Growing Your Audience & Keeping the Faith WPCP: 125
Just when you think you've got a grasp on something... a little dose of reality comes in.
In this case, it's a good thing.
After last weeks episode on winding the year down and with Christmas quickly approaching, I'm starting to really wrap my head around what I want 2017 to look like for me.
I'm still going to do a full 'year in review' episode but I want to share some of the things I'm doing as I wind down the year to prepare for next year.
Beyond sitting down with my colored pens, planner of choice and BIG ideas.
I've been talking a lot about going back to basics and mastering the fundamentals (maybe I can come up with an acronym for that?). The first two areas I've focused on have been copy and email marketing.
When it comes to copy, I haven't even gotten into the sales type of copy yet (think sales pages, ads, etc.). I started simply by working on headlines and paying attention to copy.
Let's talk about paying attention to copy first.
This whole journey of getting interested in copy began at the very beginning of this year when I decided to sign up to work with Jason Hornung's Facebook advertising agency. I connected with Jason through another friend, had him on my podcast and knew I wanted to work with him. I won't go into detail on that experience in this episode (it was great and I'm planning on having Jason back on the show to do a follow up), but I got a bonus education outside of Facebook advertising.
I was impressed with Jason's understanding of ad copy, persuasion, the psychology of copy and what drives people. When he got interested in Facebook ads he jumped in with both feet. He studied copy, advertising and direct response marketing. Books that had been around 30+ years... he created a solid foundation for building his own ad agency.
Prior to working with Jason I had zero desire to do any type of copy (or get attempt to get decent at it). But when I heard Jason's story, observed what he did to master his craft all of the sudden I had a different respect for the art of copy. So I started studying and practicing.
I tend to be someone who baby steps my way into things or I leap like a lunatic. In this case I baby stepped my way into it (but I'm slowly working my way up to a jog). I've focused on practicing headlines this year. For posts, emails and ads (although I haven't run an ad in a while, more on that in another episode).
First thing I did was start paying attention to what headlines spoke to me.
What about them did I like, what drew me in to want to read more / learn more.
Then when I would go to write my post title I would head over to the CoSchedule Headline analyzer (which I've talked about probably more than you've wanted to hear) and start with my first headline.
Holy moly were some of them bad.
Then it became a game to see what I could come up with and how I could improve the score. Depending on the topic, I'd write 5 or 6 headlines or sometimes I would stick with something clear (and maybe not very exciting) for SEO purposes.
Once I had settled on my headline I'd write my post (which believe it or not I spend way more time editing than I used to). After the post is written the next step is to write a couple more headlines (or use a few that I had written in the headline analyzer) and use the Thrive Headline Optimizer to run some split testing.
I have yet to have my original headline win one of those tests (pretty interesting, right?).
I can guarantee you that 5 years ago I was not spending this much time on headlines or content. Not because I didn't care, but because I didn't really know better.
Which brings me to growing your audience.
In the recent survey I did with my email subscribers this is what people most wanted to learn from me. I asked the question "If I were to teach a class, which topic would be most interesting to you?" Which made sense since the other topic people wanted help with the most was lead generation.