You’ve spent weeks and weeks creating an amazing product and you’re ready to launch it out to world. You excitedly prepare an email to tell your subscribers all about it. You believe in your product and you can’t wait for the sale notifications to start rolling in. With a flutter of pride you hit send and…zilch.
Nothing. Nada. Not a single sales notification. Thinking something must be wrong with your email service provider or the link you put in the email, you go into your MailerLite account and scrutinize everything. Your analytics tell you that the email was delivered and many people opened the email. Some of your subscribers even clicked on the buy now link, but no one bought your product.
You feel disappointed and ready to throw in the towel. It must be because you don’t have thousands of subscribers on your list, right? Wrong. Really WRONG. It sucks not to see results but you can’t let that discourage you. If email marketing is going to be a part of your income generation strategy (and it should!), then you need to make some changes to the way your market your offers and remember that marketing isn’t a one-time action. You can’t simply send one email (even to a list of 10,000) and expect amazing results.
In this post, I’m going to share four powerful tips to help you turbocharge your email promotions.
1. Validate your offer before even thinking about your emails (Don’t skip this!)
Before you invest time, energy and possibly money into creating a new product or service, you have to make sure your subscribers and community actually want it and are willing to spend money on it. You can have the best, most fancy and professional sales funnel in the world, but if your audience has zero interest in what you’re offering, then chances are your launch will be a flop. By validating your product/service idea before you create and launch, you’ll be able to check if your idea is viable and fine tune it according to your audience’s needs and preferences. You’ll gain more insight into your audience’s experience with the problem you’re proposing to solve with your product/service, and this will help you determine how best to position your offer when you do start promoting it.
Here are some ways to validate your idea:
- Ask people. Survey your subscribers and social media followers. Talk about your idea with people you know in real life who have the problem you want to solve. Ask in Facebook Groups, forums and anywhere else where your potential customers might be hanging out.
- Find similar competitor offers. Do some research to see if there are similar products or services being offered by other business owners. Search Google, Amazon, Udemy, Etsy etc (depending on your niche) and see what’s available and what the reviews are like.
- Consider doing a beta launch. If you’re planning to offer a service, course or high-end product, doing a test run (or creating a prototype, sample or mini version if it’s a physical product) is one of the best ways to validate your idea, iron out any glitches, and gain valuable testimonials and feedback.
- Check out this post for more on validating business ideas.
2. Generate excitement and mention your offer multiple times
Your potential customers need to be exposed to your business and your product several times, and often in several ways, before they’ll feel ready to pull out their debit card. By doing this you’ll “warm up” your subscribers, generate better awareness of your offer and you’ll have more opportunities to reinforce your message, speak to any objections or concerned would-be customers could have, and create excitement around your launch.
Important caveat: this will only work if you’ve been nurturing your relationship and serving your subscribers before you start trying to sell them things. Check out this post for tips on sending great email newsletters.
Here are 3 things to keep in mind:
- You need to build suspense and excitement. Start promoting your offer before you’re ready to officially announce it. You can do this by letting your list know that you’re working on something special. Share your progress, sneak peeks and even some glimpses into the creation process. Ask for feedback and suggestions, and make them feel like they’re a part of the process. This keeps your list engaged, it warms them up for the sale, makes them feel valued, and it builds anticipation.
- Send exciting and compelling launch emails. When you’re ready to share your offer with your list, use lots of positive and uplifting language to make sure your messages convey just how excited your are about your offer. If you’re not passionate and enthusiastic, why would your subscribers be? Tell your subscribers how the product or service you’re promoting is going to benefit them. Share testimonials and photos or mockups if you have them, and answer FAQs and questions your subscribers might have. And here’s a biggie: don’t just send a single email. You need to send a series of launch emails. Think of the products you’ve purchased to build your business, make your home comfortable or take care of you. If you’re like most people, you probably didn’t (or wouldn’t) start paying for Tailwind, buy an Alexa or book yourself a place at a meditation retreat until you’d heard about it a few times. Your first exposures were all about getting you familiar with the product and understanding how it would improve your life or business. It’s the same for the subscribers on your list. Sure, you can send out a single email and some subscribers might buy. But you’re betting on the fact that they’ve heard about your product previously, perhaps through a blog post or on your latest Tik Tok. If you want to convert more of your subscribers into buyers, you need to introduce them to your product repeatedly, clearly describe the benefits, explain how to use it, address objections and remind subscribers about it.
- Give it time and do a final push. Don’t be discouraged when your first promotion email doesn’t get the results you thought it would. People need time to make decisions, especially if you’re trying to sell a high-ticket item. They may need time to talk to their spouse, move money between credit cards, or ask other people about the product before clicking the buy button. Marketing is in many ways a long game. You may not make your first sales immediately so be patient and keep at it. If you’re dedicated and you’re sharing helpful information and offering products and services that your subscribers actually want, then your subscribers will buy from you. Don’t forget to send a cart closing reminder email right near the end of your launch to remind subscribers that time’s running out and give a final push to those who’ve been on the fence.
