You may have heard of The Rising Tide Society. Empowered by the mantra, community over competition, The Rising Tide Society is a community that provides resources to creatives. Locally, they have Tuesdays Together meet ups which take place on the second Tuesday of every month. You can find chapter near you or join on Facebook. Each month is assigned a topic where the local groups can either bring in a speaker or discuss the topic as a group with prompted questions. Currently, the groups are meeting virtually so if you are a creative itching for a sense of community during your time at home, this may be just the answer for you!
Last year, I was a Raleigh speaker for August’s topic of Email Marketing. Since we are not currently able to meet face to face, emails are more important than ever for fostering relationships to gain new business so I wanted to share some of my top tips with you. Heads up, some of these tips are Gmail specific.
Let’s start! What do you think of when you think of email marketing?
Sure, these are some good examples but every email sent to a potential or current customer could be considered email marketing.
Tip #1: Your emails should include a Call to Action.
Your emails should warrant a response or interaction. Want them to sign up for a meeting time? Want them to click a link to your website? Want them to join your group? You need to include a Call to Action to ask them outright.
Alan Berg also recommends ending your email with a question. Questions warrant a response!
Tip #2: Keep your emails short and sweet.
Attention spans are short and only growing shorter. Take out the fluff and say what you need to say.
Responding to someone? Try to match the length of their previous email with your response.
Tip #3: Set up an Email Signature.
Having your information easily accessible is key so including it in your email signature after every email is important. Having an email signature also adds to your credibility and professionalism.
Must haves – Name, title, company name, phone number, website
Optional – headshot, social media links, awards, logo, email address, address
Bonus! If you have an upcoming event, virtual gathering, product launch, etc add a P.S. to your email signature or a button.
Example: P.S. – Join us for our Summer Open House on August 27th from 5-8pm! Register here.
This is a great place to add badges and other links that you would like to highlight as well. Just try not to make it TOO lengthy.
Tip #4: Follow up! Follow up! Follow up!
Ever had an email conversation going and then you started hearing crickets? Here’s what to do:
Follow up every 3 business days for 3 times total. People usually make their buying decisions within 2 weeks of beginning their search.
The trick here is to be sure you have 3 really great email templates—each one a bit different from the others—so you’re not saying the same things every time.
- Template #1: Simply ask how they are progressing, if they have any questions, and include some of your best photos to remind them why they were interested in your business to start with.
- Template #2: Highlight your “superpower”. What’s the #1 thing about your business that really makes you special? Emphasize that and, you guessed it, include another great photo.
- Template #3: It’s time to pull out the big gun: Add a “carrot” or incentive to book your business—and include a deadline. For example, “If you purchase/book/sign up by (insert date within 1 week) I can offer you a (insert discount amount or added perk.) This increases that sense of urgency. Bonus: include another really gorgeous image.
Customize as much as possible to underscore the services/product that they can expect from you.
Tip #5: Speaking of templates, use Canned Responses.
People want responses and they want them fast. Do you find yourself writing the same email over and over at certain stages in your process? Create a basic Canned Response and customize as needed per person. It will speed your communication right up!
Tip #6: Set up a personal Out of Office Message.
Your out of office message is another wonderful opportunity to have your emails market for you. Often, I will see messages encouraging people to follow along on a social media account that they may be active on while they are out of pocket for email or to a social media account where their work is displayed. Here is an example of an out of office message that I set one weekend while I was at a Bridal Show:
This example gave an option where they could connect with me in person and showed active community engagement. It was also important to share when they could expect a response from me.
Tip #7: Include your business name in your subject line.
Often people will tell you to come up with creative, captivating subject lines that encourage people to open the email. I believe that it is important to include your business name in the subject line so that if someone has forgotten your email address and is searching their inbox, the email is easy for them to find.
Tip #8: Do not just have a contact form on your website, also post your email address! Make it easy to find your email address on your website.
This one is a pet peeve of mine. Sometimes filling out a contact form is not ideal for someone who is trying to get in touch with you.
Having your email address also listed on your website is like having the “speak to a representative” option on an automated phone call.
Tip #9: If you use Gmail and have a contact form on your website, set up a Google Form to gather data for you. It’s free! One question you should ask is, “How did you hear about us?”
You need to know how people are hearing about you in order to make informed marketing decisions and to aid in determining your ROI. Gathering this information from a form on your website is an easy way to do this in your process.
Go ahead and freshen up those email interactions! These helpful tips provide easy ways to make every email market for you.