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Why your email list is pure gold for your business


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#024 Your email list in your business is one of the essential assets you have contributing to your business growth.  

If you are not actively collecting the email addresses of your current and prospective customers, then you are missing out on a solid approach to developing and extending your reach and your business

In this podcast, I discuss why you should have a list and the three focus areas of Collection, Storing and Connecting your email addresses.

It is breaking regulatory rules to send emails without permission, but it is easy to manage the correct approach. 

Listen and connect with me with any questions. 

Why your email list is pure gold for your business

Podcast Transcript

John Campbell 0:04
Welcome to the Inspired and Active podcast where it can help you grow your business, using digital methods to inspire you to be more business active with a real focus on outdoor and activity based businesses. I’m John Campbell. I’ve started multiple businesses. I’m a digital change coach, outdoor enthusiast, and I’ve got a real passion to see more people enjoying and being active outdoors.

John Campbell 0:28
Welcome to this Inspired and Active podcast. Thanks for joining me, again, it’s John Campbell. And I’m carrying on my mic and under consideration and thinking around how you really grew your business using using digital as the main vehicle because there’s no question that today, you have to look at digital change, bringing in dense digital methods to really develop your business after the couple of years we’ve had. So today, I want to look at email, email is pure gold to you. And that’s our entitle this, this podcast is why your email is pure gold because there’s your email list, that that unquestionably is the biggest asset in your business. If you follow the inspired inactive podcast previously, you’ll know that I’m quite I’m passionate about getting more people outdoors. And I really focus on working with businesses to to grow their business, to encourage more people to engage with them, and really help getting more people outdoors. And and this is one area that that I see businesses aren’t making full potential from is their email, people are focusing too much on their social reach, trying to just connect through through those means. And really, it’s your email list if you’re not encouraging not connecting with with your clients and customers that email and your prospects and leads, then you’re leaving a lot on the table. So today I just wanted to cover five five points where your email list just to really explain to you the importance and and really how we can you go about starting collecting your email list. And the first the first point is why do you need it? Why why is it so important? Well, the key thing here is if you’re if you’re collecting your your prospects and leads, if you’re trying to engage with your clients and your potential prospective clients on social media, you do not own that, that is not your list, if you are working with Facebook, or Instagram or YouTube, they can change, they can take away your access at any time, you have no ownership, that list of contacts is not yours. And a good example of this just this week, one of the big YouTube channels I follow.

John Campbell 2:43
They were taken down and they’ve got 10s and 10s of 1000s of people following and they were just taking down and they lost access to everything. YouTube simply emailed out to them saying that you’ve been taken off the platform. And and that can happen really at at any time. So you cannot rely on that as a key component of your business in the hands of someone else or another organisation. So that’s why email is important. Because that email address that you collect and put on your list is yours. Nobody else’s, it’s yours. It’s an asset to your business. And you’ve got to see it as a as an asset to your business. Because the bigger your email list, the more reach you’re going to have. So it is that’s the first point in ownership of that email. A second point and why why do you need it is all around that the newsletter and connecting and people think that the newsletter is all done. That’s not the way you connect anymore. And yeah, you’re right. There’s lots of newsletters out there. But it’s a way if you’ve got a client list and an email list that just wants to hear from you putting out regular communications through email is still the most positive and the best way to get through and connected to your clients. So you, you need to be able to have your email list. And then you want to be able to use that email list through communication, whether that’s emails or email newsletters, or just dropping down some hints and tips or any way at all, but you should be regularly reaching out to your email list. And that will just keep them connected into your business.

