Somewhere along the line we’ve all had the experience of being uncomfortably near someone who’s, shall we say… not so fresh. Whether that person is coming from a long day at a dirty, sweaty job or simply hasn’t bothered to invest in even the barest level of soap technology, the effect is the same. The last thing you want is for your email list to resemble these unfortunate souls. No, you want it showered and fresh and ready to face the day.
So how do you keep your email list smelling like a rose? In practical terms, email list hygiene means making sure that every address on your list is active and deliverable. If they’re not, you’ll need to purge them in order to reduce your risk of spam traps and other digital maladies.
Contrary to popular belief, marketing involves much more than setting up a Facebook page, renting a billboard and running a few ads. Another valuable marketing tool that you can employ in your business is the sales letter. If you’re not familiar with the idea, think of it as a paper salesman. The purpose is to convince your audience to purchase a good or service.
Your email list is a bit like your house plants. Really, you ask? Well, the analogy isn’t as far off as you may think. Like house plants, your email list is pretty easy to keep up when you first get it. However, things get more challenging the longer you have it.
With plants, you have to make sure you water and feed them and give them the proper amount of light. You get busy with the holiday or with a project and the next thing you know those house plants have seen better days. To save them from an unfortunate demise, you’ll want to give them some good plant food, water them and make sure they have to right temperature and humidity to flourish.
You’ll want to do something similar with your email list if it’s gotten brown and wilted. It’s called list re-engagement, and it’s the next topic in our series on connecting with your customer.
You’re pretty good at what you do, right? That’s a big reason why you went into business. No reasonable person starts an accounting firm if they struggle with math or opens a computer repair shop if they don’t know the difference between CMOS and a C prompt.
You need to do more than just be good at something to stay in business though. You have to let people know that you’re good at what you do, and more importantly, that you’re good for them. In our series on Connecting with Your Customer, we’ll look at a number of ways you can form a strong, authentic bond with potential customers. The first step, of course, is to find said customer. And not just any customer either. You want to find your target customer.
You can’t really be telling me that you don’t have a membership site?
I’m here to tell you that you need one.
I don’t care what business you are in, whether it is online or bricks & mortar, whether you do coaching and consulting, whether you are in the professional services or food services, or maintenance services or whatever. Do not fall into the “But, my business is different!” trap.
Because it is not.
Here are just a few reasons to have a membership site:
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You could be pardoned for not finding caterpillars particularly appealing. They’re ungainly, unshapely and sometimes downright hideous. However we also know from science class that many caterpillars will enter a cocoon and emerge as beautiful butterflies. It’s not hard to see how the analogy applies to a business coming out of a restructuring. Like the caterpillar, your business didn’t look particularly attractive. Otherwise you wouldn’t have gone through the painful process of reworking it from the ground up. You have emerged from your metaphorical cocoon and it’s time to spread your wings and show the world who you are now.
Change isn’t easy. After all, we’ve already got a lot invested in the status quo. Large scale change in a business means disrupting the very foundation we’ve relied upon. It means tough choices that will affect not just us, but our vendors, employees, stockholders, not to mention their families. It involves extensive, often emotionally laden discussions on what’s going well, what’s not going so well and what’s the best path forward. However to remain competitive a business must be nimble, and that means change whether we like it or not.