Email Marketing Strategy for your Home Based Business

Email marketing strategy

You’ve probably heard business owners talking about email marketing but you may be wondering if it is a strategy that you should include in your own home based business.

Let’s start with what email marketing is.  Put simply, it’s one of the tactics used in digital marketing to raise awareness of your products and services directly with your audience and is ultimately used to make more sales.

But is email marketing right for your business?  If you are offering services or products and would like to increase your sales by nurturing an engaged audience in a cost effective way, then yes email marketing would be a good fit for your business.

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Think about how many emails you receive from big brands each week.  This gives you a good idea that email marketing must work, or else why would they bother?  Their aim is to get their brand into your inbox, to highlight special offers, latest products and to make sales. Do you open the emails?  I bet if the subject line catches your eye and it is a brand that you know, like and trust then you do.  And how many unplanned purchases have you made after opening an email that caught your eye?

This blog will aim to provide email marketing tips for small business by highlighting the top 6 reasons why you need it as part of your overall strategy.

1. Nurture your audience

If you want to have an audience of engaged followers then you need to be nurturing them.  When someone has given you their email address it means they like what you do and they are happy to hear from you again.  If you don’t email them for a month or more but then suddenly show up and pitch your product/service.  What do you think their reaction will be?  You need to ensure you keep your audience warm by popping up regularly.

 

 

Email marketing allows you to personalise and customise.  When you segment your list, you will only email people the things they are interested in so the emails become highly targeted.  By using personalisations such as their first name, you are making them feel special.  Both these options allow for much more nurturing than social media can.

2. Convert Your Audience 

 

Email is a great way to convert people who haven’t yet purchased into buyers.  As discussed above, once you have nurtured your audience and kept them warm, you can pitch to them with greater success.  Email can help to make your customers aware of your latest items or offers. It can also play a pivotal role in keeping them engaged between purchases.

 

EFFICIENT CONTENT FOR SOCIAL MEDIA

3. Cost Effective

 

Email is one of the most cost effective strategies you can use to make sales.  Apart from the cost of hosting your database with a provider (which can sometimes be free), it is essentially free to email your audience.  Who doesn’t love a freebie!  Especially in marketing these days and the cost of getting noticed on social media.

4. You Own your List

Unlike your following on your social platforms, your email database is yours.  You have worked hard to build the trust for your audience to share their email address with you.  They have given you permission to hear from you again.  So use it.

5. Get People to Take Action

Email is an awesome tool to get people to take action.  Using a call to action link to your landing pages or product pages drives traffic to your website, therefore increasing awareness of your brand. By encouraging people to click you are moving them forward in their customer journey with you.  Even if they don’t purchase you always have the ability to retarget them depending on where they get to in your funnel or where you send them on your website.

6. Measureable

Email is instantly measurable.  It allows you to test what’s working and what isn’t.  The results determine your future campaigns and help with decision making regarding the direction your business takes.  Other forms of marketing cost more and do not offer these advantages.

Are there any challenges of email marketing?

Some business owners find the idea of regularly emailing an audience intrusive.   If you are offering value to your subscribers with educational emails or with products and services that help to solve a problem, then you should be sending your email. The big brands are doing it so why can’t you?  Your competitors are also doing it.  Don’t let your corner of the market be swallowed up by someone else.

The other challenge is committing to sending a regular email.  If you are not warming your subscribers and consistently showing up for them, when you come to ask for a sale they are less likely to take the leap into being a paying customer.  

How do you implement email as a strategy for your business? 

Start with a great provider.  I highly recommend Convertkit.  I have been using Convertkit since June 2019 and find it to be very simple to use.  There is a free version for when you’re just starting out that you can easily upgrade when you’re ready.  The sequencing and automation is very easy to set up and the online support is always there and willing to help out if you get stuck.  If you are interested in exploring more about Convertkit, check them out here.

