You’ve probably heard multiple times by now how important an email list is in helping to generate more sales.
And like the movie Field of Dreams, you’ve probably heard the voice “build the list and the sales shall come.”
However, have you started seeing the kind of results you were promised? Are your signups really turning into profit and super engaged fans?
If the answer is no, then you’re probably doing one of the 7 fan killing moves with your email list.
Sure, each genre and target market is different, but there are some core fundamentals that every email list wielding author needs to employ to not only increase clicks, but also improve engagement and their author brand.
So, find out if you are making one of these mistakes and if so, take heed and correct or forever be frustrated with the lack of conversion.
1. The First Impression of a Car Sales Men
The biggest mistake that I find most authors make with their email list is that they go in for the sale on the first contact.
What? Who does that…
If someone trusts you enough to give you their email, you don’t want to start that relationship asking them to buy something. It makes you seem as if you are only in it to get the sale.
No, you need to build a further relationship with them and ensure they feel as though giving their email to you was a good idea. So don’t muddy that initial relationship by going after the Gary Vaynerchuck “Right Hook” off the bat.
2. Driving Reckless with No Headlights
My favorite question to authors in this predicament is “What’s your plan or strategy?” of which I usually get a blank stare.
Orchestrating an email campaign, so that it converts sales and generates a more engaged fan base, takes planning and strategy.
From the moment you decide to have a list, you should know the following:
- How you intend to interact?
- Who is your target Market?
- What is the overall goal of your list?
- How will you carry them along and build your goal?
A really good resource to get your email strategy down is Pat Flynn’s basic strategy and setup. You can find it here.
If you can’t answer these things, then you really need to think about it. Aimless emails will get aimless responses.
3. The Consistency of Communication
Have you ever gotten an email out of the blue and had no idea who it was from or how they got your email address?
Well, when you rarely write, your fans will forget as well.
Too many authors sit on their email lists and only use it when they have a new book coming out. By the time you’ve written a new book, that person who signed up for your list 6 months ago might have forgotten who you are and why they should open up your email.
That’s why creating email on a consistent basis can be very important in keeping your author brand in the lime light. Because the mind of a rabid reader likes to wonder.
4. Choosing Poorly
Not all email services are equal. Although many provide the same service and offers with similar prices, some just have a bad record with email opening software and get marked as SPAM.
Just check out the differences between Aweber and mailchimp here and you’ll see that more Aweber mail gets through Gmail than Mailchimp.
The removal criteria that email software uses in deciphering what is SPAM and what isn’t is different, but there are some known facts and things to avoid:
- Certain email services are better in passing the Spam check
- Don’t put too many links in your email
- Refrain from using salesy words like “Free,” “Download,” “Special,” etc…
- Refrain from using too many bold statements or abnormal font
So, keep those in mind when you start to craft your emails and make sure you choose the right email service to begin with.
5. Why Should They Stay with You?
If you aren’t providing value, then why should they stay in your email list? Readers might become fans of yours, but fandom only lasts as long as you are providing good content.
Although you got their foot in the door with your epic novel or work of art, your emails need to continue that effort just as much.
So, sit down and think about what would be beneficial to your readers. This could be in the form of news about your genre, epic articles about your subject or just simple niche banter.
But regardless of what it consists of, you need to ensure you make them want to open your next email and you do this by providing what they want to read.
6. You’ve Got The Wrong Guy
Some people are so eager to get signups that they don’t even think about their method and what kind of email they are getting.
Take for example you are writing
7. No Guts No Glory
Although we started with the point that you shouldn’t start your relationship with a sales pitch, the other thing that many authors forget or fail to do is actually land the final call to action.
I get it. You’ve hopefully spent some time building a relationship with your reader, you’ve employed a strategy and provided good content. So, when it comes time to ask for that ‘buy’ or get the sale, you feel as though you are “selling out.”
But don’t. This is business and in the end, you worked hard to be able to not only get their interest but also earn they attention. So, go for the sale and ask. If they are appalled and drop your email list, then so be it. They weren’t your target market anyways.
Buid Relationships and Convert on the Mark
Sure you email conversions might not be what you want and in some cases, you might be questioning whether or not it was worth it.
But like every accomplished author, and email can be the most vital tool you have. So, take notice of these 7 mistakes. Take action, build a plan, engage the right people with consistency and you will start to see a difference in your conversions and relationship with your list.