Making the Most of Your Email Marketing with Melissa Seideman | Email Series (ep 20)

email-marketing-for-tpt-sellers

Email Marketing for Teacher authors

How confident are you in your email marketing methods? If you’ve been a TPT seller for awhile, then you’ve likely heard about how important email marketing really is. It’s a platform that can be leveraged to build relationships with your ideal customers, and ultimately increase your sales. To put it simply, email should be at the top of your list of marketing priorities.

Sometimes, however, we aren’t utilizing it as much as we could be and it just feels like yet another thing that you have to do each week. Or maybe, you’re so overwhelmed by it that you aren’t using it at all. Melissa Seideman is here today to turn things around and help you finally find success with email marketing.

Melissa is an expert in email marketing for teacher authors and is answering your burning questions like, How often should you email your list? Is it okay to have multiple links in the same email? What’s a good way to leverage a sudden influx of subscribers on your list?

And of course I’m asking Melissa the big question – How do you get subscribers to actually open your emails and click on your links?!

This conversation is full of so many helpful takeaways. By the end, you just may find yourself excited to go write that next email!

2:44 What sellers should be looking for when choosing an email platform, plus Melissa’s top recommendations

7:07 Recommendations for sellers who want to start an email list but don’t have a website

8:24 Melissa’s best tips on effective email marketing for teacher authors

11:08 How to convert emails into sales [Melissa’s rule of 3]

14:50 What to write in your emails when you feel like you have nothing to say

19:44 Melissa answers rapid fire questions from teacher sellers like you!

Email marketing for teacher authors with Melissa Seideman

Our Guest on This Episode:

Melissa Seideman is a former 15-year history teacher. She lives in Ohio, where she is a full-time email marketing specialist and virtual assistant. She is the owner of Not Another Virtual Assistant. She has a ton of experience helping sellers take their stores to a new level of success with email marketing. You can learn more about Melissa on her website and connect with her inside her free Facebook group and on Instagram. Sign up to receive her weekly email marketing tips here!

Kristen
Hey y’all, I am so excited that you are here today for this guest episode. Today I am talking with Melissa from not another VA. She is a former history teacher who now specializes in helping TPT sellers find success with email marketing. And this is a big topic that a lot of you have been thinking about and asking questions about. So I’m really excited to dive in today. Melissa and I are talking about choosing the right email platform, finding things to write about how to get your subscribers to actually open your emails and click your links. And then at the end, I am going to ask her some rapid fire questions that you guys submitted. So you definitely won’t want to miss those. All right, let’s get right in to the show.

Kristen
Hey, TPT sellers ready to see growth in your business. You’re in the right place. Welcome to the savvy teacher seller. I’m Kristen Doyle. And I’m here to give you no fluff tools and strategies that will really make an impact on your sale. Let’s get started y’all.

Kristen
Welcome, Melissa, thank you so much for being here today. Can you tell us just a little bit about yourself and how you got into email marketing for teacher authors.

Melissa
Hi, I’m so glad to be here. Thank you so much for having me. So I took Lisa Finks course, on email marketing, that’s kind of how I started. And I started email marketing for my own list. And getting really successful at it and finding that I had a passion for it. And it became this like night time thing, I put my kids to bed, I would go to email marketing at night. And I taught full time and loved it. And it just took off. And now I’m doing it full time and absolutely love what I’m doing it turned into a passion.

Kristen
Love it. So it was kind of the side hustle to your side hustle for a little while it sounds like. That’s so funny, because that’s actually how I started in web design. And then shifted into SEO was the side hustle to my side hustle. Because I started the same way of learning about something I was interested in and then realizing that other TPT sellers needed help with this too. And so I started branching out and helping other people as well.

Melissa
Yeah, no, I absolutely love it. And now it’s become this community that I love being a part of, I love getting questions. I love answering questions. I love just everything email marketing, my husband gets sick of hearing about it.

Kristen
But well, I have a ton of questions for you today. I asked my audience, my Facebook group and my Instagram audience what they wanted to know about email marketing, and we have so many things to dive into. I’m really excited about it. So what do you say? Let’s go ahead and jump in.

Melissa
Sure. Sounds great.

Kristen
So first of all, let’s start at the very beginning, when it comes to choosing an email platform, what should sellers be looking for?

