Email is still King (or Queen) when it comes to marketing. Yes, social media should play a part in your marketing game plan, but if you’re not building and utilizing an email list, you’re doing your business a major disservice. Growing an email list does take time but it doesn’t have to be hard.
Why You Need Email
“Social media is like the cocktail party. Everybody gets dressed up, they’re showing off their best selves, you’re having small talk, you’re going into a cocktail party with the idea of I’m gonna meet people…And your email list is like the coffee date where you get to go and sit in a quiet environment. Yeah, it’s cozy. It’s more intimate. It’s deeper conversation.”Kendra Swalls, owner of Girl Means Business
I’ve talked about this before but as a reminder – we don’t own social media. You have no control over social media or who can see your content. An email list is yours. People who sign up for your email list want to hear from you. Through your email marketing, you can build that connection that leads to sales and referrals. When you post something on social media, it is for the masses, it is meant to reach a large number of people. Whereas when you send an email and it lands in someone’s inbox, it feels more like it was sent directly to them.
In order to grow your email list, you first need to build your email marketing platform. I personally recommend Flodesk, but there are tons out there depending on the abilities you’re looking for. Once you have your email platform, create your opt-in form and then share it with the world. A good opt-in will give people something in exchange for their email (like an Organized Business Checklist) and entice them to sign up.
The grow phase of email marketing is all about getting people to opt into your list. It’s marketing your opt-in in a way that feels authentic and not spammy. The best ways to do this are by looking for people who are searching for the information your opt-in offers, and sending them to your opt-in form. For example, when someone asks for tips on how to take better photos in that Facebook group, let them know you have a free guide that can help them out. Growing your list can happen through blog posts (like this one) or by mentions on podcast episodes.
The last phase of building your email list is through genuine connection. How many email lists are you on where you never even open the email? It’s most likely because those emails are very salesy and don’t feel genuine. Create a welcome sequence that warms up those who have opted in. Introduce yourself and your business, and let them know what they can expect by being on your list. Encourage readers to reply back to you with questions or thoughts they have. Creating connections is what leads to sales.
Kendra Swalls is a mom of 2, a photographer, and an educator. In 2012 she started her first business, Paisley Layne Photography, and everything changed. What started as a hobby alongside her teaching career quickly turned into a successful business. In 2017 she left her teaching career behind to run her photography business and start the Girl Means Business brand + podcast. Now she helps women, like you, take their business from survival mode to success mode using the same relationship marketing strategies that have been the foundations for her business success.
If you are brand new to email marketing, her Email Starter Kit will walk you through the 4 steps to get started, along with templates for creating your first lead magnet and welcome series.