Should I avoid selling in the first ten emails?

37 replies
Hi,
I want to know more about writing good follow-up emails. If I provide ten emails, for example ten tips, do I need to avoid selling in the first ten emails? Or can I include my website link at the end of the email, for example: For more details about this topic, log on here mywebsite.com.

I appreciate your opinion,
Thanks.
#avoid #emails #selling #ten
  • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
    In my experience, you should NOT avoid selling in the
    first ten e-mails.

    Why?

    Because, over time your subscriber's attention is likely to
    drop off massively as time goes on. They're really hot at
    the start and then tend to cool off over time.

    However, I don't believe that you should do hard selling
    from the start either.

    I think that it's fine to send out some great content and
    have a related offer in your initial (and later) e-mails.

    If you don't include any links to paid offers in your first
    ten e-mails, you'll likely 'condition' your list to expect
    great content for free. (And don't be surprised if they
    get annoyed if you start selling much later).

    So, sell softly from the start but give great information
    too.

    The primary goal of your initial follow-up e-mails is to
    turn new subscribers into new customers, not just new
    readers.

    Dedicated to mutual success,

    Shaun
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  • Profile picture of the author Confined To Life
    Yeah there's a tonne of people on this forum who believe you should start selling immediately! They think your first email should be a special offer and whatnot. Personally, I haven't tried it so I don't know if it's successful or not.

    From an email reader perspective, I'd much rather get to know you through 5-10 quality emails (don't do 10 separate emails for 10 tips). Hit me with your offer soon, but not immediately.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jackson Tan
    in addition, the click through rates are much better in the first few emails.. and yup, you have to condition your readers so that you can promote to them over and over again.

    Cheers Warrior!
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  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    The answer is it depends on your niche.

    If you are in a health niche where people have a problem that they want to resolve asap (think hemorrhoids), then making them wait even just a couple of days will lose you sales. They are in pain now and they want the answers right now -- not tomorrow, not the next day.

    If you have something that will solve their problem right away then don't you owe it to that person to share it with them as soon as possible?

    Other niches will be different but remember that the moment someone signs up to your list is the moment they were most interested in what you have to offer. Every day that then goes by they will become less and less interested. Ten emails is way to long to hold off selling something.

    As I said before, you shouldn't be afraid to start 'selling' almost right away if you truly believe in your product and it solves their problem. If you are too afraid to ask for the sale then it tells me you are probably not overly confident in the product you are selling.
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    • Profile picture of the author FredJones
      Originally Posted by WillR View Post

      The answer is it depends on your niche.

      If you are in a health niche where people have a problem that they want to resolve asap (think hemorrhoids), then making them wait even just a couple of days will lose you sales. They are in pain now and they want the answers right now -- not tomorrow, not the next day.

      If you have something that will solve their problem right away then don't you owe it to that person to share it with them as soon as possible?

      Other niches will be different but remember that the moment someone signs up to your list is the moment they were most interested in what you have to offer. Every day that then goes by they will become less and less interested. Ten emails is way to long to hold off selling something.

      As I said before, you shouldn't be afraid to start 'selling' almost right away if you truly believe in your product and it solves their problem. If you are too afraid to ask for the sale then it tells me you are probably not overly confident in the product you are selling.
      ^^ Perfect answer. I'd only like to add that it also depends on how you built your list. For example, if you just sold them something and thus they opted in, your selling behavior would be drastically different from the way that you would act if you opted them in with a free download with a full report for the upsell. I hope you see what I'm saying. There's no single envelope answer to your question that would cover all possible settings.
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  • Profile picture of the author Janice Stacy
    Drawing attention is very important. You should focus on that in the first 10 emails. May be a link at the end will be good which can be from a promotional and coming soon type page.
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  • Profile picture of the author AigulErali
    Creating a great autoresponder message series is the key to making serious money on the internet. Studies have proven that most consumers would buy only after repeated exposure to a product.

    In my experience, you should NOT avoid selling in the first ten e-mails.

    There is an old saying that the first ad rarely sells. You have to put your product, service, or idea in front of a prospect several times before she buys.

    That's why most autoresponder packages come in groups of 7 messages--from the 7 message marketing rule that has been the rule in advertising since our grandparents were in diapers.

    Don't ever use the word "free" in your message's subject line. Using the word "free" will likely cause your message to be flagged as spam.

    To find a freelance writer, you can go to a web site like Rent a Coder: We've changed our name to vWorker! and place a free bid request to write autoresponder-series for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author MyWebPromotion
      I wouldn't wait that long. The most important thing to have in your email is content. If you have that, go ahead and give them your message.
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  • Profile picture of the author TiffanyLambert
    I recommend you do what comes naturally. To me, it's not good to have a strict schedule on what comes into the picture, when.

    Think of your list as a close friend - and serve their needs. Would you instantly tell a friend to go buy something? Probably not - you'd probably talk to them about it first, kind of get them informed and then give a recommendation if they decide to go that route.

