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In normal times, including email marketing in your marketing arsenal is pretty important. But during a crisis, where your marketing budget might be tighter, your other marketing efforts are underperforming, and your customers are wary of being “marketed” to during unsure times, email marketing should be your #1 marketing priority.

Why?

Email marketing has the highest ROI of any marketing tactic or channel.

FOR EVERY $1 YOU SPEND ON EMAIL MARKETING, YOU CAN EXPECT AN AVERAGE RETURN OF $42.

(DMA 2019)

For comparison you can expect a $2 ROI for every $1 you spend in Google Ads.

Do you need more reasons? Email marketing is:

  1. Cheap
  2. Effective
  3. Customers want to hear from you
  4. Builds credibility
  5. Deepens relationships
  6. Boosts sales
  7. Helps nurture relationships
  8. You own it
  9. Your list is already engaged

So how do you build an email list? What should you say in your emails?

I answer all these questions (and so much more!) in a webinar I presented recently.

Just CLICK ON THE IMAGE BELOW!

Do you need help with your email marketing strategy?

Do you need help with your email content?

Or maybe you just need some extra eyes on your emails to make sure they’re not ‘tone deaf’ to the current crisis?

CONTACT US NOW – WE’RE HERE TO HELP!

How important are email subject lines?

Are you hearing crickets when you send out emails?

We’ve all been there – slaved away over an email that you thought was awesome, but no one opened it!

You spent hours and hours pouring out your heart and soul, but  – crickets!

You were worried that the email system might be broken because there is no way that awesome email wouldn’t have been opened. Right?

Wrong!

Your email subject lines are the problem! 

Just like a blog post, or a book, or a news article, your email subject line needs to be enticing so people will open your email. Let’s face it – we all get overwhelmed in our inbox, so your email needs to stand out from the crowd!

Why emails matter

Before we dive in to subject lines, let’s remind ourselves WHY emails matter!

  1. 40% more likely to get noticed!

Compared to Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter, your emails are 40% more likely to get noticed!

The readers of your emails have raised their hands to be on your list and to hear you news. So make sure your headline is relatable to them!

2. Conversion rates are 6 x higher (compared to other marketing tactics)

Your email list are hand raisers! They’ve opted in to receive your emails – and they want to read them. So they’re way more likely to open your emails than to read your Facebook page, or Twitter post.

3.  Your return on investment (ROI) is $44 for every $1 spent 

For the cost of your time and an Email Service Provider (ESP) like MailChimp, ConvertKit, Active Campaign or Emma (etc.) you can market as often as you like to your Email list.

How to create an enticing email subject line

Now to the juicy details. How do you create a subject line that will actually entice a reader to open it?

Step 1: Don’t write like a robot. Too many subject lines are autogenerated (and you can tell!) So make sure it sounds conversational, like you’re chatting with a friend. Forget the formality!

Step 2: Match your subject line to the content inside your email. The tone and topic should give the reader a sense of what’s inside.

Step 3: Create scannable, easy to digest subject lines. The right amount of words—and characters—can make all the difference in your open rates!

7 is the ideal WORD count. The ideal number of CHARACTERS = 65

Step 4: Use one of these headline starters:

  • Use numbers! (They’re the #1 converting subject line for emails AND blog headlines!)
    • # Things to do before _________
    • # Quick steps to ___________
    • # Ways to __________
    • # Top tips for __________
  • How to’s:
    • How to be the greatest ________
    • How to grow a ____________
    • How to build a___________
  • Informational: 
    • Best places to visit in_______
    • Advice on parenting
    • Ways to save money on________

A couple of other styles that work: 

  • The ______ you MUST check out______
  • The secret to ______ you need to know
  • Want to _______ online?

Kick it up a notch

Once you have a decent subject line, add in an enticing descriptive word to take it to the next level. Words that will create a little mystery so the reader opens the email because they can’t help it! They’re intrigued!

