When it comes to marketing, Jay Baer’s kind of a big deal – think the world’s most retweeted person among digital marketers. People pay attention to what he has to say (and tweet) because he truly knows his stuff: He’s a New York Times best-selling author, is a highly sought-after speaker, and leads Convince & Convert, a group of strategic advisors who work with organizations to make digital marketing and customer experiences remarkable.
Check out this Q&A with Jay where we field your burning questions about all things digital marketing. From social engagement to email best practices, we cover the latest and greatest strategies for keeping your customers and prospects engaged with relevant content that gets big results.
Jamie: Being expert Jay Baer. We are pumped to have this guy here on the line with us today. A little housekeeping before we get started. Just to let you know, we will, of course, send a recording of today’s Q&A out to you, so if you need to hop off or you just love what you’re hearing and you wanna share it with everyone you’ve ever met, we gotcha. covered. That’ll hit your inbox. We’ll also send some other followup materials as well, so be on the lookout for that. If you have a question, we had a ton of questions come in from our registration page already and from Twitter. But if the mood strikes you, as obviously this is a live Q&A, you can type those directly into your Go-To-Webinar control panel over there. And we’ll be scooping those up.
You can also tweet at us or tweet at Jay. You can see an @Emma email at @JayBaer, B-A-E-R using the #askJayBaer and I’ve got a team of lovely colleagues who are sitting here just waiting to scoop those up and pass those over to us to ask them. I’m your moderator, Jamie Bradley. I work here at Emma Email Marketing and for those of you who may not be familiar with us, we are an email marketing company based in Nashville, Tennessee. Been around for about 12 years. We’ve worked with over 55,000 customers across the U.S. and even abroad as well, helping people do their best email marketing. And we are pretty, pretty pumped to also help Jay Baer out, who is our guest today. He has advised more than 700 brands since getting started in online marketing in 1993. He is a bestselling author of five books, the most retweeted person in the world of digital marketing among digital marketers. He’s the second most influential person in content marketing, and he is also a certified barbecue judge and collector of Tequila. So we had some very delicious interests indeed. And so, I’m gonna switch over so you can actually see us now. Here we go, here I am, and there’s Jay. Hey Jay.
Jay: How are you doing?
Jamie: I’m pretty great. I’m very excited. This is actually the first time that we’ve done a live sort of Webcam Q&A, so this is a very, very fun, fun one for us and I’m glad that you’re our first go-round with it.
Jay: I am glad as well. It’s gonna be super fantastic. You know, I was looking at the slide a minute ago and it’s an excerpt I think from your event, from Marketing United when I was doing my hug your haters talk. But the way it’s cropped it, I’ve got my mouth open and it says eight which really looks like I have like a food problem. So that was [inaudible 00:02:39] notice that.
Jamie: You’re a barbecue judge, so and we’ll get to that.
Jay: That’s true. We were barbecuing this weekend for the Labor Day. I’m so glad to be here and I love working with all my friends at Emma. As some folks know, we create a lot of content at Convince and Convert, my consulting firm. We also have a media division, Convince and Convert Media and we have six different podcasts. And one of those podcasts is Social Pros, which is the show that I co-host all about enterprise social media marketing and our friends at Emma are of our treasured sponsors of that program. Thank you. And we also send out a four times a week email called Definitive. And Definitive is sort of a different take on your usual marketing email newsletter. So what a lot of people do and frankly what we used to do is send out an email every day which was, hey, here’s what happened today and here’s what Facebook decided to do again and here’s what Instagram decided to do again. And all that jazz.
And so I discovered, I don’t know, like a year and a half ago, I’m like, you know what, here’s the deal. We’re never gonna be the best at that. Like we don’t have enough people to be the best at that. And other folks publish email like that really, really great. And so we took a different tack and so our email is called Definitive and the reason it’s called that is that each day we take one topic, so email subject line best practices, for example. And my editorial team goes out and finds the three best pieces of content ever created on the Interwebs about that topic. And it could have been created by me, usually not. It could have been created by Emma, it could have been created by one of Emma’s competitors or just some guy or whatever.
We figure out the three, three that we think are the best, and then we send out an email that has links to those three best pieces of content about that topic. And then if you’re a subscriber, you can get access to the archive. So maybe you don’t need to know about email subject lines today, but you might a month from now, like, oh yeah, they covered that. And so it’s been really, really effective. A lot of people say it’s the most useful marketing email out there, which makes me really, really happy. And we’re delighted that we are able to send that email to folks, to many, many, many folks through Emma, so we appreciate that very much.
Jamie: Well, we are very delighted that you are using Emma to send it out because yeah, it’s fantastic. Go to convinceanconvert.com and you can sign up for the Definitive newsletter. You might even…
Jay: Or you can go to definitivedigest.com and go right to the subscription page.
Jamie: There you go.
Jay: Custom URL baby. [inaudible 00:05:00]
Jamie: We’re gonna learn all about that today. Yeah, no, absolutely. So definitely sign up for that because it is absolutely fantastic. So as we said, we have tons of questions. And actually, I think that we’ve started doing these Q&A’s here for a little bit and I wanna say this is probably the most questions that we’ve ever gotten during the registration process right up front because…yeah, don’t be nervous now. And they’re really great questions, too, the quality of [crosstalk 00:05:28] I think they’re great. No, the quality of the questions is also really great. So I know that we’ve got…
Jay: Can I rank the questions on a 1 to 10 scale of how much [inaudible 00:05:39] paper. I’m gonna have a ranking system here. So when I get the question, I’m gonna hold up a number of what I think [inaudible 00:05:48].
Jamie: Okay, perfect. All right. And then we can maybe send a digest out at the end and say like Janet, 10, Barbara, 1, you know, whatever it is.
Jay: We should send the 10 point question something special. We should send them a book or something. We’ll do that. All the 10 point questions, we’ll get your email address and then we’ll get your mailing address and I’ll send you a book.
