesus’) Email – this is a hard sell email that breaks down point-by-point why your product is the ONLY option for your potential clients. Use scarcity, and employ awesome CTA’s that are direct, and be crystal clear about the action you want your readers to take in these emails.

  • The Q&A Email – This is an opportunity to address some of my readers biggest concerns and burning questions. While they’re pretty straightforward, using them can help you get onto the same page with your readers, and positioning yourself as an expert, WIN!

  • The About YOU Email – An About You email is a wonderful opportunity to add a more human element into your funnel. Outside of your welcome funnel, you probably wouldn’t want a super overt message, but you will want to include messages that are all about your story, how you’ve gotten to where you are today, how you’ve come to be YOU.

  • The Educational Email – This email continues to train your readers about how to solve their problems, then it points to your product as the ultimate solution. Educational emails can be promotional or not, they can include testimonials or not, they can include media (like videos or slide) but don’t have to. They’re a building block style of email that’s a flexible base for all other styles of emails to work off of.

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Have a BURNING funnel question? I leave weekly Q&A time in my calendar just for this reason. Schedule your free 20 min Quick Chat,  HERE!

How to prune your list: 3 simple steps to help you send a re-engagement campaign

When it comes to list building efforts the more people you get, the better – so long as they’re within your target market.

But after a while as those people get exposed to you, one of two things will happen.

  1. They’ll continue to engage at a greater rate

  2. Their engagement will drop off consistently until nothing.

With a larger list this means that your conversion rates are going to steadily drop lower, and with a smaller list, this plateau of engagement can be devastating.

So what’s there to do?

The answer is simple, List Prune.

“But purposely DELETING people off your list, that’s crazy!”

Actually, this is where a lot of people get held up, but the benefits will WELL outweigh the pain and heartache you’ll feel while hitting delete.

With a well executed List Pruning Campaign you’re giving your subscribers another opportunity to decide to stay on your list, or to mark themselves as uninterested.

In the process, you get more engagement by narrowing in on just the people who are eager to hear from you. And your conversion rates grow, because there is less ‘dead weight’ dragging down your numbers.

If it’s time for you to do a List Prune Campaign, here are 3 simple steps:

Step #1 - Separate the engaged from the not so engaged

When you’re looking through your list to decide who is engaged and who is not, you’ll want to consider a few different factors, like:

  • How long have the been on your list? Is this their normal behavior because they don’t know you yet or is this them honestly being done with what you have to send out?

  • How often do you mail to your subscribers? Is it once a month, where they maybe have missed a few months in a row, but that’s not really saying anything. Or is it a few times a week, and they haven’t opened anything?

  • How long have they been missing emails? A good rule of thumb is if people haven’t opened your email in 3 months (keeping in mind how often you send...) they’re uninterested.

Tag all your less-than-interested subscribers accordingly.

Step #2: "Baby, Come Back”

The next step is to create a short email or sequence to help re-engage your subscribers. I like to call these emails the "Baby, Come Back” campaigns, and they can be anywhere from 1-3 emails.

Here are a few examples of  "Baby, Come Back” emails:

Natalie Ledwell, Mind Movies Email #1

 

Natalie Ledwell, Mind Movies Email # 2

 

Natalie Ledwell, Mind Movies Email #3




Nikki Elledge Brown

 

Social Fresh


Step #3: Hit DELETE

Depending on how you write your email, you can tag people who raise their hand to show their lack of interest, or who simply don’t open or take an action. Whichever you choose, the next step is to tag them as “to be deleted.”

After that, there’s nothing left but the crying, getting brave, and hitting that button to remove people off your list once and for all.

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Removing anyone who is no longer interested in receiving what you’re sending is scary, but given enough time the rewards will be well worth it as you watch your open rates, send rates, and click rates get a heck of a lot stronger. Promise.

Developing your longterm funnels

I got asked a really good series of questions the other day, by a wonderful woman named Sara.