Melissa
So I think you need to think long term in terms of strategy, what platform is going to make the most sense for you, some people are really attracted to the fancy layout design, and then all of a sudden, they realize they can’t segment their list properly the way they want to. So really think about looking at each option and figuring out what’s the best option for me, but also long term, because sometimes the cheaper option may not be the necessarily better option to go in the long term strategy of email marketing.

Kristen
Yeah, and from experience moving email platforms is a lot of work, I am still getting opt ins from a MailChimp account that I had, I don’t know in 2015. And I haven’t used it in forever. And every now and then I get an email that says someone opted in and I can’t figure out where it’s coming from.

Melissa
I have a solution for that you want me to say can I send this?

Kristen
Yeah.

Melissa
So what I’ve been doing now with my audience, and my clients that I work with, is we’ve been doing email opt ins on their website, so not connecting it to the landing page of the platform, but connecting it to their website and then directing traffic to the page on their website. So people opt into the website, so then they avoid having to switch from flow desk to MailChimp to ConvertKit and all of those opt ins. So putting the landing pages the opt in page right on their URL of their website.

Kristen
Yes, because then you can just go onto your website. And if you do have to switch, you just change it from Flodesk to ConvertKit, or Active Campaign or whoever. You just switch that opt in. That is actually what I’ve been doing lately, too. And I really wish I hadn’t known that early on because this must be a MailChimp landing page or something. I can’t find it to save my life.

Melissa
The problem is you create so many of them and they get lost in space. They’re on a reel or they’re on a Pinterest pin or they’re all over the place and you got to find them. So that’s why directing traffic just to your site and starting with opt ins there is like super helpful.

Kristen
Yeah, absolutely. That’s like I said something I really wish I had known when I first started email marketing would have been so helpful.

Kristen
So I think he gave some really solid advice about choosing your platform and funny enough, it’s the same advice I give about choosing your website platform. A lot of the time is to think long term because moving is a hassle.

Kristen
And it’s always an expense. Whether it’s an expense in your own time or you’re hiring somebody, it’s just a lot of work. I definitely recommend starting out somewhere, you can stay long term. And I’d love to know what your favorite platform is, what would be your recommendation for most users?

Melissa
So many clients switching to ConvertKit. And then I have some clients that are even switching, not ConvertKit flow desk, and then switching back to ConvertKit. Because they just missed the features of ConvertKit. My personal favorite is ConvertKit. Because the automations and the rules allow you to manipulate your list and make the list work for you and not you’re working with the segments or the rules of the platform. So I find it much easier.

Kristen
Yeah, I am loving ConvertKit as well. And full disclosure, I am one of those people who has bounced around a lot, you’re probably going to die when I say all of these. I have been on MailChimp, Mailerlite, ConvertKit, Active Campaign, back to ConvertKit, Flodesk and I’m back at ConvertKit again.

Kristen
Mving every single time was a hassle. And for a while I got tempted by shiny objects and felt like I needed to move for various reasons. But I have just every time I have come straight back to ConvertKit, because the features are there. And it’s so much more intuitive than some of the others.

Kristen
Active Campaigns amazing, but it’s a big learning curve. And there were so many things that I can just click a button and doing ConvertKit that I was having to create automations for an Active Campaign. It just felt like I was having to jump through too many hoops to do simple things.

Melissa
Yeah, I recommend my clients looking at what features they’re currently using, and what features do they want to use long term and then picking a platform from there. ConvertKit definitely has a lot of advanced features that if you’re taking advantage of them makes the cost of the program worth it for sure. If you’re not using those advanced features, maybe go with a simple platform that’s easier to learn.

Kristen
I think ConvertKit is it’s fairly intuitive, it’s pretty simple to learn and get started on. And I do love that you can segment your list and you can use lots of tags and things to really tailor what people aren’t getting.

Kristen
What would you recommend for sellers who are wanting to start an email list but they don’t have a website yet? I hear that question a lot in my Facebook group people asking do I have to start a website before I can start growing an email list? Or how do I start one without a website?

Melissa
So, you can create a separate landing page with whatever platform you use and then direct traffic there. You could put the landing page into your bio of Instagram, or in your Facebook profile or Facebook group, you could also link it to your Terms of Use page with your Terms of Use.

Melissa
I have numerous sellers that I’ve worked with that have a great graphic on their Terms of Use page, so they can join the email list, get freebies. And people join every day from places that they’re already buying from if they’re already bought from you, they’re gonna like you want to join your list. So it’s a great way to get traffic without having a website, you can do all of those things, you can create pins to the opt in, and use the landing pages that way.

