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Pru Chapman
OC Founder + Head Hustler

Pru Chapman is the Founder + Head Hustler at Owners Collective, a dedicated digital community and global online resource hub for early-stage entrepreneurs. Pru gets giddy supporting business owners to create meaningful, sustainable + profitable business. She loves nothing more than bulletproof coffee, her pooch Maverick, andd an empty mountain hiking trail.

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Want to know the one biggest thing that leveraged me out of one-to-one coaching and into online programs? 

Email marketing. 

Now before you roll your eyes hear me out. 

While I watched people around me tirelessly building their social media following, pitching to investors, and ‘getting their name out there’, I was doing one thing. 

Building my email list.

Every day I focused on building and nurturing my email list. Slowly but surely, tapping away in the backend I grew the breadth and depth of my email list to 25,000 people.

While it didn’t have the glitz and glam of a big instagram following, or the front page of a magazine, what it did give me was community.

A community of my ideal clients, available to me at the ‘send’ of an email.

It meant:

  • never starting a launch from zero again
  • never talking to crickets
  • never being reliant on a platform that I didn’t own

This week on the OC Podcast I’m talking all about WHY you should be paying attention to email marketing right now.

Giddy up and let’s do this!

 

Here’s what we cover:

  • Why it’s more important than ever to build an asset that you own (aka your email list)
  • How powerful focusing on building my email list has been in growing my business
  • The 8 things reasons you MUST be focusing on your email list right now

 

Links and resources:

 

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Be sure to be subscribed on Apple Podcasts or if you’re an Android user you can follow on Spotify. While you’re there, I’d LOVE you to drop me a rating and review, as is helps get this podcast into the ears of more fine folks like you.

 

Full Transcript

Pru Chapman:

Welcome to the Owners Collective Podcast. I’m your host Pru Chapman, and I’m here to help you create a better business. Over the past 10 years, I’ve built a global business from scratch that enables me to work from anywhere, which is sometimes in my hometown of Byron Bay, and quite often, from the back of a camp events somewhere off the beaten track. Along the way, I’ve had the joy of mentoring some of the most successful creative entrepreneurs around, and here on the Owners Collective Podcast, I’m going to help you do the same. So get ready for a series of short, sharp throwdowns to help you build the business that’s right for you. If you’re keen to get started already, I’ve got a free before you. Head to theownerscollective.com/startandscale for my downloadable guide on how to grow your business.

Pru Chapman:

Hey friends, today we’re going to be talking all about why you need to be paying attention to email marketing right now. Now straight off the bat, I’m a huge fan of email marketing and I always have been. Right from the moment that I took my business online, it has been absolutely critical in building the business that I have today. Now, I have to admit that email marketing, it’s got a bit of a bad reputation over the past few years, but don’t let that deter you Forbes recently called email marketing the next big thing. And I totally agree. There are so many reasons to love email marketing if you do it right.

Pru Chapman:

So about five to six years ago when I took my business online, I launched a 12 week online program called Owners Collective Mastermind. Very, very interesting, creative title there. At the time I had zero subscribers, so I was launching this to a completely cold audience. All right, so this is how it worked. Basically, a person would see a short Facebook ad for our mastermind program, and then they’d click through on a learn more button. The next step is that they’d land in a Typeform survey, and this would ask them a few questions about their stage of business, their goals, their challenges, along with their email and their phone number and the best time to get in touch. Next up, so thirdly, this would trigger off a sequence of six emails introducing me and our program, giving details and dates. And most importantly, this gave me a freeform platform to passionately talk through what I believed about business, and what they really found was that they were a match for my values in business as well.

Pru Chapman:

So across those six journeys, we… Sorry, across those six emails, we really started this journey together. And what I was able to show them is that I understood their hopes, their aspirations, their fears, and that I was the person to help them put in the next steps so that they really could achieve their goals. So after these six emails of getting to know each other, we then went into what we call a closed down sequence. And this is a sequence of three emails, which has a really strong call to action to take the leap to join our program.

Pru Chapman:

Now, essentially, these nine emails guys, these were the foundation of my business. This is what took me out of coaching 25 businesses every single week one-on-one business coaching to a leveraged scalable online model. So there was part of it that was social advertising that was a big component of it that was showing people the way, but it was within this email sequence, these nine magic emails, that actually built that know you, like you, trust you factor and convinced people I guess, or enticed them to jump from that Facebook ad into one of my programs, all right?

Pru Chapman:

And so the first program was a success. We went on to build many more programs after that. So I think the thing that you really want to note here is that it was the first step that I took. I launched with no email list whatsoever. And these emails, they worked. I wrote them once and then I was having a conversation with literally thousands of people at once. Well, maybe hundreds to start with, but eventually into the thousands. Now, I just couldn’t have leveraged myself out of one-to-one coaching and into online programs without really understanding email marketing. So just to really bring this home before we kick off, I would have absolutely been trapped in trading time for money capping not only my income, but also my lifestyle and ultimately the freedom that I have within my business had I not become really proficient at email marketing. So needless to say, I’ve got an incredible respect, understanding and love of email marketing when it’s done well and when it’s done mindfully.

Pru Chapman:

So there’s two components that I want to speak to about email marketing. Number one is why it’s so powerful, and number two is how to do it. So I’m going to break this up into two, possibly three episodes, because I think that each of these components need separate attention and the respect that it deserves, because in order for you to fall in love with email marketing, you really need to understand the different components to it. And once you do, I promise it will be an absolute game changer for your business. All right, so let’s dive in with my top tips on why you need to be paying attention to email marketing right now.

Pru Chapman:

First and foremost, and this should be enough. We could stop at this one point. Of course we won’t, but the first is that you own it, all right? This is the most important point of all. So the thing that I see is so many small business owners are putting so much time and effort into their social channels. That is borrowed real estate folks. At any given point, those channels can change their algorithm, they can shut down, and so everyone that’s spending all this time investing into their Instagram feeds and their stories and into Facebook or any of the other channels, it is borrowed real estate, right? You have very little control over what that platform is going to do in the future. And when I say in the future, I mean like on a minute to minute basis, hourly, daily, or even more. However, when you get people onto your email list, you own that email list, all right? It’s never going to go anywhere.

Pru Chapman:

So all the algorithms in the world can change and you still have that incredible piece of kit within your business. Now, if you’re someone that’s thinking about selling your business down the track, your database is very, very valuable in the sale of business as well. So you can think about this both in the short term, in the medium term, and in the longterm about just how valuable this piece of kit is for you, okay? So this, it allows you to sit in the driver’s seat. You control the flow, the timing, the frequency of the conversations that you’re having with your audience and they’re no longer dictated by an algorithm. So first and foremost, you own your email list. And goodness, just even that, we could stop there, but number two is you control the look, the feel, the tone of that conversation in your email.

Pru Chapman:

So within the social channels like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, all of the social channels, they tell us how we can have that conversation. It’s either in a square or it’s in a portrait. It’s really how much text we can have on there. It is really tightly controlled. And of course they do that for a reason to maintain a consistency, but it really doesn’t give you that much flexibility and freedom to what you want to say. So if you want to have a bust out of this square, portrait or stories kind of style, then you want to be stepping into your email marketing, okay? Because on these channels our images are censored, our language is censored.

Pru Chapman:

And I don’t really think that people can be wholly themselves on this platform. I think that we’re all kind of conforming to these platforms, whereas when you step into your email marketing, like if you swear a lot, then swear a lot. If you say [inaudible 00:07:57] see things, that’s what you can say in your email. You can just totally be yourself within email. And like I said, you decide the look, the feel and the tone. So people really can get to know the real you through your emails.

Pru Chapman:

Okay, thirdly on why you need to be paying attention to email marketing right now is that this is where you nurture your relationships. So too many businesses have their sole focus on just getting more clients, right? Get more clients, get more clients, get more clients. Really folks, what you need to be doing is yes, you need to get more clients, but then you need to nurture those clients. So to be really honest with you, sometimes people have been sitting on my email list maybe for one year, two year, even up to five years before they purchase something from me. I obviously offer a very high ticket program.