She found herself in the position that A LOT of my clients are also in when we first meet. She has a well designed opt-in, and welcome sequence that helps get her sales, but without a lot of clarity about what to do next in the process of outlining her future sales sequences.

I loved her questions so much, I just had to share.

Sara wrote:

"I launched a 5 day challenge freebie on Monday and took my users through an email sequence which led to a low-dollar offer later in the week. 

I've had some purchases on that and have moved those subscribers over to a new sequence, beginning with a thank you. 

Message 2 is just tips and info to help them as they start to move through the program (a mini course), and message 3 is some related and helpful links to blog posts on my website. 

What I'd like to know is: 
      1. Should your next offer be to a low or high priced offer? 
      2. How long should I wait before making any other kind of offer?
     3. How frequently should I send my emails and what type of content should I include? 

Thanks very much in advance!"
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Ok, raise your hand if you’ve ever asked EVEN one of these questions?

That’s because all of them are tricky, and in email marketing there is no ONE right way to do things.

Remember, when it comes to your email, everything you do, absolutely everything, will take a lot of testing and tweaking before it’s running perfectly.

Ultimately, you're writing to a totally unique sub-sect of people, that no other person in the whole world is writing to – so your process will be just as unique.

All the same, I gave Sara some quick advice that I think will also be useful to share here as well.

Enjoy!

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QUESTION: Should your next offer be to a low or high priced offer?

When you begin mapping out your sequences it all starts with your GOALS. What is the final result you want from the people who buy your product or service?

For most people, this is *something* like “I want my people to refer me,” or “I want them to raving fans of my business” ergo, they’ve worked with you and now they can’t stop talking about you.

If you work backward from that point, how did these people engage with you to become raving fans? It could be with a high priced offer ($5,000-10,000), it could be with a low ($200) offer. One of my clients has built a business around selling a $12 product, so it all depends on your business model.

HOWEVER, the higher that number, the more smaller priced offers, and nurture sequences you (usually) need to have in place to work people up to feeling comfortable buying high priced products/services.

A good way to think of this is like a staircase with a series of landings. Each set of stairs is like a sequence of emails that get you up to the landing which is a paid offer. If you were to skip from a free offer to a $3,000 offer that would be a TON of stairs to walk up, with no place to stop and rest in between.

QUESTION: “How long I should wait before making any other kind of offer?”

How long you wait in between making offers depends on your metrics. Here are a couple of questions you can ask yourself to see if your audience is ready to receive offers from you:

  • Are people consistently opening your emails?
  • Do they click links that aren’t offers?
  • Do they respond back to you or act on your CTA?

These are signs that your list enjoys your content, at very least will open your email to see the offer, and are receptive to being pitched.

But this place is also a testing ground.

For a product that’s around $500 – I like a second nurture sequence that’s around 8-12 emails and takes my readers 2-3 months to receive. I feel like this is a nice long time for them to feel like they’ve received a lot of content from me before pitching them.

I also feel that $500 is a lot to spend if you don’t believe it’s worth it, so I put a lot of effort into proving the value before ever pitching.
 

QUESTION: “How frequently should I send my emails and what type of content should I include?”

These are also a bit of a doozie because it depends on your goals and your list. For my $500 product, I’m sending 2 emails a week.

One of these is my “Tip Tuesday” emails that would come out on Tuesdays anyway, and one is what I’m learning, resources I like, ways to engage with me, small free pitches that incentives clicking but aren’t paid, free resources I’ve created, blog posts I’ve written, Q&A answers like this, just really anything I can come up with.

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Putting the piece together

If putting together the ALL the pieces is totally overwhelming, confusing, and more importantly, time-consuming...

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With the Ultimate Welcome Sequence Challenge

How to Nurture Leads While Launching

For today’s blog post, I want to talk about something near and dear to my heart, Value.

You know I’m a big proponent of NURTURING your list, so I don’t want to seem like a broken record over here.

But the last few months, I’ve been noticing that the value of the emails I received on the lists I subscribe to have gone down hill, especially once people start launching.

