One Problem, Two Mistakes, and One Big, Fat LIE About Email Marketing

This is an excerpt from my book, Invisible Selling Machine. I wanted to share it here on the DigitalMarketer blog because I think EVERYONE needs to hear this rant. 

Want a copy of this rant for yourself? Swipe the PDF here.

Here goes…

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invisible-selling-machineEmail is an incredible selling medium, but there’s one big, huge glaring problem.

According to Fortune Magazine, the average person receives 147 emails per day.

Yikes!

Remember the early days of email? People logged into their AOL accounts and smiled with excitement when they heard that familiar voice say:

“You’ve got mail!”

Today, we’re drowning in email with billions of messages hurdling through cyberspace on a daily basis. And it won’t be letting up anytime soon. According to a survey published by email service provider, iContact, 56% of businesses plan to increase their email marketing activity next year.

There’s a reason for the massive volume of emails businesses send each day: Email marketing works.

In fact, when you apply a solid process to it, email marketing works like a virtual salesman — driving sales day after day on autopilot. And, if you really do it right, it can become an Invisible Selling Machine.

So, why isn’t everyone doing it?

Most business owners I meet are paralyzed by the “small list” myth. They think they need an enormous list of subscribers to make email marketing work for their business.

Not true.

Okay, I’ll admit it…

All other things being equal — a bigger list is better.

But list size is certainly not the primary driver of email marketing success. I know lots of marketers with great big lists that don’t make a dime because, at the end of the day, it’s not the size of the list that matters… it’s how you use it.

And the simple truth is that most companies don’t know how to use their list. They don’t have a process or a system, and that’s the primary reason business owners declare that email marketing doesn’t work.

The fact is, if you do it wrong, email marketing doesn’t work. That’s why we teach you how to do it right.

But there’s something else we should talk about…

(NOTE: Want to get my full guide to crafting an automated, evergreen email campaign that literally makes sales while you sleep? For a limited time, it’s FREE when you pay for shipping! Yep, my 5 steps to email marketing success are up for grabs for free—this week only. Claim your copy now.)

The Great Big Lie

We’ve all heard this before…

“The money is IN the list.”

Don’t fall for it. This is a myth perpetuated by so-called experts peddling lead generation and list building services.

Make no mistake — simply having a list does not guarantee sales. There’s only money to be made from a list if you have a “machine” in place to monetize the list once you have it.

We’ve acquired big businesses with big email lists that were utterly worthless. They had no process to extract money from that list.

This is what most marketers get wrong. They focus all their efforts on building email lists and almost no effort on how they’re going to make money from that list once they have it. So, as backwards as it may seem, your first priority needs to be HOW you will make money from a prospect or lead. You must first have your process down, and then you can focus on how you will get more leads.

This is why you might think list building is difficult. This is why you might feel stuck. It’s not your fault and you’re certainly not alone, you’ve simply been taught to do things backwards.

Building an email list becomes simple when you understand the system I outline in this book. The Invisible Selling Machine will give you an unfair advantage over 98% of your competition by deploying a simple, copy-and-paste “method” I discovered after hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars in trial and error of selling my own products and services.

These aren’t sneaky, under-handed “black-hat” tricks and hacks, and you won’t be labeled a spammer. In fact, with this method, you’ll actually mail your list less frequently while making MORE money.

Two Crucial Errors

When most marketers get a lead, they make one of two catastrophic errors.

The first big mistake is that they fail to follow-up.

It sounds crazy, but most of the business owners I know (even some of the really good ones) don’t have a single follow-up campaign in place. They send emails to their list when they “feel like it.”

Again, it sounds crazy, because what’s the point of lead generation if you’re not going to follow-up? The problem is most business owners simply don’t know what to mail or how often they should mail.

Or they’re scared. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard business owners say, “If I email my list, people will unsubscribe.” But if you’re not going to send them emails, what’s the point of building the list in the first place? It’s flawed logic.

The second big mistake marketers make is sending the exact same email to everyone on their list.

The fact is, not every subscriber on your list is created equal. Some are very interested in what you’re selling. Others are somewhat interested and, still, others aren’t interested in what you’re selling at all. At least, not yet.

So should all these subscribers receive the exact same emails at the exact same time? Should they even receive the same number of emails?

Of course not!

