It's a conundrum: if you're like many hardworking and swamped entrepreneurs out there, your schedule and your brain is packed with enough stuff to do without thinking about how to actually market the stuff you do. Not to mention, many entrepreneurs dislike the idea of marketing because of the “self-promotion” factor.
However, you can’t get away from this truth: good marketing impacts your bottom line.
With your potential customers closer than ever thanks to social media, it's essential that you consistently keep in touch with your Tribe (Read: fans, audience, followers, likers, contacts) because they are customers, or potential customers. You must do this to stay top of mind and relevant - and most importantly, profitable.
I know that it’s often outside your comfort zone or you may feel that you don’t have the time, but connecting with a newsletter is some of the best time you can spend.
Once you get what it may cost you if you don’t take this on and you may be more motivated to take these tasks on.
This is a piece from a great infographic by Placester:
Tribe Engagement Basics
Let's step away from channels like Twitter, Facebook and all of the other overwhelming socials for a bit (as you can see, they are not where the dough is pouring in - they are extremely useful for other purposes, thats another blog for another time!) and focus on the building blocks for engagement success:
- Your Tribe (and what they want)
- Your newsletter
- Your product line
Breaking it Down...
1. Your Tribe
No amount of marketing in the world will help you if you're not giving your fans/customers what they want.
How do you find out what they want?
You ask them.
In a Newsletter: use Survey Monkey
Survey Monkey lets you run a survey on your newsletter list and ask what your fans may like to buy, learn or hear from you.
For Twitter: use Twtpoll
Use Twtpoll to send a survey via Twitter if you hae engaged followers here.
For Facebook: use Poll Daddy
Use Poll Daddy to send a poll to your Facebook or Facebook fan page! (don’t forget to invest in a “promote this post” or your followers will not see it! Poll Daddy also works in newsletters and Twitter!
By doing this, you might discover that what your customers really want wasn't even on your radar - but that you're the perfect person to serve it up!
2. Your Newsletter
Your newsletter is ideally a content-rich, valuable resource for your readers that is always moving the fact that you are an influencer forward. "Valuable" can mean many things: your list might value concrete takeaways, or inspirational advice, or personal stories they can connect to immediately.
Both will generate a customizable newsletter signup form/widget for you to install on your blog and Facebook page.
The thing that people will not value is feeling like they are being “sold” to. I've seen it countless times: entrepreneurs who misuse their email lists and ONLY reach out when they want you to do something or have something to sell.
Next, think about what your platform is.
What do you believe in? What do you have to say? How does it relate to what's going on today? Do you have a response to a recent newspaper or blog article? Can you take a current event and give it a spin based on your unique perspective?
It’s key to get in the habit of using your newsletter to share and build relationships. Maybe you're sharing a funny story, a great Instagram photo, a lesson learned, or a TED talk you found helpful or inspiring.
Whatever you choose to do content-wise, make sure your number one thought is:
How can I help? What will they find value in, and how can I add to that in some way?
Great salespeople sell by creating relationships with their customers and knowing how to stay in their customer's hearts and minds until that potential customer is ready to buy. So, think of your list members as your potential customers, BUT keep in mind that they are not calling you for a sales pitch (yet).
So there are some things to consider here based on looking at it in this light:
Find inspiration from other people who are influencers. Is there a video they made that motivated you? Did their book change how you think about business? Share!
9 Important Newsletter Tips to Keep in Mind
- Your Newsletter should be 85% content and 15% sales or marketing
- Create one CTA (Call To Action) for maximum effectiveness
- Stay the course - people trust newsletters that come regularly if there is a reason to open it
- Use a newsletter service like MailChimp or Constant Contact to make it easy to unsubscribe
- Keep it short and sweet and use minimal recognizable design
- Using personalization (first name) in the subject line of the receiver increases open rates by 3% according to MarketingProfs
- A/B Testing is highly encouraged to see what your list responds to (even if your list is small)
- Make sure your newsletter sign up is easily findable on your website, on your “about” or bio page and blog, and you have a juicy incentive to offer people for their email addresses
- Use our Cyber PR Monthly Content Calendar to come up with ideas for each month, which is a 12-month calendar of national holidays (and hundreds of offbeat holidays, and monthly themes) that can get you thinking about connecting the dots between timely content and what you have to say about it
3. Your Product Line
Let's think about what you have to sell that you aren't selling already and that your customers would appreciate. Is it monthly workshops or webinars? E-books? Weekly coaching sessions?
Whatever it is, connect those to why they are valuable for your tribe.
Do you motivate? Inspire? Kick butt?
Think carefully about what it is you are providing to your fans and why they should care.
Then, cross-promote the expertise you offer by expanding it into blog and guest post content, newsletter articles, and wherever else you are present online.
Here again, the content calendar can help spark ideas for how you can infuse your content with what's happening monthly.
For instance, if it's National Entrepreneur's Day, you might write a post about ways to help entrepreneurs market better (see what I did there?).
Let's Recap: Tribe Engagement / Marketing Basics
Build your email list!! Every day you need to think about whom you can get on your list
Provide stellar content that offers something valuable to your subscribers (consult our content calendar for ideas)
Communicate regularly and consistently using an email program like the ones listed above
ASK your subscribers what they may like to see from you (and how much they will pay for it)
Create products and resources to satisfy your tribe
I'd love to hear from you about what YOU do to engage, thrill, and build your tribe.
ICYMI: As alluded to above, don't forget to download the social media content calendar!