GUEST POST from Hailey Dale
You have the freebie. You know what you want to sell. But how do you bridge the gap between the two in an engaging and effective way using your email sequence?
There are four kinds of emails for a sales funnel that should play a role in your email sequence. Let’s go through each one, and then how to string them together.
1. Welcome Emails
The welcome email is the first one your new subscriber gets after confirming their email address. It delivers your freebie and gives them some tips on how to use it. You can also provide a short introduction to who you are and what you do.
But that’s not the only welcome email you’ll send. There’s also a second welcome email—a check-in email—sent six to 24 hours later with a reminder about your freebie. This email can separate you from the pack of other emails they’ve subscribed to receive. Use this welcome email to remind your reader why they signed up for your freebie in the first place, include another link, and explain what they will gain from using your freebie.
Depending on your email service provider, you can set this email to send only to people who haven’t clicked on the link in your first welcome message, but I like to send the reminder email either way.
2. Value Emails
Another email to include in your sales funnel sequence are value emails. The content and number of these depend on the freebie around which you’re building your funnel.
If it’s an email course or challenge delivered over the course of X number of days, those emails will make up your value emails. If delivering your freebie in a single email, find other related blog posts, content upgrades, and videos to add into your sequence.
Some points to check to make sure you’re creating engaging value emails:
- Is the email interesting?
- Think of the purpose of your freebie. What does it help your subscriber achieve? Does your email help them move toward that goal? Or take what they’ve learned to another level?
- Think hands, heart, and head. Does it help them do something (hands)? Does it make them think (head)? Does it make them feel (heart)?
- Does it lead toward your offer you’re going to make even though you’re not making that offer quite yet?
In most cases, you want two or three value emails in your sales funnel sequence.
3. Decoy Sales Emails
As a way to prepare your subscriber for the offer you’re going to make in your sales funnel, we can use decoy sales emails. These talk about your offer and show your offer in use (and the results it gets) without making an explicit offer to them to sign up or purchase it.
Even though you’ll add two or three links to your offer within the email as you mention your product or service, you won’t be making an offer in this email.
The key to making these emails a success? Make it valuable. You’re still teaching something.
For example, if you sell subscription boxes, your decoy sales email might be showing people how to pick the perfect presents for their friends. Include your subscription box as one of the tips.
Another example for service-based businesses: If you’re a bookkeeper, your decoy sales email might have to do with setting up their financial systems, getting a great bookkeeper to help you set these up like your package (link to your package), which focuses on X, Y, and Z (insert the features of your package).
You’ll want two of these emails before you make the offer. There will likely be people who will purchase your offer right away from these emails, so include a rule that removes them from your email sequence once they’ve bought your offer, or do it manually if your email service provider doesn’t have this ability.
4. Offer Emails
Finally, your offer emails! You’ve delivered value and introduced your subscribers to your offer in a way that demonstrates how it can be used and get results for them. If they’ve been opening and reading your emails, the hard work is done.
Now you just have to make an offer and then send a reminder about it.
The key to a great offer for a sales funnel is to build in some urgency. Why does your subscriber want to take action right away? In 24 hours? In 48 hours? What will they lose if they don’t? Or what will they gain?
- Will they save money?
- Will they get some one-on-one time with you?
- Will they score a sweet bonus?
If you just leave the offer open-ended, they’ll push off taking action until tomorrow. And I can tell you that it’s pretty a rare event when tomorrow actually comes around.
Putting It All Together
How you put your emails for a sales funnel together will ultimately depend on what your freebie is, and if it’s spread out over a few (or many) days.
But for a one-day delivery email, your email sequence would look something like this:
- Welcome Email (Day 1)
- Check-In Email (Day 1)
- Value Email (Day 3)
- Decoy Sales Email (Day 5)
- Value Email (Day 7)
- Decoy Sales Email (Day 9)
- Offer Email (Day 10)
- Reminder Email (Day 11)
- Optional: Value Email (Day 13)
- Move subscriber to your main list or out of sales sequence
Be Okay with Imperfection
Want to know my absolute favorite thing about sales funnel email sequences? They’re not set in stone. You don’t have to get all of the emails perfect in the first go. You can add to your sequence, change the content or delete emails entirely.
Hailey Dale of Trunked Creative is a content strategist and chief marketing officer for small business owners who are totally over the shoulds and ready to build their content empires—their way. Through her online programs and DIY kits, tell-all blog posts, and strategy sessions, she gives them the tools to get more visible in their businesses, while making it feel like a streamlined and strategic delight.
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