Kristen
Yeah, so those sellers would definitely want to look for a platform that has a really good landing page builder. I know some of those are better than others. But they would want to look for one that has good landing page designs and things that they can really flesh out a nice landing page.

Kristen
Whereas you know, we just talked about, I usually make my landing pages right on my website, so I can make it look however I want and then just add the form in. But if you’re relying on the landing page from your email provider, you definitely want to look into what’s available for those. That’s a great tip.

Kristen
What tips can you share with us for successfully using email marketing, specifically in this teacher niche?

Melissa
Yeah, so you got to think of email as a long term strategy. It’s not something you can just start overnight, and then take off. Yeah, you can get a ton of email subscribers, but they’re not going to buy from you until they trust you and have a good rapport with you. So I think the most important thing is trust, rapport and consistency.

Melissa
Those are the three things I really like to stress with email marketing, you need to be consistent with email marketing, if you send an email twice a month, do it twice a month, if you do every week, do it every week. I think the most important thing is consistency. And they build trust and rapport by getting that weekly email. I mean, there’s email list, you’re probably on the You see, every Tuesday, you’re gonna get an email from the seller and you look forward to getting those emails. So you want to get that trust and rapport.

Kristen
Yeah. And I’ve heard I know a lot of people ask questions about how do I write a subject line that people will actually click on to open. But I’ve heard someone say that people are more likely to click on your name to open than the subject line.

Kristen
A lot of times once you’ve built that trust with people, they don’t care what the subject line is, they see an email from you and they go oh, I want to see what she has to say today. And so they’ll open it regardless of the subject line.

Kristen
Is there any email marketing advice that you’ve heard that’s kind of out there in business world that maybe works great for some businesses but does not work well in the TPT space?

Melissa
I thought about this, if you’re reading anywhere online, I took Amy Porterfield list building course and if you read anywhere, they’re telling you to segment list and divide your list up so you can really market to that specific area.

Melissa
I think with a teacher space, it’s really hard because teachers bounce grades, they bounce subject areas. So I think that’s really, really hard. If you’re dividing your listen to, let’s say different subject areas, teachers change grades every year, sometimes teachers change subject areas, they stop teaching. So it’s really important to like use tags strategically, but don’t just email the tags exclusively, if that makes sense.

Kristen
Yeah, I think it makes it really important that we think long term, again, about our tags and how we are tagging people, maybe it means we need to ask teachers to update their grade level, every school year. I was just thinking, as you were talking, you know, sometimes maybe that means we need more broad tags that would encompass more subjects, more grade levels, instead of getting super specific

Melissa
Yeah. And I when I think of email, I think of like, what is the theme for the email going to be? And then I provide a bunch of products related to that theme. So if you teach third grade, or fourth grade, or fifth grade, you can find the theme of the lesson or the email subject, and then find lessons that relate to your grade in case you have bounced around a little bit. So I think that’s what’s helpful when I plan.

Kristen
Yeah, absolutely. Speaking of putting multiple products in our emails, let’s talk a little bit about getting those emails to actually convert into sales. What tips do you have for us, as far as getting the clicks over to our store and getting them to actually convert to a part?

Melissa
Yeah, I use something called the rule of three with all my clients. So the rule of three is your link should be in the email place three times the top, the middle and the bottom of the email. If you’re having one call to action, it should be in three places of email, the images should be clickable, as well as you should have a button trying to get them to link there.

Melissa
My click rates are great. If you look at some of my clients emails, the click rates are phenomenal, because I put it in different parts of the email.

Melissa
Most people don’t read the full email, you can think about the last email you got Did you read the entire email from top to bottom? Probably not. People that might scroll straight to the bottom. So that’s why you put something at the bottom as a PS, you put something in the middle, and then some people want to read the top and then close it. So it’s really helpful to have a link in that multiple places.

Kristen
Yeah, and I have read somewhere, I think I actually heard it on a podcast that there are four types of readers. And they were specifically talking about email marketing, but it applies to sales pages, blog posts, product descriptions, really anything. Four types of readers in the world, there are people who read the beginning and make a decision.

Kristen
There are people who scroll all the way to the bottom and don’t even read the top, they just want to get to the end, and they read that part, then there are people who skim and then there’s this small percentage of people who really do read every single word. And that’s one thing I’ve tried to keep in mind, as I’m writing whatever I’m writing for that it really needs to work for all of those different people. So I love that advice to put your links at the beginning in the middle and the end text links, images, buttons, lots of places for people to see the links.

