AskPat 114 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 114 of AskPat. I'm so thankful you're here. Thank you for all the amazing reviews on iTunes. I read them seriously everyday. So if you have a second, head on over to iTunes leave a review for AskPat.
Thank you. And I also want to thank today's sponsor, which is 99designs. And if you don't know what 99designs is, it's awesome. So if you need a small design job done, you don't always need your brand new website done or completely brand new logo done, but oftentimes we have these small design jobs that we need done. Small tweaks. And it can be hard to get those done, or find a designer and go back and forth even just for a little thing. That's where 99designs comes in. This is an amazing service. You can get your small design job done. From tweaks on your logo to vectorization, banner ads, photo retouching, holiday customizations, social media creative. All kinds of things. Guess how long it takes. Under an hour. And typically it's around 35 minutes. So if you go to 99designs.com/pat, you can go ahead and check that out. A lot of people have been using it since hearing it here on the show. So I recommend you check it out. 99designs.com/pat.
All right, now let's get to today's question from Craig.
Craig: Hi Pat. I noticed that you have an autoresponder series that you spoke of. And what I was wondering is if you know a way of creating a payment gateway. So, for instance, people receive ten autoresponder emails over, let's say five weeks, twice a week. Then you, the tenth one says, “Hey would you like to continue to receive these bite size lessons in email format? If so click here and text your payment to gateway.” Or something like that which generates a code so that they will continue to get a sort of an automated series of emails. Be great if you could give me any advice. Thank you.
Pat Flynn: Craig thank you so much for your question. I really appreciate it. And I really appreciate the strategy too here. Because a lot of times people don't understand the power of an autoresponder series. Or even just email in general. So I think it's important to think about all the different kinds of ways we can utilize our email list. And what's cool about an autoresponder series in general, is the fact that you're keeping in constant contact and continually providing value to those people who have subscribed, who have given you permission to send them stuff for over a long period of time. For example, I have an amount of, I have, I don't even know how many now because I keep adding to it—but around forty emails that go out after people are subscribed. Or people subscribe. Now obviously those don't go all out at once. They go once every week or sometimes there's a week break in between. So I pretty much hit everybody.
I have a year’s worth of content. I am able to keep in constant contact with my audience for a complete year. Which means that anytime I send a broadcast, I'm more likely to get an open with that email. Because people aren't like, “Oh who's this guy Pat Flynn?” They’re like, “Oh this guy Pat Flynn, he's been sending me great stuff. I'm going to open this one too.” Now there are a few things in terms of the autoresponder versus the broadcast, which are real time. Making sure that you don't send out two in one day. I mean you can do that, but I have it set so my autoresponders are always coming out on either Thursday or Friday. Which means that I can be sure that if I post or publish a email and send it out to everybody on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. Or even over the weekend, that I won't double up on email with somebody.
Now in terms of your question, Craig, how do you provide or place a paywall in between email ten, email eleven? Or it doesn't have to be that obviously. But at some point in your autoresponder you could, hypothetically, start to charge to get people to continue to get access to it. Technically how this would work and how I imagine it would work, is you would have two separate lists. One list would be the initial set of emails. Again it doesn't matter how many, but the last one of course is your pitch or your ask to say, “Hey if you really enjoy these emails” . . . And of course you want all of them to be great. “You can continue to get emails like this, which yes they take a lot of my time and I need to make money to do this for you. This is what helps support the businesses I do.” You can obviously put in your own copy there. Put in your own style and your voice.
But you can have people click a link which then goes to a page where they can pay. And that could be set up with anything really. It could be set up with PayPal, it could be set up with something like Gumroad.com. Whatever the case may be after people pay, you could even have that automatically put them into a brand new email list. A lot of these payment programs are pay processors. They have the ability for you to connect your email service provider to that particular tool or payment processor, so that when people pay they're automatically placed into an email list. A second email list.
You want to make sure, the big thing you want to make sure, is that when people subscribe to this new list . . . which, again, can happen automatically after people make a purchase that they are taken off that old list. And you can set rules for that in your email service provider. I know you can do that in AWeber. I know you can do that in MailChimp. You can also do that in InfusionSoft and some of the other more advanced email service providers/CRMs, or Customer Relationship Management tools.