3. Create a marketing calendar to plan your email promotions
You need to be very choosey about what you promote to your subscribers and only share resources that you know they’re going to love. As you grow your business and your community, you’ll start creating more content, products and/or service packages that you’ll need to promote to your subscribers. You’ll also probably come across lots of affiliate goodies you want to share with them and other businesses may even ask you to promote their products or sites.
It’s exciting to have things to promote that you know your community will benefit from and love using, but there are a few things you need to be careful of
- if you have just one or two products to promote but no promotion schedule, your marketing efforts will be haphazard and may even the mark completely
- if you have lots to promote, you could become overwhelmed (not to mention exhausted!) and find it hard to stay on top of everything and stay strategic
- you’ll seriously annoy your subscribers if you keep bombarding them with offers, even if they’re fantastic offers.
That’s why a marketing calendar is essential. Whether you have just one offer to promote or multiple offers, you need to plan your promotions. You need to know when to start promoting each offer, what the various steps/phases are in each promotion, and what you need to do at each step. And even if you aren’t selling anything yet, you NEED a marketing calendar/editorial calendar so that you can make sure you’re being strategic, nurturing your subscribers and readers, and you never get stuck not knowing what to write to your email subscribers or what to write in your social media and blog posts.
Here are a few tips to guide you as you go about creating your marketing calendar and fitting in your email promotions:
- Prioritize your own projects, products and offers. It’s difficult to promote more than 1 or 2 products at a time, so make sure to focus on your projects first – after all, they are why you started your business. Then if you have space, and if it’s appropriate, you can fit in an affiliate offer around your product if it’s relevant to what you’re launching.
- Identify promotion days and weeks. You don’t want to promote something every day of the week or even every week. Look at your calendar and decider when your launch periods will be, Plan your email launch emails in advance and decide when you’re going to send them. If it’s your product or service, then before you announce your offer you probably want to mention in at least 1 or 2 of your regular email newsletters that you’re working on something exciting. Once you’ve officially announced your offer, you’ll likely send between 3 and 5 emails about the product (launch day, mid-launch, before the cart closes). It really depends what you’re offering, but make sure you know in advance when you’re promoting through email. And of course, you also need to decide what days you’re going to promote your offer on social media. If you have offers that don’t require any kind of launch, make sure to look at your calendar, including your promotions and blog posts as well as holidays and national days, and decide when you’re going to send sales emails or mention your offers in your email newsletters.
- Don’t try to squeeze unplanned promotions into your calendar. When you’ve dedicated a particular week to a promoting your new product and someone else asks you to share their product or one of your affiliate partners is having a sale, you need to say no to promoting those things. If your schedule is full, suggest another slot if you’ve been asked to promote something. If you know your affiliate partner always runs a campaign at a certain time of year and you want to participate, mark it in your calendar for next year and plan around it so there are no conflicts. Saying no prevents overwhelm for both your community and it’ll save you from having to create a bunch of promo content that your subscribers won’t act on.
- Build in variety. When you create your calendar, pay attention to the topics you’ll be covering. You don’t want to accidentally promote two very similar products back to back. Mix things up and give your subscribers variety so they stay engaged and excited about receiving your emails.
- If you’d like a free email marketing calendar: Rock Your Email Marketing Planner.
- If you’d like more guidance on planning your emails, check out the Rock Your Email Newsletters Guide & Workbook.
4. Promote one thing at a time
If you’re going to promote a product and get the maximum number of sales, it won’t happen if you use a spaghetti approach. You need to be intentional and strategic with your promotions. This means not trying to promote multiple things in your email – focus on 1 offer per email. And it also means not including a bunch of completely different calls to action.
Research shows that when people have too many options, they end up not making a choice (Barry Schwartz, The Paradox of Choice, 2004). So if your email promotes several completely different things, the chances are you won’t make many sales because your subscribers have too many options and hence too many decisions to make. Their attention becomes divided and they may feel overwhelmed and mentally exhausted.
But what if you’ve got 2 fabulous things you want to promote? Maybe you’re about to open the doors to your flagship course and you also want to launch your podcast. These will both be amazing resources for your community, so it can be tempting to want to share them all at once in the same email promotion.
But doing this is not only going to overwhelm your list, it’s also going to make it difficult for you to give each project the attention and promotion it deserves. And if you have affiliates that promote your products, they’ll also feel overwhelmed if you’re releasing too many products at once. And just like with your subscribers not taking action when they’re presented with too many offers, your affiliates might decide not to promote your offers if they don’t know what to promote.
If you absolutely have to mention more than one promotion in an email, for example when another business is having a surprise sale and you want to share it with your subscribers (along with your affiliate link) but you also want to remind your subscribers about a webinar you’re hosting. Make sure you mention right near the beginning of your email that you’ve got two important things to tell them. Start with your offer/message – keeping with the example above, this would be the webinar. Give it the attention it deserves, and then introduce the second offer. Be sure that your email promotions always include clear calls to action e.g., “sign up for the Fit In 30 webinar” and “Grab the Green Smoothies Guide now.” Doing this will increase your conversion rates and prevent your subscribers from feeling frustrated by too many options.