I get it, you are super busy with too many irons in the pot. Why would I want to put one more thing on your plate? Because it will probably give you the biggest return of your investment.
Being on social media just isn’t going to cut it. You are looking for a target audience that is being flooded by other vendors in all types of industries when using social media.
You think that a bride is just seeing photography posts? No.
They are seeing jewelers. They are seeing videographers. They are seeing bakers.
They are being flooded. You just look like one more person selling to them. But what if you became their benefit? What if you greatly increased their knowledge about all things surrounding what is most important to them at this time? You would become something they seek to see.
DEVELOP A NEWSLETTER THAT HELPS YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE
Do you already have one? If not, please find a resource such as Mailchimp to begin.
Otherwise, let’s get started.
Automating an email that is triggered by you publishing a blog post isn’t enough. No bride cares to be sent a link to your latest session. They want an email that truly is interesting to them. Make your email informative, relatable, make it a resource, but most importantly be you. Your email starts with a relationship.
They are going to love you or dismiss you. Above all, they will see right through you if not coming from the heart. Listen, I’m all about automating but not about flushing garbage to fill the spots. Below you will find some ideas of content to put into each email.
- A relatable story. Whether your target audience is a bride or a mother-to-be, talk about understanding where they are right now and relating to them. Talk about things you know or advice you can give that pertains to who they are today. Be open and honest. This is where the trust will be built.
- Tips. Add value to your emails by providing a list of tips for something happening to them such as getting ready for a photo session, how to handle their wedding timeline, things they must not forget for labor & delivery day, your favorite other vendor etc.
- Bonus material. This is where you can give exclusivity to your newsletter. People are not as excited to get things they know are offered to everyone. Make a list of bonus material you can use to help increase your “open rate” on emails. This could be anything from a “What To Expect” pdf document or even an exclusive deal such as a free digital photo – web sized – from their previous session. Just remember this is NOT about selling to them. Bonus’s are just that – a bonus. A “Thank You” for being on your list and trusting you.
THE #1 MISTAKE TO NEWSLETTERS
Ok maybe there are two mistakes that hold as much weight as the other. The first mistake to mention is creating a newsletter and not nurturing it. Again, it isn’t enough to just automate emails to be sent out every time you create a blog post. This is not a valuable piece of email in someones inbox. Take the time to put in valuable messages to your list.
The second mistake is sending out emails that just promote you. Remember, this is about building a relationship and trust. You want the people are your list to feel excited to see your emails because they know they will get something out of it.
PLANNING & SCHEDULING
Ok, so you have the building blocks for a successful email campaign but it’s important to be consistent. Sending out an email should be something you do regularly. This is not where you want to be sporadic.
I have found that by getting on a schedule of once a week my emails have a higher open rate and less unsubscribes. I send out the email at the same time and on the same day each week. I also take the time each month to write down in my Photographer's Planner what I will write about for each email. I use my month calendar to lay it all my newsletter planning out.