Jamie: We can definitely do that. Absolutely. So we’ll do some ranking. We’ll make it a competition here and then we’ll make sure that we send you something fun. Okay. So without further ado, get your ranking hat on because I’m about to throw some questions at you, Jay. Are you ready?
Jamie: Okay. Since we do email and you’re an email expert as well as an expert among many other things…
Jay: [inaudible 00:06:33] before I got into social media and content marketing, that’s all I did. My previous company before I had Convince and Convert, we were an email consultancy. That’s all I did. So I actually knew Emma and the people at Emma right when you started 12 years ago. So that’s kind of old school.
Jamie: Yes, definitely. I will note we go way back with Jay and so it is truly an honor obviously to have him here. And also, Jay has spoken twice at our Marketing United conference and we’ll be back thrice.
Jay: Forever, just making stuff up now.
Jamie: Thanks for showing up.
Jay: [inaudible 00:07:07] I’ll do a keynote about it at the next Marketing United next spring. That’s what we should do.
Jamie: There we go. Hey. So no pressure guys, get to thinking. Okay, so I will take a question that came in at registration. I think this one’s good. It’s from RJ. He says, how do we know we are marketing the right stuff to the right folks? What are the basic elements we must know to do excellent audience segmentation? So at least RJ knows that segmentation is a huge win in the email world, but how does he do that to the best of his ability? What does he need to know?
Jay: Oh man, I got to write this backwards? It’s not gonna work. Okay. I’m gonna have to go this way. That’s a nine-point question. That’s going to be much easier than me writing backwards. So, you know, it’s a really perceptive question because a lot of people do audience segmentation using data points that don’t actually matter. Like, you know, do you need to know gender for example? Well, for some businesses for sure. If you’re selling jackets, yeah, that’s probably important. But for a lot of businesses that’s not. And so you have to understand, only ask for data and only create a segmentation where you can then meaningfully change the content in a way that will have differences in downstream behavior that also matter to your business.
So from a minimal viable perspective in a business context, I think we’re probably gonna…let me say from a B2B standpoint first. From a B2B standpoint, geography is important because typically it impacts how leads are a proportion of the sales team. So geography would be real important. I would say industry type, definitely important. And I would say what kind of job title, right? Because you’re gonna approach people differently based on where they’re at in an org chart. So from B2B minimum segmentation, if you’re gonna do it right, I would say location, industry, title.
Jay: Consumer side is a little different. Again, depending on your product, I might say gender potentially. I would probably still say location. One of the great examples of segmentation that I have talked about in the past, and I mention it in my book, ‘‘Utility’‘, was from Scott’s Miracle Grow, right, where they had 25 or 30 different versions of their email. And based on where you’re at in the U.S., you get a different email because I’ve got crabgrass in Indiana, but in Nashville, you got a different kind of bad grass. I don’t know [inaudible 00:09:34] you got hipster grass, which [inaudible 00:09:38]. And so based on…and, you know, winter comes early in some places versus etc. So location, probably gender would be the two that I would think about and potentially for a B2C list, age. But again, only if you have a schema for doing something with that information.
Jamie: Absolutely. I think that’s great advice and we advise people a lot with the gender, you know, sort of data point. You’ve gotta be careful, especially if it’s a consumer good. That could just be based on I’m buying stuff for my boyfriend or my husband. I may not be the gender that you’re targeting. So you gotta watch that
Jay: This is a fun fact. We were working on a survey for ourselves recently about our email subscribers and learn more about them. And one of the things we talked about is, you know, there’s a trend now towards people identifying as different genders or identifying as no gender. And so just a quick tip, when you’re creating your forms or however you’re pulling that information in your segmentation system, instead of saying I am a male female, rewrite that to say I identify most as a and have male, female, and then always have a neither option or both. Because you don’t want, you know, like life’s too short to have somebody complain because they felt like your contact form or your data collection form was insensitive. Not that, you know, political correctness needs to run amuck but I just feel like it’s respectful to your audience.
Jamie: I think that’s great advice. So sort of to piggyback on that, and you sort of hinted at this in the last answer, but David wants to know, is AB testing of subject lines for email really worth it or is AB testing content more important? So what are kind of your views there? It’s kind of still in the email realm, but I think ties into what you were just talking about.
Jay: That’s an eight-point question and it’s a good one. It’s definitely worth it and here’s why. No, I mean, and you should do it in a sequence. So figure out what the best subject line approaches are for you because if you don’t do that then you’re actually limited in who are gonna see the content at all. So what we always think about from a testing perspective is figure out your from line first, your subject line second, your day of week third, your time of day fourth, and then your content, right? That it should be a stair-step approach to testing because each of those, if you maximize it up here, then you have a better chance to go here and then here, here, here. So what a lot of people do is they want to AB test their content and you should do that for sure but if your subject line sucks, you’re AB testing a depressed list of people who are actually seeing the content, right?
So the challenge I have though with subject line testing in AB format is AB isn’t often enough, right? If you have two mediocre subject lines, A and B, what will you actually learn from that? You will learn that one of these is slightly shittier than the other one. And that’s good to know but isn’t really going to allow you to make some real decisions going forward. So I feel like subject line testing in many cases does not go on long enough and does not have enough nuance. So if your list size supports it, I would certainly recommend A, B, C, D, E subject line testing. And for each of those variations have them be dramatically different. One of the biggest challenges I see in subject line testing is that A and B are pretty darn similar and that’s not really gonna help you. You’re gonna say, ‘‘Well, we use this word versus that word.’’ Well, what are you going to do with that information? That’s not a strategy. It’s that this word, it might work slightly better than this other word. Does that make sense?
Jamie: Yeah, that makes total sense. That’s fantastic advice and does sort of, you know, keep it in the realm of data but maybe take it into a broader way, Barbara has an lovely question which is I want to better engage with my customers that aren’t responsive, but I feel overwhelmed by all the different ways there seem to be to do that. What would Jay recommended I do AKA, which data to track, method of delivery, etc to re-engage with customers that seem to have fallen off the face of the planet? Thank you, help Barbara.
