1. E-mail is a conversation
E-mail should never be used for the sole purpose of selling. If you only send emails to your customers when you have something to sell, you encourage them to ignore you. Consider the E-mail as a text message.
If you sell raw milk, you can text a friend and say, « The milk is ready to be picked up! I’ll see you when I get there. « Sounds simple and friendly, doesn’t it?
Speak while writing, this allows a strong relationship between your spontaneous (verbal) speech and your written expression. E-mail should never be boring or rigid.
Imagine sitting in an armchair in the living room or under the mango tree with a close friend who talks about your farm. When you write this way, the sale will be faster and easier.
Facebook and Instagram will NEVER replace email. Social media should be used as a tool to meet new customers and start the conversation.
2. E-mails are consistent
When you send emails on a regular basis, you remember the minds of your interlocutors and this is very important when it comes to the purchasing psychology of customers.
We are bombarded with dozens of messages every day. Customers will never remember your activity unless you send them emails regularly and you become familiar to them.
When you post on Facebook or Instagram, your reach is very inconsistent (and weak). It is not even certain that one of your customers will see what you publish unless you pay Facebook or Instagram to put your message in front of your audience.
But when you send an email, your customer receives it in his inbox! And the cost is lower, most of the time, it’s even free.
E-mail is the best way for you to remain consistent and at the forefront of your customers’ concerns. The sooner you adopt it, the sooner you will be profitable.
3. E-mails are easy to « forward ».
At the beginning of my marketing days, at the very bottom of each e-mail, I would say something like: « If you know someone who is interested in raw milk (or organic salads), please forward this e-mail to them and brighten their day. »
We all know that word of mouth marketing is the most effective marketing. It’s free and builds a high level of trust, almost immediately, when you’re « recommended » by family and friends.
Ask your customers to forward your e-mail to their friends and family who may also be interested in grass-fed beef, organic chicken or fresh flowers.
You would be surprised at the effectiveness of this technique.
4. E-mails overwhelm social media
If you have been on Facebook for some time in the last few months/years, I’m sure you’ve noticed the decrease in comments and actions on your business page.
In 2010, Facebook’s reach was much higher than it is today. Today, Facebook is a « pay to play » platform that will allow you to get pretty good results if you are willing to pay.
And Instagram doesn’t do any better.
So if you try to build a customer base with Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest, you won’t be profitable any time soon.
E-mail is the King and has been for many years. When you send an email, customers receive it directly to their inbox.
The E-mail may occasionally land in their spam folder, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t received it. While when you post on Facebook or Instagram, more than 90% of your followers or fans will NEVER see it, I don’t even talk about the others… E-mails overwhelm social media when it comes to building an audience.
If you don’t take anything else from this blog post, remember that an email list is the way you will make money and become profitable. Start creating a mailing list today or stop!
5. E-mail has an « eternal » life cycle
Did you know that a social media message has a lifecycle of about 5 hours? Twitter – even shorter.
When you send an email, it stays in someone’s inbox forever or until they delete it.
Social media works like this… You post on Facebook. No one sees it. No one is commenting. The message disappears from the top of the news feed and is never seen again.
When you post on Facebook, it’s out of sight and buried very quickly. When you send an email to someone, they see it in their inbox and can choose to open it at that time or later when they have more time.
They will NEVER go back to Facebook to dig or scroll through Instagram to find your message.
6. E-mail sells anything
Once you have established a relationship of trust with customers, you can move directly to sales.
When planning the emails to send to your customers, you should remember this 80/20 rule:
80% of your emails must have no connection to the sale. It can be any form of valuable content such as recipes, blog posts, a story with pretty pictures of the calf born this week.
It is important that customers do not feel like customers at all times. How do you feel when someone is constantly sending you emails to « buy my stuff »? You erase them, don’t you?
So do I.
Then, once you have earned the right to offer your products, send a sales email. This should never represent more than 20% of your emails.
And when you offer your products, be direct. Don’t beat around the bush and say, « If you want to buy, I’ll be at the market on Saturday to take the orders. »
This soft and passive approach will never work.
Be direct and clear. Never insistent. For example, « Click here to buy a sheep » or « Click here to read the blog post. »
It’s nice to have a list of your products on your website, but be aware that a large part of the sales did NOT come from your website.
Sales will increase when you send them a clear email asking them to « Buy Now ». It is your job to educate your customers.
Propose your products 20% of the time and if done correctly, I bet you will be satisfied with the result.
Many of you think: « My customers don’t open emails. They prefer to send SMS messages. »
And that may be true (for now), but the first time you offered your products by e-mail (and a customer missed a good deal), I can guarantee you that he will open the next e-mail from you for fear of letting another good deal pass.
Give them a reason to open your emails! I promise you it will work if you are coherent and strategic.
And email marketing also works in all sectors of activity. I did it myself to make sure it worked. The email will sell anything you want.
Which of the 6 lessons learned will you be applying today?