How to Streamline Your Marketing With Email Automation

 

 

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Have you been avoiding email marketing? You’re not alone.

Many business owners stick to social media marketing because they think email is outdated. But what happens when Instagram goes the way of Vine and Myspace? Say “goodbye” to your audience!

With email marketing, you’re in total control of your email list. Your audience is on your home court, so you’ll be able to market to them regardless of what happens to your favorite social media platforms.

If you’re overwhelmed by the project of managing an email list – writing the content, creating the sequences, automating everything – you’re in luck! With Flodesk workflows, you can easily create, grow, and market to your list, all without burning yourself out.

If you’re brand new to Flodesk, click here for 50% off!

EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION: Flodesk Workflows

Welcome back to another episode of the Intentional Creative podcast, where we help creative business owners make intentional shifts in their life in business to build momentum and create sustainable profit. As you may know, I’m a big fan of creating systems in my business to automate and simplify workflows as much as possible.

Running a business and being a solopreneur, it means wearing so many different hats and that can easily lead to overwhelm or even worse burnout.

The pressure to create content and show up consistently is all too real. And when you fall short, the guilt can be paralyzing. It’s hard to move forward if you’re constantly feeling behind. I know that I personally felt stuck on the content creation hamster wheel for years. It was an endless cycle of hustling, gaining momentum, seeing results quickly followed by shutting down, burning out and taking a break from content until I can make time and force myself to get back on the horse. Side note. I love that metaphor because I’ve lived it multiple times when falling off an actual horse.

if you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know, I post a lot of pictures of my horse, Dylan. He’s adorable. And you should go check him out if you haven’t already. I know he’s in a bunch of my highlights.

What I would crash and burn and quit my content strategy altogether, my audience would lose interest, my engagement would tank and I would lose whatever progress I’d made. The idea of showing up again, felt forced and just uncomfortable.

This is the inspiration behind my membership community, the Creator Club. I wanted to help other entrepreneurs avoid feeling like no matter how hard they tried, they could never get ahead, never get to a point where they feel like their day-to-day actions are sustainable while at the same time turning a profit.

They say people who work for themselves work 60 hours a week to make the same as a 40 hour a week employee. But I don’t think that has to be true.

There are ways we can value our time and prioritize what little of it we have so that we can make an impact in our business and our bottom line. That way you can actually get a taste of the freedom that you thought you’d have when you started this business in the first place.

While I’ll be talking a lot about productivity, systems and workflows on this podcast, today I want to talk about one strategy in particular that’s made a huge difference in my ability to connect with potential clients around the clock, even when I’m not sitting behind my desk.

That strategy is email marketing. You may be thinking “Galen isn’t email super outdated? I’d much rather connect in my Instagram DMs then send yet another annoying email to someone’s inbox,” but you’ve got it all wrong. While platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn allow for some amazing personal connections, you’re building an audience on borrowed land.

Social media channels. Come and go. If you remember vine back in the day, or what about Periscope? The OG live streaming app. Those are both sadly gone now.

If you spend all your time building an audience on social platforms and something happened, even something as simple as an algorithm change, it affects how you can connect with your potential clients.

That’s why it’s so important to focus on properties that you actually have control over: your website, your blog and your email list.

If you haven’t started growing your email list yet, I highly recommend you start now.

They say the best time to have started was five years ago. And the second best time is today. And it’s a lot easier than you might think.

I personally use an app called Flodesk for all of my email marketing. And if you’re totally new to the world of email, you might be wondering why do I even need an app? I’m sending emails all the time through Gmail or Outlook. When you’re sending marketing emails, there are different rules that apply then to just sending a regular email to a friend or a client. You need to make sure you’re following certain laws that prevent you from spamming people unnecessarily.

For example, one of those laws is that you need to have an unsubscribe link at the bottom of every email you send to give people the option to opt out of hearing from you.

Gmail doesn’t have that, but every single email marketing app does because they’re following those legal guidelines.

Also keep in mind that the guidelines are going to be a little bit different for every single country. So you want to make sure you’re following the laws based on where you live.

There are so many different topics to cover around the idea of email marketing. We could talk about growing your list. We could talk about creating opt-in forms and where to place your email opt-ins on your website. It’s seriously limitless.

Today though, I specifically want to talk to you about one way you can use email marketing to save yourself a ton of time, and that is email marketing automation or workflows.

So what actually is email marketing automation? What does that look like for your business? You might be familiar with email newsletters, where someone signs up to your list and you send your entire list a weekly or a monthly email to kind of keep them up-to-date on what’s happening with your business, any openings that you have for new clients, that sort of thing. When it comes to email marketing automation, we’re going to be sending a series of personalized emails to people who subscribed to your list based on the date they joined.

Every new person who signs up for your workflow is going to start with the same email and finish with the same email as everyone else in the workflow. But they’re going through the sequence at different times.

The reason this is so powerful is because it makes your content evergreen.

When you’re sending a regular old newsletter, whatever you send this week is going to be missed by everybody who joins after you sent it.

When you create a workflow or a series of emails, every new person who joins your list is going to get all the value of the emails in that sequence, regardless of when they signed up.

Another reason workflows are so powerful is that these emails are sending around the clock. When you’re on vacation, when you’re sleeping, whatever timeline you have them set to, they’re going to send out so, you know, you’re never leaving your subscribers without content.

