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Email marketing is tough. What should you send and when? How much is too much? What if you’re afraid of annoying people?

All you want to do is create a lasting connection with people. You just want a fan for life. How do you do that?

In today’s episode, we go a little more advanced and show you how to build out an initial autoresponder sequence to sell your products.

If you don’t already have a product to sell, we tell you how to get data from subscribers to figure out exactly what to build and exactly what people will respond to.

We talk about consistency, staying top of mind with email, mentioning and selling related products (downsells), and why you should focus on one product type and create related products instead of switching to something completely different.

Learn what to do when people don’t buy, whether you should sell in every email (at a micro and macro level), why you should speak to one person, and why your message should be polarizing.

If this wasn’t enough, we answer a TON of questions (probably many you have), so be sure to listen to this episode if you want ideas for improving your email game.

Highlights, Takeaways, Quick Wins
  • Pick any day to send a newsletter and do it consistently, because you want to build up expectation.
  • Even if you’re not ready to sell something, what’s most important about email is that you stay top of mind.
  • People buy from those that they know, like, and trust.
  • If you already have products, you should mention them and sell those products in your emails.
  • You have the right to ask for a sale after you’ve given value.
  • Unless you send the right message at the right time to the right person, your emails aren’t going to feel authentic.
  • Your lead magnet is going to designate the type of person that signs up for your email list.
  • A smaller engaged audience is much better than an larger unengaged audience.
  • Your prospect will consume content every day—the question is whether it’s going to be someone else’s content or yours.
  • People are going to be in different stages of the Buyer’s Journey when they encounter you.
  • People aren’t buying your product for legitimate reasons and you need to know what those reasons are.
  • If your prospects don’t buy, ask them why.
  • You need to understand peoples’ objections and speak the language of their objections.
  • Always, always, always agree with the buyer.
  • You want to turn people off just as much as you want to turn people on.
  • What you sell needs to be what helps your audience overcome the hurdles they’ll encounter along their journey.
  • You need to be sure the person who signs up to get your lead magnet is exactly the person you want to buy your product and the person the product was made for.
  • Have a single purpose and action with your email as much as possible.
Show Notes
  • 01:18 Cory: A lot of people are asking me if I’ve defined my Lambo goal yet. I had a call with Scott in the Community this morning and he brought some good things to mind. If you’ve listened to the other episodes, you’ve heard me say that my goal is to make a film with certain directors, actors, or actresses, but Scott’s advice was, “Don’t build a goal that’s dependent on other people, because maybe by the time you’re ready to work with those people, maybe they’re done with the industry or dead.”
  • 02:06 Well, now my Lambo goal is screwed because I had it dependent on another person. He also brought up not having my goal be something that can change. His advice was not to let it be industry specific. I’m not giving a definite answer yet, but it made me think. Sean, you used to be a letterer. What if your Lambo goal was something to do with lettering?
  • 02:45 Sean: That wouldn’t be good. Don’t I have it easiest of all? I actually have the Lambo goal, for now anyway. It seems silly, but I don’t really care about the Lambo. It’s so much about what it represents. I don’t even go outside.
  • 05:36 The Lambo goal is about my childhood dream of getting my dream car and not settling on a Mustang. I want to accomplish that dream for the sake of accomplishing it. I want to move on to bigger and better things too, so eventually I’ll have to come up with the next Lambo goal. I will be able to relate eventually.
  • 06:06 Cory: When you do get there and achieve it, that will mean something to a lot of people. If Sean can make it, I can make it.
  • 06:20 Sean: It’s more for other people than for me—sharing the journey and accomplishing that. Did you feel like you got any more clarity after talking to Scott?
  • 06:36 Cory: I think so. I know a goal I do have is to build or have the money to have someone build a house that I designed somewhere in the mountains. That would be great to have my own secluded house. Let’s say maybe that’s when I’ve had my fun with film and I’m done. Maybe I move on and then it’s like all these goals I had with film are done.
  • 07:11 It’s not going to change. I was telling Scott, if my goal was to buy a house—whatever the specifics of that look like—that’s not really something that’s going to change because we’re humans and we need a place to live. Maybe my interest in film changes after 20 or 30 years but something like buying my own house in cash isn’t something that’s likely to go away.
  • 07:38 Sean: Any other follow up you would like to get to before we start talking about email?
  • 07:44 Cory: Well, this is our first episode back since seanwes conference.
  • 07:58 Sean: We did do a conference recap episode on the seanwes podcast. We also have a membership-exclusive show called Fired Up Mondays that I do with Aaron Dowd, where we talked a little bit about it there. What were your takeaways, Cory? What did you think of the conference?
  • 08:26 Cory: It was the bet event I’ve ever been to and that’s saying a lot for me. I’ve worked here for two years. seanwes membership has always been included as an employee, so I’ve been talking to these people for over two years. A lot of the people who attended the conference were members and it was surreal to meet people and have intelligent conversations. Everyone was asking smart questions, improving, and getting excited for their careers and pursuits.
  • 09:17 Sean: Listen to episode 292 of the seanwes podcast. It was amazing. We’re already planning 2017 and it’s going to be great. Today’s topic is How to Sell More Products, Stay Top of Mind, and Create Lasting Fans With Email.