If you want to find out more about what Convertkit is like to use then watch this demo video to take a sneak peak inside!

As a little thank you for using my link to make your purchase, I’d like to offer you a bonus!  Email me your Convertkit receipt to info@nicoladepiazzimarketing with the subject line BONUS and i’ll send you a Welcome Sequence Swipe File.  How good would it be to set up your first email sequence with cut and paste templates to get you going super fast?!

#AD This post contains affiliate links which means that if you buy something as a result of clicking the link, I’ll probably get some thank you money. You won’t ever pay more for purchasing through my links and please be assured that I only recommend products I have personally used and love!  

The Efficient Way to Create Content for Social Media

EFFICIENT CONTENT FOR SOCIAL MEDIA

Your business needs content.  To engage with your audience, draw people into your community and to ultimately convert followers into customers, you are going to need to be producing content.  Consistently.  

But content can be time consuming.  I often hear from mums in business who say they don’t know what to create for their audience and they don’t have time to do it.  Consistency is a big issue. I tell them they need to learn the efficient way to create content for social media platforms. 

This article will give you 5 social media content creation tips.

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1. Content Strategy

Start with a content strategy.  It allows you to set your goals, work out who you are targeting and what methods you will use to attract them.  To know who you are targeting, create your Ideal Customer Avatar using this template.  This will help with producing the right content for your audience.

2. Create Your Content Buckets

Knowing your buckets allows you to produce content with a purpose.  If you are short on time, the content that you do produce needs to be quality and actually work for your business.  To create your buckets, think about the various aspects and revenue streams in your business.  Then dig deep into those topics to get as much post worthy topics as possible.  Use this content buckets template to help you.  Simply set up a spreadsheet with your topics in different columns, then you can add to it as you go.  Even better, use Google Sheets so you can add new ideas from wherever you are!

3. Social Media Content Calendar

Use a content calendar to plan your content each month.  This is where you transfer the topics from your buckets and insert them into post ideas in the calendar.  The posts can be made up of simple graphics and photos, or perhaps do a video, an inspirational quote or write a blog post that you share on your social platforms.  Use this free infographic to get 46 ideas for social media content creation.

4. Batch Your Content

Batching will save you heaps of time because you are creating your content in one dedicated session.  This is the most efficient way to plan, create and schedule your content.  Read more in tip 5 below.

5. Social Media Content System

If you have an ad-hoc approach to your content then you are unlikely to achieve your goals and be consistent.  Having a workable system will keep you on track.  This is what i recommend to the female business owners that i work with:

  • Pick a day per month to plan your content for the following month.  Block this date out in your diary as non negotiable.
  • Fill out your content calendar using the information that you have inserted into your content buckets
  • Batch your content creation as per the information above.
  • Schedule as much as you can
  • Set aside time in your planner for the more in-depth content such as blog posts or videos.
  • Always check your analytics to see what is working so you can improve your content and provide value to your audience.

If you would like to be more organised in both your life and your business then take a look at my planner templates.  Watch your productivity soar when you are setting and reaching your goals as well as planning your content!

 

Planners Bundle Nicola Depiazzi

I hope this blog post has helped you to understand the efficient way to create content for social media.  If you have any questions, feel free to drop me a message or connect with me on Facebook or Instagram.

 

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How to Simplify Your Content Strategy

how to simplify your content strategy

Most business owners have several social media platforms as well as a website that require content and in all honesty; it can be very time consuming.  This blog will highlight how to simplify your content strategy because for many women in business working from home, content can suck up most of the time available for work. 

We wear all the hats and do everything in our businesses so simplified systems for the low impact tasks are essential to ensure time remains for results driven high impact tasks.

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What is the importance of a content strategy?

A strategy allows you to have a plan.  In the long run having a plan is going to bring better results than if you’re simply winging your content in a haphazard way.

Why Simplify?

