I was recently consulting with someone who runs a very successful offline business. They do have a web presence and it gets a very large amount of traffic but they don’t make any money from it.
Which is why I was brought in.
As soon as I stepped through the door I knew what the main problem was in their digital marketing strategy. They didn’t have an auto-responder.
Yes, they were capturing the leads that visited the site but then they…
…did nothing with them!
Okay first things first, I needed a drink.
Only coffee… it was about 9am in the morning after all!
With my coffee, and a couple of biscuits, in hand I sat down in the office I’d been given while I was there and logged into their emailing system.
I couldn’t believe my eyes.
In fact I logged in and out a few times just to make sure that everything was as it was supposed to be.
They had 100,000 leads in their system and the last email they sent them was three months ago!
I took a swig of my coffee and strolled into the directors office. Sitting down I said…
Do you know you’ve been losing $100,000 every single month?
He looked at me like I was insane. After all, I was telling him that he’d been missing out on an additional $1,200,000 every single year in revenue.
That’s when I explained to him that every single email lead is worth, on average across all markets, $1 per month. So if he’d just sent a few emails out then he’d be more than a million dollars better off.
When I told him that he could have done it on complete auto-pilot I thought he was about to hit me.
The way he could have done this is using an auto-responder.
An auto-responder is an emailing system that sends emails to your leads at set time intervals over a period of a few weeks or months.
There are three ways to use them. These are:
- Use them to deliver all your content and sales promotion
- Use them just for content delivery
- Use them just for sales promotions
Either of these will work well in the right scenario. Most people will tell you that you should be using number 1 from the list above. This means that you don’t have to ever worry about writing any content or sales promotions, as soon as someone joins your mailing list they start getting content and promotions.
But, personally, I think that’s dependent on both your market and the type of business that you want to run.
This won’t work for all markets because the content in some markets is not evergreen. By this I mean that it’s constantly changing and if you’ve written an auto-responder that always uses the same email then the content is going to be outdated by the time people read it.
Of course, if you’re looking at a market such as dog training then it’s not going to change very often and this won’t really be an issue.
My biggest issue with using this method is that at some point subscribers will come to the end of the pre-written content and then they’re going to receive nothing. That’s fine if you’re business is simply about getting people into a sales funnel and converting as many of them as possible.
If you’re doing that then it’s purely numbers.
I don’t like running a business that way. I want to keep helping people achieve their goals and provide them with the support I would like to get if I had trusted someone with my email address.
And that means that you need to keep emailing them even after they’ve finished your auto-responder sequence.
Which is why my preference is for option three.
I don’t want to be continually writing sales emails but if I want to keep my business going then we need to sell our products. However I do like to stay in touch with my subscribers and mail them between three and five times every week.
It’s the content emails that I write each week because I want to make them personal to what is happening to me at the time of writing. How I’m feeling, what I’ve experienced recently, the results of new tests etc…
And I’m a firm believer that writing like this not only creates more fans, but it also helps your readers to learn faster.
Yes, it takes more work. But, as an internet marketer, without your subscribers you don’t have a business at all!
If you don’t already have an auto-responder series then you should get one right now, in fact you should have got it yesterday. If you already have one then it’s time to start determining if you’re using it best. Which means determining if your readers are getting the maximum value from your emails.