John Campbell 4:16
The second area that just wanted to cover off with you are the basic steps about collecting because when I speak to businesses, that they are not actively collecting emails, and it is important that they do. And so this is an area that we need to work on is what are the kind of steps you need to start collecting your email address. And even if you’re not digitally advanced in your business, even if you’re not really experienced with this, this area is essential and is relatively straightforward in the kind of technicality of digital. So I see it in three steps one is to collect the email one is the store the email list and the other one is to use it to connect so we’ll just look at each of those three areas to begin with. So if we look at collection, now collecting email, you need somewhere to put it. So if somebody gives you the email, whether that’s on the back of a ticket somebody’s bought or just an add an event that you’ve then collected the email addresses from, you need to put it somewhere digitally, you need to put it online somewhere. Now, that that could be that could be in a simple spreadsheet, or it could be in any other kind of list that you you hold. But really, you need to work, you need to store it somewhere you can use it and the typical way you would do, you would have some list management system, some online piece of application, that just gives you the ability to start working with that list. And and it’s called a CRM system, a customer relationship, relationship management system. And really, that is what you’re aiming for you needing to collect your email addresses and put them in a CRM system to enable you to start using it. Now I’ll extend I’ll expand on the collection aspect of this in the next step, but just carrying on the collect, store and connect process that we’d have in this first stage, you’re now going to collect the email, and you will put it into your CRM system and it sits there allowing you then to connect. Now there’s, there’s a few options here, you you’ve got quite a list of emailing systems available in the market all at different prices, most of them are all monthly subscriptions. So basically, you’ve got products like ConvertKit, AWeber, they’re all very popular, one of the most popular is MailChimp. Now it doesn’t really matter which one you take gets, they’re all based on a price and they all have their features, but effectively, they all do the same job. And I would suggest you just go with a product like MailChimp to begin with

John Campbell 6:48
MailChimp would give you a free access to start with, for I think it’s around 10,000 emails a month, which is more than enough for many of you. And then if you move into the paid subscription, it’s it’s 10 $11 a month I can remember this is last time I looked, but I think it’s it’s around that moat that area and it is very effective. And it will give you what you’re looking for. Certainly, to get started even when you’re more mature at this, it’s still a good system to use. So in this collect, store and connect process, it’s key then that you start to know your audience who is it you’re targeting, because you’re collecting emails from your your customers and your prospective customers. So you have to understand what is the audience group you’re targeting. Now, this does not have to be just people who are coming to your location, you have the option here to be much wider than that. And we could look at how you can offer services to a wider audience in a future podcast. But look at your audience, look at your your niche, look at how you’re going to collect it. And it brings us on to the third area of how do you attract people? How do you try and persuade people to offer you their email address.

John Campbell 8:03
The way to do this is really by creating what we would call in the trade a lead magnet, this is just a way for your customer to see something you’re offering. And they will look at the value of it want to get it, download it and access it. And they’ll do it by leaving you an email address. And then they would download whatever it was you were offering. So that’s called a lead magnet that’s allowing you to attract people to leave that email addresses for you. And this lead magnet is just something that you can give them which has some value to them. And they would be happily leaving their email address to get access. Now that could be a checklist or something in your activity world that were useful, whether it’s a checklist of camping equipment, or climbing hints and tips or what you need to be safe on bike trip, there’s lots and lots of things you could do, which could be a simple downloadable file that someone would be able to put in their email address and then download that checklist. Equally, it could be a video could be a video series, it could be a small booklet, really anything that you think would have value to them will put up online and then for your client to download it or to watch it they would offer you and give you their email address. There are a lot of ways to try and persuade people to give you the email address through this lead magnet approach and how you design your lead magnet is really important. And I will do a separate podcast on good practice and creating a lead magnet but it’s all about having a great headline. It’s all about understanding the transformation somebody’s going through so what are they wanting your your lead magnet for it’s not just because they want a checklist is because they’re looking for a transformation going from feeling one thing to be able to do something else that was that transformation that you are effectively promoting in your lead man magnet not just the lead magnet magnet itself, but we’ll cover that often in another in another podcast session. Now lead my next magnets are promoted through landing pages, that’s another term for you. So your lead magnet is put on to a landing page. And it’s like a one page website, it’s a single page that gives people the information about your lead magnet. And again, the software on a monthly subscription service to enable you to create these landing pages. And a lot of these email systems I mentioned, MailChimp, will have a landing page capability for you could go to a specialist landing page system called could be Instapage, or LeadPages. Or if you’ve got a website Elementor allows you to create simple pages within your website. So there’s a lot of ways you can create a single page to promote your lead magnet. And on that page would be a form that enables your client just to leave their email address for you. So you then have that stored in your CRM system, which allows you then to connect and email them. And just remember, we’re looking at all touch points to collect your email addresses. It’s not just your lead magnet, anytime you can, whether somebody is coming to your site, somebody’s coming to take part in one of your events. Just make sure you capture their email addresses. If you go to a conference or you go to any promotional opportunity, just collect email addresses through whatever means you can we go to exhibitions, and we might put up a small competition, enter your email address here to be able to be put into a raffle or whatever it was you wanted to do. But always try and build up this email list. It doesn’t need a huge email list to be kind of successful and be connected, you can have a few 100 in your email list or a few 1000. But once you’ve got it, you can then start working with those clients and serving them and giving them value. And that’s what this is all about. So we’re now collecting and storing our email addresses. And then we start connecting with with the

