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The "Email List Q&A" Lesson is part of the full, Finding Clients as a Freelancer course featured in this preview video. Here's what you'd learn in this lesson:

Paul answers questions about response rates of emails, utilizing referrals or incentives, and a recommended sending frequency.


Transcript from the "Email List Q&A" Lesson

>> So that will make sense, let's take a pause for a minute just to see if there's any questions around any of that before we move on. Anything sprang to mind, no.
>> How fast do you, I mean, now that you've got it all working like clockwork send out an email how fast you get a response?

Just curious.
>> In response in terms of actual work or in terms of communication?
>> You know what, is either all.
>> Right, so I'll send out an email, out today actually, my emails go out every other Thursday. And it's within 10 minutes I'd had three people reply going really great email today, Paul, blah blah blah.

And I will always reply to them, okay? So I get instant feedback at this point because I've spent so long on and nurturing-
>> There is something about the email, you have to send a message. Yeah, there's content in the email.
>> Yeah, we'll get into that.
>> Okay.

>> You said the blank email [LAUGH]
>> I won't.
>> [LAUGH] Yeah that would be good.
>> [LAUGH] Absolutely but you do AB testing or like?
>> I don't actually.
>> Okay.
>> No, I should do, but who's got the time, right? This whole thing this isn't we're not talking about building a kind of a multinational, segmented, AB tested, world class sales funnel here.

We're talking about something that's enough to support us. In terms of turning into work that, so one of the things that I do and we'll get into this all in a lot more detail. But one of the things I do is, so I get bored easily, right, like I said the attention span of a small child, which means that I don't wanna do another UX audit.

I'm fed up with doing those. I wanna do some prototyping. So what I'll do, is I'll send two or three emails, right? So that's over, say, probably about a six week period on various aspects of prototyping, and that will win me work. Within maybe a month's period, something like that.

So you can turn it around relatively quickly. So, a question from chatroom.
>> Do you encourage referrals, and do you have more clients from referrals versus warm leads from the emails?
>> Right, good question. So, I don't encourage referrals, so you can use it for various incentives and I have played with this in the past.

So, you can sale, I'll give you 10% if you refer me as a client, just, I felt dirty during that, it just didn't feel like me. And it didn't work anyway. So I kinda dropped doing that. I've also tried doing referrals of the email, right? So in other words, if you invite someone else to subscribe to this, then you'll get whatever.

And I actually found a really good tool that kinda has this whole gamification thing built into it tried that, didn't work for my audience. I'm not saying it doesn't in certain situations but I'm kinda positioning, I'm not selling. No, widgets. I'm not selling paper cups. I'm selling a bespoke custom high end service, right?

So really these kinds of gimmicks don't really suit it particularly well, in terms of the balance between referral work and new work that comes in via this method. I would say it swings, right? It's about a 6040 split but that depending on the particular quarter or particular month or whatever else it could go either way, I mean, it could be 60 for referrals one month and then 60 for emails the next month.

So I don't track it that closely because again who's got time, right? I probably should do a better job of that, but I don't. Any other questions or is that it at the moment?
>> The response, what is the response rate to these things? How many emails do you need to send?

Did you figure it out like, okay, I need to send 10,000 emails, or you were just like, I need to send out as many emails as I can, as many people as I can, or do you scale it down, okay, now I wanna tailor her this?
>> Yeah, so-

>> What's the controllability that you were talking about?
>> Yeah, got you. I always send out, because I'm lazy, because we want something that's manageable here, I send out to my entire mailing list once every two weeks, right? You could get a way with once a month I think.

I know some of my colleagues that have used similar to now every day which is just crazy they can do that, but they it seems to work for them. And the guy that I've got in my head is actually got a mailing list it's more than twice my size from doing that, so I'm not knocking it.

But I'm not committed enough to do that so it's balancing you gotta balance the amount of effort that goes into sending emails out against. The how often the people need to hear from you to remember you, because that's the aim, right? I do do some very basic segmentation of my list.

So, when people sign up, I ask them, do you work in house? Do you work for an agency or are you freelancer? That's all I ask them, because you don't wanna put too many barriers in people's ways. And so because I've got some services aimed to freelancers and agencies and I have some services aimed at people that are in house.

So I will tailor sometimes do the same. You say I'm doing a newsletter on prototyping, I might write two slightly different versions of it. So that's about as clever as I get, because again, we want this to be lightweight. Anything else from the chat room?
>> Do you prefer sending a bunch of emails or would you send personalized emails?

>> I do personalize to a degree. I mean, at different times, right? So as we go through this you'll get a much better understanding of when I send a personal one to one email, because I do do personal one to one emails. But with my main mailing list, no, it's doesn't generally tend to be personalized beyond your name, I tag people within the particular system I use.

So I learn about what they like and what they don't. And so it might get some degree of personalization based on that. So for example, sometimes I get myself into situations where, let's say, I'm giving a workshop on this for example, and then, I'm also about to release a book on a different subject.

Well, I need to promote both of them at the same time. How am I gonna do that? Okay, well, basically, I know these people are agencies and freelancers so they're gonna get this presentation as the pitch in that particular email, and this group is going to get you know the other thing.

So I do that kind of basic segmentation but nothing very complicated. And the personalization, the real personal emails I do a much earlier in the process before they've joined the official mailing list. The only exception is I do keep an eye on my mailing list to check for as people sign up, I do pay attention to the domain names because if somebody like I don't know Nike pop up in the list, they're gonna get a personal email.

[LAUGH] So, I do a bit of that. But other than that, no. Yeah, no one, this is good, God engaged audience today.
>> What are your feelings about LinkedIn? Do you use it in conjunction with the emails?
>> Yes, so, we're gonna get into all of this later and I'll show you exactly how I use LinkedIn.

So I won't answer that question right now because otherwise I'll just be repeating what I said later. I think-
>> The other person said I assume you're gonna cover this later in the course but they're very interested in growing the mailing list.
>> Yes, definitely covering that. So whole section on that.

Well, that's the majority of the course [LAUGH] To be honest.

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