Your marketing content does not have to be complicated.  We are all busy, our attention is needed in many different areas as business mums so let’s concentrate on the things that really matter.   Finding a productive way to create and deliver content will allow you to focus on other areas of your business and life because content won’t be taking over.

This post may be helpful to you too – 10 Tips to Increase your Social Media Engagement

Here are my top tips to simplify your content strategy

goal setting female business owner

1. Know Your Goals

Are you wanting to gain more followers on social media, more traffic to your website or more sign ups to your email list?  Having a clear goal will help you to keep focused.  The goals can change per month or quarter as your business strategy and goals change.

2. Know your audience

Be clear about your current audience as well as your potential audience and create content that will draw them to you.  What pain points do they have that you help to solve?  How do they consume their content?  Use this Ideal Avatar Checklist to create your ICA if you haven’t already or to update it.

TIP: always do keyword research before creating blog posts to find out what your target audience is searching.  I use Keywords Everywhere for Chrome

3. Know Your Channels of Communication

Which platforms are your audience hanging out on?  Are you engaging with your audience via social media or via a regular email?  Know how to talk to your followers and how often.  One of the most important factors in simplifying your strategy is to focus on quality over quantity. 

TIP: quality content is king.  It is better to post less frequently but with amazing content that is highly valuable to your audience.

Help Your Productivity with this Post – Top 10 Working Mum Hacks

Simplify Your Business Systems

4. system – THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP OF ALL!!

Here is where we get into the nitty gritty of having a simple content strategy. If you have an ad hoc approach to this, you are likely to fail.

Below highlights how to simplify your content creation.  A system that will stop you winging it!

–  Decide on a day to plan your content and put that task in your planner.  Preferably around the 15th of the month to plan for the following month.

–  Batch your content.  Set aside another couple of days to create the content.  Put those days in your task manager.  Aim to create a week’s worth of social media posts in one sitting.  Or a month’s worth of blog posts in one go.

–  Schedule as much of your content as you can.

 

This will ensure you are much more systemised in your approach to content.  No more winging it every day wondering what to post and where to get ideas from.

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How to Consistently Show up in Your Business

How to show up consistently in your business

Do you struggle to show up consistently in your business?  Are you treating your business more like a hobby?

 

There are many reasons for why showing up can be difficult especially when you are a mum as well as a business owner.

 

It is important to find ways to be there for your audience, delivering good quality, valuable content that will engage.  If you are building relationships and gaining trust then you will be well on your way to converting your audience into a sale.

 

Watch this video training on how to consistently show up in your business to learn ways to make it easier to show up regularly.

Find more from me on YouTube here

Want to RECLAIM YOUR TIME?

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7 Tips & Tools For Doing Business Online

Many of us are finding ourselves working from home due to social isolation.  It may also be a time of pivoting in your business to offer your services online.  This post will offer suggestions of tips and tools for doing business online.

 

As the COVID-19 virus spreads across the globe, it is a time of uncertainty for us all.  You are more than likely homeschooling your children as well as trying to keep your business going; I applaud you for this.  

Perhaps you work in an office but are now working from home.  

 

I too am combining homeschooling our 3 children with running my business.

 

With fewer hours in the day to dedicate to work, it’s a time to dig deep, keep calm and carry on!

 

Whether you are new to doing business online, have recently pivoted to a more online focus, are starting from scratch with an online business to teach what you know or are simply working from home because your office is closed; these tips and tools will be helpful.

1. Building Your Audience

With an online business you are going to want to build an email list of dedicated followers.  If you are switching your business online for this period of isolation, then now is a good time to start a database of your clients as well as attract new potential clients by following the tips below.

 

To begin, you’ll need a platform for storing the emails.  Mailchimp is an obvious choice if you’re just beginning because it is free for the first 2000 subscribers but it does have some limitations when you want to start creating automations and email sequences.

I use Convertkit which is reasonably priced and easy to use.  Another platform I would recommend for value for money is Mailerlite.