Email Guidelines

  • 09:47 Sean: Email is tough. People are always wondering what they should send, when they should sent it, what the optimal times are, how much is too much, and they’re afraid of annoying people. All you want to do is create a lasting connection with people—you want a fan for life. How do you do that? Today I want to get into a few guidelines, address the feeling of not wanting to annoy people, autoresponder stuff, selling automatically, selling related products, being polarizing, and sending more emails.
  • 10:25 Even though that’s quite a bit, I also want to quickly get to the many questions we have because I know that’s where a lot of this show’s value is going to be. Someone was asking, “What if I don’t have an email list and I don’t even have a website? I don’t know about driving traffic or blogging.” I would recommend episode 159 of the seanwes podcast called Getting Started With Email Marketing.
  • 11:00 That’s a better place to start and a prerequisite for this episode would be that you already have an email newsletter or some kind of sign up form on your website. If you’re not even there yet, check out episode 159 of the seanwes podcast. That’s an in-depth episode. For this one, I want to go a little bit deeper for people who are already doing email.

Stay Consistent

  • 11:28 We’ve talked about the importance of getting inside the weekly cycle. You could consistently send out a message once a month, but people are going to forget about you. Get inside the weekly cycle and within weekly, be consistent. People wonder if they should send emails out on Mondays, or Tuesdays if people are too busy on Mondays. I wouldn’t overthink it. Optimization at that level isn’t relevant to any of us that are sending fewer than a million emails a month. What’s most important for you is doing it consistently.

Pick any day to send a newsletter and do it consistently, because you want to build up expectation.

  • 12:19 If you’re not consistent, a lot of times emails end up in spam or promotions folders. If you’re so consistent that they know it will show up every time, and it doesn’t show up, they’re going to go looking for it. They’ll wonder where it is. They’ll actually check their promotions tab because they know you send it every time on that day. Compare that to not being consistent, they’re not going to know it’s coming and they’re not going to be looking for it.
  • 12:57 Cory: I’ve noticed when I’ve been consistent with sending emails, or doing anything consistently—blog posts, Facebook posts, YouTube videos, etc.—I see growth with my viewers. With email, they get that I send out emails on Wednesdays. To the question of sending an email on a certain day, I would say that it does matter what time you send it out on that day. If you’re sending an email on Wednesdays, but sometimes it’s 7am and sometimes it’s 12pm or 6pm, then they’ll forget. As much as you can, make it on a consistent day and time.

You Don’t Have to Sell

  • 13:44 Sean: You don’t even have to sell in your emails; what’s most important is that you stay top of mind.

Even if you’re not ready to sell something, stay top of mind because that breeds familiarity.

People buy from those that they know, like, and trust.

  • 14:07 Sean: The first part is knowing someone. You can’t just hear about them once to know them, you have to get to know them. When you stay consistent, you stay top of mind and you end up buying from people that are top of mind. When you need electronics, what stores come to mind? That’s very powerful. Even if you don’t have something to sell, stay consistent because it breeds that familiarity.
  • 14:36 Cory: There are several times where I’ve broken the consistency of either not posting a video or sending an email on Wednesday. Sometimes I don’t send an email when I don’t have a video. I was thinking I have nothing to sell and selling is them clicking the button—I’m selling them on watching the video. But, I have something to sell and what matters is I send something. Staying top of mind is, “Cory sends emails on Wednesdays.” I get that now.
  • 15:20 Sean: If you’re thinking, “I don’t have anything this week, I don’t know what I would send,” imagine a friend that’s subscribed to your newsletter or a friend that should be subscribed because they’re interested in this topic and they’re not subscribed. Imagine you’re thinking about not sending out a newsletter or you just skipped it and you meet with this friend and they say, “I noticed you didn’t put out a newsletter.”
  • 15:50 Think about the conversation you would have with them. It would start off with you coming up with excuses or explaining why you didn’t send anything because it wasn’t done and they ask, “What are you doing that’s keeping you so busy? What are you working on?” The answer to that question is the story you tell in the email you should be sending.
  • 16:20 Cory: That’s awesome. We always have something to share—that’s what I just got out of that.
  • 16:26 Sean: You’re building trust and if you already have products, you should sell those products. If you’re not selling those products, you’re not going to make money. If you don’t tell people about them, tell people to buy them, and tell people why they should buy your product, they’re not going to buy it.
  • 16:50 If you’re not promoting it, you’re not going to sell it. You should be mentioning them regularly. If you’re not, you don’t believe in your own product. Do you believe someone’s life will be better because of your product? Then you need to be selling them.