Pru Chapman:

And so people need that nurturing for a period of time to build that know you, like you, trust you factor. And in email marketing, this is exactly where you do it. All of a sudden, you’re not on those channels where everyone is. You’re in someone’s inbox, and that’s a very personal space. People are really protective about their inbox these days. So if you’ve been allowed into that sacred space of someone’s inbox, they’ve opened your email and they’re reading, you really are building that know you, like you, trust you factor, and that has to come before anyone is going to purchase from you. So it’s a place where you start conversations, you share values, you share case stories, client success stories. And like I said, people might buy from you straight away. It might be in five years time, they might never buy from you. But if you’re offering incredible value in this space, it really is where you’re nurturing that relationship and really putting in the time and the investment into what that relationship needs to be.

Pru Chapman:

Now leading on from this, the fourth reason that you really want to be paying attention to email marketing is that people are much more likely to buy from email than they are from the social channels, particularly when you have a high ticket item, okay? So I’m not so much talking about products here because people do buy from social channels, they’ll buy products, but if you’re offering a program or a membership, anything like that, that has a higher price tag on it, let’s say $1,000 or more, people need to be nurtured, right? They don’t just see an Instagram ad for over $1,000, a product or a service over $1,000 and necessarily whip out their credit card, all right?

Pru Chapman:

They need to go on a little bit of a journey for you. They’ve just met you. They need to know more about you. An email is where you’re really able to do that. You can even have a little think about it yourself. Maybe even checking on your behavior in the next few days or even the next few weeks, when do you actually pull that credit card out? It’s probably when you’re on someone’s email list, they’ve built that know you, like you, trust you factor, and then you’re confident of taking the next step with them.

Pru Chapman:

Okay, so next up is that if people don’t buy from you, you can actually get feedback on why they’re not buying, all right? So just say they go past an ad on a social media platform. You never know why they didn’t stop, why they didn’t take the next click, why they didn’t purchase. You will never ever know. However, if they’re on your email list and you’ve been in conversation with them, and let’s say that you launched a program, but they didn’t purchase your program, then you have the opportunity to go back to them and say, “Well, what was it? Can you give me some feedback? Was the price too high? Was the price too low? Was it not what you were looking for?”

Pru Chapman:

And so it gives you this incredible opportunity to get that feedback and then potentially, to offer a followup sale for them as well, okay? So just say they didn’t buy your signature program because it was too long. It was going to go for 12 months and you actually were able to find out that people didn’t want to commit to a 12 month program, then you could really quickly go back and say, “All right, here’s the fast track. This is a six week tripling down opportunity where you can jump on board with me in a one-on-one mentoring capacity.” You could charge a higher price for that. And all of a sudden, you could have doubled or tripled your income.

Pru Chapman:

So being in email in conversation, and that’s what I want you to think about it as, is this nurture sequence in conversation, you can find out this really critical information from people and then offer them something that’s going to suit them better. And honestly, guys, this can completely change your product suite or your service suite and the trajectory of your business because feedback is everything. You want to know why people are buying from you and of course, why they’re not buying from you.

Pru Chapman:

All right, so my seventh point is once you have this email database, it doesn’t cost anywhere near as much once you’re set up, okay? So social ad spends can really add up really, really quickly. Now, I thought that I would spend a lot on social spends when we do product launches because we’ve spent up to, I don’t know, let’s say about $6,000 on Facebook and Instagram ads when we’re doing a big launch. Then I was actually looking at a friend of mine. She did a post on Instagram yesterday saying for her last launch, she spent $160,000 on social ads.

Pru Chapman:

All right, so the moral of the story here is that social ads can add up really, really quickly, all right? And once you have people on your email list, there is a small cost to it depending on the platform or the provider that you’re using, but nowhere near that kind of fee. So again, it kind of loops back to, this is now an asset in your business, your database, that you own. And it means that every time you launch or you relaunch something, you’re not starting from scratch. You’re starting from, maybe you start off with 200 people, 1,000 people and it works its way up.

