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Blog Title: Real Balanced
About Sara: Sara Nelson is the food blogger behind realbalanced.com, a site dedicated to sharing low-carb, keto, and nut-free recipes. Since 2017, Sara has shared delicious, nutritious, and allergy-friendly recipes with her thousands of blog readers and social media followers. In addition to food blogging on her own site, Sara is a blogging coach and teaches bloggers how to grow and scale their blogging business. Sara lives in Milwaukee, WI with her husband, Ryan, and their Boston Terrier, Rowsdower.
Notes from Episode #036: How To Create A Welcome Sequence To Nurture Your Audience Of Raving Fans
Sara is the first repeat guest on the show!
Fun fact about Sara: She’s obsessed with watching TV. It is relaxing and makes her happy. She and her husband both enjoy it. She likes sitcoms, but not movies.
Sara prefers to call a welcome sequence a “nurture” sequence because you want to keep them as a warm audience member. When they sign up with you, you want them to receive value and resources so they want to click on your email every time.
Be strategic in how you are reaching out to your audience. Email is the best way to communicate with your audience so use it to your advantage.
It is time consuming to put together content in an email – images, link and writing is done, so be valuable. Show your audience that their currency – their email – is being appreciated by giving them a solution to their problems over and over again.
Main way to get emails is by using a lead magnet (a freebie!). If you have an e-cookbook then make sure that its relevant content that they’ll get more of on your site. If you send them a keto e-book but you don’t have any other keto recipes for them, it’s not going to be a good lead magnet.
Think of your lead magnet as a handshake. You don’t start with a heavy conversation. You introduce them to who you are and what your brand is.
Create a connection and a dialogue with your audience by personalizing your communications. You want them to have an idea of who you are so share your story.
Build an open relationship with your audience so they respond to you and want to know you, what you have to offer and they feel like they know who you are. They’ll be curious what you’re sharing on any social media platform too.
Sign up for other bloggers you like on their email lists. This will help inspire you by seeing what they are doing, then you can make it your own.
ICA – Ideal Customer Avatar is who you are talking to as you write any emails and content.
You can create more than one type of Nurture sequence for different types of audiences so you can tailor your content to them and grow your audience with what they want.
Talk to the avatar, don’t talk to the masses.
You can filter emails if you have people who want specific information. You don’t have to do this in the welcome sequence though. If you have multiple lead magnets, this is a natural way to segment your lists so you aren’t sending people all your information if they only were interested in one topic.
For any nurture sequence you have, plan to create and send 5-7 emails over 10 days – 2 weeks – that should be your target. Show them that we’re experts. You do this on your website, so it’s important to carry it over to your emails. (Establish trust) Once you have the initial 5-7 emails out, you can add to your sequence if you can add more value and carry it out as long as 6 mos even. But you don’t need that all written to get started, add as you go.
The first emails will be more storytelling, more links and information. Then the emails should get simpler and just be twice a week your audience is hearing from you. But they should always be hearing from you.
Don’t share the recipe of the week in a nurture sequence, use that in the weekly email you are always sending.
ALWAYS pitch something in your emails! A digital product or affiliate sale should be immediately put in front of your audience. They might not buy right away, that’s ok. There’s a statistic that people need to hear about something 7x before they buy. They could buy down the line. But by always pitching, they are brand aware, product aware and solution aware.
Let your sequence be organic and finish when its done (in a month – 6 mos). Maybe you’re ready to start a new one and pick up where another finishes.
Once you have established a sequence, make a note to yourself to check your open rate and click through rate three months down the line compared to your weekly newsletter.
Don’t be so overwhelmed by how to do this or learning the techy part of this marketing, that you don’t do anything. Start with the basics; get the lead magnet out there. Start with a few emails and work from there. Don’t let 6 mos of content freak you out – you don’t need it prepared in advance! You can add to your sequence as you go so just get a few ready. You’ll be inspired as you think about what you want to tell your ICA about yourself and your business!
Subscribers who’ve been around a long time don’t need a warm email. So create a different series. This is called Re-engagement sequence – rewarm them up to who you are. Make sure a welcome sequence is for new subscribers only.
Be the one person they want to hear from.
You have the ability to offset algorithms so you can do this!
Once you learn and use this technology, you will be so glad you did!
Favorite Quote by Jessica Haren, founder and CEO of Stella and Dot “You have to see failure as the beginning and the middle but never entertain it as the end.”
Join her facebook group (free) too for free blogging for business tips.
Helpful references from the episode:
Tips to starting your own email list – https://shop.realbalanced.com/start-an-email-list
Blogging and business topics – https://realbalanced.com/blog/business/
How (And Why) To Start an Email List As A Food Blogger – https://realbalanced.com/email-list (blog post)
How (And Why) To Start an Email List As A Food Blogger – https://realbalanced.com/email (free eBook)
Free Profitable Blogging Insiders Facebook Group – I share my tips and tricks for profitable blogging: https://www.facebook.com/groups/profitableblogginginsiders or realbalanced.com/FB
I have also been featured on The Chopped Podcast, where I spoke about a variety of different topics related to starting and growing a profitable food blog. That episode is available here: http://chopped.libsyn.com/176-team-based-approach-to-food-blogging-with-sara-nelson