How to Sell With Email

  • 17:18 Sean: Sarah asked, “I’ve been teaching for some time now. All of my emails are jabs; how do I effectively right hook?” She’s talking about Gary Vaynerchuck’s terminology: Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook, but it’s really give and then ask—you give value and then you ask for the sale. I would say to right hook every time. Every email, within one email, it should be give, give, give, ask.

You have the right to ask for a sale after you’ve given value.

  • 17:58 Even at a macro level, each email is overall a give, give, give, strong ask. Zoom in on one email, it’s mostly give, give, give, ask. In general, what is this one email about? It’s about giving and we call that a giving email. Zoom out to macro level: email, email, email—give, give, give—and then on the last email, go for a strong ask. “You’ve been hearing about this product and you know it will help you, go buy it.”
  • 18:43 On a micro level, if you have a product, you should be selling. We send out podcast newsletters and we give people highlights, valuable takeaways, actionable things they can apply right now, and they get the link to the full show notes, but in that email, it also says to become a member.
  • 19:05 “Become a member and get access to hundreds more emails like these in the Vault. You also get access to the Community, mini courses, learning paths, and live shows streamed every week day.”
  • 19:26 Cory: She says that all of her emails are jabs and she’s wondering how to effectively right hook. I would say to believe in what you have to sell and offer and just ask for it. You have done the giving—that’s all your emails have been doing. Believe in what you’re asking for and ask for it.

One Email, One Person

  • 19:48 Sean: A huge number of people get this one wrong. They say, “Hey, everyone!” and they speak as if they’re on a stage in front of this audience of thousands of people. There’s multiple things wrong with this. Number one, you’re not building deep relationships. Imagine if you emailed a friend and you said, “Hey everyone!” they’re going to know that you copy/pasted this. It doesn’t feel personalized. You’re alienating people and it promotes the mentality that you’re bothering X number of people every time you send an email.
  • 20:33 You think, “I’m not going to email my 10,000 email subscribers an email just to tell them a story when I don’t have a video. I’m bothering 10,000 people.” If one of those people was your friend and you would tell them this story in person, you should be sending it and you shouldn’t be thinking of it as “bothering 10,000 people.” It’s one email from one person to one other person. One person is opening your email and one person is reading it—and that happens 10,000 times.
  • 21:07 Cory: I get this newsletter that says, “Hey there, friends,” and it makes me feel like I’m reading this group text message that I don’t really have to reply to, but they want me to be informed of this. I don’t feel very engaged and I probably won’t reply. It feels like I don’t even know how big this group text message is and I don’t want to invade on that. We joke about people saying, “Hey so-and-so-nation.” Another person I follow is Levi Allen of Left Coast.
  • 21:49 Sean: I was watching his vlog and he said, “Hey friend,” and it just made it so personable.
  • 21:58 Cory: He’s great at that. He either says, “Hey friend,” or, “Hey there, friend,” and I immediately feel like he’s talking to me. I read that email very intentionally and I’m very engaged. It’s really important for your reader to feel like they’re hearing directly from you.

Automation & Authenticity

  • 22:19 Sean: Ed says, “How much should you automate at the beginning, and how do you keep your emails from feeling like they’re firing straight out of the automation cannon? Too often I subscribe to lists and I automatically can smell the inauthenticity and I lose interest immediately. People with bigger lists have to use these tools but surely there are more authentic ways to go about them? You can take me down a sales funnel without me knowing I’m in it every step of the way.”
  • 22:55 This is what’s known as the bad toupee fallacy. You only notice what you notice and you don’t notice what you don’t notice. An example of this is at our conference, we had wooden tables that were supposed to have blue table cloths on them and the company that was supposed to deliver just didn’t show up. Laci, who was organizing the conference, was very disappointed. We paid these people, they didn’t do their job, and we had a vision of what things were supposed to look like.
  • 23:33 It fell through, but none of the attendees knew. They didn’t know there were supposed to be table cloths. We had balloons outside to let people know this was the venue, but what if the balloons weren’t there? People wouldn’t wonder where the balloons are. You don’t notice what you don’t notice. This inauthenticity he’s describing is prevalent in a lot of people’s emails and it doesn’t have to be prevalent.
  • 24:07 Just because you are in a “sales funnel” doesn’t mean that it has to feel that way. Disconnect is felt when an email is either the wrong message, sent at the wrong time, or sent to the wrong person. If you have the right message sent to the wrong person at the wrong time, it’s the wrong message. Similarly, the wrong message sent at the right time to the right person, and all of the other combinations.

Unless you send the right message at the right time to the right person, your emails aren’t going to feel authentic.

