When you first start any new project, there’s not a lot to show for it.
But there is one way to look and act professional immediately. It’s also a cost-effective way to update followers on your progress, share announcements, and stay at the top of your customers’ mind.
I’m talking about email marketing. Specifically, building an email list is one of the smartest first steps you can do when starting your own business.
Here are 5 crucial reasons why:
1) Let people know what you’re working on
As you start your new business, people want to hear about you and the progress you’re making. Whether you already know these people, met them recently through work on your idea, or they’re friends and family, they are interested in everything you’re working on and want to stay updated.
In the first message you send out to your list, describe your mission and list off two ways that your readers can help out if they want to support. In future messages, outline recent accomplishments and provide further information about your idea. If you’re writing a blog, this is a great way to push it out to your network.
Not only does it keep the people around you updated on your new business, but it holds you accountable to set goals. If you tell your list you’ll be writing them every 2 weeks with updates, you’ll be compelled to get stuff done.
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2) Send out exclusive content, promotions, & invites
Simply put, an email list establishes a direct connection between your customers and you. Nurturing this connection is a need that will never go away throughout the life of your business.
How can you nurture this connection?
Send your readers cool and exciting stuff!
Make announcements about new products and special limited time deals. Invite them to participate in events or try out a new service before announcing it to the world. Ask for feedback about a recent product release. Above all, make them feel special.
3) Drive more sales
Consistently distributing relevant and engaging content to your customers allows you to stay at the top of their minds whenever they make a purchasing decision in your field of expertise. With email marketing, you’re able to make helpful suggestions, provide quick access to offers, and an easy way to press the “Purchase” button.
Whether we know it or not, people are always on the lookout for a go-to person in every specific industry whenever we need something. By sending valuable and informative content out to your customers, you’ll become the expert that these individuals trust when it comes to your field.
All of this allows you to acquire more sales and happier customers.
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4) Establish that direct connection
As a new startup, it is mandatory to treat your customers like gold. These are the most important people in your world, and you need to make sure they feel like it. Your email list lets you do this with ease.
Send a thank you note, request feedback on your company, or just say hi — these very simple messages can mean the world to these individuals. I’m very serious when I say that the small things count.
By constantly staying in contact with your customers, they’ll feel more comfortable purchasing because they know and trust you. It’s a simple assignment that produces huge results.
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5) It’s all very cheap to do
Seriously. You can create a free account on Mailchimp within seconds and have your first newsletter crafted within minutes. It is surprisingly easy and free. So take advantage of it. (Disclaimer: I’m sure there are other decent email list providers, however I’ve always used and loved Mailchimp.)
This account is free up to 10,000 subscribers, but there are definite advantages for opting for the paid option. Of primary benefit is the ability to create automated message systems to send out whenever a customer performs a specific action on your website or other.
Quick tips for your emails
You may not have any customers yet, you may not even have a finished product to sell, but this is not a legitimate excuse to distribute amateur content. Do your best to mimic the pros. A little effort here goes a long way.
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Only write about things your readers care about. Focus on providing relevant content, offers, and news. Basically, make sure that each one of your messages benefits your readers.
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Less is more
Your message will receive less than 10 seconds of focus by your reader. Thus, keep your sentences short and impactful. Practice writing clear and concise copy to get your point across in as few words as possible.
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Everyone likes photos. Spice things up a bit by including a few well-chosen, relevant images to provide some dimension to your message.
Quick tips to grow email list
- Mailchimp provides you with a link for your signup form, so my advice to you is: put that anywhere and everywhere you can online. This includes on social media pages, on your email signature, and on the bottom of your blog posts.
- Give readers a reason to join. Entice them with access to insider information, exclusive news and discounts, and timely updates.
- Give readers something in return for signing up such as an e-book or whitepaper. Give more value than you take.
Clearly, building an email list is one of the most simple and cost-effective ways to spread your idea out into the real world. It takes minimal effort to set up, produce content, and has a virtually endless list of benefits.
All I can advocate for you is to get your account set up, right now. Get all of your network contacts, stakeholders, and friends and family on your list. Send out your first message. Never stop adding people to your list and never stop sending out messages. Seriously… never.
Grow Your Idea helps first-time entrepreneurs talk to and understand their customers, establish their business model, and plan their growth strategy. Our mission is to empower anyone with a great idea to take action on their big idea.
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