  • top secret
  • surprising
  • mystery revealed
  • lightning fast
  • can’t miss
  • smarter
  • creative

Test it out

CoSchedule has created a cool tool so you can see if your email subject line will work. Copy in the subject line, and hit ‘submit’ and they’ve give you a score!

Check it out here:  https://coschedule.com/email-subject-line-tester 

Test it again

Now you have a new subject line, try it out on a small subset of your list. Are the open rates higher than your prior average? If so, send it to the rest of your list.

So there you have it! Up your subject line game and getter better email open rates!

What questions do YOU have about email marketing? What is your open rate like, and what are you doing to improve it? 

Leave your questions and comments below! I love to hear from you!

Many of us use Pinterest for our personal use, but who is using Pinterest as a marketing tactic for their business?

Read on to for reasons why and tips on how you should use Pinterest for your business.

In 2010, I started a Pinterest account. Not a Pinterest Marketing account for business purposes, but a personal account – for my own pleasure. I pinned recipes, photos, and inspirational stuff like travel pics, etc. Things I was interested in. I created ‘boards’ containing collections of similar things and followed my friends and ‘liked’ their Pins.

I created a business account in 2012 for a business I worked with. I hadn’t really created any Pins myself until that point, but creating Pins was pretty easy and fun!  We saw some success back in those days of using Pinterest marketing for business. We increased our website traffic and even tracked some leads directly from Pinterest!

Fast forward to today…

Pinterest has evolved into a hugely popular search engine, shopping portal, social website, knowledge portal, and so much more!

Pinterest is a great marketing opportunity for businesses to share their knowledge with a larger audience, with the objective being to draw them into their own website where they can continue to share their knowledge, but also showcase and promote their products and services. The ultimate goal – new customers! 

The stats are mind-blowing!

Here are some pretty interesting numbers*:

  • 175 Million active users per month
  • 50 Billion + Pins
  • 1 Billion + Pinterest Boards
  • 81% of Pinterest users are actually Females.
  • 40% of New Signups are Men; 60% New Signups are Women.
  • Men account for only 7% of total pins on Pinterest.
  • Millennials use Pinterest as much as Instagram.
  • The median age of a Pinterest user is 40, however majority of active pinners are below 40.
  • Half of Pinterest users earn $50K or greater per year, with 10 percent of Pinteresting households making greater than $125K.
  • 30% of all US social media users are Pinterest users.
  • 60% of Pinterest users are from the US.
  • There are over 75 billion ideas on Pinterest.
  • 87% of Pinners have purchased a product because of Pinterest.
  • 72% of Pinners use Pinterest to decide what to buy offline.
  • 67% of Pinners are under 40-years-old.
  • Over 5% of all referral traffic to websites comes from Pinterest.
  • Pinterest said 80% of its users access Pinterest through a mobile device.
  • 93% of active pinners said they use Pinterest to plan for purchases and 87% said they’ve purchased something because of Pinterest.
  • Two-thirds of Pins represent brands and products.
  • Food & Drink & Technology are the most popular categories for men.
  • An average Pins made by an Active Female User is 158.
  • Recipes: There are more than 1.7 billion recipe Pins.
  • Shopping: Every day nearly 2M people Pin product rich Pins.
  • Articles: More than 14 million articles are Pinned each day.
  • Average time spent on Pinterest per visit is 14.2 minutes.

Are you still wondering why you should add it to your Marketing Strategy?

2 more simple reasons:  

  1. It can be a great lead generator (driving traffic to your website)
  2. It is great for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) distributing your content and links that drive traffic back to your website. Google loves this.

 

1. What should I Pin?

One way to see what your niche market likes is by using the ‘search’ tool in Pinterest. Search for keywords that your niche might be looking for – this will tell you what your audience is probably interested in.

On Pinterest, people are looking for ideas and products that inspire to action. So let people find you because of your inspiring content. Build trust by continuing to provide value.