John Campbell 12:06
customers and prospects. You have an email list. And I just wanted to bring one thing to mind here there is regulation around this. It is it is really important that you understand the regulation. And what is it you can do and what you cannot do GDPR, which was a term that came in in 2018, which stands for general data protection regulation, but it’s really there to protect you, as a consumer, you as a person, so you’re not getting your personal information shared. And you shouldn’t be getting spammed by companies you don’t know. So you mustn’t just enter into that without understanding that you cannot just email out to individuals who you haven’t heard from and haven’t your your prospects have to confirm through your email process that they will accept emails from you. And that’s where your lead magnet comes in. If somebody signs up for your lead magnet, they are confirming that they are happy to be contacted by you. So you must ask for their permission in this case. And you must clearly state that you will not share this information with other organisations. And they must have an easy way to unsubscribe, that is essential that your email system will typically enable this. And if you’re using your CRM system, again, if somebody says they don’t want an email from you anymore, they will automatically unsubscribe. So you don’t have to do anything. But you do need to have that process in place to allow that to happen. So not to be underestimated the importance of the regulation to make sure that you don’t fall foul, you can be fined if you are continually sending out emails without consent and without permission. So it is really important that you look at that as part of your privacy policy and your data protection focus as you begin to collect this personal data, because the email address, which is all you’re collecting is personal data, or for that for that user, you don’t need to collect anything else. But it’ll still be classed as personal data. So you have to be very careful in this area of regulation.

John Campbell 14:17
So the final area is once once you’ve built up, you’ve stored your email list is connecting in as we’ve discussed. Now, you’ve got to be consistent with the connection, try and use that email list. So it’s quite, it’s good to be able to categorise it, put them into different pots effectively. So if you wanted to send an email about a specific subject, you could you could easily then email only those customers who are interested in that subject because there’s no point in blasting your whole email list and if it’s quite wide, and you know that a large percentage of them aren’t interested in what you’re giving them so let’s start categorising that list less not using it in in a true sense of a marketing system for you and your business. Because you will start measuring, you’ve got to start measuring the success of that email list. And all the systems that you’ve put in, whether it’s MailChimp, or any of the other ones will give you the ability to look at how many people received email, how many people open the email, and how many people clicked on your call to action, because what you’re trying to do through the email is not just tell them what you’re doing, it’s maybe asking them to take a take an action, and you can measure how many people are doing that. And, and that’s called your conversions. So if you can get your conversions up, to do follow through into the action you want, that’s what you’re trying to do. And you might find that, if it’s, if it’s a cold list, you don’t really know well, or they don’t know you could be prospects at 20% kind of conversion might be what you’d expect. If it was a warm list, so people know you a bit more, that would be going up to 40%. But if you’re getting anything, anything around 40% conversion, that is a wonderful conversion rate, we see right down at five 10% of people, if not less, if it’s a really cold outreach, you’re doing your email list, but that email list, you want to keep warm, and try and get those conversion rates up. And that’s where the whole marketing game kicks in, using your email list as your your key asset, and sending out and connecting with your clients and prospects and have a measurable and controlled fashion.

John Campbell 16:37
So in the podcast we’ve covered why do you need a list and we talked about owning it as the key thing, the three steps and the process of collecting emails, storing emails, and connecting with the email you’ve the client you’ve actually collected email from, and then how do you collect it and the importance or regulation and the importance of measuring and looking at the reports on a regular basis to see how your your email list and your marketing is performing using that email list. So that’s really important you think of this as a critical asset to your business. As we said, your email list is pure gold to you if you can have a strong connected email list your business growth and your marketing strategies can be applied and you can see acceleration and what you’re doing. And it just allows you then to just connect guru and develop that connection with your customers which is a lifeblood for for any business in this in this world. Thanks for listening and please reach out to me. If you have any questions follow me on Twitter at jarthurcampbell, but also in on Instagram at inspiredandactive so I look forward to hear from you and please listen in on the next podcast.