How do you make sure you get better results, more engagement, and more sales using email marketing campaigns? You need to understand the psychology of marketing, which is why today we're breaking things down and sharing the 9 psychological strategies that we successfully use in all our email marketing campaigns.
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SOME EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS:
(00:15) Want to make your sales from your email marketing? Grab our Click Tricks.
(5:40) Build beliefs.
(10:18) Say something and prove it.
(11:45) Train your readers to click on the links in your emails.
(14:20) Always make people feel included.
(16:23) Ensure your emails have a solid thread.
(20:00) Create singularity.
(22:45) Deliver value in all your emails.
(25:04) Become a habit.
(27:57) Create urgency.
(30:10) Subject line of the week.
We put a little something together for you. It's really cool and it's FREE (yes, it's cool and free – we're nice like that). If you want to make more sales from your email marketing, you need more clicks on the things that you're selling!
That's why we're giving you 12 creative ways to help you get more clicks in every email you send. It's a FREE download, and it's called Click Tricks. You can grab it here.
Human beings are this big, complicated cocktail of thoughts, ideas, and emotions. And all these things fuel our beliefs, what we are, and what we think about the world around us. But beliefs don’t get built super fast. In fact, they are built slowly through stories, ideas, and people making us question facts, opinions, and authority. You don't instantly absorb a belief just because someone said something to you. A belief has to be built over time because changing our minds about something is a shift that's hard to make.
Let's remember that your subscribers are people, so they already have beliefs about you, themselves, marketing, or whatever it is you help your customers with. And the minute you come at them with something that might jar with their current beliefs, their defense mechanism and walls go up. So it’s your job not only to climb over that wall but also to slowly take it down and bring people over to your side of it.
Another way to think about it is the idea of building a bridge. Picture yourself standing on the edge of a cliff with another cliff opposite you. You could do with a bridge. And if you imagine your customers' beliefs are one part of the bridge that takes them half the way there and towards you, your job is to build the other half of that bridge so that the two cliffs can connect and people can come to you. There's no quick fix for this - we can't give you a magic trick or formula. Building beliefs is almost like a series of breadcrumbs you drop so you can lead people to follow you on this trail.
For example, we need to build the belief that email marketing will work for someone. And this happens over time - once they've seen enough case studies or have tried something that worked, for example. That's what helps our customers build that belief. And we recognise that it might take people different ways or routes to get to that point. But one thing is for sure - it always takes time.
Every time you make a statement, prove it. Because why should people believe what you say, otherwise? We don’t often use photographs in our emails, but on the odd occasion, we do. So if we say we went to an event, for example, we'll add a photo of it. And we do it because people these days are sceptical.
So if we say that a product is discounted, we also link to the original sales page to show people what that price was. We always try to prove things along the way, either by the actions we take or the words we say. And that's why we stress the importance of never extending deadlines. Because you need to prove to your list that you’ll do what you said you’d do. And that teaches them that next time they see an offer from you that’s expiring, you’re going to follow through. If you proved it in the past, people are going to believe you.
We come across a lot of business owners with big lists who say their subscribers don't click on anything. They don't pay attention. And the primary reason for that is that most people fall into the trap of thinking they need to wait until their list is 'big enough' to start sending emails.
But that's not what you do. You need to start emailing people as quickly as possible and as soon as they join your list. And on top of that, you want to encourage them to click on the links in your emails. Your job is to build the belief that every time they click on something inside your emails, it's going to take them somewhere fun, interesting, useful, engaging, or entertaining. So always give your subscribers something to click on.
In every single email we send, we include links - whether it’s a direct call to action or our super signature at the bottom. And our cool, FREE resource Click Tricks helps you train your subscribers to click on your links.
Getting people to click on your links is important because it gets them to engage with your emails – and they can’t buy from you without clicking on links! But also, it helps to boost your engagement. This, in turn, tells the algorithms for Gmail and the other email platforms that you're a good source and that people are paying attention to what you send. And that's great stuff!
Also, you want to know when someone is engaged or not, because if they aren't, maybe there’s something you can do to ‘wake that subscriber up’ and try to get them to start paying attention again. So from the first email you send, make sure you’re constantly training people to click. Give them lots of different links to click on because if you're not training your subscribers to click, it means you’re training them out of that habit.
And that's how you'll end up with people on your list who probably won't bother ever reading your email. And you don’t want to become that business owner!
How do you make people feel included? By not making them feel excluded! Because there’s nothing worse than feeling like you got to something a little too late. If everyone’s talking about things that you don’t understand, that’s an immediate way of disengaging people.
So a simple way of not making people feel excluded is to not back reference previous emails. If you refer to something you shared yesterday, for example, but someone (for whatever reason) didn't receive or read or remember your email, they're going to struggle to engage with the email they're reading right now. They're not going to get the full value of what you sent them because they don't know what yesterday's email was all about.
So each email should be self-contained. But it can, of course, future reference to tomorrow’s email. In fact, that's a great psychological element called an open loop. And it's good because it teases the future, and it encourages people to keep consuming your content.
While every email should be self-contained, your campaigns should take somebody on a journey. If you ever watched a show such as The Mentalist, for example, you’ll know that every episode has its own storyline, but there’s a thread that covers the entire series. Your email campaigns are the same. You want to create a journey where the campaign takes them from the beginning to the end. But every email makes sense on its own. Because let's remember that no one gets 100% open rates – not everyone is reading every email!