Jay: I presume she means via email, that she has an email list that’s not responsive. So I would…let’s assume we don’t have mailing lists for purposes of this question, which is, in fact, a nine-point question because it’s very important, especially now in this era of declining open rates and such. We have the same problem [inaudible 00:14:17]. In fact, ironically we just had a meeting about this same topic a week ago. So here’s what we’re gonna do. I’ll just tell you what we’re doing. So we’re creating a specific win back campaign where we are sending an email to people who habitually do not open and we feel like we may be getting sort of gray-boxed on those people right there. They haven’t marked us as spam or anything like that. It’s just that eventually depending on your email service provider or your email client, I should say, you’ll sometimes start to be hidden away into a tab, etc.
So a specific win back campaign has a totally different subject line, different from line to kind of keep it away from what you typically do and just plainly say, hey, we noticed that you’re not engaged with our email. Would you like to change how often do you get it? Would you like to get something totally different and give them some options, which also helps your segmentation for the question a couple of times ago? So a specific win back campaign is number one.
But number two, now that social media allows you to integrate with email, so specifically we’re taking our email list, sorting the people who do not typically open, uploading that list to Facebook, and then creating Facebook ads to only show those people ads that say, hey, we haven’t seen you very much on Definitive lately. Come back, click there for a landing page that reengages them there. Same thing with Twitter because you can upload that same list to Twitter as well. So it’s an email win back campaign that has a very targeted social media ad campaign on top of it.
Jamie: Which is brilliant. And sort of to go back to list health and growth, and I think this is a great question from Christie, as we build our email lists in ways that enable subscribers to indicate their interest, and this might be a similar answer but what do we do with the several thousand who are already on our list? So she’s, you know, obviously with the forms and…
Jay: Try to segment, but you don’t have that.
Jamie: Right? Like what’s the…it’s not even re-engagement but profiling with [crosstalk 00:16:19]
Jay: Right. How are you gonna profile your list? And that’s a real common, real common situation. In fact, that is a 10 point question. That is my favorite question so far. That is a book and a pair of socks question.
Jamie: Christie, we will…
Jay: Christie’s getting hooked up.
Jamie: ...we’re gonna reach out to you directly.
Jay: And so it’s really hard to do that because you have to give them a reason to essentially catch up. So if you’ve got a list that all you have is email and then going forward you’re asking people other stuff to segment them and now you’ve got this other group that you don’t know anything about, it’s essentially the same idea that we talked about. It’s a instead of a win back, it’s a profiling campaign. We would tackle that pretty much the same way. We would send those people an email that says, look, historically we haven’t done as much custom content for you as we probably should have. Now we wanna give you email that’s massively relevant to you or as relevant as we possibly can make it. The only way we can do that is to know more about you. So it’d be awesome if you just a last knew this, this, and this.
And that might have to be a series. You might not be able to do all of it in one email. But of course that email is not going to get 100% take rate, right? I mean, you’re not gonna get everybody, so then you have to do the same kind of thing, layover on top of that probably some social ads and things like that that drive people to a landing page. But it’s always got to be about them, right? You always have to spin that around we’re doing this so that we can send you better content. And you have to mean that, it has to be true as well. You could also consider doing that as some sort of a contest as well and say, look, we want to gather this information from you. For everybody who does provide this information, we’re gonna enter you to win something awesome and makes it into more of a promotion.
Jamie: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. That actually just happened to me the other day with Anthropologie. They wanted and they just wanted to mine data from me, but they needed…it was something they had to ask for that clearly I’m not giving them. And I got like a 30% coupon that was timeboxed and it totally worked. And I sent it to all my [crosstalk 00:18:18]
Jay: Yeah. And what’s so great is that…in that not only do you feel good but they’re actually gonna make money because you’re going to go in there and use the coupon. So they’re gonna get free revenue and so essentially they are paying themselves to create better segmentation opportunities, which is pretty smart,
Jamie: Which is super smart. And it was also a sale weekend where it was already 30% off sale and the discount worked regardless. So it was really strategic timing.
Jay: That’s smart. I was on a panel with their CMO not too long ago at a conference and they’re really, they’re very good at email.
Jamie: They’re doing some great stuff and I love that. I love discounts, Anthropologie, send them my way. So just sort of, this is actually a great question. So obviously the things that you just spoke to, there’s a lot of automation in place with email. Peter wants to know when shouldn’t I automate an email because I feel like, you know, by and large, we are hearing more and more about automation all the time. There’s, you know, the power of welcome series. There’s power and reengagement sort of, you know, things firing based on activities or behavior. But, when would you tell someone absolutely do not do that or is there?
Jay: I don’t know if there is, that’s a really good question too, because I’ve never really been asked that question before. So that is because I’ve never heard that question before, which is, that doesn’t happen to me. That is also a 10 point question
Jay: It’s pretty rare that, oh my god, I’ve never heard of that. So when would you not use automation? Well, okay, so if for whatever reason you have to or want to send everybody the same stuff on the same day at the same time, so you’re, you’re relying on a newsletter and I’m not trying to be dismissive of newsletter. I mean there’s lots of reasons why you send a newsletter and you want everybody to have the same stuff at the same time. For an example, let’s say you’re gonna have a 30% off sale and that sale starts tomorrow, you probably want the whole list or most of the list or at least a key segment of the list to get that offer at the same time. So you wouldn’t necessarily need to or want to automate that or trigger that because you want it to happen simultaneously. Certainly in a customer service context, right? You have an outage, you have some sort of issue that everybody needs to know about at the same time. Then you hit the whole list.
Also, the one thing about automation that is tricky is that if you’re trying to mine your stats to do better email when you’re doing emails that are all triggered, it’s onesie, onesie, onesie, onesie, you know, it’s individual messages. And that can sometimes make it a little harder to mine their data and say, okay, what actually works for us? For example, going back to the previous question, doing AB subject line testing on top of an automation sequence is hard, not impossible. It’s just takes longer to get enough data to make decisions. So that’s another reason why you might not use automation and just kind of send everybody is because you’re trying some stuff, you’re experimenting.