Melissa
Yeah, and then I make the buttons and the links a different color, so it pops out a little bit. So if you look at some of the features of Flodesk or ConvertKit, you can actually change the links in the template section and change the color of the links in Flodesk.

Melissa
It’s helpful because the link pops out with your brand colors. And then the same thing with a rule of three paragraph is no more than three sentences long. So if you have a paragraph that’s longer than three sentences, people tend to not read it. So I break them up into short, digestible pieces.

Kristen
Yeah, absolutely. I know, at least as a reader, I am a skimmer. Unless I’ve already know I love it at the beginning, sometimes I read the beginning and decide, but for the most part, I’m a skimmer. And so if a paragraph is more than like three or four lines down whatever device, I get a little overwhelmed with it. And I’m just scrolling.

Melissa
You have to also remember, most users are actually looking at their phones to read an email. So you got to make sure it’s optimized for mobile. So what I do with my clients, when I read it, I actually send myself a test copy of every email, and I read it on mobile, because you can see if it’s optimized for mobile. And that’s where most users read, I think I’ve read 70% of people are actually looking at emails on their phones. So it’s super helpful if it’s optimized for mobile.

Kristen
Yeah, absolutely. And things that look like they’re not too long on your computer will look really long sometimes. Yeah.

Melissa
And then be aware of the graphics and how many images you put and all that is really important.

Kristen
Yeah, so we want it to load quickly. For sure. I know, I was testing an email that I was sending out last week. And the image took forever to load on my phone for some reason. So I went back and looked and sure enough, I had exported it from Canva really big.

Kristen
So I just needed to shrink that down to a better size, because like you said it was going on a phone not on a big desktop for most people. So it really doesn’t have to be a huge image.

Kristen
Well, I will say I know that your rule of three works for sure. Because since you started doing emails for Chalk and Apples for me, my click rates have been through the roof. They have been so much better than they were before definitely is working out.

Kristen
The big thing I think that a lot of us struggle with is figuring out what to say. So let’s talk a little bit about deciding what to write when maybe you feel like you have nothing to say to your audience right now.

Melissa
Yeah. So clients come to me all the time saying I don’t know what to write. I don’t know what to plan. And I often say, when are you writing your emails?

Melissa
Well, I’m writing on Monday night before Tuesday morning, or I’m writing them Sunday night before Monday morning, they’re going to send and I think that is the biggest mistake you could make as an author. So use whatever platform you’re using and try to plan ahead whether you use Trello or airtable or Asana plan ahead.

Melissa
So I have my clients and I do it for myself too, is I plan my emails for the next month or the month before so I’m thinking a month ahead. What holidays are coming up what sales are coming up? So I know like TPT is going to have a sale at a certain time of year so I know the week before needs to be a freebie email and a teaching email.

Melissa
So kind of a value email where the next week is going to be a really hard sell email. I’m going to probably have a few emails going out with a sale. So it’s important to like plan those out. Look at the holidays. Look at Veterans Day, is it Grandparents Day? Is it Valentine’s Day? Look at the holidays and the teachers are such planners.

Melissa
So it’s important to keep that in like you were thinking of sellers and other niches. Other niches you probably could just send it the week of and people will buy it up. But the problem is with teachers, they’re planners. A lot of them are Type A planners. I wouldn’t say all of them, but a lot of them.

Kristen
I was not I was the last minute planner.

Melissa
But a lot of them are planners. So if you’re planning on doing Halloween, like the week before people already have their plans ready to go the following week sometimes. So it’s important to get both the type A and the not type A.

Kristen
Yeah. And even if they are not a planner, a lot of times admin requires your lesson plans to be turned in a week early or whatever, at least a few days early. So definitely I think teachers are planning things ahead. Would you suggest then holiday emails, we kind of focus on sending those out a week or two before the holiday?

Melissa
Exactly, like I already have clients in November planning for December’s holiday emails. What crafts are they going to do? What bulletin boards are they going to do? So plan ahead the end of the month before, what are you going to be sending the following month?

Melissa
So that’s why it’s helpful to look at a calendar and figure out what holidays come up. What topics could I talk about, where’s my teachers heads too, like that’s important. Like if you’re just selling to them constantly, if it’s May, they’re super stressed out, maybe send them a gift card, maybe give them a freebie that will help them get through the week, even a simple emails a check in email, how are you doing?

