Email Marketing 101 Course
Lesson 1: What is email marketing, and where does it fit into my business?
Let’s start with a simple definition:
The simple definition: Email marketing is marketing by email.
Just like in other types of marketing, you tell people who you are, advertise your products or services, and give them stuff they may find useful. If your marketing is compelling enough, and they need what you’re offering, they visit you or your website to check out the details.
But there’s a “big” problem
If you’ve been around any of my writings before, you know that I regard marketing as a “big” problem. And the easiest way to deal with a “big” problem is to split it up into smaller problems, because smaller problems are easier to solve than big ones.
In the case of marketing, I split it up into two:
- Marketing: what you do to get people to notice you
- Lead nurturing: what you do after they’ve reached out or connected with you.
You’re in my Lead Nurturing stage
OK, this is going to get really meta (self-referential), but bear with me:
There are two ways you got to read this email:
- If you were already a subscriber to my email list, you may have seen me mention this course in one of my marketing emails. It seemed interesting, so you signed up.
- Alternatively, you were searching for something on the web, or found a link to my sales page, found the course and signed up.
In either case, my marketing worked (getting you to sign up for the course), and now you’re in the Lead Nurturing stage for this particular product.
Where does this fit into your business?
If you’re familiar with the Tornado Method, you know that your business makes money in the Revenue Engine - the five stages that start with Marketing and end with Follow-Up.
At its most basic, email marketing can be used to automate some, or all, of your Lead Nurturing:
For example, if you subscribe to my weekly newsletter, automated email marketing gets the emails to you (though I still have to write them).
But email marketing can also be used to cover some of your sales process.
For example, if you’re in a business where the sales process needs at least some one-on-one discussion (coaches, consultants, designers and so on), you can use your email marketing to qualify your leads and offer a meeting (where you can dazzle them with your charm, wit and expertise to make the sale).
In this case, email marketing covers a little more of your Revenue Engine:
For example, let’s say I’m a consultant. I could use the following technique:
- You heard of me (marketing at work) and you get onto my email list (usually through a lead magnet or my weekly newsletter).
- Now you’re in the Lead Nurturing stage. You get weekly emails with valuable stuff, and you like what you see.
- One of my emails invites you to see if you would like to work with me. You click on the link, which takes you to a form where I ask you to tell me what you need, what your budget is and when you would like to start.
- My email marketing system analyses your response, and if you’re qualified, sends you to my Calendly link where you book a meeting with me. (If you‘re not qualified, a polite email will tell you so.)
Notice what happened here: my email marketing system not only built trust and helped to establish my credibility, but it also qualified you and set up that first meeting.
And I didn’t have to lift a finger - or spend a minute - to get a meeting with a qualified and motivated client.
But it can go even further
If you’re selling an online course (like this one), and you’re willing to invest a bit of time in learning how to use an email marketing system well, you can cover almost all of your Revenue Engine:
And this (for some of us) is the ultimate goal - as close as you can get to passive income. Your email marketing system can automate almost everything from lead nurturing all the way to delivering a product or course and eventually following up with your clients.
Be careful of wild promises (but there’s a silver lining…)
As promising as this sounds, email “marketing” won’t do everything. More specifically:
Email marketing will not get you leads.
Email marketing is great at nurturing leads, and marketing to existing leads. And potentially helping you make the sale and even deliver your product or service. But you will still have to do marketing to get those leads.
But here’s the silver lining:
The less time you have to spend nurturing your leads, making the sale and following up with past clients, the more time you can spend marketing.
And that’s how you grow a solopreneur business - automate the stuff that can be automated so you can spend your time on the stuff that really needs your expertise.
Here’s what you’ve learnt
At the beginning of this lesson, we posed the question: What is email marketing, and where does it fit into my business?
Here’s what you’ve learnt:
- What is it? Email marketing is marketing by email. You still need to do “pure” marketing to get people onto your email list — but once they’re on your list, you can market to them, nurture them, and even make the sale (and in some cases deliver your products).
- Where does it fit in your business? Email marketing can cover everything from lead nurturing onwards: sales, delivery and follow up. It will not get you new leads (which is the job of marketing).
- Why is this important? Email marketing systems can automate a lot (or all) of these stages, so you can spend more time marketing or delivering your services. Or on the beach.