Jamie: I think that’s a great point and yeah, automation is a wonderful asset. It’s changed the game for deployment, but at the end of the day, you’re human, they’re human. Sometimes it, you need to just be testing and looking at putting out, you know, hitting the button yourself. So I think that’s a great point. Jenna asked a question. This is one that we get often but I would love your perspective on it and I may even just put one little stat in before I toss it over. But Jenna says, I’ve never thought much about email marketing because I personally think people get way too many emails and will probably delete them. I get so many myself, I delete 100 plus emails per day. So do I. What is a great counter to this objection for me?
And I would say first and foremost, the ROI for email done right, which we can get into how to do it right, is and has been more than double that of other digital channels for as long as I’ve worked at Emma. But I would love when, you know, at Convince and Convert, you work with tons of clients, you put a lot of thought leadership out there. So where do you, I mean…and we actually, we will take questions that aren’t about email. We’ve just gotten so many for obvious reasons, but what do you tell people when they wanna talk about starting and integrating an email program or, you know, is email right for every brand?
Jay: There’s only two things that every brand cares about, email and SEO. Everything else is marginal. So she’s right that nobody ever wakes up and says, you know, what would make this a great day? If I got more email. Nobody ever says that which is partially why you see the rise of Slack and tools like that for interoffice communication and why you see Facebook messenger becoming popular and other tools that essentially don’t reduce the flow of messages. They just changed the nature of where people contact one another. So instead of checking one inbox, now we have to check 27. I don’t think that’s progress necessarily [inaudible 00:23:14] but it is, is.
But as my friend Jeff Rohr says all the time, he was the CMO at Yext and formerly the head of research and content for Exact Target. He’s like, ‘‘Look, let’s remember that you have to have an email address to even sign up for a social network.’’ So to think that somehow, you know, email doesn’t matter, like the one begets the other at some level. But the key for everything, for email, for TV, for direct mail, Facebook, for Instagram, for Snapchat, for everything is relevancy. Relevancy always wins. Relevancy is the killer app. If you send somebody an email that they want at the time they need it and it includes content that they care about, they will open it, click on it, and take action. Period. It’s all about relevance.
The challenge with email is that there is very little what we call a unit cost to send an email. So email’s real cheap, still super cheap. And so there isn’t much penalty for you to just hit the send button again. The penalty comes in a list that doesn’t perform that people like, I don’t wanna hear from them anymore because they email me every. I bought some underwear recently as I do. I’m a guy. So now you’re buying underwear a lot. That’s a lady thing. I think that to be, you know, make too generalizations, but, you know, guys don’t, you know, pretty much if you’ve got underwear, you’re good for a decade. This, I think just typical guy [inaudible 00:24:44] how it works. Right? So I bought new underwear, from Duluth Trading Company and I liked their TV commercials and so I actually was aware of this underwear from television, right? That was the demand generation. So TV still works too, kids.
So I’m like, oh, that actually seems like pretty good underwear. I’m kind of in the market for new underwear anyway. Which I know is bizarre but I was. And so I go to their website, I’m like, oh, they’re even having a sale on underwear. So I bought a whole bunch because, you know, I’m the kind of guy, if I’m in for a nickel, I’m in for a dollar. So I bought like 11, 10 pairs of underwear or whatever. So they come, love them, couldn’t be happier. My best underwear I’ve ever had, super psyched, wearing some right now. But then I get one email a day from them seven days a week, every single day I get a new offer. And I’m like, look man, like I know you sell other stuff other than underwear but I don’t need that right now. And I sure as hell don’t need any more underwear for a while. Like get back to me in like 2024 will be the next cadence appropriate for underwear purchasing for most dudes, right?
And so this idea that just because you took interest once means you’re always interested thereafter is a fallacy. And so the challenge is just like for them or any other brand is that for them to hit send every day to me cost them nothing and it’s fractions of a penny at the scale that they’re operating in. But it does a disservice to the brand as a result. And so one of the problems with email service providers, not just Emma but all of them, is that it makes it really, really easy for you to use email for evil instead of email for good. So going back to the original question if you want email to work, it’s not about sending more or less, it’s about sending email that people actually care about.
Jamie: That is the perfect answer. So if I’m ranking, that’s a 10. That’s a 10 answer, Jay.
Jay: Thank you, plus you got a whole underwear riff on there too which is [inaudible 00:26:42]
Jamie: Which is great. But, no, I mean…
Jay: We’ll be able to clip that up for the YouTube version of this later.
Jamie: There might just be a little bonus reel that goes out there. Yeah. So TMI with Jay Baer. No, no, that was great.
Jay: That’d actually be a great show.
Jamie: It’d be pretty good.
Jay: Speaking of which, I’ll tell you another little riff. I want people to comment on this in the question box, okay? So I’m gonna tell you an idea. This is a true idea. No one knows this idea in the whole world, okay? Not even my wife. Last week I was at a conference with Ann Handley, who is a dear friend of mine and chief content officer of Marketing Props. Also a friend of Emma and as a speaker at the Marketing United conference in Nashville every year, etc. So Anna and I were together at Uberflip’s event. Uberflip is another great company that we love and are supporters of and vice versa. Great guys out of Toronto.
So we were at their conference last weekend. And Ann and I had this idea, okay, this is where you guys need to get into the questions and tell me whether you’d like this idea. It’s called Podcast Karaoke. So the idea is kinda like what we’re doing here. Ann and I would do a 10 minutes show every week, just she and I, and we would just have whoever joins the live, do it live on Facebook, wherever joins the broadcast first can throw out a topic and we’ll do 10 minutes on that topic. Like whatever it is, no prep, no ideas. So we could do one on fanny packs, we could do one on dinosaurs, on anything. So Podcast Karaoke. That’s the idea just riffing. So…
Jamie: Come on, guys. Let us know what you think.