Melissa
That’s one action I would like encourage you to do is send check in emails and I know it’s gonna be annoying to get a bunch of replies, but you want that trust and rapport and they want to see you as the teacher next door, not just the business owner.

Kristen
Yep. And you know, those replies that come in they are sometimes it’s a lot, if you get a ton of them at one time, I have 20 or so sitting in my inbox right now that I need to respond to. But if you take just that second to open their email, and type out, even if it’s just a one sentence response and send it back to them, they will feel like they have just made a new friend, that goes a long way toward building that trust.

Melissa
And if you use Gmail, you can have a template set up in your regular Gmail. Like I hope you have a great week. Thanks, this was so helpful, you can make it seem really personal. And then I usually use the rule if they reply to me, I do the same amount of response. So if they wrote a couple sentences, then just write a sentence back and say your first name if they wrote a paragraph, I try to write a little bit longer. So that’s usually what I do with replies.

Kristen
Yeah, that’s a good rule to follow, too. And I do love using templates in Gmail, they save so much time. And I am one of those people who is when I’m writing an email or any messages, really I am down to business.

Kristen
So if I were just to write an email reply by myself, it would be one little phrase and it would just address whatever question they had. And there would be no like, Hey, how are you? Have a great week. None of that.

Kristen
Because that’s just not natural for me when I’m writing things. If I’m answering questions, I’m answering questions. So using a Gmail template is super helpful for that for having that little bit of personality and a little bit more personal conversation to attach with, you know, whatever you’re responding to.

Melissa
And if you have like a space, if you’re like a reading teacher or social studies teacher, a math teacher, you could have a couple of blog posts ready to go that are similar to that idea and make it a template and then just reply with with a template. You might like this idea, you might like this blog post.

Kristen
Yeah, that’s a great idea, love that. Might have to do that with some of those replies that are sitting in my inbox right now.

Melissa
Well, and then you could have some of those frequently asked questions as a template too and just have it ready to go.

Kristen
I love that my tip for Gmail templates that I’ll share just in case people are just getting started with them. If you save a template with your signature, and then you open up a reply also, with your signature, they get your signature multiple times.

Kristen
So when you save your templates, take the signature off. I’ve done that and had three signatures once in an email and thought, Wow, this doesn’t look good. Now I know.

Kristen
All right. Well, this has been such a great conversation. I wanted to kind of end with some rapid fire questions from my audience if that’s okay with you. Hopefully we can get through these fairly quickly. We’ll see. I say rapid fire questions and then I’m not always the best at making them fast. Sometimes I like to talk about it.

Kristen
But here we go. All right, first question, How often should you email your list?

Melissa
I recommend once a week being consistent at the same time every week, but some business owners can’t handle that. So then email the first of the month, twice a month, figure out some kind of consistency, you can poll your audience and see what they want.

Melissa
So you can make a simple Google survey, offer a gift card to and pick a winner and have them complete a survey. What day of the week do you want an email? I do recommend emails towards the beginning of the week so teachers can start planning the rest of the week or the following week.

Melissa
Think about you as a teacher, when did you likely open an email from like a teacher that was emailing you? And yeah, that’s what I recommend.

Kristen
I was on the right track. I thought you were gonna say weekly. So here’s a follow up question to that. And I think I know exactly what you’re gonna say, based on your answer just now. How important is it that we email at the same day and time every week?

Melissa
It’s so important, if you’re sporadic, they’re going to be sporadic opening their emails. But if you’re consistent with it, I think that’s the most important thing. So you knew what I was going to say.

Melissa
But yeah, the most important thing is consistency. So the same time, the same day, every week, so every Monday at 7am, or every Monday at 3pm, whatever you choose to send to the same time and test try it for a while and figure out what works for your audience too.

Kristen
Yeah, how long would you suggest testing, like one date and time before you switch it up and try something different?

Melissa
I would do at least three weeks. And then you can create like a spreadsheet and see your open rates and click rates, and then three or four weeks, and then try it again the next month. And see, you could also like if you have ConvertKit, you can do like changes subject lines and stuff like that, but that’s what I would recommend.

Kristen
Awesome. Okay, next question. Should you have a weekly email that shares multiple types of content? Or should you just focus on one key piece of content that you want them to see?