A cool thing to do here is really, I think, you got to really impress people for one, with those initial emails. You got to make sure that they become something that people can't live without. That's going to help you obviously when you sort of say, “Hey, you can continue to get these emails, by paying me X amount of dollars.” Or even have people continue to pay X number of dollars per month. And again that way you'd be setting up a recurring payment system. But of course you want to make sure that there is a reason to keep paying per month and not only have the emails come in like they normally do. But even provide even more value. Surprise your audience. I love surprises. I love giving surprises. Because those are the things that keep a high retention rate, that keep people talking about you. And keep people happy with parting with their money to get whatever it is that you have to provide for them.
Another thing you could do that I think would be very useful is in that last email or even leading up to that last email, start to inject some videos or some higher quality type of content to really blow people away. But also show some of you and some of your personality, I think that's what I would do. So for instance, if I had ten emails that people get, even daily, over a week and a half, that last email would definitely be a video saying, “Thank you so much for subscribing, here are some great tips for you.” Depending on whatever your niche is and market. Really help them out, but then say, “Hey you know what, these types of emails take a lot of time.”
And again this is on video so they're seeing your face, which helps with the idea of them wanting to give back for all the information that you've given them. “Hey, thank you so much. You can continue to get emails like this, if you go to this website or click on the button below or click on the link underneath this video.” Be very specific with that call to action, and then you can pay a small fee of $10 or $10 a month or whatever the case may be. It depends on niche and you should know sort of what you could charge for these types of things or have an idea at least. And then just be like, “Hey if not, that's totally fine, you can get free content on the blog when I post about it, or on YouTube, or on my podcast. But if you really want this high quality information that you've been used to seeing sent directly to your inbox, just use the button below. After you make payment you'll just continue on with the email.”
Now, technically, something I forgot to mention, is some email service providers require another confirmation. So if people are on one list and they purchase and they're automatically placed into another one, they might get an email back saying, “Hey do you really want to be on this list? Or please click to confirm that you want to be on this list.” Now you could talk to your email service provider or you can un-click an option for that to not happen. And I think in this case, obviously people have already given you permission. If the email service provider won't let you do that, which sometimes they don't, because they don't want bad emails on their email list, but since they’re coming from people who are already on a email list, I think you can make the case that that is something that they don't have to worry about. So, again, just talk to your email service provider. Don't be scared to email them. I think you should definitely tell them what you're up to, Craig. Just so that they're comfortable and they can maybe help you through the process even more. Especially in terms of connecting your email list to the payment processor that you're going to be using.
So that's how I would do it. I really think that's a great strategy. Especially if you have some really high quality information that is worth paying for. I think that's the most important thing. Really delivering high value content up front for free. I mean if you do that and you really make change. I would recommend also making sure that people have some things they can do within those first emails to see results because once people see results, that's when they form the habit in their head to get results from you. And that's something worth paying for.
So once they see those instant results, they're going to be more likely to pay and keep going with you. If they're just sort of plain old emails, like normal emails that you would send out anyway, then I can see it being a little bit difficult to convince people. You want to make it so convincing that you don't even really have to argue. You just say, “Hey, this is the option to continue.” It would be a no brainer. You would want people to feel bad, to not keep going. To have them know that they’re missing out or potentially not getting the information they need to move forward in whatever it is they're trying to do if they don't continue with the emails coming from you after that paywall.
So, a little bit of a long-winded answer and I covered a lot of things in there, Craig, to make sure that you were thinking of all pieces and parts of the puzzle there. But I appreciate your question. Thank you so much. And an AskPat t-shirt is going to be headed your way.
For those of you listening, if you have a question you'd like featured on AskPat, head on over to AskPat.com. You just have to ask right there. And of course, as always, I love to end with a quote. And today's quote comes from Charles Darwin. He says, “It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” And I love that because really it's not about, it not about what happens to you all the time. It's about how you react to what happens to you. Cheers, thanks so much, and I'll see you the next Episode of AskPat.
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