  • 24:47 How in the world do you do all three? Authenticity is aligning all three of those things. It’s really important to understand that the lead magnet defines the prospect. The lead magnet is some sort of gift you give away to people who sign up for your email list. Say you have a blog post with a sign up form and people subscribe to be on your email list. You don’t want to just say, “Subscribe to the newsletter,” because that feels like an ask. You’re not really giving anything.
  • 25:25 What works well is to give what’s known as a lead magnet, which could be anything from a course, to a checklist, to a guide, to a physical gift that gets mailed. If they know their customer acquisition cost, customer lifetime value, and the exact percentages of people who sign up and eventually buy, they know exactly how much money they have to play with. If they make this many hundreds of dollars off of a percent, they can afford to send everyone a t-shirt or a card. That’s a lead magnet—a thing you give away in exchange for someone’s email address.

Your lead magnet is going to designate the type of person that signs up for your email list.

  • 26:25 If you are broad on the front end—if the lead magnet is generic—you’re going to attract everyone. This ties into the question Keshna has, “My emails get opened but no one is responding, what am I doing wrong?” There’s probably a lack of alignment. You need to send the right email at the right time to the right person. How can you do this? The only way you can know is if you know who this person is.
  • 26:54 There are more advanced segmentation tactics you can do on the back end with tagging and links. If someone buys a product, they can get marked as interested in a certain topic. There’s a lot of advanced stuff, but the simplest way is to do it from the beginning. You want an engaged audience.

A smaller engaged audience is much better than an unengaged large audience.

  • 27:18 Sean: You want to reach people that you have the most value to offer. If you could reach everyone, that would be great, but you don’t have that much to offer to everyone. It’s better to get more specific with that lead magnet so that you know who this person is. It means the person you attract is your target.
  • 27:40 You know this person intimately, you can speak directly to their struggles, and it’s going to feel like you’re reading their minds. That is authenticity. That’s how someone can go through a sales funnel without it feeling salesy or disconnected at all. That’s the authenticity you’re looking for.
  • 28:04 Cory: That makes so much sense. The people who signed up for your email just signed up because you had a sign up box. You don’t know who that person is or what they’re interested in.
  • 28:21 Sean: Your question that you ask them in your welcome email (something we talk about in episode 159 of the seanwes podcast, Getting Started With Email Marketing) is all about you, what you want, what you’re interested in, and the product you’re trying to sell. You don’t even know who this person is. If you ask, “What’s your biggest struggle with Premier Pro?” and you’re not getting any answers, it’s because that question is about you.
  • 28:54 You weren’t clear with the lead magnet up front, so the people subscribing just loved your films and they want more films. You don’t know that because you weren’t clear. For instance, if you were eventually going to sell a course on Premiere, your lead magnet would need to be something like Ten of the Best Premiere Pro Keyboard Shortcuts That Will Save You Time or something along those lines. Every person who signs up for that is interested in Premiere and the engagement rates will be through the roof.
  • 29:27 Cory: That’s beautiful. That way you know exactly who’s on your list because that’s the only reason they signed up.
  • 29:32 Sean: If seven of your 10 subscribers end up buying, isn’t that better than 1 person buying out of 100 of the wrong people?
  • 29:44 Cory: My answer to the question of, “How do I keep my emails from sounding like they’re coming straight from the automation cannon? You can take me down a sales funnel without me knowing I’m in it every step of the way,” is that authenticity is in the writing. It’s in how you talk to your reader. Authenticity is not lost in automating. Do you think it’s only authentic when it’s a weekly email? No, the only difference between weekly emails and daily emails is the frequency. If you want authenticity, you have to have honesty.
  • 31:00 The ideal is to take people down a sales funnel without them knowing they’re in it. You want to be real with people. In order to be authentic with someone, you have to be honest. You’re not trying to be, “I saw this one guy do this one sales tactic and I want to be just like him.” Be yourself. Be you and it will come across authentic if you’re being honest to your true self and that will come across to your readers.
  • 31:32 Sean: That’s a great takeaway. The way to make it authentic is to be yourself and to stop copying other people’s tactics. If you use someone else’s sales tactic and it doesn’t sound like you, that’s why. You can use autoresponders to sell automatically. When someone signs up for your specific lead magnet, you now know who this person is. If you’re specific enough, you’ll know who this person is. You have to know this person and that’s how it sounds authentic and how you get people to feel like you’re reading their mind.
  • 32:27 You know them and they only would have signed up if they’re working on growing a SaaS app, if they’re building a remote team culture, etc. Your question in your welcome email can be, “What are you struggling with X?” and that makes sense to them, not just to you. It can’t just make sense to you. Ask what they’re struggling with and say, “Reply to this email. I’m listening.”
  • 32:59 They’re going to reply and they’re going to tell you, “Nobody wants to use our chat system, so we only communicate over email and it doesn’t feel like anyone is a human.” You may have been planning on talking about building a remote culture within a chat app, but you may not have realized people are struggling with using it at all. That’s something you need to address.
  • 33:23 You’re starting to learn their real struggles. When you get six people saying the same thing, you can then work that into an auto responder and it will feel authentic. MailChimp, ConvertKit, and Infusionsoft can do different forms of autoresponser campaigns and sequences. Someone signs up and maybe a day later they get a second email and that second email addresses that struggle. They’ll eat it up because they’ve been wrestling with all of these things and they’re finally getting the answers.