Pru Chapman:

So once you’ve been actively building your email list for a while, it can grow really quite rapidly. I know for us, like I said, I started out with an email list of zero about five or six years ago, and we’re going up to about 25,000 in the first few years. So you can see like the confidence then that we would have going into a launch knowing not only were we just relying on social ads because we certainly weren’t, but we had this incredible database of people that had shown interest in what we were doing before, we’ve be nurturing them and offering them value for years and then telling them that yes, we were relaunching our next program. And so a bunch of those people, I don’t have the stats on it, but I should go back and do that and let you guys know about the conversion that we’d actually get from our lists, but it was huge. And it was always larger than what we’d get straight off ad spend because people had been on the list for a while and they’d built that know you, like you, trust you factor through that nurturing.

Pru Chapman:

Okay, so next up, this is the eighth tip that we’re up to, is that you can be really targeted about what you’re talking about and to who, okay? So just say that you have a service and you offer this particular service to start ups and to scale ups. With a really good CRM, so with a good platform that’s managing your email marketing, you can be very specific about the conversations that you’re having with each type of lead and the product or the service that you’re offering them, okay? So this comes into tagging and this will actually lead into the next episode, which is more of the how of email marketing, because with a reasonably sophisticated system that doesn’t need to cost a lot and doesn’t need to be tricky to set up, but you can find out exactly where people are coming from, what they’re clicking on, and then looking at your suite of products or services, you can be really targeted about what you’re sending to who and when and why.

Pru Chapman:

So there you have it guys. These are my top eight tips on why you need to be paying attention to email marketing right now. I think first and foremost, the most important tip here is number one, that you own it. This is an asset in your business. It is going to provide you with short term, medium, and long term sales. It’s an incredible asset in your business. If you ever wanted to sell your business, very, very valuable in the valuation of a business, but also will give you so much confidence to see that asset building and growing over time, and you’re increasingly making sales from it, but not only that is nurturing those leads so that you can be having a one to many conversation, any given day in your business and just increasing that opportunity to connect with your community and for them to eventually become clients and customers of yours as well.

Pru Chapman:

So gone will be the days where you’re completely reliant on those social platforms and those terrible algorithms that are allowing people to only see, I think it’s down to 1% to 3% of our actual posts. So what you’ll see when you really do tap into email marketing, when you really start doing it well, you’ve got literally thousands of people opening your emails. Every single week you are in conversation, you’re getting that real time feedback and you’re able to craft and nurture your services and offerings to be the best to suit your community that are on that list, all right?

Pru Chapman:

So there are the top eight tips guys. Like I said, I really want to jump into the how, but I wanted to give each of these components the attention that they deserved. So in the next episode, I’ll drop that in just a few days, we’re going to dive deep into the how of how to increase your open rates, all right? Because once you’ve built this beautiful asset, you want to be making sure that you’re maximizing its potential and its opportunity, okay?

Pru Chapman:

So if you’ve got any specific questions in the meantime around email marketing, be sure to hit me up. You can, I would actually say, become a subscriber on our email list all the emails I write, all of our emails, they all go out from me. So if you hit reply, I’m going to see it. So if you’ve got specific questions around email marketing, then please hit me up in the next few days and I will make sure that I cover them in our next episode. Alrighty guys, I’ll see you there.

Pru Chapman:

Thank you so much for tuning in. And if you never want to miss an episode, be sure to subscribe over on Apple Podcasts. I’m also dropping some juicy business building tips on Instagram. So head over to @ownerscollective to join in the fun. And finally, folks, if you’re hungry for a deep dive into the entrepreneurial story behind some of the best businesses around, be sure to listen to my other podcast, One Wild Ride, where we talk all things, good business, positive impact, and epic adventures with the most inspiring entrepreneurs around.

Pru Chapman:

(silence).

 

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