This is the article where I explain what the heck an autoresponder is and why it’s important for you to know.
Capturing website leads is important. In fact, it’s one of the keys to growing your coaching business via online marketing. You might’ve read the article here where I talk about why most websites are poor performers because they don’t do that, and you’re on board.
Now you’ve got that idea in your brain: your website must talk to your email marketing service. Maybe you’ve read my post on how to choose a service. Now you’re working on implementing an email list building strategy on your site, or your developer is doing it for you.
But you want to know: what next? What do I do when people subscribe? Keep reading to find out how to effectively welcome new subscribers into your email list and using autoresponders. Also, watch out for the sneaky lesson at the end.
what’s an autoresponder?
Think of the last time you signed up for someone else’s email list. Perhaps you went on a site and opted in to get a free guide. They probably emailed it to you right away, and then for a few days after they sent you an email every day offering more help.
That’s an autoresponder, my friend. It’s simply the emails that are AUTOMATICALLY sent to someone when they opt-in (i.e. enter in their name and email and press “GO”) on your website.
An autoresponder case study
On my site, I offer a free guide called “5 Tips to a Sleek Website.” I wrote it to help new coaches who want to DIY their website project. When they opt in, I send them an email immediately with the guide, then they get an email from me every day for the next 3 days.
All those emails are providing additional value and selling them on my next step, which is a free strategy session with me. In that session, I evaluate their current digital strategy and provide some feedback on how they can improve their results.
Basically, I’m diagnosing any weak spots in their online presence. Then, if they want some help to implement strategies for improving, we might set up an additional time to chat about working together on their website.
How an autoresponder fits into internet marketing
Do you see how the autoresponder fits into the general marketing scheme? Here’s the order, to spell it out for you:
- Freebie (a guide, in my case)
- Opt-in (they enter their info)
- Email nurturing via autoresponder (that offers them the next step, a strategy call)
- Strategy call
- Project/paying client
You’re probably thinking, “Well, that’s cool for you. But I’m not a web consultant. How does this apply to me?”
Good question. This is what it might look like for a life coach:
- Freebie (you offer them a cool thing)
- Opt-in (they sign up for the thing)
- Nurture sequence (you tell them about more things you offer)
- MINI session (providing more value and offering help)
- Paid coaching client (you gotta do the other stuff to get here!)
You might be thinking, “I already know all this.” But it’s super important to understand exactly HOW the autoresponder fits into the overall picture so you know the kinds of things to offer in it.
What an autoresponder is and what it isn’t
Now, also understand that your autoresponder is separate from the weekly emails you will send your email list.
Comparing the two is kind of like getting your hair dyed. The first time you go, it’s a bigger process and you have to really introduce your hair to the dye.
But then the next time you go in, you’re just sort of touching up the roots. You’re reminding the new growth of the color it’s supposed to be (or at least that you want it to be!)
Similarly, your autoresponder is like that initial application of hair dye. It introduces the potential client to you and what problems you can help them solve.
Then, the weekly emails (which, by the way, you start sending to them AFTER they finish getting the autoresponder emails) are just like the dye touch up to those roots, reminding them of what you do, how you can help, and most importantly, providing results for them before they ever pay you anything.
The hair dye analogy isn’t perfect, but you catch my drift.
Now onto that sneaky lesson
Congratulations! You’ve just been through funnel 101. Wasn’t that simple? Sometimes we let lingo really gets our brains in a bind, but I snuck that one up on you there.
A funnel is simply the process of leading someone through this marketing sequence.
And your autoresponder is key to your funnel. Now you know what it is and its purpose.
Hope that was helpful!
Tune in next week, I’ll be teaching you exactly how to structure the emails in your autoresponder so you can turn those website leads into paying clients.
P.S. An autoresponder is just a series of emails you set up so your email service automatically sends them to new subscribers on your list.
In these emails, you offer more value and encourage them to take the next step in your funnel – the mini session.