Send More Emails

  • 34:17 This ties into a later point that I had, which is send more frequently, send more emails. People don’t want to bother their subscribers. If you buy a course, are you bothered to go through it every day? You go through the next lesson each day, are you bothered or are you eager?
  • 34:45 Cory: I’m eager. I’m invested.
  • 34:49 Sean: It’s something you’re interested in. Even if you didn’t buy a Premier course, you might follow someone on Twitter who does filmmaking in Premier, or you might be subscribed to someone on YouTube who does Premier videos and they have a new video out the next day. What are you going to do the next day? You’re going to consume content that you’re interested in. You’re going to consume content from someone about Premier Pro because you’re interested in it.

The question isn’t whether or not your prospect will consume content of this type, because they will.

The question is whether it’s going to be someone else’s content or yours.

  • 35:17 This is why I recommend sending emails every single day through something like an auto responder. When you’re configuring an autoresponder, send emails every day. “But Sean, that’s too much!” You’re not thinking of this person. Do you want it to be your content or someone else’s? Because they’re going to consume it.
  • 35:54 After you’ve brought someone into an audoresponder sequence, you’re beginning to address their struggles and you’re providing value, I would recommend, at the end of your email as a little P.S. or a note, mention your product almost every single time. As long as you’re providing relevant value in the email, you can be like, “This is what X product helps you with.”
  • 36:29 What so many people do is they wait. They don’t want to sell. Can your product help someone with this problem? People are going to be in different stages of the Buyer’s Journey when they encounter you. Some people are just ready to buy. I’ve dropped $2,000 on a program from someone I didn’t know. It met my needs and they had social proof—buy! They had been ramping up for months doing live events and answering people’s questions. I just landed on the page.
  • 37:07 Sean: There are people at every single stage. Some people aren’t close to buying and some people just need the next solution and they find your product. You’re missing out on those people when you don’t mention your product sooner. Later on you can ramp up to a strong sell and address the concerns before you get there, but don’t be afraid to mention your product earlier in that sequence.
  • 37:34 Cory: You say to put it at the bottom every time, and I like the idea of putting at the bottom, “Have you seen my film, X?” at the bottom not taking up a lot of space.
  • 37:53 Sean: It’s about awareness. Most people haven’t seen it. People don’t notice announcements, so they probably didn’t see it. Say they have seen it, twice, how bad is that? They need those impressions. They need to be exposed to it or have visited that landing page for your other product seven times before they buy, so why aren’t you contributing to those impressions you need to make?
  • 38:27 When it’s all about waiting until the launch and you think people will see it and buy, they probably won’t see it and buy. People will probably see it, see it again, think about it, talk to their spouse, deliberate, look at alternatives, think about it again, think about buying, send a question, look at the FAQ, get distracted by Twitter, see it again, and then maybe they’ll buy.
  • 38:49 Cory: We need to be exposing our audiences to our product more often. I’m going to start doing that.
  • 38:59 Sean: It’s the Magic of 7. So many of our seanwes members listened to this podcast for years before joining. They hear us say it all the time—if you want to build and grow an audience-driven business, we have the resources for you. We have minicourses that are free for members like 30 Days to Better Writing and Getting Started With Video. We have resources on starting a podcast, launching a course, selling physical products, and getting started with email marketing.
  • 39:37 You want to build and grow an audience-driven business? Go to and sign up, it’ll be worth it. People hear that not just seven times, 70 times, but 150 times. “He says he has a money back guarantee. I could just sign up and see if he’s really serious about what he’s talking about, and if not, I can get my money back. I might as well try it,” 150 times in!

Sell Related Products

  • 40:10 Sean: Let’s say you have an autoresponder sequence and someone goes through the whole thing—maybe it’s eight or 30 emails long. You’re providing relevant value, you’re thinking about their struggles and what they need to know before they’re a candidate to buy. Why didn’t they buy? How can you know why someone didn’t buy something? You ask them, that’s the only way you can know. How many people are asking them why they didn’t buy?
  • 41:00 Cory: Hardly anyone.
  • 41:02 Sean: Because it’s a scary thing right? I don’t want to know why someone didn’t buy. I want to believe my product is perfect and great and for everyone, so you don’t ask. All that’s doing is creating a blind spot. You know when you’re driving, you put on your blinker, and glance casually to the side while you’re getting over and then you hear this horn?
  • 41:25 There was a person in your blindspot. You can’t see them out of your rearview or side mirrors. They’re in that perfect, evil little spot that you can’t see unless you turn your head all the way back and clear your blind spot. Blindspots aren’t good.

People aren’t buying your product for legitimate reasons and you need to know what they are.

