"No longer are we padding our metrics with vain, inflated subscribers who ultimately harm our deliverability and email performance. Instead, we're keeping our email list smaller, but way healthier and more effective."
You want to start strong and the way to do that is to make a personal connection with your readers. While there are many ways to make that connection in each issue, your first issue is where you set up expectations about the value you'll provide. It's often the point at which subscribers choose to stay or go.
Here are some things you might want to include: Write your introduction to your ideal client.Acknowledge that this is your first issue and that you appreciate your readers' attention.Tell readers what they'll be getting and how often. Outline the benefits of staying subscribed.If you have added your customers and business contacts to your subscriber list without their express permission, acknowledge that you have done so and why you have. (For example, you might say that they have bought something from your store, or you met at a networking event.)Tell readers that it's easy to unsubscribe via the footer in this and every email.Ask for feedback and suggestions…
There’s a reason that finding new clients is described as prospecting, and researching our contacts is called mining. It really can be long hours of hard work for little immediate return.
In 1849, when Dr. Matthew Fleming Stephenson proclaimed, “There’s gold in them thar hills,” he wasn’t telling his friends to rush off to California. He was suggesting they stay and mine in their own neighbourhood.
That’s a lesson for small business owners, too. Greener pastures aren’t always greener. Have you fully mined the possibilities within your current circle of contacts?
Before you do any prospecting, you need a mine. It might be a spreadsheet, a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool, a bulk email account, or some other ‘place’ where all your contacts (clients, vendors, colleagues, potential clients, referrers, press, and so on) are gathered together. If you don’t have that yet, start now – make it the next priority of your small business marketing strategy.
Using a date in your newsletter sends a signal to your reader about how often they can expect to hear from you. Not everyone will realize your newsletter is biweekly or monthly or quarterly, even if you've said it somewhere inside.
Inside, near the top, the format of the date sends a message. Using month-year signals it's monthly but might also be used for less frequent, too.Using the specific date tends to signal a more frequent distribution. But not always because I also recommend this date format if you want to simulate the feel of a personal letter.Using season-year signals quarterly or less frequent. (e.g. Summer 2016)
Your date could also be in your subject line, where it's purpose is to make life easy for your subscribers (or at least make sorting their email easier). Using month-year sends a clear message that it's a monthly newsletter as it sits in an inbox.Using a specific date in a more frequent mailing helps your subscribers easily trash out of date issues.Da…
It's always useful to check in on your blog stats so you can see what people are interested in reading. This year I'm a little surprised with some of the posts that have been read the most on Work Better, Not Harder. Here they are:
#1. 7 Out Of 12 Small Business Bloggers Agree On This When I teach marketing courses, the group eventually tires of seeing this list of key reasons for publishing a blog or newsletter come up on the screen in every class. Focus on only 2-3 main goals.
#2. Social Media Day Halifax 2018 Marketing Conference For the first time, Halifax celebrated Social Media Day in grand style this year. I'm proud to be one of the organizers of the first Social Media Day Halifax conference which took place on June 22nd.
Did you realize there's a difference between being found and getting found? The words suggest a subtle difference but, really, there's a huge distinction when it comes to online marketing. Many new and experienced small business owners make critical -- often costly -- mistakes by not understanding the difference.
I'll start with 'being found' because this is my own strategy (and my area of marketing expertise) so it'll be easier to explain. Also, I think you'll be able to appreciate the difference more when you read down to the 'getting found' description.
Someone searches for your name or the name of your company because they know you in some way or have heard about you.
These people already know something about you or your business. They have a perception that you might be able to solve their problem and they are looking for evidence. Hopefully, they are also looking for how to contact you.
During one of our January workshops in Regina, we had a discussion about our ‘ideal clients’ vs. our ‘favourite clients’. I look on them as being the same thing but I discovered that this isn’t true for everyone.
It became evident during our chat that there was one very specific defining characteristic that made some clients ‘ideal’ but not ‘favourite’. Can you guess what that was? Money.
Once we got past financial gain and started talking about our favourite clients, another word kept coming up over and over again. That word was TRUST. Almost everyone mentioned it… wanting their clients to trust them and being able to trust their clients.
Do you have an important client that’s a real pain to work with but brings in half of your income? I’m not suggesting you should dump them. Not by a long shot. Some of those ideal client characteristics pull more weight than others and that will be different for each of us.
Last summer I sat down and listed 10 characteristics of our ideal clien…
I've been talking to a lot of people lately about creating and organizing their content for various purposes and places. In the process of conducting a recent lunch and learn on the subject, I collected lots of tips and ideas, and here's a good one.
Share your opinion about someone else's article or on a hot topic under debate in your industry. If you're good at what you do, you will have lots of opinions. Telling people about them will really define your unique selling proposition. It also makes you a leader in your field.
This doesn't have to be about claiming someone else is wrong. It can also be about agreeing with them and offering more info or expanding on the subject.
Of course you have to keep up with your reading and research in order for this strategy to work. Current is key.
“You’re assuming efficiency is my goal,” my good friend replied one day when I suggested a better way (to me) of doing something. Oddly, I might be inclined to say that about some parts of my own work (just not whatever it was we were discussing at the time).
This is not a story about the dangers of assuming (although that could be another article). This time I want to dish out some advice about how to be more efficient (since Danielle doesn’t want to hear it).
I’ve written before about my essential small business tools (Part 1 and Part 2) but these ones below are especially important to my productivity.
Immediately upon implementing FreshBooks, I saw an improvement in outstanding accounts receivable. Reminders are automated and I rarely have to follow up with anyone myself. No more wondering, "Did I already remind that client?"
I've been using graphics applications for over 20 years - for fun and work. Nothing beats Canva's 'magic resize…