Jay: This is the question. [inaudible 00:28:09]
Jamie: So yeah, exactly. We’ll shield, you know, we’ll, we’ll curate the responses. But yeah, let us know. I think it’s a great idea.
Jay: Something for you to sponsor. Podcast Karaoke brought to you by Emma.
Jamie: Emma. Jamie, just me, I’ll kick some money over. So speaking of socially, just mentioned Facebook, so I feel like we don’t wanna neglect our people that wanna know all your thoughts there. We got a lot of questions about it. So kind of keeping it in the Facebook realm, looks like Miriam who’s actually on the call right now, we are looking at making our organization dormant at the end of 2016 and coming back online in May to showcase newly produced content. As a part of this decision, we may not be able to maintain a robust presence on Facebook. Can you explain how the Facebook algorithm would treat our reach if we were to shut down completely or drastically reduce our posting for a few months? I think that’s a great question. Sort of like what’s at stake here if they go quiet and come back with a bang?
Jay: That’s 10 point question. Miriam, I’ve done a lot of mergers where companies have bought and sold and we’ve combined pages. But I don’t know if I’ve ever thought about we’re just gonna go dark on purpose and then come back and what the algorithmic implications of that would be.
Jay: Okay. The real answer is I don’t know.
Jamie: Not funny.
Jay: But I can find out. Send me an email, jaybaer.com and I will ask a couple people on my team who are full on Facebook geniuses even more than I pretend to be. I think though that your impact would not be terribly detrimental because the way the algorithm works is that success breeds success, right? So from an engagement standpoint, so if people interact with your content then they’re gonna see it more the next time and then the next and the next time. And so if you can come out of the box hot, so when you reemerge like a butterfly from the cocoon, when you reemerge and you’re like pop, pop, pop, here’s three in a row, things that are solid, they’re gonna get disproportionate engagement, it should jump you back up. What I would probably do though is in that relaunch, I would seed that with paid. So a couple of weeks before you kind of reemerge as a butterfly, I would use some dark posts inside your Facebook ad manager and try and just kinda get into algorithmic radar of your existing fans. Do a paid post and do that for a couple of weeks, kind of get that ball rolling and then turn it on officially. That’s, I’m pretty sure [inaudible 00:30:55].
Jamie: That’s a great question. And we’ll reach out. We’ll resend Jay’s email to you because we also have to send you some presents, Miriam. So very good question. We’ll get you hooked up. So sort of stay, keep it in the social realm. So Dara has a question and this is kind of similar but a little different. We don’t have anyone assigned to social media engagement. Is it better to post regularly to stay on our followers’ radar or only post when something new, big fun is going on? So for those people that may be a little strapped and not have the bandwidth to really give it all they’ve got in social, what would you recommend?
Jay: Well, you could replace social with email and ask the same question. So do you send email all the time or only when you have something big, interesting fun to send, right? It’s the same. It’s the same decision for you, right? Without knowing more about what you’re trying to send, and that is a seven-point question, I would say based on limited information I have, you should always send less but send better because everything you send… So Scott Stratten, who’s another friend of us all and Emma sponsors his show called the UnPodcast, which is terrific with his wife Allison.
And Scott, sort of my, one of my best friends and he has a saying that he uses sometimes. And he talks about the fact that every relationship that you have with any company has sort of a meter, right? And a meter is here and every time you send something that they like, you like them more. And when you get something that they don’t like, it goes less. And so you have this constant like heartbeat or pulse essentially of your relationship. So every time you send something that they don’t like, that isn’t relevant, me getting an email every single day after buying underwear, for example, I was here with that brand, right? Because this underwear is amazing. And then every day I get another email that’s not relevant and it’s like [inaudible 00:32:45], and the exact same thing can happen in social.
So I would say that you should probably focus on things that are worthy of attention. That’s how I like to describe it to clients, is this worthy of attention? Now the second part of that answer is what is good, interesting, fun can vary tremendously. And so I would say there are things worthy of attention that aren’t necessarily things that are fun, that happened in your company, right? That’s when you start talking about the whole utility concept and shining the spotlight on other people and sending out things that are useful and that actually aren’t about you at all. But that’s a longer topic for a different webinar.
Jamie: Yeah. Well, and to that end, and you may have kind of answered it but Charlie has a similar question except he is very specific. As a boutique estate planning law firm, how do we engage current clients and prospects on social media? Do we really need a Twitter when our main topic, preparing your documents in the event of death, is not the most exciting thing to put out there? So I think that’s a… I love this question. I don’t know how you’re gonna rank it, but I think it is really interesting. You know, when you have a brand, choosing the right channels, you know, when you aren’t, you know, selling underwear when you’re…
Jay: Absolutely, that’s a nine-point question and I know a little bit about boutique estate planning law firms. My wife used to work for one. So that’s the kind of scenario where social is probably an amplifier to content as opposed to its own thing. And so you are in the information business. Any sort of legal professional service, accounting, finance, consulting, like what I do, all of that you have nothing to sell other than what’s between your ears, like literally you sell nothing. You sell knowledge. So the secret is to give away everything, you know, one bite at a time. And so that’s one blog post at a time. That’s one video at a time. That’s one webinar at a time, it’s one podcast at a time.
So what you need to do is figure out how to unlock and unleash everything you know about estate planning and give it away one piece at a time. A series of videos would be terrific. And then you amplify those videos. You’ve made sure that people know about those videos using social. So instead of social saying, we’re awesome, if you’re gonna, maybe think about getting your estate in order. You think about, hey, go here to check out this really useful content that’s gonna be helpful for you. So what a lot of professional services providers they’ll say is, ‘‘Well, we can’t do that, Jay, because if we tell them everything we know, they won’t have to hire us.’’ Is a really common, like we can’t, we can’t be that transparent because they won’t have to hire us. And also our competitors will know what we know. They’ll steal our secret sauce.
