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Issue #1 • January 2017

How to Use Email Marketing to Sell Products Online

Monetize Your List

Have you ever walked into a wholesale store and immediately felt overwhelmed? There’s so much to look at between the 5 gallon salsas, the excellently priced refrigerators, and the barrells of bright white tube socks. Even if you come in with a shopping list, it’s easy to get lost in the expanse of the aisles upon aisles of products.

Wouldn’t it be easier if someone knew what you needed and had it all waiting for you at the register?

Now think about your readers. They’re all over the Internet. They’re scanning websites, reading blogs, ordering toilet paper online, watching Facebook videos–and then they land on your site. They head to your shop tab and scroll through your beautifully taught courses, well-researched eBooks, and dozens of carefully designed printables. But without any direction or sales assistance, they feel that same overwhelm as you did at the wholesale store.

Everything looks amazing, but it’s too much for their over-Interneted minds to handle. And instead taking time to read through your product descriptions to find what they need, your reader closes the tab and moves back to an easy-to-scan social media app.

So how can you fix this? How can you make all your amazing products more marketable and less intimidating? How can you make it easier for your readers to see their benefits and then in turn, easier to click that Buy Now button.

It’s simple. Email marketing.

No eye rolls, please. I know we’re a company dedicated to creating a solid email marketing process for all you bloggers out there, but seriously, have you actually thought about how email marketing can help you sell your multitude of products?

How email marketing can help you sell your online products

Email marketing can be huge for selling products online. The problem is that most online marketers are either doing it wrong or they’re just not doing it all. I’ll get to some ways to do it right in a bit, but first I want to tell you why you should even be doing it in the first place. 

You're selling to a targeted list

When someone subscribes to your list, they’re giving you permission to get back in touch with them. It’s with that permission, you can now put any message you want right in front of that reader who has already shown their interest in your business.

Now think about how almost everyone checks their email at least once per day and many people check their email incessantly. That means email marketing makes sure you get the chance to target the right person at the right time with the right message.

Using automated emails saves you time

Automations are the ultimate time-saver of the email marketing world. The less time you have to deal with things like pitching, educating, and selling, the more time you have for the kind of high-level thinking you really want to do.

Email marketing is personalized

While not putting time into those things I mentioned above might sound like a bad move, setting up email marketing automations for those systems helps you create a more personal touch to a wider audience than you could have ever done manually.

With segmentation, link triggers, and sequences, you can fine tune each message to target a very specific audience. It makes communication between business owner and reader much more personal, which can mean increased authority which then leads to increased revenue.

You can build trust and a relationship with your readers

Email marketing is so similar to building a relationship in real life, but we often forget that when we’re sitting behind our screens looking at a bunch of avatars. And forgetting to build a solid relationship with your email subscribers is one of the biggest mistakes I see in email marketing these days.

By using sequences with email marketing, you’re able to inject your personality into every email. You can tell your readers a story about how your products will benefit their lives. You can be hospitable and create a process that makes understanding your product simple and exciting.

That’s the main thing– remember is to be hospitable. Think about how you want to be treated when you walk into that overwhelming store and create that same feeling for your customers.

Ways to use email marketing to sell online products

Now that you know why email marketing is an important aspect to selling your online products, it’s time to tell you how to actually apply email marketing to your online business.

The first thing to remember when selling with email marketing is that your emails need to be written in a way that’s entertaining as well as educational. The people reading these emails have allowed you into their sacred inbox, so you have to treat is respectfully. Deliver only valuable information to them and always focus on the experience and not the product.

Second, when it comes to selling your variety of products online, it’s important to think about how they all relate to each other and how they relate to your customer. Do you have products that could naturally be sold hand-in-hand? Are there products that make sense to purchase after another product is purchased? How can your products work together to sell themselves?

By doing this you can create some fun, educational, and entertaining emails to present you products to your customers. Here are a couple examples of those emails:

Welcome Emails

A welcome email is the first email someone receives when they join your mailing list. You can have a welcome email for customers too, but in this case, we’re talking about a welcome email for new subscribers who haven’t bought anything yet.

In the beginning of this new relationship, you have the chance to make a great first impression by being friendly and helpful. One way of being helpful is to clearly communicate about targeted products and how they are beneficial to your new reader.

Example: Let’s say you’re a blogger who focuses on teaching indoor gardening practices. If you know your new subscriber came to your emailing list from an opt-in form about indoor fruit plants, you can create a welcome series that triggers an educational course about indoor fruit plants and links to your specific eBooks about dwarf lemon trees and strawberry bushes.

Bundle emails

Everything is better in pairs, right?  Figuring out what products work well together and them selling them as bundle is always a fun way to engage with your customers. I know when I hear the word “bundle”, I automatically think the purchase has an added value and usually comes as a limited time offer.

Example: If your reader is purchasing your Indoor Gardening 101 course, before they finalize their purchase, you can create a bundle to go along with the course that includes your favorite seed packets, a indoor greenhouse, and branded gardening gloves. Not everyone will opt for the extra products, but there will always be people who get excited about bundles.

Thank you emails

Usually thank you pages are just dead end landing pages, but there’s actually a lot of sales potential here. You can find some fun ways to add a little revenue that many bloggers never think about by simply adding a few links to similar products.

Example: If a customer just purchased your eBook on how to grow basil indoors, it’s a solid assumption they might also be interested in your email course about indoor gardening.  By linking to that course which links to your other indoor gardening eBooks as well, you’re not only increasing your sales, you’re also helping your customer learn more and save them the time of looking around the Internet for that information you already know they want.

Classic ConvertKit email marketing automated sequence

All of those emails and more can be created into automated sequences with a standard formula. It’s one we use everyday and it’s what we teach as an email marketing best practice.

This formula is a set of eight emails that you can use to teach, introduce, and sell your products no matter what they might be. Now, eight emails is a lot to explain right here after all this other information, so if you’re interested, head on over to this blog post about an introductory sequence to learn more about our formula.

Do you use email marketing to sell online products?

If you’re worried that pitching and selling your products will give you a sleezy-salesmen vibes, have no fear. First, if you’re running a business, you have to make sales. There’s no way around it. And to make those sales happen, sometimes you have to ask for them. You don’t generally wake up thinking, “Who can I give money to today?” do you? You readers aren’t either. So just ask.

Also, by packaging your products together in exciting ways is actually honoring your readers’ time. If you can build trust and authority with your readers, they will love that they can go to one place to get all the information and products they need. Honestly, they’ll love for it.

Do you use special packaging or sequences to sell your products with email marketing? If so, share this articles with your blogger friends and help them get with their email marketing too. We’re all in this together!

Dani Stewart

As a daughter of an entrepreneur, the wife of an entrepreneur, and an entrepreneur herself, Dani has lived and learned all sides of creating and growing businesses. She is excited to bring all that life experience as well as a decade of crafting content to the ConvertKit community. She is a part-time baker, dinner-party planner, and lover of good bourbon living the simple life in Nashville with her husband, Sean.

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