Wouldn’t you agree that if a subscriber shows interest in a particular product, service, or topic that they should receive more emails than a less engaged subscriber? And wouldn’t you think if you segmented your subscribers this way that your engaged subscribers would buy more?

And, if you laid off your less engaged subscribers, don’t you think they’d stay on your list longer and maybe even buy something from you at a later date when they’re ready to buy?

Absolutely!

And that’s exactly what a “Machine” does and it does it on 100% autopilot.

If you want to learn to build your “Machine” — no matter the size of your email list — watch this set of (free) training videos

big-results-from-a-small-email-list

Don’t forget… this was Chapter 3 of Invisible Selling Machine. You can get the rest of my 5-step guide to crafting an automated, evergreen email campaign that literally makes sales while you sleep for FREE (plus shipping) this week only! Learn more now.

The post One Problem, Two Mistakes, and One Big, Fat LIE About Email Marketing appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

This is an excerpt from my book, Invisible Selling Machine. I wanted to share it here on the DigitalMarketer blog because I think EVERYONE needs to hear this rant. 

Want a copy of this rant for yourself? Swipe the PDF here.

Here goes…

Get the 3-Step Pinterest Jumpstart Plan that Led to a 40% Increase in BabyList’s Revenue

It’s easy to push Pinterest under the rug.

Yes, more people use Facebook.

However, users on Pinterest are signing onto the platform to plan, buy, and do. That’s a much different intention than users signing onto a platform to watch cat videos.

And, when you consider that 50% of women and 50% of dads in the United States are using Pinterest—that’s some buying power. (Hint: that’s 47,000,000 American users.)

See where I’m going with this?

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If you need more reason to pay attention to Pinterest, then let me let you in on a little secret: Very few marketers get Pinterest, which means there is opportunity left on the table, and you can rake it in by learning the basics.

(RELATED: How Ezra Firestone Generated $41,254.34 in Ecommerce Sales From $775.50 in Pinterest Ad Spend)

This is exactly how I got started establishing a Pinterest presence for BabyList during my time as their CMO.

Using the incredible results from the three strategies below, we were in a great position when we were given access to Pinterest Promoted Pins—a venture that resulted in a 40% increase in revenue during its first five months!

Those steps were basic, but powerful, and they’re what I’ll be sharing today.

Let’s get started.

Step #1: Forget Your Profile

Everyone thinks you have to start with a Pinterest profile, and then you have to find and save cool pins to your profile day and night to gain followers.

These people are WRONG.

And I understand their confusion.

Every other social platform makes you start with a profile and encourages businesses to build their number of followers.

But Pinterest is different.

While you do need a Pinterest profile to spend advertising dollars on Pinterest, you DON’T need a profile to get tons of traffic from Pinterest.

Let me give you an example.

The grocery store Trader Joe’s does not have a Pinterest profile, but I know they get tons of traffic from Pinterest.

How do I know Trader Joe’s gets tons of traffic from Pinterest?

Here’s the trick: You can go to “www.pinterest.com/source/[enter_url_here]” to see what people are pinning from ANY website.

So, let’s see what people are pinning from traderjoes.com by typing in www.pinterest.com/source/traderjoes.com:

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Look at that! Recipes from the Trader Joe’s website are being saved to thousands of Pinterest profiles, all without Trader Joe’s having a Pinterest profile. Huzzah!

(NOTE: Want a 5-step process to bring a flood of shop-happy traffic to your ecommerce site? Get started with Pinterest’s new ad platform and get a proven system you can follow to fast-track your way to quick results and measurable ROI. Learn more now.)

pinterest-CTA2

Step #2: Figure Out What People Like Pinning

Okay, now you know you don’t have to create a profile to get Pinterest traffic.

What’s next?

Start by getting a feel for your competition on Pinterest.

To do this, type your best search terms into the Pinterest search bar.

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For example, if I have a toy company, I’d type “toys” into the Pinterest search bar. If I’m a motivational speaker, I’d start by typing in “motivational speaker” into Pinterest.

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What comes up for your search terms? Which pins have the most re-pins?

Now, a lot of people think of Pinterest as a social media site, but it really functions as a search engine.

So, treat Pinterest like Google.

Type in your search terms, see who wins them, and strategize on the content you can create to get you to appear among the results.

