As a copywriter and marketing consultant for organic companies, I’ve written and edited many emails for clients over the years. Including clients in various niches like health coaching, natural medicine, yoga, and more.
I have a strong sense of which kinds of emails are successful…and which aren’t.
Furthermore, I’m convinced the #1 way to build your organic brand is through great email marketing. Not by posting on social media 24/7…or going to cheesy networking events where you have to plaster a fake smile on your face to get people to like you…or by engaging in any other bright shiny objects. Rather, the key to building your brand is simply to SEND EMAILS to your list consistently.
Send one short, simple email per day that adds value for readers. That’s it. That’s the golden key to the kingdom.
Organic companies don’t use email marketing nearly enough…and I’m not sure why. When done consistently, email marketing can skyrocket your organic company from “barely known and struggling” to “wildly popular and crushing it.” I’ve seen it happen! Those who don’t consistently send good emails go out of business. Those who DO send out good emails grow!
That said…here are my top 7 tips for using email marketing to build your organic brand:
1. Send as many emails as possible. I know, this seems counterintuitive. You’re afraid if you bombard people’s inboxes, they’ll unsubscribe…NOT SO. If you have great content that pertains to something they’re interested in, people will happily stay subscribed to your list. I’ve seen it time and time again.
For some reason, many organic companies struggle to send even one email a WEEK or…gasp…one a month. I advise aiming to send one email every day! Hell, even twice a day is OK occasionally. This will create momentum. You’ll make it easier for people to remember you exist…and they’ll buy your products more often. Plus, you give people more opportunities to forward your emails to their friends and family.
Don’t worry about appearing as if you’re tooting your own horn or clamoring for attention, or “bothering” anybody. As long as the content is good, you’re doing people a SERVICE by sending them emails.
2. Keep emails short, sweet, and fun. Aim for simplicity in language. Strive to get all your emails at a “fifth grade reading level” – which means a fifth grader could easily comprehend your writing without getting confused. (You can use free websites such as readability-score.com to help you assess how easy it is to read your emails.)
Always give ONE key takeaway per email. Remember that most people are busy and don’t have time to comprehend lengthy or convoluted emails. Many people check email on their phones. Give them something they can read and benefit from in 2 minutes. Use humor, colorful language, fascinating metaphors and similes…and make people laugh! Otherwise, why bother?!
3. Forget fancy newsletters that require design…use pain text emails. Plain text emails are surprisingly effective at driving sales. You don’t need to hire a designer to format and make every single email look pretty. Just write your text, plug it into your email system, and boom done.
Of course, you can send fancier branded newsletters occasionally (1-2 times per month) if need be, but don’t let design challenges ever be an excuse not to send emails out consistently.
4. Use autoresponders. An email autoresponder sequence is a series of 10-15 emails that are pre-written and scheduled to be sent out to new subscribers over a certain period of time (such as a few weeks). Autoresponders accomplish many things: they educate new subscribers about your company, your philosophy, your big WHY, and of course your products. They create a sense of connection and bonding for the new subscriber who’s gradually getting to know your company. These emails warm people up to make their first purchase with you. They help new subscribers get to know you and your brand. Furthermore, these emails drive away any bad fits whom you don’t want subscribed in the first place (e.g., people who would have turned out to be pain-in-the-butt customers).
The key with autoresponders is to “evergreen” the content – in other words, don’t put anything in that will be outdated in a week or a month (or ideally ever). And DON’T make the emails sound automated. Make them sound personal and engaging.
5. Use story-based emails. Everybody loves a good story. When you can find creative ways to tie stories to your PRODUCTS, you’ll generate more sales while building your brand. Where can you find good story material? One obvious source is your customers’ stories. If you pay close attention, your biggest fans are often telling you how they used one of your products, how it changed their life for the better, or how they “love” it.
(Example: “I love organic Suja Juice – it helped me wean off chemical-filled sodas, which I used to be addicted to! I’ve lost 20 pounds by drinking Suja Juice instead of soda. I feel better, too – less of a zombie. I have more energy and can think more clearly…which comes in handy, given that I’m an air traffic controller for a living. You can’t afford to be tired or make mistakes in my field…or you’re out of a f#&king job!”)
Start paying more attention to unsolicited positive feedback you receive. Ask customers for permission to feature their stories. Interview them, flesh out the details, and shape their success stories into coherent written pieces that can be plugged into an email. Blast them out and you’ll generate sales, while making making your brand stand out.
6. Educate by using the contrast principle. Contrast your product to a competitor’s product. Show why yours is obviously better. Make the difference between the two products so “black and white,” people would have to be idiots not to choose your product over the competition’s.
Warning: This strategy is not for the faint of heart. You have to be willing to take a stand for what’s right / better / healthier. Expect contrast marketing to rock the boat. When done correctly, it’s one of the most effective forms of email marketing in terms of generating sales…not to mention, permanently altering people’s world views.
7. Rant more often. I don’t think people rant nearly enough in email! Think of the last time you heard somebody ranting about something. Chances are they were fully engaged, emotional, and bringing 100% of their passion to the table…and you couldn’t look away.
Ranting in email will often generate sales – assuming the email is structured well. You need a spokesperson (usually the founder and/or CEO of your company). Don’t be afraid to offend or push anyone away with your rants. If you really feel strongly about something, then you SHOULD be speaking out about it passionately anyway…otherwise, you’re living a lie by staying quiet.
Write a short rant in an email, plug one of your product sales pages in the “P.S.” section of the email, blast it out…and watch as sales pour in.
There you have it…7 tips on how to use email marketing to build your organic brand.