So your email campaign needs to contain a story arc. That's what's holding it together - not you (i.e. the main character or business owner). You need an overarching theme that stitches the whole email campaign together.
If you look at all the campaigns we have inside The League, they're like a season of your favourite show. And each email is like an episode of that show. They all have different functions and flick your readers forward and towards buying from you. But they all work together in the campaign because they take somebody on a journey from beginning to end. That’s how we create all of our campaigns to create consistency so people feel they’re going somewhere.
Each campaign should always lead to one single thing – an ultimate destination. We talk about the idea that all roads lead to Rome in your business. In other words, you want one core, flagship product, and all your other offers lead to that. So each email campaign is designed to be one specific way into your Rome.
In our business, everything ultimately leads to our membership, The League. But there are different ways into it. For example, we might have a campaign that’s about encouraging people to join our membership via a $1 trial. The campaign is leading to that offer, which, in turn, leads into The League. But at other times, we might run a completely different campaign that leads into our membership via a bonus offer.
We do this (run one campaign for one thing) because we don’t want to confuse the minds of our readers by mentioning too many offers at once. So within each email campaign, you want to create singularity. That gives people focus and allows your readers to achieve comprehension, understanding, and desire for what you're offering. Remember that a confused mind can’t do anything!
Delivering value in your emails allow you to create a hook into your subscribers’ minds where they want to go and dig out your emails every day because they consider this an important part of their life. You don’t want people to dip in and out and read your emails only some of the time – you want them to pay attention all the time. And if they’re not paying attention, then you want them to unsubscribe and come back when they're ready.
Recently we had somebody getting in touch saying that over the last few years they’ve been subscribing and unsubscribing to our emails. And they've now joined The League. Over time, we just carried on sending emails as we normally do, and eventually, when they were ready, they moved over the line - but only when the time was right for them.
So send emails that people feel they’re hooked into. Make them want to pay attention - even when they're not thinking of buying from you just yet. Because you don’t just want people on your list who are ready to buy from you. You also want people who enjoy reading your emails and one day might think about buying from you. Because the time won’t always be right for everybody.
So your emails need to be useful, interesting, and entertaining – each one of them. They’re not just a sales mechanism - emails are a content mechanism that sells. If you want to find out more about this head over to the episode called How to Make Your Emails Less Boring.
You can find lots of little tips or snippets of content about psychological methods on the Internet. And those tactics are fine, but they're like tiny sprinkles at the top of a cake. They’re never going to really affect its flavour or texture. What you need instead is strategic persuasion and psychology. You need strategic ethical influence skills in your marketing, and that’s what we give you in our email marketing campaigns.
The good news is that strategic elements are easier to apply than having a gazillion little technical things you need to remember to include in your emails - like words you’re supposed to say or not say. So if you email regularly, you become a habit. The only reason you remember to brush your teeth each morning and night is that it’s a habit.
If you send emails every day, it becomes easier for you to get into that habit. But it’s also easier for your readers to remember to check and read your emails daily. And that's a key strategic-level piece of influence that links to an existing behaviour – just like brushing your teeth. You want to build on behaviours and habits.
And when you do that with the delivery and frequency of your emails, that’s when people start to pay attention. You become ingrained in someone’s life to the point they decide to buy from you. You don’t need to use any clever tactics to make them go and buy - simply use the strategic-level element of building habits.
Again, this is something we do in all our email campaigns because we need people to take action now. And that can mean two things:
Urgency isn’t just about getting people to buy from you. It’s also about getting them to attend a webinar, watch a video, or look at an offer. Because these are the first steps to buying something!
Of course, you want to create urgency around a particular discount or bonus disappearing. And we do that in a lot of our campaigns to give people a reason to buy now. But on top of that, you also want to build urgency into your marketing.
So if you're running an evergreen webinar, for example, you still want people to go and register now. You want them to pay attention and look at the offer right now. Because by getting them to pay attention, you're keeping them engaged. And that means they're more likely to open your emails on a daily basis so they don't miss out on an offer.
We recorded an episode of the podcast on the different types of urgency you might want to use, and you can find it here.
We hardwire these psychological strategies into every single campaign we run and teach inside The League. If you’re a member, we even give you something called the SVVC framework, which explains how every one of our campaigns is built. And if you're not a member yet, go check it out!
This week’s subject line is “what’s that SMELL?” It's an interesting subject line because it obviously has inbuilt curiosity – people now want to know about the smell. Who smells? What smells? What of?
But we also used this idea of putting a word in uppercase to put emphasis on that. And you could change that emphasis and put it on other words, such as “what” or “that”. It would be interesting to do a split test to see how the various subject lines perform against each other. So feel free to steal that idea and try it out for yourself!
If you want to write better emails, come up with better content, and move your readers to click and buy, here's how. We put together this list of our Top 10 most highly recommended books that will improve all areas of your email marketing (including some underground treasures that we happened upon, which have been game-changing for us). Grab your FREE list here.
If you want to chat about how you can maximise the value of your email list and make more money from every subscriber, we can help! We know your business is different, so come and hang out in our FREE Facebook group, the Email Marketing Show Community for Course Creators and Coaches. We share a lot of training and resources, and you can talk about what you're up to.
This week's episode is sponsored by ResponseSuite.com, the survey quiz and application form tool that we created specifically for small businesses like you to integrate with your marketing systems to segment your subscribers and make more sales.