Today I thought I’d share two ways you can add value in your email sequences, as you lead up to, and during a launch.

STEP 1: Schedule a HEARTY nurture sequence the month before your launch

For many of us, we have an idea when our launches will be – hopefully you’re not saying “I think I’ll do a product launch on Monday” the Friday before.

So in the month leading up to your launch, schedule out a robust nurture sequence, covering some of the big pain points your clients face.

In these emails, give, give, give, and don’t pitch. Just begin to train your audience to think of your emails as having lots of good content, so when you shift to your promotional sequence once the cart opens – people will continue to open them willingly.

What does this look like? Here is a simple formula you can use to build out your nurture emails:

{NAME}

[SECTION 1] Start with a questions that pertains to your ideal clients pain point, or a personal story that shows where you were before you implemented the tips you’re about to share.

[SECTION 2] Establish yourself as an expert, or share what qualifies you to share your info (especially if you didn’t start with a personal story to show your ‘before’)

[SECTION 3] Giveaway useful contents and tips. Lists are always nice.

[SECTION 4] Sign out

Preeetttty easy.

STEP 2: Keep giving even after your promo sequence starts

While addressing objections needs to be your #1 priority with your promo sequence, when I’m mapping out the sequence content for a client, I am constantly asking myself “how I can address objections BY adding more value?”

Example – lately I’ve been working with a client who has a six month coaching program. One of the biggest objections from women for this program is ‘how do I know this program will work?’

With that in mind, I include lots of content that can help them make changes to their business ASAP.

All throughout the sequence, I include lots of tips and tricks, sneak peaks of the modules, training videos, mini-trainings, and challenges so that her readers can take action and start getting value from her content quickly.

Ergo addressing the objection and giving value at the same time. Magic.

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I hope these two tips help you get clearer about how to add value to your launch sequence. If you’d like to chat about how to do this even more for your upcoming launch, contact me here.

Don't hit send without checking these 6 things!

For this week, I have a bit of a PSA:

I received yet ANOTHER email with the subject line “Oops! I sent you the wrong link, here is the *REAL* one.”

Every time I see that, I just cringe. When you’re emailing thousands of people, you really want to make sure that everything is working the FIRST time.

In email marketing, we also talk a lot about how finikey readers are. Your subject line has to be good so your readers will open the email, the CTA has to be catchy so they’ll click. But all of that is for not, if once you hit send all the pieces aren’t in order.

Plus considering all the work, time, and effort you put into writing that email – I know you also want it to be perfect.

We’re all human here, so I know that mistakes happen, but worrying about your broadcasts is a headache you shouldn’t have to have every single week.

That’s why, this week, I wanted to offer you a simple system that you can put in place for all your emails. Now, you can rest assured that everything is in tip top shape the first time.

BEFORE sending a broadcast out to your whole list, double check your email by:

  1. Clicking all your links and make sure they go to the intended page/ aren’t broken.

  2. Making sure your email formatted correctly and will work with multiple different inboxes (ie. always send that test email and remember emails received by outlook can turn out a little weird)

  3. Checking the subject line, Subject Line, SUBJECT LINE! (so that it doesn’t say ‘test’ or ‘draft’)

  4. Going back and confirm that the correct list is getting your emails

  5. Confirming that you have a high open rate at that time/ day, or testing it if you’re unsure.

  6. Giving it to another human to glance at your spelling, and then triple check it.

  7. Including social media sharing buttons so that the message can get passed along.

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Want help creating perfect broadcast every time? Find out if my services are right for you!

Connection > Content

As a funnel strategist this might come as a bit of a surprise, but sometimes I totally hate content.

That’s because “Content” can so easily become the product of our ‘one-and-done’ culture, and ends up looking mass produced, regurgitated, processed, and re-purposed.

And that's the truth.

More importantly, the people on your list, in your community, your followers, your tribe, your gang– they just aren’t interested in your "content."

