Email marketing may seem pretty old-school in the days of social media saturation, but it is still one of the most effective and popular ways for small businesses to reach other small business. Once glance at the statistics proving the effectiveness of email marketing should convince you to make it part of your advertising arsenal. Email marketing should be part of you overall marketing plan, used in conjunction with social media, building your brand, and boosting your online presence in general. It is a great way for freelancers to keep themselves fresh in the mind of potential clients.
Solopreneurs should have an email marketing campaign because it keeps you highly visible to potential clients, you cannot expect them to be continually checking your website. Emails are a great way to remind clients that you are fantastic at what you do and are ready to meet their needs. Your email campaign should remind people that you are an expert in your field, what you can do for them and why they should buy your services. Regular contact helps potential clients get to know and trust you before they hire you. Plus email marketing takes less time and money than any other type of marketing you will do, so why not give it a try?
The first part of any email marketing strategy is building your email list. A major advantage of compiling an emailing list is that you own your list and can back it up at anytime, which is not the case with your followers on social media. If all social media were to disappear tomorrow, you would still be able to reach your subscribers. Another advantage that email marketing has over social media is that most people tend to check their inbox more regularly than their media feeds.
Ideally you want the subscribers on your list to be made up of your target potential clients, so generate offerings with them in mind. People need an incentive to subscribe to your emails so you need to think of a freebie you can offer that your target audience really wants. Perhaps a free PDF instructional booklet, or a how-to guide pertinent to your industry. You need to generate something useful and unique to your niche area that will not only get people to subscribe to your emails, but set the stage for them to start trusting your expertise. If you find that potential clients are attracted by your offering enough to subscribe to your emails, that is the first step of getting to know more about what your clients want and need.
Having people subscribe to your business’s emails is a fundamental part of the sales funnel and can tell you who is finding your website and interested in your services. Your website should have a squeeze page which exists for the sole purpose of gathering names and email addresses, but you can also place opt-in forms in other places around your website.
Once you have thought about who your target audience is, what you can offer to entice them to subscribe, and how you will fit your squeeze page and opt-in widgets onto your website; you need to choose an email newsletter service that fits your needs. Some of the best priced and most popular include MailChimp, which free up to 2000 subscribers, GetResponse, Aweber, and Constant Contact. These services will have your email marketing up and running in no time and then provide email analytics, allowing you to see if you're reaching and keeping your target audience and to prune your list of non-engaged subscribers if need be.
What to Send
Besides your free offer to attract subscribers you need to plan out what kind of content you're going to email them on a regular basis. You can start by having a welcome message for new subscribers that comes along with the freebie. In it you can include a question or two to try and get your reader to respond and engage. The more you can get potential clients to engage with you, the more you can find out what their needs are and meet them.
Try and make your emails personal in order to avoid being spammish. Address people by name and get to point; don’t include any excess fluff - you want your emails to be valuable, not something that people start to automatically delete without reading. Share content that is relevant and useful to your target audience. It can be content that you have created or curated, just be sure that it is useful, builds your visibility, and promotes your expertise. The content of your emails could include: helpful tips and tricks, a blog roundup, success stories from your field or clients, an explanation and discussion of a current topic in your niche, a recap of a recent industry event, a set of FAQs, or updates of your recent activities and what you are learning. If you find one content strategy not working, try another or a variety of them until you find the right match to your clients' interests and for your brand.
Aside from your general email marketing campaign, don’t forget to send clients personal email messages once in a while to remind them of you, check on them, and thank them for their business. Keep in regular contact, even when you do not need anything from them. Holidays and events are a great time for these kind of personal touches.
Successfully using email to market your business means getting potential clients to trust you and see you as an expert so they feel confident in hiring you. Email marketing is a great way to build a following and reach people who need your services in a more direct way than social media.
Choosing the right frequency to email your subscribers can be a tricky balancing act. You do not want to annoy them with too many messages and end up with your emails getting diverted into their spam folder, but you do not want them to forget about you either. The best piece of advice in this regard is to choose a reasonable frequency for how often you can produce valuable content and stick to it. Whether you can provide great content weekly, biweekly, or monthly; plan an email content calendar and stick to a regular schedule.
Once you have set up your service and are ready with great content at a regular frequency, you can collect subscribers and reap the rewards of a successful email marketing campaign. Do not forget to engage with your subscribers, ask them questions and find out what they want and need from your business. When they respond be sure to follow-up with them in a timely manner with your unique brand of expertise. If they have a problem, prescribe a solution or suggest the next step they can take, this will show that you are indeed a capable expert in your field and the right person to hire for to solve their problems. Try not to respond to any emails with a wishy-washy “let me know how I can help” - instead, tell them exactly how you can help!
Email marketing may be an older tool in the age of internet marketing, but it is still a valuable one that should be part of every solopreneur's toolbox. Why not use email to share your expertise and start reaching potential clients today? Along with email marketing, you can start reaching new clients today by signing up with Sagegroupy, the freelancer’s friend.