One of my favorite quotes on timing is from someone named Stacey Charter…”Life is all about timing…the unreachable becomes reachable, the unavailable becomes available, the unattainable…attainable. Have the patience, wait it out. It’s all about timing.”
It rings true.
Similarly, successful e-mail marketing is all about timing, and timing your e-mails with an appropriate sequence and message will help you “reach the unreachable; make the unavailable…available, and the unattainable…attainable” in delivering your message in a way designed to affect the maximum response.
In the period your e-mail campaign encompasses, your messages should sequence the following:
- Asking what your prospects want. Ask for comments on your blog, or send out a survey. Start accumulating data to determine what is needed…what are your prospects or customers frustrated by, what do they fear, what do they desire? In a 30-day period, start with an e-mail query on a Wednesday, then repeat it on the Monday of the following week, or something in a similar sequence.
- Once you’ve gathered some data, toward the end of that week, send an e-mail message indicating you’ve received the data, and that you’re putting the information together to determine the best way to address the needs. Send another e-mail confirming this is what you’re doing four to five days later.
- Determine the method you’re going to use to address the need identified. This could be a free webinar or some type of on-line event. Or, it could be an e-book or PDF outline. Whatever you have determined will best fill the need within the resources you have available, send an e-mail, within the next three to five days, to your list to let them know what’s next. If it’s an on-line event of some kind, send the registration information.
- Follow through with whatever you have promised to share. This needs to be information you provide for free…even if there is a selling component at the end. And…if you are selling something…the offer must be at the end. The purpose of collecting the “problem” data and preparing a solution to the need is to build rapport and trust. You may, in fact, have a more in-depth and longer-lasting solution that your prospects or customers choose to purchase from you. It is, however, important to provide immediate “pain relief” without a price tag. After all, you’re here to help.
- Follow up on attendance or downloads. For all those who registered to get the free information, regardless of your delivery format, check to see how many actually showed up, or downloaded the information you provided. For anyone who didn’t, send a follow-up e-mail to tell them how to get the information…with a deadline.
- Do a deadline countdown e-mail series to impress the urgency of getting the information while it’s still available, generally something like: 72 hours, 48 hours, 24 hours, and “the final 12 hours.” Keep your offer for “additional paid assistance” at the end of your “solution program”; whether you decided on a live video broadcast, a power point with audio presentation, or e-book/PDF format. Leave this out of your deadline e-mail series. If your prospects or customers really want help, they’ll find your offer much more enticing by discovering it for themselves at the end of your helpful free information.
Avoid the average marketer’s e-mail barrage that simply says “I have something to sell” for 30 days in a row. With a maximum of 10 to 12 e-mails in the month, beginning with several “How can I help?” messages, and then providing both immediate relief, along with potential long-term relief through your product, you will build relationship, trust, and potential with perfect timing.