DAY 15: How are Your Customers?

Well holy smokes…here we are – the final day.

It would have been really nice if you could just take today off like the kids do on the last day of school but, you have a little work to do today…and every week from now on.

Now, let’s get on with today’s tasks…

When you first started, you learned that your customer list is your most valuable list. Satisfied customers are much more likely to buy more stuff. You don’t have to work so hard convincing new people to buy when you have a solid group of loyal repeat customers.

Today, you will focus on your customer list. Here are your tasks…
==> Writing Assignment – What Can You Do for Your Customer?

One of the keys to good customer relationships is to treat them special. Give them little goodies, special discounts and incentives. Send them information about products before they are publically released. Make them glad to be your customer.

Think about what you can do for your customer today and write an email to do that.

As always, you will want to follow up on the customer email. If you made an offer, think of more benefits or sweeten the deal. If you sent them a free item, remind them to download it and give them some more thoughts on the subject. Keep in touch with your customers and keep them happy.
==> List Building Assignment – Low Cost Offer

One of the easiest ways to build a customer list is to sell a low-cost hard-to-resist product. Even as an affiliate, you can create (or purchase PLR) an info product that you can sell. Just make sure the low cost product is highly relevant to the higher ticket items you are going to sell and you have a follow up system planned in place.

They should feel like they got a great deal of value but the low-cost item should also make them want more! For example, if you sell educational toys, you can release a low-cost report to parents that gives them tips on educating their children through play. The toys you actually sell will be used in the report to demonstrate the concepts. This helps new customers learn about the toys you offer and see their benefits. As a valued customer, you give them a special limited-time discount to purchase those toys.

Voila! Your customer:

• Gets value from the low cost product
• Learns about your other products in an informative, low-pressure report
• Feels special because they received an exclusive discount

Once you create the offer, you have to promote it. You can contact an affiliate to help you spread the word, run an affiliate contest or start an Adwords campaign…get some traffic going to that offer.
Final Thoughts

Congratulations on completing all your challenge tasks. You’ve accomplished so much in a short period of time. I do hope that this challenge has helped you develop new habits that you’ll be able to carry on for a long, long time.

Whether or not you continue to do an email and a list-building task each day is up to you, but you will need to dedicate some part of each day to your email marketing. It will pay off BIG TIME.

To your continued email marketing success!

 

Back to Day 14

 

 

Day 14: A Contest & Promotion Partner

Oh yeah, the last days are finally here. Today, you’re going to focus on contests and sweepstakes.

Important: Please note there are varying legal requirements for contests and sweepstakes, depending on the country, state or province in which you live. Research those before starting because I offer no legal advice whatsoever.

The basic idea is to create a contest or sweepstakes where new subscribers enter their personal details for a chance to win a valuable prize. Many people find the quality of the subscriber tends to be lower than through other methods.

You may have heard some business owners refer to these subscribers as freebie-seekers. What they mean is that many of these people are not interested in what you have to say. All they are interested in is the free prize. It is not uncommon for this group of people to forget who you are or even the fact that they entered your contest! Of course, if you approach this the right way, you may get a good response. You may also find some people who are glad they found you through the contest promotion and stick with you.

Here are some tips to help you navigate through the process:

• Your prize should be something that is very relevant to your business. The people who enter should be part of your target market.
• Make the opt-in to your list optional. Rather than automatically adding all entrants to a mailing list, tell them what freebie they can get instantly from the opt-in. If they like the information in the opt-in freebie, they may sign up voluntarily. You’ll get far fewer opt-ins, but they are more likely to stick with you and you’re less apt to receive complaints.
• Follow up quickly with your new opt-ins and let them get to know you. Time is of the essence. Contest entrants often move on quickly to the next contest and forget where they’ve been. Put yourself in a better position by setting up an autoresponder series to develop a relationship.
• Group contests can be overwhelming for the business owners and certainly for the people entering. These are contests where multiple people add a prize or a freebie to a huge package and everyone builds a list from it. On the other hand, many business owners have found that donating to contests for the PUBLICITY to be a beneficial thing.

Note: The difference in going the group route is that you shouldn’t treat the entrants as if they are on your regular opt-in list. Treat these people as prospects that you still need to convince and get to know.

