Wait for it…eMail!
So let me tell you who Pat Flynn is. Pat is a former architect who, when he lost his job about a decade ago, started blogging. He discovered that if he blogged a lot, and targeted his markets carefully, he could actually make a little money by selling online courses and running some online ads through Google. (www.smartpassiveincome.com.)
The business grew, and Pat knew there were others who would like to earn income the same way. (I guess you’ve figured out why I’ve followed him for many years.) So Pat started focusing on teaching others how to increase their “passive income” and did something that seemed radical at the time—he shared his own monthly earnings, line item by line item, month by month.
If he made $1,453. selling an eBook, he’d tell you that and tell you exactly what it took to write it, and how he promoted it. If he got an affiliate royalty of $92 from Blue Host for running a postage-stamp-sized ad on his site, he’d tell you that and explain how to sign up so that you could do the same.
Before long, Pat was earning $10,000 a month. Then $50,000. Then $100,000…a month! Then more.
With that cash flow, he hired the best of the best and, making it his full time job, decided to climb to the top of the mountain on Facebook, Youtube, and other top social media platforms.
In fact, as of today Pat has more than 130,000 “Likes” on Facebook and over 200,000 YouTube subscribers. Yet he noticed a while ago that all of his metrics were starting to decline. He noticed that when he published a new post or video, only a few thousand people would have it shown to them. These are people who had already opted in and said, “Yes, I want to make sure I see everything you publish.” Yet Facebook and Google’s algorithms were allowing only a fraction of his tribe to see what they had asked to see.
In fact, as of today Pat has more than 130,000 “Likes” on Facebook and over 200,000 YouTube subscribers. Yet he noticed a while ago that all of his metrics were starting to decline. He noticed that when he published a new post or video, only a few thousand people would have it shown to them.
It turns out that today, it’s not your own “fan” who gets to determine what they see, it’s the companies who own the platforms. Which has been part of my argument for almost a decade as to why so many designers sink way too many hours into various social media platforms. (Truth is, many stopped doing that a few years ago.)
When Old is New
The new secret sauce for Pat and thousands like him, is…wait for it…good old email! This, too, I’ve been shouting from the rooftops, for despite all the talk of SPAM, a lot of email does get opened! Open rates of 50% and higher are not unusual if you have a qualified opt-in list. And, you can send emails at any time you want, as many times as you want.
In fact, one of the first things I do with coaching clients is encourage them to clean up their email lists and many find they have more good contacts there than they had remembered. Some haven’t sent out an email in over a year, but Constant Contact (or other service) still has their list and once their new “brand” is ready for relaunch, there’s simply no better way to get the word out.
It’s not even too late to start a monthly email newsletter if that’s something you enjoy doing. (Otherwise, not!) But at a minimum, take an afternoon off to collect all email addresses that you can find from past clients, influencers, media, etc. and start investing in your email list.
Then, you’ll think of something to send to them. And then…send it again!