And I’ll tell you two things. Number one, your secret sauce isn’t a secret. I’ve been a consultant for almost 25 years. I’ve worked with hundreds of companies. And in almost no case do you actually have a meaningful competitive advantage in the thought leadership context. Your process is the same as anybody else’s process. You just called it a different acronym. So not to mention the fact if you have anybody who works for you who used to work for a competitor or vice versa, they took that process with them when they left. If you have any clients that have worked for you and your competitors, they also will tell the process, right? So your secret sauce isn’t secret.
And the second thing is, and I’ve learned this the hard way in my career, if somebody is thinking, well, here’s the deal, I could hire Jay as a consultant or Jay’s team, or I could read all of Jay’s blog posts and do it myself. That’s not a customer you want, right? If they value your expertise so little that they believe that reading blogs can get them to the same place that then that’s probably not somebody is gonna be a real successful client to begin with. So a list of ingredients does not make somebody a chef. So in this case, take what you know, give it away, and use social to make sure people know that content exists.
Jamie: I love that answer. That was a quotable answer, Jay. You had a lot of good stuff in there. So kind of shifting gears a little bit. Where was it? I had it. Oh, first of all, not to sway your ranking, but Elizabeth starts her question with I respect him a lot. So there you go.
Jay: That’s a one point right there.
Jamie: Go Elizabeth. So she wants to know what do you see as the biggest obstacle facing small businesses getting onboard with customer nurturing programs and what will be the outcome if they don’t get on board with a customer nurturing cycle? How much time do they have to get it or die in business? And I will note, I think Elizabeth is speaking as someone who works with clients. So she’s saying I think help her explain how to get people on board with nurturing their customers.
Jay: I mean the challenge, and that is a eight points question but you get nine points because of your love for me. We’ve got a few smaller clients on our roster too and the challenge on the nurturing side is not wanting to or even hooking it up. I’m like, you know, it’s easy to set up a nurturing system on Emma. It’s having something to say in that nurture, right? It’s like, okay, if we’re gonna nurture somebody, we’re gonna send out an email through marketing automation and that email’s gonna go day 2, day 6, day 14 or even, you know, week 1, week 3, week 5, week 7. For small businesses, having enough content and that kind of flow of information can be really, really daunting. Because they’re like, I don’t have anything else to say. Which is ridiculous because just like I mentioned in the previous answer, if nothing else, and we’ve actually done this with clients who are like, we can’t write that many emails. Is that okay?
Here’s the deal. I want you to take your phone, go into your audio notes. I want you to press the button. I want you to talk for the next hour about how you guys help clients. And then you take that, transcribe it, right? Using a transcription service, we use Speechpad at my company but there’s lots of them out there and you just edit it and rewrite it. And now you basically have an entire nurture sequence, right? It’s just you don’t think of it that way. So that’s the biggest challenge is having the content to viably send. Because again, like we talked about, if you’re sending emails that aren’t relevant in the nurture sequence, that doesn’t really help people either. One of those kinds of cheats around that though, the shortcuts and we do this at Convince and Convert is sometimes I’ll do something in a nurture sequence that says look, just a quick email, hey, I just wanna know more about you. So just reply to this email right now and tell me who you are, what you do.
And I get emails every single day from people who are like, oh yeah, I’m Elizabeth and I was on this webinar, or it’s great and you get to kind of know people and it’s low impact. Easy, doesn’t require any effort on either side to speak of, so that can work too. So that’s the biggest challenge is having enough things to say or thinking that you do. Is it an existential issue for small businesses to have marketing automation and nurture? No, it’s not, certainly not yet.
On the consulting side, professional services side, which I think you said is where Elizabeth is, I think it’s pretty darn important. And you know, within 18 to 24 months I think you’re gonna have to have that setup. But there are other small businesses that will never need to have it. Like if you’re selling hot dogs from a hot dog cart, your marketing automation process is probably not mission critical. You could do a cool hot dog newsletter. And I’m not kidding, you can totally do that. You could do a condiment reviews, right? You can do all kinds of cool stuff. You know, the utility play there would be, okay, we’re gonna have a hot dog cart and then we’re gonna do a review once every two weeks of hotdog buns that you can buy in the store. And say, okay, you know, here’s the 15 different kinds of hotdog buns we have at Kroger. This one blows, this one’s awesome, and just send that email newsletter. Then every time somebody is downtown they see your cart. Like, oh bro, I get your email, but it will be when you’re selling hot dogs. That’s how I would do it.
Jamie: Love it. And I do wanna just report back if you were hanging by your, you know, your seat wondering what everyone thought about the podcast idea with Ann. All right Elizabeth, perhaps your fans as well. I love that idea. I think it’s the same Elizabeth. Catherine, thumbs up, Becky. I’d watch it. Elizabeth again, I think I’ll start my own. So maybe. Yeah. Hey, where there’s room for everybody. Jacqueline says she’s not sure if she has questions about fanny packs, but she would like you to talk about email. So there we go. So it sounds like it’s a winner and you need to do it.
Jay: Okay. All right, that’s good. That’s good feedback.
Jaime: This is great. Oh, and then Dominic just wants to know, Jay, you seem to have an acting or standup background. True or false?
Jay: Mostly false. I’m gonna take that as a compliment, I think. I was in acting briefly in high school for like one year, I did a little play action. And I was named most likely to be a game show host in high school. So I was the kid who every time there was an assembly or like pep rally or whatever, I was always the MC. Like from sophomore year on I was that guy. I was the announcer. So that’s, that’s pretty much my only background in that world. And then also doing 60 conferences a year for many, many years.
Jamie: Yeah. Well, there you have it, folks. He’s a high school actor and the MC and parlayed that into too much
Jay: I did some radio in college too. I started the radio station at my university. Real radio work back in the day, back in college, like when nobody, literally nobody is listening. They know if you are [inaudible 00:42:47]
Jamie: The dulcet tones of Jay Baer.