With those things in mind, it’s time to write those emails and build that list.
==> Writing Assignment – Email for Your Contest

Setting up a contest will require a number of emails. Write some emails to:

• Tell your current list about the contest. You don’t need them to opt-in, but you certainly want to tell them about this opportunity to get some great free stuff!
• Follow up with entrants to thank them for entering
• A second follow up to share a gift or special offer that warms them up so they can soon become your customer
• Ask affiliates to promote your contest and perhaps offer an incentive
• Follow up with affiliates
==> List Building Assignment – Get a Promo Partner

Secure at least one place that will promote your giveaway for you. If you don’t expect this will draw in a lot of new entrants, make sure to secure a few places for today. You want to ensure what you’re working on has an impact on your list building.

TIP! When your contest ends, make sure those links coming to your contest are still useful. You can do this by offering an ongoing contest or swapping out your contest offer with another freebie offer. That way, you can keep getting opt-ins from that ongoing traffic

 

Back to Day 13                                                                Final Day 15

DAY 13: Product Review & RSS by Email

You’ve seen quite a bit about relationships in this course; but, their importance can’t be stressed enough. The more connections you have in your niche, the faster things grow for you. Your connections’ knowledge, advice and cross-promotion are invaluable. If you skipped ANY of the relationship building tasks, march your behind right back to those tasks and complete them.

If you’re ready to move on, let’s get started…
==> Writing Assignment – Product Review

Today, you will write a product review. Choose a product that you’ve used regularly and like. This will make it easier to write. If you can review the “P.S.” product that you recommended in yesterday’s writing task, this will be the perfect follow up.

A good product review will include:

• Overview of the product and details
• Who the product is suitable for (no product is right for everyone)
• Potential drawbacks and solutions
• Optional: Compare to other similar products – likenesses and differences.
• Overall thoughts

TIP: Once the review has been sent to your subscribers, add it to your autoresponder, and publish it on your site. Distribute the review where you can.

In addition, if the product has an affiliate program, you may also want to add the name and affiliate link to your list of recommended items. This particular document is often in pdf format and is distributed with product downloads. It may also be available to download on the site or linked at the bottom of review pages, depending on your strategy.
==> List Building Assignment – RSS by Email

If you offer an RSS feed on your blog, try adding an email option to subscribe to your RSS feed. Email options are available through Feedburner.com. Some autoresponders, like Aweber, provide similar options as well.
Back to Day 12                                                                                    Day 14

DAY 12: Content Follow Up & Incentives

Up to this point, you have written quite a few emails and completed a nice amount of list building activities. You should also have in place an opt-in page, thank you page and an opt-in box on every page. Today, you’ll add something new into the mix.

Get ready to make more progress. Here it comes…

==> Writing Assignment – Content Follow Up

You’ve probably noticed a pattern to the writing strategy…you follow up on EVERYTHING. Your efforts work efficiently because your readers have time to absorb what you’ve said, consider your offers, and appreciate your content. Today, do one or more of the following:

• Write additional tips
• Offer some encouragement
• Help your readers make the most of what you wrote yesterday, the day before or sometime in the past week.
• Did you remember to send a follow up after asking for an opinion? If not, do it today.
• If your inspiration topic inspired more emails or content ideas, go for it.

Writing this email, keep in mind the products you promote and how you can work it into a follow up email. One way is to include a post script (P.S.)

You can say something like: “P.S. And oh, by the way, if you’re having trouble unclogging your drain, here is a product that I keep on hand at all times -> http://draindraindrain.com”

P.S.’s can be very powerful and are easily worked into most emails. Use unique tracking links in your P.S.’s to get an idea of how well your P.S. is working for you. Use them often, but for today, start practice writing just one.

==> List Building Assignment – Provide Incentives

You’ve created a few freebies, so let’s use them again. Ask yourself what incentive will encourage your affiliates, subscribers or social media followers to help spread the word about one of your freebies.

You could:

• Create an affiliate contest – give the affiliates, who send the most leads, a valuable prize.
• Ask subscribers to share your offer through social media and give them a valuable coupon or another free item. Include a hashtag so you can keep track of the shares.

Keep in mind that nobody ever said you had to do everything yourself. Having a team on your side is a winning approach. If you have an assistant or an entire team at your disposal, make use of their skills.

Your ultimate goal is to work on planning your email marketing as much as possible and let someone else do the other work.

You could:

• Hire ghostwriters or copywriters to write for you.
• Purchase PLR you can brand, monetize, and publish.
• Let an assistant set up your opt-in pages and emails.