  • 41:54 Sean: You’re only going to know if you ask them. You can ask them manually, personally, and I recommend you do, but you can also ask them automatically with a sequence that should sell someone on a product you have to offer. Say it’s eight emails long, what should the last email be?
  • 42:18 Cory: Asking them why they didn’t buy.
  • 42:22 Sean: Yes. Say, “Hey, just curious. I noticed you were interested in X and Y. My product helps you with X. I was just curious why you didn’t buy. I wanted to see if I could help you out with anything. Feel free to reply to this email.” I could have spoken that using dictation and 60 seconds later I’m now gathering data automatically. Figure out why people don’t buy and revise your automation sequence.
  • 42:59 Maybe you find out it wasn’t the right product for them. They’re in a different place, but you have a second product and this product helps them with that! What should you do in the next email sequence? Tell them about the related product. Some people don’t have the related product yet, so this is exactly how you do the research to figure out what your next product should be.

Start From a Standpoint of Agreement

  • 43:34 It shouldn’t be that now you’re done with your first product, you should turn around and make a completely unrelated product. No, make a related product in the same vein that has to do with the same topic, but it’s slightly different. Maybe it has a different price point. Maybe it solves a different problem. You could even automate this part—it’s crazy.
  • 43:50 You get the data on the ninth email asking why they didn’t buy. Most commonly, people who aren’t in the right place for this product are either struggling with X or Y. “I’ve got resources for you, but feel free to check these out if you’re interested in this or this.”
  • 44:13 They click the link and two things happen: this goes to a page where you do need to have the resources that help them, but behind the scenes, they’re tagged as being interested in one of those things. Then, they go down a specific path in your email automation. That path leads to whatever it is they’re interested in.
  • 44:46 You see how we’re starting to segment on the front end and the back end? Not just with the lead magnet, but also on the back end. We’re selling them on a product, we’re selling them in every single email after we provide value, then we sell strong.

If your prospects don’t buy, ask them why.

  • 45:16 Cory: I hope that people like when I do this and that it gives them tangible ideas, because when I hear you talk about these things, I just start getting ideas for what I could be doing. I want to share that and hopefully that’s helpful for people. Let’ say I work for a year on a feature-length film, which is what I’m doing right now, and I do the launch to sell it for $20.
  • 45:50 If some people don’t buy, then I should ask them why they didn’t buy and most people would probably say, “I just don’t have the time. I’m sure it’s great, congratulations! I just don’t have the time for an hour and a half movie.” What if I respond by saying, “What if I made a two and a half minute film, would you watch that?”
  • 46:39 If they say they would totally watch that, then I can go make another film that takes me a weekend to make and I can turn around to say, “Here’s this short film just for you,” because I had asked them why they didn’t buy. Someone was asking, “Does this work with nice-to-have products?” I would say yes. Ask them why they didn’t buy your book, music album, or film and see what the answer is. Maybe it’s not their genre, then you could make something different based on that feedback.
  • 47:20 Sean: Hopefully articulating how he’s going to apply this gives other people ideas. Sarah says, “If they’re interested, they’ll make time. I don’t believe in, ‘I don’t have time.’ People have the time to watch an entire season of Breaking Bad.” That’s very true. It’s not that people don’t have time, however:

You need to understand peoples’ objections and speak the language of their objections.

  • 47:45 Sean: Address is the way that they put it. They think they don’t have time. You cannot come in and tell people you do have time. You’re right, but you will fail as a marketer. You need to say, “Feel like you don’t have time for this?” Address the concern. People don’t join seanwes membership because they think they don’t have time to engage in a community. Is that a legitimate concern? No, it’s a complaint. It’s not a legitimate concern, but I can’t tell people, “Yes you do! Now, go join!”
  • 48:25 That doesn’t work. I have to meet them where they are. I say, “I realize you don’t have time.” Always, always, always agree with the buyer. You can only ever move someone from a standpoint of agreement. If you don’t agree, you’ve lost. There’s no hope. Always work from a standpoint of agreement. This isn’t about being dishonest. Find a way to empathize. Be compassionate. Undertand where they’re coming from.
  • 49:01 They’re saying they don’t have time because they have four kids, a business on the side, a day job, and they’re taking care of an elderly family member in their home. That’s why they don’t have time—empathize with them. Say, “I understand you don’t have time. You have so much going on.” Start at a standpoint of agreement, then say, “I understand you only have an hour a day to work on your business.
  • 49:37 What would happen if all of your effort was spent on taking you in the wrong direction? What if you’re doing things that don’t work that other people have tried before and have found didn’t work? What if they could save you that time? What if you could get clarity on your situation? It seems like you don’t have time for a community, but what I would summit to you is that you don’t have time to head in the wrong direction for years.
  • 50:12 I don’t want you to waste that time. It’s true, you do have to invest time in the Community, but these are such smart people and a lot of them have been in the very same place as you. You may have to invest time, but what you get back is clarity. That clarity is gold.” Bridge the gap and start from a standpoint of agreement. They do believe they don’t have time and you have to empathize with that as a starting point.