(Related: Episode 66: Creating Content that Converts with Laura Hanly)

To illustrate, during my time as CMO of BabyList, I realized there was a lot of potential for us when it came to baby gear searches on Pinterest.

Search terms like…

  • “best stroller of 2016”
  • “baby swaddle blanket”
  • “how to cloth diaper”

So, we created blog posts to target these searches… and it worked.

We got 100,000 more visitors to our site as a result.

(Related: How To Write Blog Posts That Sell)

Step #3: Add Vertical Images to Your Posts

Once you have blog posts that match well with Pinterest search terms, you have to make sure there is an awesome VERTICAL image included in the post.

Buzzfeed has some great examples.

When they write a post they think will do well on Pinterest, they always include a vertical image with the post.

Here’s an example from BuzzFeed:

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See the vertical image/collage that’s featured at the top of the post?

At this point, you might feel overwhelmed – I have to add vertical images to all my blog posts now?

Believe me, this can be simpler than it seems.

You just need…

  1. A portrait image that matches your blog post theme (I love Stocksy for finding images).
  2. A way to overlay the title of your blog post on top of the image (I love picMonkey for adding text overlays – you don’t even need a designer).

Your pins don’t even have to be professionally designed.

In fact, I believe the pins that look homemade do better than the super well-designed ones because they look less like ads.

Try these simple three steps and take your Pinterest game to the next level and leave your competition in the dust.

(NOTE: Want a 5-step process to bring a flood of shop-happy traffic to your ecommerce site? Get started with Pinterest’s brand-new ad platform and get a proven system you can follow to fast-track your way to quick results and measurable ROI. Learn more now.)

pinterest-CTA2

The post Get the 3-Step Pinterest Jumpstart Plan that Led to a 40% Increase in BabyList’s Revenue appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

It’s easy to push Pinterest under the rug.

Yes, more people use Facebook.

However, users on Pinterest are signing onto the platform to plan, buy, and do. That’s a much different intention than users signing onto a platform to watch cat videos.

And, when you consider that 50% ...Read More

Advertising on Facebook? This Little Tweak Cut Our Lead Cost in Half

I’m so happy we decided to test this…

As you’ll see in this case study, we changed one option in the Facebook Ad Manager and and started getting leads for half the cost… but not on Facebook.

Instead, our ads started to run (automatically) on Instagram.

If you weren’t aware, Facebook bought Instagram in 2012 for about a billion dollars in cash and stock and they have since made it super simple to use the Facebook Ads Manager to advertise on Instagram.

You’ll see the ads, ad copy and the results (leads for $1.76 anyone?)  we used in these “hybrid” campaigns.  I say hybrid because these ads run on Facebook and Instagram simultaneously.

I’ll also give you some pointers on getting started with your Instagram advertising.

But first, you need to how to…

Generate Leads Using “Value First” on Instagram

Our goal for paid ads has always been to present an offer for something free in front of an audience who would be thrilled to learn more.

So, when Instagram ads became an option for us, we already knew what our strategy would be.

We have an Instagram Marketing Strategy Guide we use as a Lead Magnet and ran paid ads to it throughout the year.

The guide acts as the very top of our sales funnel.

Once someone opts into the guide, whether through a paid Instagram ad or a form on our website, they are brought through the same follow-up sequence of onboarding emails.

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During our last list building campaign, my team and I decided to test out results using Facebook’s “Automatic Placement,” so the ad was fed to all the placement options.

This option is found under “Ad Set” when you are setting up your Facebook ads.

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By selecting this ad placement, your ad can be seen on BOTH the Facebook newsfeed and on Instagram.

Below is the ad we ran on Facebook for the 2017 Instagram Strategy Guide…

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And this is how the ad appeared on Instagram…

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For this campaign, we spent $1,096.02 for 534 leads, an average of $2.05 a lead, which we were happy with.

When we went back to the reports to analyze what made the difference, Instagram placement beat out Facebook placement on cost per conversion significantly.

In 14 of the 17 targeting audiences, cost per conversion was HALF on Instagram than its Facebook counterpart.

On average, a lead from an Instagram ad ran us $1.76/lead – 89¢ fewer than those shared to Facebook.

Moral of the story?

It’s worth it for business owners to test BOTH platforms.

We don’t only use Facebook and Instagram Ads for our lead generation, but also to directly convert sales.

