An Autoresponder Sequence, WTF and I supposed to say to people?
That seems to be the biggest question we get asked about email marketing.
Now that we have our email software set up and ready to take emails, the fear sets in, what are we going to say to people?
It’s this fear that can sometimes result in paralysis which stops us speaking directly to our audience.
But what if we could put these emails on autopilot?
If we had them planned out in advance and never had to think about them again would that make our life easier?
The answer is yes. Having a sequence or auto responder set up will help us not only get over that fear but also reduce our workload.
Remember it takes time to do everything, so if there is an opportunity to put something on auto pilot then we should do so.
An autoresponder sequence is a series of emails that will be automatically delivered to our subscribers once they sign up to our list.
These emails will be written out in advance and simply scheduled to go out.
Autoresponder sequences are a great way of engaging with your audience when they first sign up. You catching them at their peak state of interest in you and your blog, being able to talk to them straight away is a real bonus.
What can I do with an Autoresponder Sequence?
There are a number of ways to look at Autoresponder sequences, you can use them to do the following;
- Get to know you audience
- Nurture your relationship with your list
- Deliver step by step instructions like a challenge or mini course
- Show new subscribers the best of your archives
- Earn money by mixing in affiliate offers to your normal emails
No matter what your aim for your list it, the goal is to keep the list warm.
What you don’t want is for people to sign up to your list and never hear from you again or that when you do send them a mail, they have forgotten who you are and why they signed up to your list.
It is for this purpose that we recommend that everyone have an autoresponder sequence.
Filling your Autoresponder Sequence
The question still stands, “WTF am I going to say to people?”, to help you out, here a sequence that has worked very well for us over the years.
- (Immediately) – Thanks for subscribing, double check they received their lead magnet/ content upgrade
- (1 day later) – Introduction to our blog, what they can expect and what we aim to do for them
- (3 days later) – Give them another free download, like an opt-in or upgrade (provide more value)
- (1 week later) – Follow up re the last download, any questions comments or problems? plus introduce some of our best content from our archives.
- (1 week later) – Most popular questions readers have answered and invite questions from the reader.
- (1 week later) – Tell them a story of how you have helped another reader and ask to connect on social if they haven’t already.
- (3 days later) – Recap story and explain how you can help them and what they should do to get your help
- (1 week later) – Send them a list of your top resources, again provide value
- (1 week later) – Mention your product, event or affiliate and offer a chance to find out more.
- (1 week later) – Offer a discount or incentive to buy product, event or affiliate product
These are just some of the types of emails that you can send out, but as you can see once it’s set up it will run for 10 emails and roughly seven-eight weeks.
Having regular contact that provides value will almost “train” your subscribers to see your name or email address and click open. It will also show them that you are active on email and accessible to them by mail if they have a question or comment.
What is a Broadcast?
A broadcast is very simply a one-time email. Effectively all you are doing is sending an email to your list or part of the list.
This too can be scheduled to go out, but will only go out once at the specified time and date, so people who join your list after that time will not be sent this email.
When should I send a Broadcast?
When it comes to broadcast, these tend to be used when it comes to time sensitive content or offers.
So if for example, your goal is to send out a weekly email recapping the week’s content on your blog, well then you can’t really automate that as the content is only a few days old, so your newsletter cannot be put together any more than a few days in advance.
Newsletters and Offers
Newsletters always tend to be a reoccurring task and work well with broadcasts.
The same can be said for offers, sales, events etc. Where the content will expire then a broadcast should be used to promote it.
You can have an autoresponder sequence set up to promote your offer, sales or event, but you must make sure that you either disable the sequence once the offer has expired or remove the ability for people to sign up to this sequence.
The other factor is time, how many emails in the sequence, how far apart are they sent and is there enough time left for people to go through the sequence? Many people forget this and as a result, their subscribers don’t get all the way through the sequence to the offer and as a result never get a chance to but.
That’s why we recommend using time stamped broadcast for these types of emails. That way no matter when people join your list, they will be added to the same emails as those already on the list and thus get the offer at the right time.
Phil has put together a quick video giving you an overview as to how you set up your autoresponder and send a Broadcast using Convertkit.
As always any problems, questions or observations leave a comment below!