Then make sure your website allows for a smooth transition from Pin to page. That means a beautiful and engaging Pin should link to a beautiful and engaging web page.

A couple of ideas for Pins include:

  1. Memes
  2. Videos
  3. Helpful tips
  4. Infographic
  5. Quotes
  6. Customer testimonials
  7. Customers using your product
  8. Recipes or methods to create something (step-by-step guides)

 

2. Add the Pin-it Button

Once you have a Pinterest account and are Pinning to it, make sure you have aPin Itbutton on your website. Make your content easy to find and share to get the most exposure for it.

By adding a ‘Pin It‘ button to your website your brand or business will begin to see more activity and traffic.

3. Boards

To get your account setup and active, create 5 boards of a variety of topics that your niche is interested in.

Make sure the board’s title and description have keywords that are commonly used by your niche, align with your overall messaging for your brand and marketing efforts.

Next, create a series of about 7-10 pins in each board, varying the type of pin (quote, blog post promo, video, etc.)

Now you’re ready to go!

What NOT to do:

Promote yourself, your product or service. Insteadbe of service. Provide great content that is helpful and useable to your niche audience. Don’t worry – you’ll have plenty of other opportunities to promote your offer or service to them once they are further into your funnel (on your website, etc.)

Create pins about you, your team, your workplace. Pinners aren’t looking for that stuff. They’re looking for inspiration!

Be salesy or pushy!  Pinterest will not reward you!  No “10% off” or “50% off today!” or “Buy Today!” And don’t ask people to “repin” your content.

Stress about the number of followers you have! It isn’t that important! Pinterest’s strategy is to be a visual search engine where the importance of posting high-quality, engaging and relevant content outweighs the importance of building follower numbers.

Pin sporadically or infrequently. It’s recommended to post at least five times a day to get optimal results. I know… that is a LOT. But you don’t need to create all this content yourself. Curating and repinning popular content from others works (but make sure you have a good balance of your own versus other’s content).

Also, you can pin the same content to multiple boards – using social media management tools (like Canva – see below) to space out them throughout the day.

Use hashtags! They’re unnecessary and worthless on Pinterest. Save them for other social networks.

Tools/Resources:

Let’s face it – who has time to spend hours on Pinterest every day posting pins? Make sure you use these tools to help you build your Pinterest Pins.

  • To create your pins (they have great Pinterest templates you can use!): Canva
  • For scheduling your pins (schedule your weekly or monthly Pins in advance!): Buffer
  • Great tips and strategies: Pinterest’s business blog

 

Happy Pinning! 

 

*https://www.omnicoreagency.com/pinterest-statistics/

You’ve probably seen them – the glamorous photos of Instagram celebrities holding a product as the sun sets on a beach in Thailand. Or maybe you’ve seen the celebrities *unboxing their favorite monthly box subscription. They have a name: “Influencer Marketers”. And what they do is called “Influencer Marketing”.

*Unboxing – when you open and reveal contents of a subscription (or product) box in a very slow and dramatic way… with a heap of suspense and over the top ‘oohing’ and ‘ahhing’.)

Who are these “Influencers”?. They are bloggers, or fashionistas, or online personalities who have built a loyal following on platforms like Instagram, LinkedIn or Facebook. They are trusted by their followers and have an influence on their audiences purchase decisions because of their credibility and knowledge of a particular industry or topic.

Unless you have a massive marketing budget, you’ve probably just ignored ‘influencer marketing’ as a tactic in your marketing strategy. Those celebrity influencers must cost a fortune, right?

Yes, some do! But there is another way!

Micro-Influencers

Ok – what is an influencer?

An influencer can be a blogger, a YouTube video star or someone who posts regularly on social media.

A micro-influencer is an influencer with a smaller reach than big celebrities and influencers.

So how big (or small) is a micro-influencers audience size? There isn’t full agreement on this amongst experts, but I define it as anywhere from 1000-250000 followers.