If you haven’t made it to that business stage yet, you may have a friend who can do some of the non-planning tasks for you. Better yet, consider hiring a person or two just for a short-term task or project. Most qualified people will already have a basic knowledge of how to do the associated tasks so you wouldn’t need to do much, if any, training. It’s a great way to get ahead.

 

Back to Day 11                                                             Day 13

 

DAY 11: Get Inspired & Start a Conversation

Now that’s dedication! I’m glad to see you’re back working your way towards better email results. If you’ve had trouble keeping up with the daily challenges, here are a few tips for you:

Emails can be short. An email can simply be sharing something of interest. You can share a few quick tips, a link to a blog post, video or report. You can provide a little motivation or ask for feedback. Stick with one topic at a time, though. It’s less work for you, it keeps your readers more engaged and when sharing a promo, conversions are more likely to be higher.

Schedule email marketing time daily. This daily time is important. Nothing has the power that a well thought out email does. It’s emails that sell products, create bonds, and even drive traffic. Dedicate at least 30 minutes each day to improving your email marketing in some way.

Get help, as needed. One person can only do so much. Hire a ghostwriter, guest writer, use PLR, get a Virtual Assistant to take care of the administrative tasks like setting up mailing lists, adding autoresponder messages, etc. Get a business manager to manage people and projects. Free up your time so you can spend more time forming the master plan and get even better results from your efforts.

Your time here is limited but if you stick with it, you will see results. The amount you see depends on where you started. Keep in mind that it’s all a learning experience. The more you practice, the better you’ll get and the easier the process becomes.

Now, it’s time to practice and progress…
==> Writing Assignment – Get Inspired!

While you may see some beneficial results early, look at this as a long-term plan to develop relationships and grow your business.

Start by scanning headlines through your RSS reader. Scanning is the keyword here. If you don’t have an RRS reader, get one! The info can help when generating ideas, studying subject lines and more. The goal is to find an article or post on a topic that’s of interest to your readers. Remember those people you wanted to make a connection with? Check their site feeds first.

Once you find a topic, write down your own thoughts on the subject. For example, if you found a post with ideas for controversial ways to keep troubled teens in school, consider sharing your original ideas in an email.

But don’t stop there…

You can pull triple-duty on the topic.

First, make a useful and meaningful comment on the blog post that inspired you. By doing this, you are opening the doors to a connection with that website owner. As you know, connections can go a long way to help you grow your readership, lists, profits and business, in general.

Second, you can write a follow up email letting your readers know about the post you read & commented on and share the link so they can see your opinion.

Ex. “Yesterday, we talked about controversial ways to keep troubled teens in school. I know it’s an important topic for many of my readers and I hope some of the ideas I shared helped in some way. Well, I have also found an interesting article at thiswebsite.com. I’ve also shared my opinion in the comments area as I think the article has some a very unique perspective that might help you too Check it out at thiswebsite.com/article.”

Try to get as much mileage as possible out of every topic you write about.
==> List Building Assignment – Start a Conversation

After a number of your readers have had a chance to visit, contact the website owner. You could further discuss the comment on your blog and let the other website owner know you shared their thoughtful post with your mailing list. To take it further, consider writing a blog post that is related to their topic. Then ask if they’d like to publish it. Remember to link to your opt-in page in the byline of your post.

For example: “I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoyed your post on keeping troubled teens in school. It really opened my eyes to new ideas on communication. As soon as I read it, I knew it would be useful to my subscribers, so I emailed them about your post and I’ve received some great feedback from them so far.”

Back to Day 10                                                         Day 12

DAY 10: Ask an Opinion & Taking Stock

At this point in the challenge, you’re starting to see some results. Keep in mind that this is an ongoing process and the things you do will continue to work, far into the future. For example, a guest blog post continues to bring traffic to your opt-in page. You’re not just completing tasks here; you’re building something!

Make sure the emails you write continue to give you value. A few ways to do that include:

• Keep a well-organized archive of your newsletter on your site (like an FAQ section.) It helps generate traffic. Keep a copy on your computer too. It makes a great swipe file you can go back to if you get writers block.

• Add evergreen broadcasts to an autoresponder for new subscribers that come onto your list.

• Repurpose some content-rich emails. Turn them into blog posts, articles, etc. Publish them on your site or allow others to publish them.

• Take a series of emails and turn them into a special report. Give it away to your list or let your affiliates brand it to give away.