There is a BIG opportunity for selling on Instagram…

Generate Conversions Using Retargeting on Instagram

Two of our lower priced products, The Hashtag Handbook and Social Media Class Tickets, have sold well with Instagram ads.

Screenshot 2017-03-21 12.04.55

We served these ads only to warm audiences, retargeting the visits to our sales page.

In a quick test of retargeting ads in January 2017, they converted at a cost of $8.77. With the Handbook priced at $27.99, that is a $19.22 return per sale.

Any small business owner can benefit from running retargeting ads.

Unlike the Instagram Strategy Guide ads from above, which can focus on cold and warm audiences, retargeting ads can take a lot less time to set up because it only requires setting up targeting once.

(RELATED: [DOWNLOAD] The Complete Guide to Facebook Ad Targeting)

(NOTE: Want The Ultimate Facebook Ad Template Library? Copy & paste these 7 proven Facebook ad campaigns to create low-cost, high-converting ads on demand. Get them here.)

Facebook Ad Templates

3 Tips For Getting Started with Instagram Advertising Campaigns

1. Test on Both Platforms

Like we did with the Strategy Guide above, test your ads on both Facebook and Instagram.

Running on both platforms is easy to set up and will help you target where your efforts should be spent. It turns out these ads were super successful on Instagram, and the actual cost per conversion was $1.09!  With this information, I now can make a decision about where my budget is more wisely spent, and for this campaign it is Instagram.

For instance, we ran a retargeting campaign for our Hashtag Handbook in January 2017. We started by running the following ads on both platforms:

On Instagram…

instagram-advertising-stratergy-img8

And on Facebook…

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It turns out, these ads were super successful on Instagram and the actual cost per conversion was $1.09!

With this information, I now can make a decision about where my budget is more wisely spent, and for this campaign it is Instagram.

If you are going to test the two platforms for your retargeting ads, you can save yourself even more time by ensuring the ad copy you write for your description will work well on both platforms.

What do I mean?

On Instagram, only 300 characters of your description are visible, the rest is hidden behind a “read more” button.

Because of this, you need to make sure you use that real estate wisely and include a hook right at the beginning of the ad

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For example, in the Hashtag Handbook retargeting ad, you can see we come right out and tell people to stop wasting their time.

The sentence tells our audience we want to help them get a precious resource back: time.

The copy continues to explain the selling points of the handbook, which someone can view if they hit “More,” but to get them there, you need something to attract them in the first place.

It is easy to test out where the copy on your ad would be cut off, take a peek at your ad and with “ad preview” in the Ads Manager or Power Editor.

2. Start with a Small Budget

Nervous to invest in ads?

Keep the budget low.

We ran the Hashtag Handbook retargeting ads for 3.5 days at $10.00 a day.

(RELATED: How 6 Pro Marketers Would Spend $10/day Buying Website Traffic)

This is an ad spend that anyone can afford, and at this pricing and conversion rate, you stand to more than double your investment in 7 days.

You are also gaining increased visibility for your accounts when you are running ads, so the ad return is not just in cash earned but also in brand awareness and account followers.

3. Set Up Two Audiences

Remember, in order to retarget visits to a sales page, you need to add your Facebook pixel to the page and set up the Facebook custom audience to start collecting data.

(RELATED: How to Use Facebook Advertising Pixels to Create High Converting Ad Campaigns)

We suggest setting up not one audience, but two.

The first is obvious: People who visit the specific web page.

The second is an audience to use for exclusions.

The purpose is to exclude people who decide to purchase your product from being served ads for a product they already own.

The easiest way to do that is to create a second custom audience, one for those who visit your Thank You page. Anyone who visits that page is a customer of the product.

When you create the ad targeting under your ad set, select your custom audiences, the first under “include” and the second under “exclude,” and you are good to go!

Try out these tips to get your Instagram paid advertising off the ground.

(NOTE: Want The Ultimate Facebook Ad Template Library? Copy & paste these 7 proven Facebook ad campaigns to create low-cost, high-converting ads on demand. Get them here.)

Facebook Ad Templates

The post Advertising on Facebook? This Little Tweak Cut Our Lead Cost in Half appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

I’m so happy we decided to test this…

As you’ll see in this case study, we changed one option in the Facebook Ad Manager and and started getting leads for half the cost… but not on Facebook.

Instead, our ads started to run (automatically) on Instagram.

If you weren’t aware, ...Read More