Melissa
Okay, I recommend a theme for the email and plan the email around the theme. So a blog post about the topic and upsell about the topic and sometimes even a freebie about that same topic. I tried to do themed emails, I think it just makes the most sense.

Melissa
If you’re trying to throw too much at them, they’re gonna get lost in all the different products and they might be like overwhelmed with the products you could think of like a cyber Friday sales. There’s always just too many emails coming in too many stores, you just close it down and don’t want even open your emails on Friday.

Melissa
So think of the email the same way. The theme, consistent, a blog post, upsell and a freebie I tried to do in every email.

Kristen
Yeah. So you would say then that it’s okay to have links to different places. We just want them all to be related to the same thing relate to the same thing? So as opposed to like, here’s the latest blog post, here’s my latest podcast episode. Oh, and here’s this product to.

Kristen
You would suggest more like we’re talking about multiplication facts today. Here’s a blog post, you can read. Here’s the podcast, here’s some products you might like.

Melissa
Exactly. And then if you teach multiple grades, try to have like multiple grade options there. So if you were teaching about multiplication, that applied to third, fourth or fifth grade, maybe have products for each grade level, because there’s probably teachers on your list that are in different grade levels.

Kristen
Yeah, exactly. I think that’s another one of those things, it’s a little different for us as TPT sellers than it is for most other businesses and email marketing advice. In general, they would tell you to have a single call to action per email, never more than one, because you’ll confuse people by trying to send them to more than one place.

Kristen
But because we have an audience of teachers who teach multiple grade levels sometimes for multiple subjects. And it really is more important to give them a variety of options to click so they can find one that fits what their content level is.

Kristen
All right. Next question. How do you balance when you share blog posts versus products in your emails? I guess that would apply to podcast episodes and things as well.

Melissa
I try to mix it up. Sometimes teachers want to read more. So you can always do a small like if you want to learn more, click here to listen to the podcast. Or if you want to read more, click here to do the blog post and then direct them directly to the product.

Melissa
That’s what I try to do. I try to include the blog posts or the podcasts in the email as a simple click here to learn more because you want to direct traffic, whether you’re directing traffic to your blog, and then the blog is selling it or the podcast is selling it also.

Kristen
Yeah, I love that approach. Because that gives people who are ready to make a purchase they already know and trust you that option to just go buy the resource. But for people who aren’t ready to make a purchase yet they can go over to learn more about the topic and then hopefully make a purchase after they read your blog post.

Melissa
Well, now if you have your blog written for SEO, it will sell the product, it will sell other blog posts linked to it. It’s helpful to drive traffic that way too.

Kristen
Yeah, absolutely. And I know you know that I am always promoting using SEO to drive traffic to your blog post and send that over to your store as well.

Kristen
A lot of TPT sellers do promotional things where we collaborate with other sellers and we get this influx of new subscribers. What would you say is a good way to leverage that sudden influx of have subscribers on your list?

Melissa
Yeah, so we’ve done a number of those for a bunch of clients will email me saying, here’s the list we just did this afternoon, we got 20,000 emails or 10,000 emails.

Melissa
So what you can do is send them a welcome email a little bit about you a little bit about your business, and then give them an exclusive freebie say, I’m so excited you’re here, please reply with what grade you teach, how long you’ve been teaching, that type of thing and try to establish that relationship right from the start.

Melissa
And then hopefully, you can then move them into your welcome sequence, which is also going to then build rapport and build trust with them.

Kristen
Yeah, you really want to roll out the red carpet for those brand new subscribers, especially if they have just subscribed to maybe a dozen different people’s email lists.

Kristen
You want yours to be one that they make a connection with, and that they want to continue reading. Otherwise, they just suddenly started getting 12 new emails a week. And that feels overwhelming and they start unsubscribing I would assume.

Melissa
Yeah. And I wouldn’t roll them into your newsletter just right away, I would make them go through the welcome sequence first, and then go into your newsletter after that, too.

Kristen
Yeah, definitely. Okay, last question. Where would you suggest people start in terms of sending out broadcasts versus creating sequences?

Melissa
So people often just start doing the weekly emails and then they realize all of a sudden, we need to start doing sequences. I kind of recommend doing both do a sequence trying to upsell your opt in. So imagine they got the freebie with the opt in, then they got the freebie email, then give them a selling email and then teaching them on a selling email in that series.

Melissa
So you kind of should do both at the same time. A lot of sellers come to me with just this email list. They’ve been emailing, but they’re not converting to sales. So I think the reality is take that warm list that opted in for the freebie and try to sell them with an automation or workflow that way.