Now that you have some ideas of how your emails can help you beyond the initial mailing, you can continue with today’s tasks…
==> Writing Assignment – Ask an Opinion

When your readers feel valued and appreciated, you’ve made a connection with them and that’s what turns “potentials” into “loyals”. Today, you’re going to make them feel valued by asking their opinion on a subject, creating a short survey, or asking them to submit questions to you.

The key is to encourage some kind of interaction. They can post their opinion on a blog or if you want it to be confidential, you might use a submission form. If you’re creating a survey, you can use a free tool like Easy Internet Survey to easily create your survey and store the responses.

Make sure you create a follow up. If you do a survey, you may want to allow a little extra time for people to finish it. However, plan your follow up now and schedule it when the time is right.

Here are a few questions you’ll want to consider as you plan: Will you share the results? Will you reply to those who answered your question? Will you answer some of the questions that were submitted?

Make sure your subscribers feel appreciated and valued by giving them something. Keep in mind what your reader wants to get out of their participation and deliver!

So today, you’re going to ask for an opinion and plan your follow up.
==> List Building Assignment – What’s Working & Do More

Today, you’ll be looking at your statistics, specifically those of your website and your autoresponder. Here’s what to look for….

• For each opt-in page, find out where the majority of the traffic is coming from. Also, make note of which opt-in pages are working best.

• Which guest blog post is driving the most traffic? Can you do another one for that site?

• Look for 5 or 10 more ‘hot’ pages on your website. Add a promotion for your mailing list to the bottom or within the content of these pages.

• What affiliate is sending the most traffic to your opt-in page? Can you sweeten the offer for that affiliate to get them to promote more?

Always do more of what works. In fact, do one of those things that works, today.

Back to Day 9                                                                                 Day 11

DAY 9: Promotional Email & Advertising

Getting into a daily routine of writing is important. The more consistent you are, the easier it will be. If you have gotten behind, try your best to catch up. Trust me…it’s lucrative.

Writing articles, creating tools, reports and blog posts is important to an online business. But giving priority to the email tasks is what will help make your business profitable. If you create content and products, yet fail to contact your potential buyers, your sales will be significantly lower or maybe even non-existent.

With that in mind, it’s time to write another promo…

==> Writing Assignment – Write Another Promo & Follow Up

Today’s task is to write another promotional email. To recap a bit, promotions can be informative. They can review products (positives and drawbacks); show case studies; provide valuable advice and more.

Although you may think a product is great, you don’t want to sound like a used car salesman. Avoid over-hyping, which may lose you sales in the end.

You may be wondering about the number of promotional emails you are writing. Shouldn’t there be some purely informational emails sent as well?

Every list is different and so are your business goals. The key to opening that door to better email results is getting into the habit of daily writing and promoting in emails.

Many people have found that combining information with a promo brings better results and fewer unsubscribes. When readers come to expect both to be in an email from the word “go”, they aren’t as likely to unsubscribe on the second promo they see. So start as you plan to go and you’ll have fewer bumps in the road.

Don’t forget to write your follow up while the information is fresh in your mind. What extra incentive or additional helpful information you can provide? Can you add a bonus? Do you have a case study? Do you have feedback from other customers?
==> List Building Assignment – Swap or Buy an Ad

It’s time to start advertising. If you have the funds to buy an ad, that’s great! Check out “ezine” and “newsletter ad” directories (ex. ezineadvertising.com). Also, try advertising on Facebook, Google Adwords or other highly targeted advertising opportunities.

If you aren’t able to buy an ad, there are other ways to get the word out. One great way to bring in new subscribers is through other mailing lists. Search for the sites and lists you think would be a good target (similar audience). Then approach the owners of that list directly and ask if they would swap email promos or ads with you. Keep in mind that you must be willing to return the favor!

 

Back to Day 8                                                                              Day 10

DAY 7: Write an Article, Tips & Pay With a Tweet

To this point, you’ve had the opportunity to create several emails, which can be used to build a relationship with your subscribers and boost your sales.

Remember; ALWAYS add your most successful email promotions to an autoresponder, so they can keep working over and over for you.

Now, here are two more tasks to help make your email results even better…
==> Writing Assignment – Write an Article Related to Your Goodie

Today your writing assignment has two parts but don’t worry, the first part will be super quick.

Part 1: Your readers are with you because they want two main things – updates and to learn from you. Think of a problem your readers have and give them 5 tips to solve it.

HINT: If you have the time, you may want to make a list of problems you can address in the future.