    It's a great idea to provide places and questions where your list will interact with you - no one way street, in other words. That way THEY begin asking YOU for recommendations and you don't look pushy, you look helpful.
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Batty
      Originally Posted by TiffanyDow View Post

      I recommend you do what comes naturally. To me, it's not good to have a strict schedule on what comes into the picture, when.

      Think of your list as a close friend - and serve their needs. Would you instantly tell a friend to go buy something? Probably not - you'd probably talk to them about it first, kind of get them informed and then give a recommendation if they decide to go that route.

      It's a great idea to provide places and questions where your list will interact with you - no one way street, in other words. That way THEY begin asking YOU for recommendations and you don't look pushy, you look helpful.
      Take it from the pro.. right there. In your first part, you saved me some typing, and in your second part you gave me some new ideas. Thanks Tiffany!!
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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    You should always try to give your subscribers free content but from the very first email, you should send them your link too.

    I would never wait to send them my first offer after the first 10 emails because the fact of the matter is that most people have a short memory span. They may open your 1st-3rd emails and then totally forget about you.

    I would always focus on consistently getting new subscribers because new blood (subscribers) is the life blood of your internet business.
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  • Profile picture of the author angshuy2k
    This is surely a big question. If you are giving tips and at the bottom if you keep your link, probably they might click through and if they like it surely they will buy it. I wouldn't stop myself of putting a link at the bottom of my new letter and surely , I do always put my link at the bottom of my email.

    Best wishes,
    Swrajit
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  • Profile picture of the author MKCookins
    Its best to provide value, around your first 5 emails - then offer a sale.

    This way the prospect can get to know you, and also you are building trust with them by not always selling.
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  • Profile picture of the author Edwin Torres
    You have have an OTO in place right after they sign up to make some instant money.

    In your AR sequence you should start selling around the 4th email, make sure to presell them to convert the sale easier
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  • Profile picture of the author KriiV
    I would avoid it yes. I usually do the following.

    9 emails of quality content. 1 email with content but also some form of product/service for sale.
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    • Profile picture of the author WillR
      Originally Posted by Martin Krivosija View Post

      I would avoid it yes. I usually do the following.

      9 emails of quality content. 1 email with content but also some form of product/service for sale.
      Try adding an offer in every 2nd or 3rd email and you should see your profit increase almost immediately.

      9 emails is far too long to wait before selling.

      Half your list wont even be opening the emails by then.
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  • Profile picture of the author TomYevsikov
    Actually, It's up to you and your results with your testing...

    However this doesn't mean you should send a promotion every other day nor you should send a promotion once per month...not when you don't have your own product anyway..

    Try and see what works for you. I send a promotion weekly, if I can't find something good out there, I just don't send a promotion
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  • Profile picture of the author paul nicholls
    I will just echo what most people have said here

    A good mixture of free info and promotions is good

    If you`re ever in doubt, rather than just ask in here and get a kazillion different answers
    sign up to 10 different peoples lists who you know are doing well online and see how
    they do things

    That way you`re actually seeing what they do as appose to them telling you what they do
    and you can then get a better feel on how to set up your follow ups

    Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
    Different lists call for different measures. If you're goal is to sell them a solution to a problem, then you better be hard selling from the get go. Every second wasted is another second they can go somewhere else for the solution. If your goal is to generate a following that eventually follows your recommendations (affiliate offers), then a soft sell approach is in order, but I would not wait ten emails to start. You can start soft selling in your first contact. Just provide a lot of ideas and information in each of your contacts to go along with your soft pitches.
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  • Profile picture of the author AndrewStark
    The only real answer here is to do what feels right for you.

    Also you need to make sure that the offers you do put in the follow-up series are evergreen products that will sell as well in a year's time as they will today. Nothing will kill your list faster than being sent to a salespage that's out of date, or worse still they do some research and find out that the product was crap and had a massive refund rate.

    A good compromise is to write reviews on your blog, that way you're providing content whilst showing that you are going to promote some product or services to your list.

    The worst thing you can do is spend the first ten message building up the image of "Mr Content" then sending out a copy & paste "Churn & Burn" message on day 11 - instant unsubscribe and waste of time.
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  • Profile picture of the author surferchris
    Yeah, I wouldn't wait after 10 emails. Just make sure your first few emails are of great value, enticing your customers to have a glimpse of the worth of your content. If is quality, they like more and they will eventually purchase what you may offer.
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  • Profile picture of the author jbsmith
    Nope - definitely not. However, be smart about your "selling" in that you want to frame your emails in a way that your reader a) Gets that you understand them and their challenges/desires b) That you have some knowledge and experience that will help them c) That you create curiousity and trust so that they are compelled to buy from you. Using this approach you can reference your product in nearly every email without being spammy or coming across as a hard-seller. I still like to fit a straight, short sales message into one of the email follow-ups somewhere between message 3-5 works best for my different niches selling ebooks.
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    • Profile picture of the author madhushan
      I feel that you can should focus on developing a relationship using the follow-ups. You have to make sure that you can involve with them on an emotional level before you start selling.
      People get lots of emails daily. Which one do they open? ofcourse, the ones that stand out and the ones from the people they like(It could be you if you can involve with them emotionally). So, you should be more concerned about involving with subscribers on an emotional level and once you achieve that, you will start selling automatically.
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  • Profile picture of the author rmolina88
    If you're using an ebook for a freebie, then make sure you at least have an affiliate offer in there or an OTO after someone signs up for your list.