 

In order to attract people to become a subscriber, you need to create some free valuable content that you give away in exchange for their email address.  This is often called a lead magnet. Ideally your lead magnet is an easy to consume, quick win for your potential subscriber. For example, a checklist, template, mini e-book or video tutorial.

Need help with combining the demands of a business and a family?  Learn how to Reclaim Your Time.

2. Organic Traffic Generation

If you are selling your services online and are offering a lead magnet for subscribers then you need to generate traffic to your website.  The following highlights a few ways to do this:

 

Blogging

By regularly adding valuable content to your site that is rich in keywords you will be more likely to come up in Google searches on your topic.  Use a keyword tool or a chrome extension like Keywords Everywhere to search keywords and phrases that your target market is searching for; then write blogs relating to those.  Make sure every blog post is optimised with links to your lead magnet and other relevant blogs that you have written.

SEO

Search Engine Optimsation is the method that Google and other search engines use to rank and display your site.  This is a complex topic with lots of free information all over the web to help. Try this guide – Beginner’s Guide to SEO.  Essentially, if you are just learning SEO and implementing SEO then begin with keyword research, creating compelling content and make sure your website is discoverable.  See Crawling. Indexing & Ranking.

Pinterest

Many think that Pinterest is a social media platform but it is in fact a search engine.  This is a great way to direct traffic back to your website by creating pins relating to your blog posts and other areas of your site.  Set up a business account and start creating boards. If you need help with Pinterest for business then I can highly recommend Melyssa Griffin’s course Pinfinite Growth.

Social Media

Whichever platform you choose, make it work for you by using it to its full potential.  Ensure you post regularly, build relationships and trust with your audience by interacting with them and get into doing live broadcasts.  You want to create content on your social platforms that cement you as an expert in your field so you become the go to source.

3. Video Conferencing

Using an application like Zoom makes it very easy to communicate with clients, colleagues and even friends wherever they are in the world.  Zoom is very easy to set up but has limited capability in the free version. You can also try Google Hangouts or Skype.

4. Task Management

Whether your business is on or offline, it is a good idea to have a task management tool in your game plan.  I use Asana and love it.  Trello is another platform to try.  The benefit of having an online task management system is if you are working in a team or with a VA then it allows you to set up and manage projects.

5. Pivot Your Business

If your business does not usually have an online focus then now is the time to think about pivoting.  What is your current business and could that be turned into an online course or membership to serve the masses rather than few?  Take my example, I had been working with clients locally offering marketing services but that meant I was exchanging my time for money.  By pivoting online and altering my focus to productivity, I am still able to offer 1:1 coaching but can also deliver a course helping women with the demands of a business and a family.

6. Be Consistent

Whatever you do, continue to do it consistently.  Keep showing up in your business and doing ONE thing each day to help reach your goals.  Time is more limited now so you may need to narrow your focus, but by showing up, your business can tick over until the world goes back to some sort of normality.  Whether you commit to writing a weekly blog post, sending out your weekly email to your subscribers or posting on social media 4 times a week; keep doing it.

7. Mindset

More important than any of the above points is your mindset because nothing will happen if your mindset is not set to positivity.  Here are my top tips for staying in the right frame of mind at this challenging time:

1. Take a look at your values to ensure you are living your life with purpose.  When we stray off course it is good to come back to what is important to us in life. If we are living a value driven life and are connected with our purpose, then we are more likely to follow the path to reach our goals.
2. Stop and breathe.  There is no point denying that it is tricky to work and home school so now more than ever, it’s a good idea to hit the off switch now and again.  Up your meditation game by following a guided meditation daily if you can. A great app to use is Insight Timer.
3. Create a reward system.  Let yourself have that glass of wine at the end of the day or that walk in the sunshine when homeschooling is finished.  Set up a challenge to be completed and then reward yourself with your favourite thing.
4. Practice gratitude.  Remind yourself of the little things by writing down 3 things you are thankful for.  Do this daily and watch your mindset switch to a more positive frame of mind.