Jay: Yeah, dulcet tones of indie rock.
Jamie: So you said game show, which actually reminds me of Content Marketing World, which is next week in Cleveland where I will be. And I will you be there as well?
Jay: I will be there. I’m doing a couple of sessions. I’m doing one on podcasting with Mitch Joel.
Jamie: There you go.
Jay: Then I’m doing a Hug Your Haters-esque session on “How Negative Customer Feedback Can Drive Your Content Marketing”.
Jamie: That sounds so awesome. So if you’re there, stop by. We’ll be there. I’ll be there. Actually. So the reason I bring,
Jay: We’re gonna see you on Tuesday, a little powwow.
Jamie: Yes. We’ll chat.
Jay: I’m gonna make sure you’ll be there.
Jamie: All right. But the reason I bring it up is because Sean name drops at Joe Polizi, who’s the…
Jay: Never heard of him.
Jamie: Who is the Content Marketing Institute, Content Marketing World grand poobah if you will. And he’s a brilliant thought leader, really great guy. So Sean actually says, Joe, please I suggest…
Jay: That’s minus one point.
Jamie: Oh no. Sean says Joe suggests using or owning just one social channel until a certain point of growth is achieved and then branching out. Do you agree? So we’re pitting us against each other, but it’s interesting.
Jay: I don’t know that I would say it quite that way. I would say it this way, which is if you don’t love social media, you suck at social media. So don’t be on a channel that you can’t actually commit to, both from a marketing standpoint and from a customer service standpoint because if you’re there, if you have a presence there, your customers will assume that they can contact you if they have a problem. I’ll give you an example. A month or so ago, you guys remember probably when Southwest had a huge computer problem and they had to cancel like all these flights. It was like pandemonium. It was real, real bad, real bad.
And they handled it not very well in the real world. I’m told that, you know, the gate agents were kind of snarly, partially because nobody knew what was going on, they had no computer system. But they handled it pretty well online. In fact, I wrote a whole blog post about this. They did a nice job on Facebook, a nice job on Twitter. In fact, they used Facebook Live and had live interviews with their COO saying, hey, here’s what’s going on, here’s what we’re doing, which is pretty revolutionary and the first time that I am aware of that a major brand used Facebook live in a crisis response scenario. And I think it’s first of what we see quite often going forward.
But the one place where they totally dropped the ball on, and I called them on it in this post is on Instagram. So they answered on Twitter, they answered on Facebook, they answered on their own site. They’ve got a blog and a discussion board and they were there, of course. But on their Instagram account, a bunch of people were like, hey, where’s my flight? You guys suck, what are we doing? And they never answered there at all. And I talked to their head of social who’s a buddy of mine, who had been on my podcast, and he’s like, yeah, we just flat didn’t even think about it. We just didn’t think about Instagram as a customer service channel but we’re there obviously for marketing. So if you’re there, it could be a customer service channel. So you have to make sure that if you’re there, you’re there.
So I get Joe’s point, which is you shouldn’t be involved in a social channel if you’re not gonna be good at it. And he’s totally right about that. But I don’t know if that number is necessarily one, right? That number could be three, it could be four, it can be six. You should be all the places that your customers are and that you have a strategy and that you have relevant metrics and that you can actually do things that are worthy of attention.
Jamie: Yeah, that’s great advice. And I think that’s a great reminder for any brand, because we are…I’m looking at McKenzie who is our social guru and I’m like we’re in every chance. We’ve gotta still stay on top of it. But yeah, that’s a great point. So another question, and this kind of takes it back to email, this is from Matt and I think this is just a good question. I’m an executive search consultant, fancy name for a headhunter. When someone clicks on a link to a job that they see in my email, how would you recommend I reach out to them without seeming like a stalker to see if they have any interest in actually pursuing the job that they clicked on to view? So I think this is a really good point because Matt’s job is to be aggressive and kind of pay attention.
Jay: It’s a 10 point question. I love that.
Jamie: That’s a good one.
Jay: We’re gonna hook him up. Okay. So he sends out an email, maybe it’s a newsletter, I’m guessing, right? It’s probably not one on one. So some kind of newsletter or like jobs for the people who are unhappy. And you click a link, kind of what’s this job all about? And then the question is how do I follow up on that without looking icky? It depends on how much time and effort you want to put into this. I’ll tell you what the best case scenario is. Best case scenario is you mine your clickstream data so you know who clicked what and then you create very short videos, 10 second, 15-second videos. And you do a video and you do it right into your phone and you say, hey Jamie, I noticed that you clicked the link for this job, content marketing manager at Convince and Convert. It’s a really interesting company, I think you’d find it fascinating. If you have any questions at all about the position or what they’re looking for, email me and my personal email is right here. Or you can hit me on Facebook messenger right here. And then you send that, a link to that email to that person, right? And do it for everybody who clicks. That’s the best way to do it, right? Because it takes something cold and makes it warm.
The second best way to do it is the same idea but with marketing automation, using some data segmentation drop-ins, right? So we say, okay, if you click then you get this email, which essentially is a written version of what I just did in the video. But instead of me having to say content marketing position at Convince and Convert, we just pull that string in from the name of the clinic, right? So we use some data fanciness to be able to customize that and do it that way.
I don’t think at this point in time that most people would be like, ‘‘Oh my God, it’s wizardry from Harry Potter,’’ if they got a follow-up email that indicates that you know what they clicked on. I think people believe clicks to be tracked at this point in most cases. So I wouldn’t be too concerned about that. Now where you can get super freaky, and actually this is what you would do if you want to go way pro on this, is you take that, that list of clicks, right? You upload that to Twitter and say this custom audience on Twitter are people who clicked the link for the content marketing job at Convince and Convert. Then you write an ad on Twitter, which is the video from you saying not to Jamie but to everybody, ‘‘Hey, I wanna let you know about this amazing job at Convince and Convert content marketing manager. And then they see that ad on Twitter and they’re like, ‘‘Wow, that’s the same place I just clicked on the email.’’ And that kind of closes that loop as well.