    I've been having success where I haven't been directly selling off the bat, but mentioning where I get my services and using affiliate links.

    For example, I advise my list that you can get a domain from godaddy, but I use my affiliate link in the email to direct them there. I've been making quite a bit off doing that without trying to directly sell.

    I've also set up tutorial video pages with my affiliate banners and have been making some good money from those as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dariuszden
    Every opinion seems to be different and I know that is the case with the pro's as well.

    What I noticed is that some either believe you should start selling right away (to establish a clear relationship)
    Others believe you need to sweet talk and be helpful before trying to sell something.

    I personally believe both could be very right and very wrong.

    Generally in any health/teaching/courses niche I would suggest giving quality/helpful info first and then suggest priced items.

    In IM or money making niche I go with info/sell at the same time.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by WillR View Post

      ... and what about those people who wanted to buy the product right away?

      5 emails before selling is just a waste of your list.
      Exactly. Or, as one of my old sales managers put it...

      "don't stop them from buying just because you aren't through selling!"

      Originally Posted by AndrewStark View Post

      The only real answer here is to do what feels right for you.
      Wrong. The real answer is to do what works for you. Until you've been through the process enough times to develop 'feel' for a market, what feels right is often about the worst thing you could choose - like sending ten emails before mentioning a sales offer.

      Originally Posted by AndrewStark View Post

      The worst thing you can do is spend the first ten message building up the image of "Mr Content" then sending out a copy & paste "Churn & Burn" message on day 11 - instant unsubscribe and waste of time.
      If any of y'all don't believe this, scan through a few pages of 'list building doesn't work' and 'building a relationship doesn't work' threads. The truth isn't "out there", it's right here in the forum...
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      • Profile picture of the author johndetlefs
        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        Exactly. Or, as one of my old sales managers put it...

        "don't stop them from buying just because you aren't through selling!"
        Yep, i've still got sales staff that do that... and they get the "stare of death" until they get it and just ask for the credit card already!

        Horses for courses. If your prospects have come to your site looking for a product or service why would you wait 5 emails to sell to them?

        Sounds like a good way to have them go somewhere else and get their itch scratched.

        Might be different for opt-ins from a blog or e-zine I guess, but i'd still have some links or a signature at the bottom for sure... or even a story about how to do something for free, but if they don't want to do it themselves then you just happen to have the solution handy...

        if a prospect opts out because of that then they weren't a prospect anyway!
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    I sell in every email i send out. I dont email much to my list - maybe 7 times for the whole month. But i recommend selling in each email. Too many factors against you for you not to do so.

    Some subscribers will unsubscribe instantly, some wont like your content, some will give dummy contact info, and some will be asked to confirm their subscription.
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  • Profile picture of the author TeamBringIt
    Originally Posted by AzlanR2 View Post

    Hi,
    I want to know more about writing good follow-up emails. If I provide ten emails, for example ten tips, do I need to avoid selling in the first ten emails? Or can I include my website link at the end of the email, for example: For more details about this topic, log on here mywebsite.com.

    I appreciate your opinion,
    Thanks.
    You don't need to wait for 10 emails and then start doing promos. If you send 3-4 content filled emails, then it's ok to send a promo email. It is all about giving value to your subscribers and gaining their trust. After this is done, then send out some promos.
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  • Profile picture of the author celente
    I test and measure within my different niches.

    I know the bigger email marketers will tell you HAMMER THEM from day one, but that is not a goal you want to have. Eventually that will blow up in your face down the track somewhere.

    Mix your hardsells and softsells. But I would say from day one you should be doing both.

    But do not go overboard, you MUST MUST MUST test and track results and then see what you can do from there.
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    • Profile picture of the author TerranceCharles
      No matter how great your email content is, no matter nice you treat your subscribers, it's a numbers game - people will STILL unsubscribe regardless for different reasons, too many list, information not relevant, no trust factor etc.

      The soft-sell approach is the best in my opinon, when you give your readers tips - and include your promotional content that relates to your tips. Educate them and guide them to your offer for more information.

      If you condition your email list for only free content, the MINUTE you sell, you'll get a lot of unsubscribes, complaints and a lower open and click-thru rate. Condition them from the beginning that this is a business and there will be selling and they know what to expect. That's the point of building your email list consistantly - you replace the ones that are not interested.
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