All the gurus agree — email marketing can be an effective way to grow your list of customers, market your products and services and stay in touch with clients and prospects. But nobody ever talks about how email marketing can affect you – personally – as an entrepreneur. I’m not talking about subscribing to an email marketing list – I’m talking about launching your own email marketing campaign.
Implementing an email marketing strategy sounds like a no-brainer for small business owners and self-employed professionals. It just makes sense. It is a proven way to market your business and it’s not expensive. So why do some of us (especially women) hem and haw about “bothering our customers” with our marketing messages?
It takes a great deal of courage for small business owners to put their thoughts out there in the world. It’s not easy asking everyone you know to sign up to receive your wisdom every week in their inbox. For some reason, it’s more intimidating than launching a website or speaking at a networking event. I think it’s because creating an email marketing campaign requires that we acknowledge our status as experts. It assumes that we believe we have something valuable to say – something important to contribute. And that assumption makes some of us feel uneasy.
You can relate if you’ve ever made one of the following arguments against email marketing for your business:
“Nobody is going to want to hear from me every week (or month).”
“I don’t want to bother my clients or customers; people are going to think I’m annoying or pushy.”
“There are plenty of other companies out there with this information – I don’t need to add to the clutter.”
These excuses are based on fear – and it’s not the fear of business failure, it’s the fear of personal rejection. I know this to be true – I’ve been there myself. And I talk clients through this unfounded fear every week.
The fact that we feel this fear is actually a good sign. It means we take our communications with customers seriously – and personally. That we respect the relationship we have established with clients and we don’t want to violate that trust in the form of spam.
But when we get over that fear of rejection, we discover that consistent and thoughtful email marketing strategies can offer a dramatic shift in our personal energy as business owners. In fact, I believe there are advantages to email marketing that go deeper than opt-in rates, open rates and click through rates. I call these the:
Three Energies of Email Marketing
1. Energy of Commitment: There’s something about starting an email newsletter that says “I’m not going anywhere!” And it’s comforting to the receiver (and sender!) to know you plan on being in business long enough to warrant an ezine or enewsletter.
2. Energy of Contribution: If you follow the 80/20 Rule and dedicate 80 percent of your email marketing to providing information and resources of value to your reader, then YOU get to experience the reward of giving. You get to sleep well knowing that you helped someone solve a problem, find a connection, learn something new or simply laugh for the first time that day.
3. Energy of Completion: Imagine what it would feel like to actually cross something off that long list of yours? As entrepreneurs or small business owners, we have many ideas and projects that seem to expand in scope and schedule rather than come to completion. Sending an email blast is an easy way to experience that feeling of completion and enjoy a sense of accomplishment.
Wouldn’t it be gratifying to experience these energies in your business? And as for that fear of rejection, my personal advice is to avoid your ‘unsubscribe’ notifications. Certainly pay attention to your subscriber numbers, but don’t let yourself get pulled into the Energy of Rejection every time someone decides they would rather not hear from you. If you don’t know about it, you can’t possibly take it personally. So focus on the number of people who do choose to hear from you – and spend your time and energy giving them the wisdom and value they deserve!
What are your best email marketing tips? Share them with me here!