Be Polarizing

  • 50:48 Sean: You’re not a concentrated enough version of yourself. Years from now, people will understand what I’ve been doing. Right now they think I’m a quirky character and I’m uncompromising. People leave because I’m so black and white. I don’t expect everyone—not even you, Laci, or Ben—to take everything I say 100% at face value and apply it completely.

Being an extreme version of myself may move someone one step in the right direction.

  • 51:45 Sean: I don’t believe they will adopt 100% of what I’m about, but by being convicted and polarizing, I leave an impression. People remember me. Sometimes they leave and sometimes they come back. If they come back, I don’t want them. I actually don’t want the wrong people and neither should you. You want the right people and you won’t know the right people until you’re convicted.
  • 52:20 Don’t be bland, middle-of-the-road, and wishy washy. You can’t be middle-of-the-road or I’ve already forgotten you. I don’t want to follow someone who doesn’t act like a leader. Sometimes, leaders go in the wrong direction. There are bad leaders who purposefully lead people in the wrong direction. Imagine you’re leading a group out of the wilderness.
  • 53:03 The group doesn’t know how to get out of there and you’ve been there. You know how to get to town, so you want to lead them. If you’re walking around all wishy washy saying, “We could go this way. We’ll probably get where we want to go!” no one will follow you! You say, “I’ve been down this road. I’ve done this, it works. This is the direction to go. I’ve done it 10 times before. Let’s go!” and you just start walking without even looking behind you to see who’s following.
  • 53:35 You will have people following you. “But Sean, what if it’s not the right direction? What if the bridge you used last time is now gone? That trick you used to grow your business was great for you, but I read an article that said not to follow successful people because they just got lucky and it’s different for everyone.”
  • 53:58 Guess what? You get to the bridge and it’s gone, now what? Now you actually have to be a leader. You say, “Hey everyone, I’m going to be honest with you. last time I was here, this bridge was here and that’s what I used. I’m not going to try to deceive you and make up a direction to go. I made a mistake in assuming this bridge would still be here and it’s not. I made a mistake, but I can tell you how I arrived at this place last time and the decisions I made along the way. I think those decisions will lead us to the next bridge.”
  • 54:44 I’m willing to share everything that works and doesn’t work along the way. What you can know is that I’m going to be honest and transparent with you. I’m going to start heading this way because I think it’s the best option for X and Y reasons. People will continue to follow you. That’s what a leader does.
  • 55:03 Cory: We need to be writing our emails with confidence and conviction in ourselves and what we believe in.

You want to turn people off just as much as you want to turn people on.

  • 55:19 Cory: I really fought that at first, but it makes sense. People love to follow honest and transparent leaders.

What’s Next for Your Subscribers?

  • 55:19 Sean: Charli says, “My email list is now over the 2,000-subscriber free plan on MailChimp. What should I be doing to make it worth spending money on an email client? I get lots of subscribers from my screen printing PDF lead magnet, but I don’t know what to do with them. I just send them my month newsletter. I’m made at emails.” My question for Charli is, what’s next for these people?
  • 56:23 They’re obviously interested in screen printing. Go through the story. Their journey doesn’t start when they signed up for your email list. They didn’t just spawn into existence when they signed up. They existed long before they found your lead magnet, so what happened before? Where are they at in their journey? Talk to them! Get on a Skype call with them, go out for coffee with them. Get to know who they are. Why did they sign up for your lead magnet?
  • 57:01 They’re interested in screen printing, but what are they trying to do? After they read your guide, what is the next step for them? What is the most common next step and what are the hurdles they experience? What you sell needs to be what helps them overcome the hurdles they’ll encounter in the next step.
  • 57:34 Don’t make it about your thing and your list and your product. You’ve got to think about the person. Where were they before they signed up for this lead magnet. What does this help them with? In the best, most ideal version of them consuming your lead magnet and applying it, what is the next step? If they apply everything you said, what is the next step? What are their struggles with that? You need to help them with that and that’s what you sell.
  • 58:12 This is the way you do it. It’s not easy. You have to do research, have conversations, and build this thing that’s going to help them. The quick answer that other people will tell you is to keep doing it and get sponsors on your email list. You can do that, but that’s not as sustainable and I think you’ll have a more loyal audience if you sell your own products to help them. I think it can also be more lucrative too.

How Much Time Should I Spend on a Lead Magnet?

  • 58:55 Jake asks, “How much time or effort should be spent creating a lead magnet that incentivizes email sign ups? I had some conversations about this at the conference. One thought was that it should be small and sweet for the sake of gauging interest for the sake of something bigger. Another thought is that it should be something bigger to provide more value and increase audience loyalty.”
  • 59:15 Small vs. big doesn’t matter—all that matters is specificity. There are nuances to how polished it is and how it effects brand perception. Don’t do a crappy job. Assume it’s going to be good and quality, but when it comes to small vs. big, it doesn’t matter. All that matters is specificity. Who is the person?