Kristen
Good advice, for sure. And I know a welcome sequence is on my list of things I really need to create because I don’t have one. We’ll have to talk about it.

Melissa
Yeah, Welcome sequence you should have from the start. And they should all go through that welcome sequence before they’re even added to your newsletter, weekly emails, and it can offer value.

Kristen
It’s on my list, I promise.

Melissa
So I have some clients that do a welcome sequence that’s pretty long. Some clients that do short welcome sequences. I recommend about four emails, one email about you about your business, offer them a freebie of why they joined.

Melissa
And then the second email, I try to think of three content pillars for your store, what is the first content pillar and then have a teaching, a freebie and an upsell related to that content pillar for your store. And then do the second email and the third email just like that, kind of welcoming that your brand and types of products you have.

Kristen
I love that approach that sounds like a good way for them to really get to know your store as a whole.

Melissa
And you’re offering them value.

Kristen
Absolutely. And to find out, you know, from the beginning if your store has the types of products that they’re going to be looking for or not because that’s important, too.

Kristen
We don’t want people on our list who aren’t our people. So it’s good to just let them know upfront, here’s what I offer. These are kind of my areas., and then if they unsubscribe, they unsubscribe. Right?

Melissa
Well, yeah, and they’re not your people. I used to get upset when people unsubscribed. And I think you got to just learn to get hard scan and not to get personally because they’re just not the right people for your list.

Melissa
So yeah, it’s great to have a list of 100,000 people or 150,000 people, but if they’re not opening your emails, they’re not clicking and they’re not buying, why do you have them on your list?

Kristen
Yeah, exactly. And that’s something I’ve had to develop a little bit thicker skin about as well. I think one of my biggest mistakes early on was I would click and see who unsubscribed and then if it’s a name I recognize from something like that. I feel bad. I’ve had to learn just don’t even look, it’s fine.

Kristen
They’re not my people, other people are and we want people on our email list who are you know, the right people for our business, not people who are just hanging around and aren’t actually interested in what we offer.

Melissa
Yeah, that’s why I always recommend to the double opt in if you don’t have double opt in opt turned on, you should definitely have that turned on.

Melissa
Flodesk interesting enough actually recommends not to turn the double opt in on, which I always like give a hard time the sellers that I work with and I say we should definitely have double opt in on because you’re confirming that email, making sure they actually want to be on that list. And they’re a real person and not just someone putting a fake email address.

Kristen
Yeah realistically, if they’re not interested enough in your freebie to click the download button to actually get the freebie, because that’s what my double opt in usually is. It’s the download button for the freebie they asked for. If they’re not interested enough to click the download button. They’re not going to be good email subscribers anyway.

Kristen
Well, thank you so much. I feel like I have learned a ton today and I’m sure everyone else has to. Can you tell us a little bit about where to find you if people want to get connected?

Melissa
Sure, you can find me on Instagram @ notanotherVA. I would love to chat with you and you can learn tips and tricks. I also have a Facebook group that’s free. There’s about 2000 subscribers right now, I think it’s close to that it’s pretty up there called Email Marketing That Works for Teacher Authors.

Melissa
So I would love for you to join the Facebook group in the community. And then I also have a free weekly email series that comes out Tuesday morning at 7am for almost an entire year’s worth of emails for free ,if you opt into my email list. There’s teaching emails and videos and all kinds of training that’s free all in that email list.

Kristen
Awesome. I love how consistent your email list is. Look at you practicing what you preach!

Melissa
Yes, every Tuesday morning at 7am. So if you want an email every week about email marketing, feel free to join.

Kristen
Thank you so much for joining me today. If you loved this episode, definitely go follow Melissa on Instagram, and join her Facebook group all about email marketing for teacher authors. You can find all of her links in the show notes for today’s episode at Kristendoyle.co/episode 20.

Kristen
If email marketing is something you’re focusing on right now in your business, or if it’s something you’ve been thinking about and want to learn more about, then you’ll definitely want to come back for the next two episodes of the Savvy Teacher Seller Podcast, because this episode is kicking off our mini series all about using email to grow your business. Talk to you soon.

Kristen
I hope you enjoyed today’s episode. If you did, please share it with another teacher seller who would also find it helpful. For more resources on Growing Your TPT business. Head to Kristendoyle.co/TPT. Talk to you soon.

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