 

I hope this helps you during this challenging time to work from home and online.  I’d love to hear how you are managing working with kids at home and what tools you use so feel free to leave me a comment.

Ten Tips to Increase your Social Media Engagement

Want to increase your social media engagement?  If people are engaging with you, then it means they like what you do and like hearing from you.  We all know that engagement on social media is about developing relationships and building trust.  And when trust is in place, you are more likely to convert a follower into a customer.

We can’t all be at the stage of having thousands of highly engaged followers.  We have to start somewhere. At the beginning it can be soul destroying to be posting every day to several sites and feeling like no one is seeing your fantastic content.  So here are my Ten Tips to Increase Your Social Media Engagement.

1. ASK

By asking questions you are inviting people to interact with you.  There are so many ways you can do this now. Try creating a poll, doing a survey, doing a video where you invite people to place their answers in the comments, use your Stories to ask questions or ask for feedback.

 2. RESPOND TO QUESTIONS

If you receive a question from a follower or you simply see a question that is relevant to your audience then respond to it in one of your posts or stories.  This is a great way to have very relevant content specifically for your audience and if you can mention or tag the person that asked the question; even better!

3. GAMIFICATION
Have you come across this term? It basically means to make a game of your content to encourage interaction and engagement. Tap into people’s love of playing games and get your audience joining in with something. No one wants FOMO, so people are likely to join in if it’s fun. For example, ask for followers to post a video of themselves using your product and the best one will win a prize. Or ask some trivia questions relating to your industry. Your imagination is the only limit here.

4. OFFER/ GIVEAWAY/ COMPETITION
Competitions and giveaways go great on Instagram. You need to be a little more careful with Facebook and make sure you don’t break the rules. On Instagram however you can ask for tags and comments in exchange for going in a draw to win a prize. This hugely increases engagement because followers tag their friends.

How Is Your Productivity? – Read – 5 Time Saving Hacks For Your Business

5. BE RESPONSIVE – START A CONVERSATION
Always respond to comments or mentions that followers leave on your posts. If you can start a conversation with someone, help answer a question or simply say thanks for taking the time to comment, you are more likely to be remembered. Social media is after all meant to be social. Increase connections with your followers by being responsive.

6. POST ABOUT CURRENT EVENTS
Bring what is happening in the real world into your world if it has relevance to your audience.  For example, if your audience is predominantly working mums then post about going back to school or halloween & christmas. This will let your audience know that you get them and is a way to share stories of your experiences.

7. USER-GENERATED CONTENT
Content created by your followers is very powerful. For a start, it means you haven’t had to do anything to create a whole new post! By sharing user-generated content you are tagging a follower which shows that you see them and you care about what your audience does and posts. Don’t be afraid to ask your audience to tag you in their posts so you can share it on your feed. People get a buzz from being featured!

8. AMAs – ASK ME ANYTHING!
This takes a small amount of planning. Tell your audience in a post that you are going to do a Q and A session and ask them to supply their burning questions. This can be done using Stories or as a normal post with questions left in the comments. Then in the next day or two, let your audience know that you will answer their questions. It’s a great way for people to get to know you.

Check out this post – How to generate up to 11 types of content from 1 blog post AND free Infographic.

9. POST AT THE RIGHT TIME
Use your Insights to ensure you are posting at optimal times when your audience is online to increase engagement.

10. PARTNER-UP / COLLABORATE
If you can collaborate with other accounts in a similar field or with a similar audience then you will get yourself in front of that person;s audience. This greatly increases your chances of getting engagement with a new set of followers. Why not look into appearing on someone’s podcast, write a guest blog post or a do Stories take-over.

Hopefully these ten tips to increase your social media engagement has given you some ideas to implement in your social strategy to increase engagement. Let me know what works for you and what doesn’t in the comments below.

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