You need to be sure the person who signs up to get your lead magnet is exactly the person you want to buy your product and the person the product was made for.

  • 59:55 You have to go as specific as you need to be sure of this. It will sound absurdly specific, like, a Ten Step Checklist for Selling More Color Grading Courses by Improving Your Copywriting. The level of specificity is the important part. The lead magnet could be a one-page PDF. It is so easy to create lead magnets. Open up your iPhone, go to the notes app, and brainstorm. What do people need when they’re getting started? Write down 10 things and then order them. This will take you like 15 minutes.
  • 1:02:05 All you have to do is export this from your computer as a PDF. It’s that simple and everything else is getting fancy—the design, making videos, making courses, writing a chapter of each of the 10 things for an ebook. Small or big, we all consume content at various formats and in various sizes. We follow people on Twitter with 140 characters. We watch 10-second Snapchat videos.
  • 1:02:44 We watch 30-minute or 2-minute YouTube videos. We read full books. We come in at all different levels. An in-depth masterclass is valuable, but they do have to invest the time. If you can give them something short and sweet in less time, it’s a different kind of value, but it’s still very good. Don’t get caught up in small vs. big.

Email Content Options

  • 1:03:16 Sean: Michelle asks, “What are some different content options for emails? Is there a main point to hit on in every email? Is it helpful to write a purpose statement for yourself concerning emails?” I would say to have one point to your email. So many people try to do too much with an email. Nobody has time for that. They have hundreds of emails in their inbox. They’re coming to an email and asking, “What’s in this for me? What’s the point? Is there something you want me to do?”
  • 1:04:19 The things I left in my inbox are emails that require more than one thing from me. They require more than one step. It’s not just, “Click here to sign up. Do this to launch a course.” They’re like, “I need you to do this, this, this, this, and this.” When I gt emails like that, I either archive them or if I really have to do those things, I procrastinate on them.
  • 1:04:54 When you’re causing people to have those feelings by asking them to do too many things, think about too many things, and take action on too many things, they’re just not going to do it. If you’re wondering why people aren’t responding to your welcome email where you ask what people are struggling with, it’s because you also asked them to do 10 other things, follow you on Twitter, share your latest blog post, buy your product, etc.

Have a single purpose and action with your email as much as possible.

  • 1:05:27 Cory: It needs to be specific so people know what to expect. A lead magnet doesn’t have to be a thing, like a video or a PDF. It’s a magnet that brings people into whatever you’re saying. If mine was Get Insights Into the Filmmaking Process, that’s the lead magnet. What you’re giving them is words—it’s writing. The lead magnet could just be Learn Color Grading. It’s doesn’t have to be the PDF with the niche title.
  • 1:06:20 Sean: It does. The way you would do it is you would promote it as an email course. It needs to be a thing that people feel like they get. If it’s a series of emails, call that an email course. You do’t even have to call it an email course, you could call it a course or a mini course, even if it’s free and delivered over email over different days. Make it a thing. You will get some people they you were describing it, but you’ll get more people if you make it a thing.
  • 1:06:58 Cory: If it’s specific and you let people know what to expect and when to expect it, that’s going to get the people in that you want. You’ll know how to give them what they want.

Full Article vs. A Link to Read More

  • 1:07:08 Sean: David says, “What is your view on sending a full article vs. sending an excerpt plus a link to read more?” I’ve done this both ways. As much as possible, think about the person and think about their experience. If it’s under 2,000 words, give them all of it and give them a link to view it on their browser. If it’s longer than 2,000 words, write up a separate message that speaks to their pain, talks about the solution, tells them why they should care, and have the call to action be to “go read this.”
  • 1:07:52 That’s the short answer. Some people want it all right there and they won’t take action. Give them the value, they’ll appreciate it. That’s long-game relationship marketing. Also, give them the link to view it in their browser because some peoples’ email clients handle email poorly, they don’t like reading long-form email, or they save to read for later. If it’s more then 2,000 words, write something custom and send them to the post.
  • 1:08:32 Raule says, “Is it a strategy to have different mailing lists for different purposes?” Absolutely. If you have different purposes, you need different lists. I’ll make an assumption here and make a leap because I recognize myself in that and I recognize a lot of people in that. 90% of you should not have separate lists and your real problem is focus. You shouldn’t have split focus. At worst, both of your lists and both of your projects will fail.
  • 1:09:10 At best, they’ll experience a mediocre level of success. Your problem is not segmentation and email list features, it’s split focus. I almost guarantee you that it’s not that you’ve been doing one thing for seven years and it’s tremendously successful and you’re wondering if the next thing should be on the same list.
  • 1:09:43 The problem is you’re trying to do two things at once. You’ve found yourself with two audiences. FOCUS: follow one course until successful. Go until you’re making $100,000 a year from one and then start the next one.