They don’t want your one-and-done mass email sends or your [FIRST-NAME] fields. What they want is something so much DEEPER than content.

They’re interested in YOU– your story, your journey, and (hopefully) your business. 

As humans, this connection is what we’re all after, and it drives all of our decisions, including our buying decisions.  But, if the story you're telling is real AND adds value, then it won’t feel like "content." It will feel like connection.

So, as business owners, what are some ways to add connection and real value to our writing?

We can relate.

Stories, videos, sharing photos – these are all excellent ways to share your life with your followers. Sharing is contagious, once you start it others will follow.

We can leave the b.s. to lawyers.

People can smell your b.s. They can smell when you’re not bringing your most genuine self forward. So write to your list like you're their most trusted advisor, because you should be .

We can be proactive and help them with what’s actually wrong.

Do your research and learn what your audience is interested in knowing more about, or have a survey and ask them point blank. Either way, take what you know about your buyers and give them what they really NEED, not what you think they want. 

This week, I challenge you to use your time speaking to your community, to do more than share content. Start sharing connection.

Getting Behind the Wheel of Your E-Mail Sequences

One aspect of my work is to help online entrepreneurs outline email sequences that nurture their leads, turn those leads into buyers, and turn those buyers into long term fans.

I love this work, but ultimately, getting ‘behind the wheel’ of your own sequences can be really confusing, misleading, and frustrating.

So if you’re looking for a way to nurture more leads with less work, then here are a couple launching points to make your sequence stand out:  

Create a goal

When you’re first planning out your sequence, it can be easy to just jump in with both feet, but without a clear idea of where you want to lead your readers. Take a few minutes BEFORE you begin to write and outline a clear goal for what type of action you want once the sequence is completed.

Outline when and what you’ll send

Creating a plan for sending emails is like setting up the framing for the house. You’ll want to make a note of not only how many days apart you’ll be sending emails, but also a rough indicator of the type of content you’ll be sending out in that email. Will it be an educational email with no pitch? Hard Sell? Or maybe one that has a link, but only in the P.S.?

An example could look like this:

Email 1: Welcome email
Send immediately after opt-in in

Email 2: Educational email (RE: Setting up sequences)
Send 1 day after last email

Email 3: Educational email w/ Link in the P.S.
Send 3 days after last email

Email 4: Hard Sell email pitching product/service
Send 2 days after last email

Email 5: Educational email (RE: how to analyze sequence engagement)
Send 3 day after last email

Always be giving

Break up your sales emails by layering them between informative educational emails. This insures that your readers don’t feel bombarded, overwhelmed, or turned off by a constant need to sell. This can be altered slightly if you’re in a launch period, but in general it’s nice to give your readers a bit of a break from time to time.

Have ONE call to action

Every email you write and send should have one purpose, and lead your readers to one place. If there are too many things going on, your readers simply won’t engage. As you outline your sequence, create your goal for each email - and make sure that they’re clear and succinct.

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Sequences aren’t always the easiest thing in the world, but they don’t have to be complicated either – IF you go forward with a clear goal, stay helpful, and clear.

And if you want to create an awesome sequence for your subscribers, sign up for a Sequence Strategy Session!

“Should I use emojis in my subject line?” ...Well the jury’s still out

It’s pretty obvious that emojis have become a thing over the past few years, and so much so that people, all over the place have started using them in their email subject lines!

But keeping up with what’s cool is always a mixed bag in the marketing world.

For me, even as a writer and a lover of the English language, I’ve never really minded emojis (maybe it’s because I’m still under 30.)

So while I’d love to be the end all be all for how your audience feels about YOU using emojis in your subject line, I’m definitely not.

What’s worse is that the research out there is totally up in the air about whether or not they're even successful.

That’s why if you’re adamant about using emojis in your subject line, it’s important that you follow a few simple guidelines.

Make sure that...