5 truths about Micro-Influencers:

They’re more engaged!

The lower the number of followers, the more engaged the ‘influencer’ is likely to be!

Think about it – do the Kardashians respond to all their followers and engage with every one of them? They don’t have time for that. But a micro-influencer will.

A 2016 study by digital marketing firm Markerley found that the more followers an influencer had, the less engagement there is on their posts.

Hyper-focused on your niche

It can be much easier to find a micro-influencer who has intimate knowledge of your niche and is likely to have followers who are interested in that same niche.

The bigger the influencer, or celebrity, the harder it is to know what it is that they specialize in or have an interest in. And sometimes they have too many interests and your area of focus (or niche) is just one of many.

People buy from influencers

A 2016 survey by Collective Bias (an influencer marketing research company) found that 60% of respondents had considered recommendations by a blogger or social media post before making a purchase.

They don’t need to be celebrities.

In fact, it is better if they’re not! Collective Bias also found 30% of consumers were more likely to buy a product endorsed online by a non-celebrity than a celebrity. Among Millennials, 70% preferred a non-celebrity endorsement.

It is affordable!

Influence.co, a platform that connects influencers with brands, looked at what influencers were charging for a sponsored post and found that those with less than 2,000 followers charged on average $124 compared to $690 by those with between 250,000 and 500,000 followers. By the way, the cost for celebrities is way higher than this…

So how do you find Micro Influencers?

There are a number of ways Small Business can find micro-influencers. There are agencies, like Collectively, who are focused on connecting brands and influencers. But if your budget is small, then you can do the connecting yourself. All it takes is a little time spent on social media (yes, it is ok – it is ‘work’).

1) Look for people who are appealing to your customer base. Use the search bar and search for ‘hashtags’ related to your product or business. And then start clicking around.

2) Make sure they’re engaging with their audience. Responding to questions, and comments. And interacting. You want to make sure they’re ‘active’ in their account

3) Check through their posts. Do you like what you see? Are there any red-flags? Look for content that will appeal to your customers.

4) Check out these nine tools you can use to research micro-influencers.

How to work with influencers.

Now that you’ve found potential Micro-Influencers, it is time to connect with them and pitch your proposal.

First, make sure you know what your goal is. Is it leads? Sales? Traffic to your website? Or brand awareness? Will you want them to blog about your product? Then promote it on their social accounts? Or just take a video using your product and promote that.

Then ask these questions in your communication:

  1. Who are your followers? Age, location, gender and any other preference data that can help you determine if it is a good fit. Use your own customer profile to match against to make sure that your influencer’s audience matches yours. (If you need help creating your customer profile, let me know!)
  2. Have you worked with any of our competitors? Or brands/products in my vertical or industry?
  3. Have you heard of my brand before?
  4. Which social media platforms do you focus on? And what would be the best fit for my brand/product?
  5. What are your engagement rates on each of these platforms? Engagement rates are a lot more important than the number of followers or likes. Engagement rates show how many of these followers are actually engaging with the content by commenting, sharing, liking, clicking links etc.

Payment.

You will need to establish how you will ‘pay’ for access to the influencers’ audience. And there are a couple of options you have to do this:

  1. Give the influencer a product or discounts as payment.
  2. Percentage of every sale that comes through the influencer’s network.
  3. Fee for each component of the plan. E.g. blog post, post to Instagram etc.

Long-term plans are becoming more of the norm. The standard rule of needing to get in front of someone 5-6 times applies here, and so having a long-term plan where the influencer is promoting your brand over the course of a few months will be more effective than a one-off mention on their account.

What’s next? Get started! 

Oh, one more thing, make sure that you hold your influencers accountable for disclosing the fact they’re being paid to feature, test and review your product or service. Influencer marketing is all based on trust… so be transparent and require your influencers to be as well!

Happy influencing!