Has setting up an e mail list for your pet business been on the to-do list for ages?
I know it’s the case for many pet business owners which is why this week I’m speaking to VA and Mailchimp expert Catherine Gladwyn.
Catherine helps hundreds of small business owners get their heads around e mail marketing and takes away the overwhelm.
She works as a virtual assistant, coaches other virtual assistants, has written a book, How to Be A Virtual Assistant and has another book due out this autumn.
Catherine kindly shares her tips on email marketing for the podcast and you can listen in on the player link below or read as a blog post.
With so many different ways to keep in touch with customers, often e mail marketing gets pushed to the bottom of the list.
It can be fiddly and complicated. You may need to set up lead magnets, landing pages, opt in boxes or create downloads.
All these things take time, planning and research.
But once the hard work is done, having an e mail list means you have a direct line to your clients that you own.
No algorithms to contend with or distractions while on social media.
You can have a conversation with them and people are more likely to sign up for your product or service from a conversation going on in their inbox.
As Catherine says: “Social media is borrowed, things happen beyond our control. That’s why having an email list is so important.”
We spoke during lockdown in May 2020 – the ideal time to start something new.
Catherine breaks down setting up an e mail list or newsletter and what you can do with it into simple steps.
Don’t worry about not having anyone on it at the beginning. We all start with 0, then a few friends and our mum! Catherine says: “It takes time, don’t let that put you off. It doesn’t have to be perfect, keep it simple. Making a start is most important.”
Even if you only have a few subscribers, keep on going and learn with each message. “It can feel like you’re talking to an empty room, but it will pay dividends. Keep going,” says Catherine.
Remember to share the sign up form.
“You can share this on your website, on social media, on the footer of your website, in a pop up form on your website, on receipts, invoices, on your e mail signature or leaflets. Any opportunity you get to talk to people, share the link,” she says.
Create a lead magnet.
This is a resource or offer you can share with people in exchange for their e mail address meaning you can stay in touch.
Catherine explains: “Think of something where you can educate people, give value and show you as the expert.”
(My lead magnet is a press release template which you can download here)
Think quality over quantity.
Catherine says to only send a newsletter when you have something valuable to say.
“If you overwhelm yourself and say you will send one every week without fail and you haven’t got anything to say it will mean you send a dull e mail.
“This will lead to unsubscribes which often makes people stop with their e mail marketing.”
Show your personality.
Use your e mail to bring your team and customers closer and show your personality.
Catherine says to share interesting things that are happening in your business and on your team from awards to new recruits.
And she shared a brilliant example of celebrating the dog walker who uses a poo bag to pick up a record number of poos!
Mix things up.
Share your products and services and use e mails to ask for reviews – this will help boost your business in so many ways.
Have a press page.
Use your newsletter to share any press coverage you have. “Press elevates your status,” says Catherine.
“People will be impressed with this and you should shout about it!”
Make sure it’s easy to unsubscribe.
This allows the recipient to stop getting your e mails if they don’t want to.
Don’t let the unsubscribes get to you.
“People unsubscribe for many reasons,” says Catherine. “They may be competitors, have left the industry and don’t need the information you share.
“If you’re a dog walker, they may have moved, they may have even lost their dog. If you have services, they may have lost their job and don’t want to be enticed to spend.
“It’s rarely because they think you’re a horrible person.”
If you’d like to find out more about Catherine you can do so on her website:
Learn more about Catherine’s new book, The 20% Rule which is out later this year:
Catherine’s How To Be A VA on Amazon:
How to be a Virtual Assistant by Catherine Gladwyn* (Affiliate link)
Follow Catherine on social media:
Enjoyed this post? You might like to read: Taking the fear out of sending emails with Rob and Kennedy