There are different types of emails you will want to experiment with that can help you market your business. Here are a few.
eNewsletters That Deliver News and More
eNewsletters are digital newsletters, sent through email. They often have a banner at the top which features the name of the newsletter and has images along with a few articles. Some businesses include an image of a video that will link to an online video content platform like YouTube or Vimeo.
I love a good eNewsletter that provides great information and perhaps a little smile in the midst of a busy day.
eNewsletters allow you to show more personality with your copy. The images also give you the opportunity to further connect with your reader with interesting graphics that capture attention. Your email service provider usually adds a link on the top of the email that gives the reader the option to read the eNewsletter in their browser. This is a nice feature for those who prefer to view a newsletter in a larger sized font.
The style of eNewsletters has varied over the years, but the important features have stayed.
eNewsletters are a great way to stay in touch with your clients and prospects. In fact, in 2014, I was able to track $10,821.34 in sales between Q2/13 to Q2/14 produced because of my eNewsletter. In fact, one customer told me that he wouldn’t have thought to reach out again but then received my newsletter and remembered me. He ended up hiring me to do several more projects with him.
Keep eNewsletters entertaining and deliver valuable information. Be careful it’s not too boring or “cut and dried.” If your content is boring, you’ll lose your reader—and future opportunities to connect. The next time he sees your email in his inbox, he’ll likely delete it unless he knows there’s something unique and interesting inside.
Many of today’s email platforms offer newsletter templates. Test a few of them to see which one fits your needs. Don’t forget to take advantage of any royalty-free images they offer. It’s a great way to “dress up” your eNewsletter.
These are also called sales emails.
Promotional emails are exactly what they sound like—emails that promote your business. You could have a special offer you’re running for a limited time just for your clients. Or you could send an email that asks a few questions with the intent of getting the reader to call your office and set up an appointment.
Promotional emails could contain news about your office, feature a team member from your office, a new service, new rules, or regulations that will affect your clients, and reminders about upcoming deadlines.
You just want to remember to always include a strong call to action at the end of the email. Once you notify your reader, follow through by telling them exactly what they can do about the information they just read.
Promotional emails are a great way to market your business and generate excitement, anticipation, and interest. Here are a few tips for creating promotional emails that get results:
Always use a provocative email subject line. This is what will cause your reader to open your message. Use provocative statements, questions, and statements to arouse curiosity, specify results and stats, and customize email subject lines (Example: “John, are you ready to cash in on the tax changes?”)
Use a headline in the body of the email copy. Yes, most emails start out with a “Dear Scott,” or a “Hello.” Some don’t bother with a greeting. But including a strong headline will help pull in attention to the rest of your email. Get to the point as quickly as you can with the copy.
Test your email to make sure all the links work. Do not ignore this part of the process. If you want to avoid sending out an “Oops… I made a mistake…” email, then it’s always a smart idea to send yourself a test email so you can check that everything looks and performs as it should.
Make sure to include a strong call to action at the end of your email. Even better: place a deadline or limited time offer that will further encourage your reader to act quickly.
Keep track of your email list, those who open the emails and the links they click. If you find that someone is opening a lot of your emails and engaging with them—and this is a person who hasn’t been contacted for some time—go ahead and use this as a good reason to call them. Emails can create opportunities so don’t miss them.
New Launch of Services or Products
Whenever you offer something new, you make sure it’s announced throughout your marketing assets. This means your announcement should be featured within your monthly newsletter and in your emails.
Announcements should also be included in:
- A new brochure and/or sell sheet
- On your website
- On social media
Also, remember to put out a press release and send it to news outlets. Don’t just limit it to your own local city. Use online press release distribution sites like Cision PRWeb and PR Newswire to ensure your press release is seen by national news outlets as well as your local area. Don’t forget to send an email to your list with a link to your press release.
Do you know that professional services clients often leave their current provider for another simply because they want a specific service which they think you don’t provide?
This is why it’s important to make announcements and promote them on different channels. Check to ensure your current clients and prospects know you’ve unveiled something new.
The problem with clients leaving is unless you have an unhappy customer who acts, you don’t know they’re gone… until long after they’re gone.
Very few customers and clients will tell you why they left. They just leave. This usually leaves you scratching your head while mumbling, “Was it something I said?”
Well, it might have been something you said. Or something you didn’t do.
Therefore, it’s so important to constantly promote your current services and new ones. Email marketing makes it easy to do this on an ongoing basis. All you need is a little planning. Take the time to sit down and list all your services on one document (if you’ve not done this already). Then look at the calendar and plan to emphasize at least one of those services for one month.
When you launch a new service, also make sure to build up some excitement. Send out emails which essentially say, “We have a big announcement in March… you won’t want to miss it!” weeks before you make your big announcement. Arouse people’s curiosity about what you’re up to and give them teasers to stoke their interest.
I appreciate reminders from the businesses I work with. With accounting services, you already have a built-in reason for reminders—the taxes are due! And with financial planning, everyone knows that someday they’ll likely want to retire and enjoy life.
Email is a wonderful tool to send out those reminders. Most of the time, people are busy, and an important deadline date can easily be overlooked or forgotten. You can further strengthen your role as a “trusted adviser” by sending a friendly reminder to your clients about an important upcoming date.
Also, many accounting and bookkeeping offices will have special hours from February—April. And if you’re really rocking your marketing, you might even have an exclusive “Platinum Level” type of service only available to a small group of your best clients. Not only send email reminders to them but mail them directly with the information.
A side note: if you’ve developed tiered pricing, always mention you’ll be sending something separate to the highest level of membership. Treat your clients as members of an exclusive club and you’ll be able to command higher prices for your services.
People like to belong to something. It hits a deep need within every human being. If you create experiences within your practice meeting that need, you’ll be much more successful than a financial advisor, accountant, EA, or bookkeeper who doesn’t (and who mistakenly thinks that after April 15 is gone, they should be, too).
Consistency… Consistency… Consistency: About Email Schedules
Every time I talk about marketing, I talk about consistency. Consistent marketing action is what will bring you results. I remember a conversation I had with the owner of one of our favorite Asian restaurants.
“Thomas, have you ever tried radio advertising?” I asked.
The reason I asked was that I looked around at a nearly empty restaurant during dinner time and thought it was a shame. His food was good, and the prices were reasonable. The restaurant was clean and had a nice ambiance. His answer almost made me choke. “Sure,” he said. “I tried radio advertising. Once.”
Once won’t cut it. Especially today when we have constant marketing noise. You’re not just competing with other accounting, financial advisors, or other service providers for business. You’re competing with Amazon’s online advertising, Walmart’s television advertising, and the hundreds of other businesses that are running ads in newspapers and magazines.
You see, other businesses are out there consistently promoting their message. You must do the same. I tell my clients to run a marketing strategy for at least six months. This usually gives you enough data to determine if the marketing is successful or not.
With email marketing, you need to be consistent with your schedule. If you’re sending an eNewsletter, let your subscriber list know they can expect it on the second Wednesday of the month (or whenever you want to publish it). Then follow through by keeping to that schedule.
When you state how often you will send emails to your list, it not only prepares your subscribers, but it adds to your credibility when you make good on your promise.
You probably won’t see results right away when you start using email marketing. But in time—and with the right messages—you will get a response. However, it all hinges on you being consistent with your efforts.
Partial excerpts taken from the book, The Maverick Advisor: The New Rules of Marketing for Financial Advisors and Consultants – Get Great Clients, More Respect, and the Fees You Deserve, by Mary Rose Maguire.