Came a great question from an “Email Players” subscriber:
In the Email Skhema book, you talk about always plugging something in every email. Since I am an email copywriter, I always write something interesting and transition into a product pitch. But I feel the list may not be happy in the long term. What is a good ratio mix of sales and educational content in a week? Should I write blog posts and link them instead from time to time?
Your daily email horror hosts’s take:
He is making the exact same mistake a lot of email marketers — probably 99% of ‘em — are making. And that is, projecting one’s emotions & hangups about being sold to on to a list.
Listen up, listen good, and always remember:
Buyers want to buy.
Lurkers want to lurk.
Lukewarm people want to complain, whine, & bytch.
You have to decide which of those you want to focus on and serve.
If the answer is buyers, then write for & TO them.
That means, giving them something to buy.
Of course, that doesn’t mean not to make your emails worth their time to read. That is what my Email Players Skhema book is for — to give that foundational info on how to do just that while also selling. But it does mean at least giving your subscribers the opportunity to know your offer exists each day. Or, at the very least, sending them somewhere that will lead to a sale.
There is no perfect ratio of selling & content.
The art & craft is in seamlessly & naturally combining the two.
The last thing I do when I write an email is say:
“All right, I gotta make sure x% of this email teaches, and y% sells…”
Some of my emails are 100% teasing.
Others are even 100% pitching.
Once in a great while (2 or 3 times per year, max) they are 100% teaching.
But 90%+ of the time it’s a combination — all based on the content, the market, the market’s awareness and/or sophistication levels (ala Gene Schwartz’s teachings), what I want to write about, what I think my list needs to know, what is on my mind, what is on the market’s mind, the offer I want to tell them about, and a whole slew of variables that make any kind of perfect ratio of selling & teaching a complete myth with about as much basis in reality as Asgard.
That’s my take.
If you want more on all this, subscribe to the newsletter.
Not only do you get the Email Players Skhema book mentioned above, but you also get email access with questions (not critiques or “quick looks” at your emails/content, it ain’t coaching) to me directly like the gentleman who asked the above question took advantage of.
Plus, if you subscribe by the coming deadline you’ll get the March issue.
And that is all about list building.
Specifically, building lists of those wanting to buy vs lurk or just want free stuff.
Here’s the link: