Podcasting is quickly becoming mainstream. A lot of big bucks are being made in the area and now the only thing standing between a podcaster and success, apart from great content and presentation, of course, is marketing.
One of the marketing strategies that can really get you shooting for the stars is email marketing. It is a treasure chest of opportunity that can allow you to grow your podcast exponentially.
When it comes to email marketing, however, some things generally work better than others and success is a matter of knowing what works and what doesn’t.
That’s what this article is going to be about: the email marketing hacks that will get your podcast growing.
If you’re just getting started, here are my favorite email marketing platforms – Ross.
Keep your marketing campaign structured
One of the greatest mistakes many marketers make is that they believe that having a method to their email marketing campaign will simply bog them down. That’s not true.
In fact, it’s the lack of a process or method that ends up slowing you down.
When you have a process that you have defined well enough to turn into a method, you get even more of your time freed up to do other stuff like experiment and be creative with new ideas because you aren’t spending most of your time putting out fires and fixing errors.
Most of the mishaps that happen with email marketing are mishaps that could easily be prevented.
Use a multi-platform approach to reviewing your emails
There are plenty of email testing platforms out there.
Many of them will go to the whole length of showing you exactly how your email message will appear to clients, whether on a desktop or mobile; whether in HTML or text form.
Persistence is key
It doesn’t matter how good your email is. If the intended recipient has not opened it, you might as well have never sent it.
So what do you do in such a situation? Why you send it again.
You can resend the email to all of the recipients who never opened it. It might seem like you’re bugging them, but they could have failed to open the email for a whole host of reasons, including perhaps that it ended in their spam folder or just got lost in the many emails they get every day.
When you send it again, you put it at the top, where they can notice it easily and open it. Besides, there is no harm in resending an email once or twice. If they don’t open it twice or thrice in a throw, then you know for sure they just don’t want to.
Did you know ConvertKit has a one-click feature that allows you to do this easily?
Keep your subject lines short
Emails aren’t meant to be a blog post, and their titles aren’t meant to look like the titles to highly academic research projects. If you really want your intended recipient to open the email, keep the subject line short and sweet.
There are also lots of other little things you can do to increase the clickthrough rate of your emails.
Remember that the whole point of a subject line is to give a sort of heads up to the recipient so they can open the email.
You want it to be interesting, but you don’t want it so detailed that it’s giving away too much information at the onset. When you do that, your recipient won’t be eager to know anything more. Ideally, your subject line should get your recipient thinking “Tell me more!”
You can use the same techniques you use to come up with the titles of your podcasts.
Integrate your sales and marketing
Email marketers have a major obsession with 2 things: open rates and clicks. They want to know who opened the email and what they clicked on while they were there. This is too narrow a view, however.
The whole point of this particular kind of marketing campaign is to generate leads and good ones at that so the sales team has customers to sell to.
That said, email marketing shouldn’t end at sending your recipient an email and then moving on.
From the perspective of a podcast, you should take some time to work it into a system. All the emails that come from the sales and marketing departments are part of the same overall plan. They all help ease the recipient along on the journey from becoming a led to becoming a subscriber of your podcast.
That is how you should look at them. Get them in sync so that there is some kind of flow and then tweak the ones that don’t fit into this flow.
It’s okay to have “replies” and “forwards” in subject lines
This is usually a topic that brings about confusion. What happens when people see “RE:” or “FWD:” in an email? Most of them will get the vibe that they’re going deeper into the rabbit hole and getting more information about something important.
This works only if they forwards and replies are real ones, however.
“If someone opens your email and then notices that you lied to them, their interest in what you have to say wanes because then they just get angry,” says Najib Tahir of SuperiorPapers.
On the other hand, if they notice that you’re genuine in the information you are providing and it’s a real follow up, they will want to know more.
Hire someone to proofread your work
It should ideally be someone who is not a part of your internal team and is therefore not a part of your campaign.
What you need is a fresh pair of eyes to look at your email and notice those little things that you would never have noticed by yourself.
You can hire a cheap writing service to do this for you. It’s well worth it in the end.
Content delivery emails are your friend
So someone just visited your podcast and filled out a form to get some form of content, whether it’s a freebie or a white paper.
You then send them the link via email and you thank them for downloading the content.
Should you just end it at that? Wouldn’t that be a major waste of an opportunity?
These emails aren’t usually sent out by your marketing department. It’s usually some other group that isn’t aware of the kind of user experience that the marketing department is trying to craft for the listeners.
You need to bring it back into the fold and put it in the hands of marketing so that better email copy is written. The recipients need to be given more options in terms of what do next after they have received promised content.
You should never allow any dead ends in your marketing.
Give your subject lines attention
We have talked a lot about subject lines in this article, but it’s only because they are one of the most important, and yet overlooked elements of an email.
Most people will work really hard to come up with the perfect copy for the email and then slap on the first subject line that pops into their minds. It shouldn’t be like that.
It should actually be the other way round. Spend most of your time on the subject line and only a little on the body of your email. The most important thing is to get your recipient to open your email with the intention to read it. If no one does that then there’s no point to having a killer copy.
In fact, you can take it a step further. To make sure you’re getting the right subject lines, perform some A/B tests on them.
This is such an easy test to do and it will give you a wealth of information. The kind of subject line you pick for your email can pretty much color the entire email a certain way.
You should, therefore, hire a writer and encourage them to be as creative as possible when they’re coming up with blurbs and figure out what kind of perception the recipient gets from the blurb.
Make sure your emails are in sync with all buyer facing messages
As a podcaster, you will likely be communicating with your customers from multiple platforms.
It’s important to keep everything consistent so your subscribers don’t feel confused about the kind of messages they’re getting across different platforms.
You need to know what message you want to deliver on your podcast, your blog, your tweets, your emails, and so on, and then stick to that message at all times.
Measure a wide range of metrics
As a podcaster, you might think that the only metrics that matter to your email marketing campaign are open rates and clicks. However, there is a lot more to it.
What you ultimately want, of course, is more subscribers to your podcast, which will increase your revenue in the end. You, therefore, need to find a way to connect your email marketing campaigns with the leads that end up as subscribers or as customers of what you’re selling, and to the revenue, you are earning as well.
It’s not guaranteed to be an easy thing, but it’s definitely valuable to the success of your podcast.