Part 2: Write an article on a topic related to your goodie. You may already have one that will work for this. Promote your goodie in your article byline. Make sure to ask for the opt-in to access your goodie. Submit the article to an article directory; create a HubPage or Squidoo lens for the article. Just do something to get the article out there.

Caution! If you’re using PLR articles, keep in mind that they cannot be submitted to article directories.
==> List Building Assignment – Create a Social Payment Opportunity

Today’s activity is about building awareness. Since social media is so popular right now, it’s important you take advantage of it. What I’d like you to do today is to create a custom landing page for your free goodie specifically for Facebook and Twitter (one landing page for each).

A quick way to do this is to take the opt-in page you originally created for the goodie and modify it some. You can add a special welcome message such as “Thanks for following me on Facebook. I’m glad you decided to check out my free goodie.”

Now typically, even when giving away a freebie, you are asking people to ‘buy’ it by giving you their name and email address through an opt-in form. So while they are not paying with cash, they are paying with something.

Today your sign up pages are going to ask visitors to pay with a social promotion. They can pay with a Tweet, a “Like” or a Google +1. There are a few methods for doing this but the easiest is to use one of the following services to create your ‘buy’ button.

here is mine

 

Make yours here

http://www.soclock.com/

Once you have your page set up, promote the freebie on Facebook and Twitter, linking to their specific page.

 

Back to Page 6                                                                           Page 8

DAY 6: Goodie Follow up & Guest Blog Post

Congratulations! You’ve completed the first 5 days of the 15 day email challenge. Are you ready to keep going?

Moving along, it’s time for another email writing and list building activity. As always, you can decide what to write and build on your own…or if you need more direction, your challenge/tasks for today are below.
==> Writing Assignment – Content Follow up

Today, you will promote your goodie by writing a follow up email. Include some additional thoughts, helpful tips and a link to the goodie. The key to a good follow up is to ensure your subscribers get something out of it, even if they’ve already downloaded your free gift.

Keep in mind, you don’t want to bombard your readers with emails for things they have already gotten. Try your best to omit sending an email to those people who have already taken action from your email. If your autoresponder can track what links have been clicked or products ordered, use that feature to your advantage here.
==> List Building Assignment – Write a Guest Blog Post

Do you know of a website or blog whose audience you’d like to reach? You may be able to do that with a guest blog post. The site owner gets an original piece of content (from you), while you (and your linked byline to the opt-in page) get additional exposure when the owner puts the post on his or her site.

Make a list of blogs where you would like to add a post, for future reference. Today, you’re just going to write one guest blog post.

Before you start writing, do a little research. Most places that will accept guest posts also have guidelines about submissions. Look around the site for those and get a feel for the type of content the readers are looking for. This will help you shape your approach and the blog post’s content.

If they do have submission guidelines, follow them to the letter. If they don’t have guidelines, write the blog post first. This post should be highly relevant to their audience. Send it to the site/blog owner (or submission area), saying that they may publish it and ask them to notify you when they do.

Having a ready-to-go blog post is the key. You don’t want to waste the owner’s time with a bunch of emails. Even if the blog owner doesn’t publish your article/blog post, you still have a great piece of content that you can modify and publish elsewhere.

 

Back to Day 5                                                                        Day 7

Day 5: Create A Goodie & Distribute It

Today, you are going to maximize your time by combining your email writing and list building efforts.
==> Writing Assignment – Give a Goodie

Your challenge today is to put together a quick goodie for your existing readers. Don’t spend much time on this. You just need something quick and dirty that is also useful to your readers. It can be a video, report, worksheet, tool or anything you think your readers might like.

TIP: In the goodie, include a special offer that complements your product.

Once it’s finished, write an email telling your subscribers about the goodie. Give them a link to access it. It’s that simple. The objective here is to create goodwill with awesome value so don’t make the readers jump through hoops to get it.
==> List Building Assignment – Distribute That Goodie

Now take the goodie, that you just created and repurpose it slightly. Use it as a list-building tool. You may want to do one of the following:

• Add a promo for your opt-in page at the bottom of the new goodie. Then distribute it to your affiliates and others so they can distribute it as well.
• Set up a second opt-in page & require new subscribers to opt-in to get the goodie.
• Submit it to directories and anywhere applicable.
• Add a link to the goodie’s sign up page in your signatures and byline.
• Create a few Facebook ads to draw new people in.

 

Back to Day 4                                                                              Day 6