This past weekend was a holiday weekend here in Canada and as I was laying in my hammock at the cottage, enjoying the cool breeze off the lake, I realized that my business is running “somewhat” on autopilot.
A big part of it running this way is the use of autoresponders. If you’re not sure what an autoresponder is, Wikipedia describes it as “a computer program that automatically answers email sent to it”.
So basically my business is setup with a number of websites, each with it’s own unique capture mechanism. These could be a squeeze/capture page or a free offering on a blog where someone enters their name and email address.
Once these sites capture an email address, my autoresponder is notified and starts the process of building a relationship with the person who entered their email.
This is much easier than me personally responding to each person, as you can imagine, yet it still allows me to establish myself as a leader in my field, give the person a glimpse into my word and establish a level of trust with the reader.
If you’re building a business online, I highly recommend you look at implementing some form of autoresponder into your relationship building activities.
Here’s a few ideas of what you could create as an autoresponder:
- Email Mini Course: This could comprise of a series 5, 6 or 7 emails teaching someone the fundamentals of a particular skill. For example, on one of my sites I give business women a 6 day mini course of search engine optimization. This, of course, leads to the 7th day where I introduce them to my search engine optimization video course which teaches them the same skills but in much more details.
- Newsletter: This is a bit of an “old school” method but still works in some markets. Basically you’re offering your subscribers access to a newsletter. Remember the newsletter should be addressing the needs and solutions for your market, not necessarily updating the reader what on what is new with you or your company. The newsletter could include information that is not necessarily available on your website, otherwise, why would they need to subscribe.
- Special Report: Sometimes called a white-paper. These are longer than newsletters and usually are focused on one particular topic. In an email autoresponder you may want to have some initial “teaser” copy and then link them to the special report available in a hidden area of your website. If you are in the business of writing special reports, one idea is to make your “offer” on your site, access to the top 5 most popular reports.
- Audio File(s): This format and the next one (video) are both very hot right now. It gives people a more passive way to learn, by listening and watching. You could give away an interview you did, a recorded speaking event, or you could just record yourself speaking about a particular topic.
- Video File(s): This is probably the hottest format being used today. I find video is much more engaging and better at building a relationship with your subscribers. Don’t feel like you need too much of a script. People are looking for authenticity. Your videos don’t need to have “Hollywood” quality. The important thing is that they are valuable. This method combined with method 1, mini course, above makes for a powerful combination.
So there you are, five separate autoresponder ideas for you to implement. Start now, even if it’s not perfect.
When I look back on what I had initially setup as my autoresponder, it wasn’t that great, but at least I took action. Now that I know more about marketing online and how to lead people to what I want them to do, I’ve gone back and revised some of my autoresponders. And you can too, but start today.
Yours in Success,
P.S. I’d love to hear from you, so please leave me your comments down below! And pass it along to your Twitter/FB friends if you enjoyed it! Thanks so much!