Some people fully replaced their weekly or monthly newsletter with a workflow and other people do a hybrid model. I’m actually doing more of a hybrid model right now where I’m still sending out a weekly email, but a lot of people on my list are in a workflow at the same time. Meaning they’re probably getting one or two emails a week, depending on where they are in that workflow sequence.

Each workflow you create can have a different goal. For example, some workflows might be designed to provide value to your potential clients, maybe giving them business tips or something like that.

Other workflows can be more sales oriented, talking about a specific product or service and trying to get clients to take that next step with you.

If you go over to my website right now, I have a few different opt-in forms across my site and on my blog. One of my most popular freebies is my free SEO checklist that comes with a printable checklist, as well as a video tutorial, showing you how to use it to optimize your website. It’s a really valuable freebie and I use that to entice people to sign up for my email list so they can get more value from me and also learn about my products and services.

If you sign up for my SEO checklist, the first thing that happens is you see an option to upgrade and purchase my 12 months of blogging mini course. It’s super value packed. It’s got a ton of resources. It’s basically 12 monthly blog prompts and worksheets to get you started blogging for the year with topic ideas all mapped out for you. But anyway, I wanted to make a super enticing offer to get people to buy right then and there and take that next step towards working with me. If you don’t buy it, that’s cool too, but what happens next is you go into a workflow inside of Flodesk.

This workflow starts by sending you an email with your SEO checklist, just in case you didn’t save the link. And it goes on to tell you a little bit about me and my business in case you’re brand new, and you have no idea who I am. I then send you a video so that you can learn exactly how to use the checklist and get the most out of that.

After that you enter a value packed sales sequence that tells you more about my 12 months of blogging course and gives you a few different opportunities to buy.

If someone buys at any point during this workflow, I actually use an app called Zapier to remove the person from the workflow, so they don’t continue getting sales emails after they’ve purchased. Service-based business owners can use workflows in the exact same way. Think about who your ideal client is. What could you give away for free? Whether that’s a checklist, a video, some kind of resource that’s going to provide them valuable content and answer some of their frequently asked questions.

Once you’ve got your freebie connected to your opt-in form, you can send people through a workflow that talks about who you are, why you got started in your business, maybe some examples of your work, some valuable content you’ve recently shared on your blog.

The entire goal of the sequence should be introducing somebody to your business, building that know, like, and trust factor and giving them the opportunity to reach out to you to inquire about next steps.

Say somebody goes through a four or five email workflow and they still haven’t purchased from you or signed on to be a client. This is a great opportunity to move them into a workflow that’s focused on providing value.

You could set up this workflow, so it sends emails once a week, for example, maybe on Tuesdays for five or six weeks in a row, providing valuable content the entire time.

Say your, a wedding photographer. These value add emails could be targeting soon to be brides, providing them tips for planning their wedding, day of coordination, hiring vendors, whatever it is that you think your ideal clients are struggling with.

If you’re a web designer, these value add emails could be geared towards small business owners, so you’re sharing marketing tips or helping them to write a better about page. These educational emails help your ideal clients see you as an authority in your niche.

After receiving five weeks of consistent emails, this prospect could be more ready to buy than they were when you first joined your list.

This is your chance to put this person into another workflow, more focused on sales and selling your services.

The end goal for me personally, is to set up an entire years worth of emails all in workflows so that anything I send on top of that is gravy.

That way I can focus on doing work that matters most in my business, like taking care of my clients and showing up on social media while letting my email marketing run like clockwork behind the scenes.

I am definitely not at this point yet. Like I mentioned earlier, I’m doing a hybrid where I send out some weekly content via email and then the rest is automated, but as I create more content, I’m going to be moving these weekly emails or at least any of the weekly emails that I’m sending with evergreen content, evergreen, meaning the content is great whether you consume it today or six months from now, it’s still going to be relevant. Any emails with evergreen content, those are going to go into a workflow so that way anybody who signs up for my list in the future, isn’t missing that great content just because they signed up after the fact.

Creating an evergreen email strategy. Like this one allows you to generate leads on autopilot all year round while you spend time on other things in your business, in your personal life, whatever it is for you.

I am all about work-life balance and this set it and forget it strategy is just one more way to keep your business growing without having to put in more hours.

If you want to learn more about email marketing, make sure to screenshot this episode and tag me on Instagram stories @localcreative.co.

Also, if you head over to my Instagram profile and click the link in my bio, I’m speaking at a summit next week called Accelerate Your List, all about how to grow and nurture your email list. The summit runs from March 29th through the 31st 2021 and I can’t wait to see you there. It’s totally free so make sure you go sign up.

As always, if you enjoyed this episode of the intentional creative podcast, make sure to leave us a review on Apple. It helps more creative business owners like yourself. Find out about the show and it’s like giving me a virtual high five.

As we get more reviews, I’ll be featuring some of them on the podcast, so make sure to tell me a little bit about your business in the review so I can give you a shout out.

I hope you have an amazing rest of your week and I’ll talk to you in the next episode.

Want to learn more about Flodesk Workflows?

Check out this blog post about Creating Workflows or read my full review of Flodesk here.

Listen to this week’s episode of the Intentional Creative Podcast to learn all about implementing Flodesk workflows and automations in your own business. If you love it, leave us a review!

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