  1. Emojis are on brand for you.

  2. You’re ok with people receiving a ▢ if they have an email server that doesn’t support emojis (ie. outlook)

    *Hint: By placing the emoji at the beginning or the end of the subject line, OR not using it to replace words can be an effective means of dealing with this dilemma.

  3. You test it to see that your audience responds well.

  4. You know what the symbols can “really” mean, and do your research before you send something slightly sexual to your entire list.

  5. You use them sparingly. Emojis are really effective if you use them once in awhile, but the more you use them the more your readers get ‘immune’ to them, and they lose their advantage.

Now’s your chance to try out emojis in your subject lines, and see what a bit of testing and a little discipline can do for you.

Don't Be Boring: An Appeal To Ban Boring Newsletters

Typically, I use my blog as a place to discuss email marketing strategy. Today, I want to deviate and talk about something slightly different, but equally important – your writing.

You can complain all day about a lack of engagement, or talk about how nothing works to keep your readers interested, etc.

But the fact remains that all the email strategy in the world cannot help you if your writing is lackluster, boring, or bland.

Therefore, I want to discuss....

THE BASIC SINS OF BORING WRITING:

  • Being vague: If you don't outline what you want to talk about, there is a chance your topics might not be fleshed out enough, and in which case- it’s probably boring. Going deeply into a topic will always be better than generalizing about it, so make sure you have examples to back it up.
     
  • Writing like an old man lawyer: I feel like this is most people’s biggest pain point. We’re taught, through 16 years of school, how to write like academics and then the minute we begin our own businesses it’s shit to the wind- write like you speak. What a paradigm shift!

    If you’re having trouble with a conversational tone, literally record yourself in conversations. See what words you use, what your own natural sentence structure looks like, type it out, and start there.

     
  • Being irrelevant: If you’re questioning if something you wrote is boring, ask yourself ‘is this relevant.’ Because the truth is, everything you write doesn’t have to be riveting, but it does have to be pertinent to the conversation. So check yourself, and if it’s not relevant – cut it out.
     
  • Being a know it all: Yes, you are an expert in your field, and yes you know A LOT about your subject matter. But for your readers, it’s difficult to stay engaged through lengthy paragraphs or wordy broadcasts. Keep your readers engaged by either: making it easy to skim, or being more direct.
     
  • Not understanding how to format: This one piggybacks nicely off the last point – To make it easier for readers to skim, you must understand the formatting of your newsletters. To make it easy for them, try to use shorter paragraphs, bold KEY phrases, or use all caps. Just find a way to draw the reader to the important parts of the content.


If you’re unsure if what you’re writing is boring, I like to suggest testing it out.

Look at your conversion rates, ask your audience, change something up and then create a unique funnel and see how new subscribers respond.

That’s should be easy enough to keep you from sending out boring newsletters ever again.

Indiana Jones and the Search for List Engagement

As we all know, growing your list is really only 1/2 of the puzzle. Engaging WITH your subscriber (not AT them) is the 2/2.

As far as marketing is concerned, having an engaged list is a lot like the search for the holy grail – it requires patience, trial and error, a hell of a lot of work, and maybe a booby trap or two.

Like so many other things, I've been convinced it doesn't have to be that hard. So I tested, and here is what I found.

1) Those Welcome Sequences I harp on about... yeah they increased my open rate 23% . "Wait, how does that even happen?" you may be asking yourself. Well get this! I took down my welcome sequence last month, just to see, and my open rates PLUMMETED – as in only 3% of new subscribers opened my emails. Ouch! Keep those sequences people.

2) If you're on my list, you may notice that on Tuesdays I send super personal, kind of funny emails that link email marketing to my everyday life. These emails always do really well for me and the response rate I get from them is excellent as well, and I think that's because people like to hear about me, and over time feel comfortable engaging with me as well.

3) Clean it up. While it might come as a shock, part of maintaining a healthy list is pruning it from time to time. I (personally) like to do this about once a month. I set up a rule in my EDS and have anyone who hasn't opened emails in their first month removed.