Jamie: That is fantastic advice and actually we had lots of questions that came in and I wish I could ask them all but people asking specifically how you tie email to social and I think you’ve touched on it really well today.
Jay: Well, the best thing is is like any email list you have, right? So any conditions, it’s the whole list. People who clicked, who didn’t click, people who clicked but didn’t click yesterday, people who unsubscribed. Any sort of condition you can upload to Facebook or to Twitter. And by Facebook, I also mean Instagram. And then you can build audiences inside Facebook and witter only to reach those people with specific messages.
So one of the things that we’re working on is having people sign up for an email that alerts you when a new podcast is published. Because if you don’t go into your podcast app, you don’t actually know when the podcast is ready, which that’s one of the challenges I have with podcasts, right? So basically get on the podcast notification email. Well, if we do that, we can then take the people who are on that list, upload that to Facebook and then create a little ad that has the audio clip of the podcast and only the people who have signed up for that email will see that ad on Facebook, right? So you’re tying them together that way.
Jamie: That’s great. That makes total sense. If it doesn’t make sense, let us know and we’ll clarify. Because this is a very active audience. I’m very excited and you’ve gotten lots of great compliments and I’ll pass them along, I promise. But I do, we only have a few more minutes left. So I do wanna get a few more questions in because you guys…
Jay: I’d do this all day if I didn’t have a meeting coming up, I would just sit.
Jamie: I know. I’m having a…
Jay: We should do this on a regular basis and just do ask me anythings. I’m in. Actually, when we work on our 2017 program together, that’s what we should do. We should do this like every 60 days.
Jamie: I was gonna also mention that Scott Stratten thing you mentioned, we’re doing this very thing with he and Allison on the 15th.
Jay: Oh, that’s awesome. Allison’s doing it too, that’s great. I will be in New York that day but I will try and tune in and ask really hard questions.
Jamie: I think you should. I was gonna try to see. I was like…
Jay: He and I were in Fargo together. He and I were in Fargo together yesterday. True story. Ask him about his trip to Fargo because it is an all-timer.
Jamie: I’m jotting it down. Make a note, trip to Fargo. I’m sure he’ll bring it up anyway. But okay. So let’s see here. Oh goodness. Oh, this is a very good one. Annette, I would like to reach out just once to people who have opted out, inviting them back with a giveaway and or an opportunity to receive fewer emails. Is this legal, would you advise for or against?
Jay: I’m not gonna get into the legality of that. You should talk to Emma about kind of how your canned spam rules are set up. I would do it at opt out, right? So create either in Emma or outside of Emma a custom landing page that says, hey, if you leave a puppy dies, you know? Or I’ve seen one in the past which was for every person who unsubscribes, we fire an intern, which is hilarious. And so, or whatever works for you, you know, some sort of funny thing. And then say, look, we understand that it’s not for everybody but before you just bail, we would like to give you the opportunity to change your cadence, right? So if we give this daily, would you like it weekly, would you like it, you know, only when we have something super duper, you know, incredibly awesome. So you call it awesome, only you know, or whatever. And give them an option. But I think the time to do that is when they have clicked the button to do it, you know, a week, a month, a year later. I would be a little skeptical about that just because of the way email is set up.
Now to my previous point, the way to reactivate those people is in Facebook to say let’s take the email list of people who have unsubscribed and reactivate them with a giveaway or an offer or sumo wrestling or whatever you wanna do, but do it in the other venue because they’re not only are you not potentially in violation of canned spam rules but you also were kind of getting at them in a way that they’re not expecting. They’d be like, wow, that’s super badass. I wanna come back.
Jamie: Yeah, absolutely. And I think we use an example of that. Michael’s, the craft store is the one that we sort of herald. They, I’d never thought twice about Michael’s. I went to opt out. I was like, why am I even getting this? And now I am a fan for life and talk about them all the time and we talk about them in all kinds of presentations because that opt out experience was exemplary. And just the language they use, it was super simple. So a very good point. And again, Annette, if you are a customer, reach out directly and we’ll chat through what you can and can’t do and help you come up with a solution. So, good question.
All right. So I think we probably have time for one more. Here’s one from Holly and it’s got, it’s got a lot. This might have been one of my faves. George Clooney has his own tequila brand. So while this is a question about tequila, it’s also a question about your general views on UnBranding. First, do you like the tequila? And again, to note if I didn’t mention it, you’re a tequila connoisseur, literally, you’re a collector of tequila.
Jay: I’m from Arizona originally. So it kinda goes with the territory.
Jamie: There you go. Second, what advice can you give us non-famous entrepreneurs of the world who would love to quit our jobs and start our own companies? So if you’re not a Clooney and you’ve got a dream, what is your advice when people are sort of wondering, should I stay or should I go? Should I chase the…
Jay: So I dig the tequila actually. I’ve had it, Casamigos. It’s good, it’s unexpectedly good. I was at a conference with Clooney not long ago with Adobe and he is awesome. Like, I mean, we all know he’s awesome but I mean like awesome dude.
Jamie: He’s not joking around.
Jay: He’s just really a good dude all the way around. Like cool to everybody, doesn’t play the star game. I was like really, like given how enormous he is, he’s unexpectedly a treasure. He said during that event that he’s gonna make more money this year off the tequila than off of movies. Right? Holy cow. So he’s like, yeah, this is like the greatest thing. They kind of did it on a lark sort of and all of a sudden it’s like, oh my God, I’m gonna make like $30 million [inaudible 00:56:29]. So that’s amazing.
Here is, it’s a really timely question because right before we logged on, I was talking to my speaking coach. And I have one coach for content and one for performance and my content coach is working with me on a new speech I’m creating called “Crack The Black Diamond”, which is all about how to overcome the four fears that hold us back, which may, in fact, we might talk for next year marketing [inaudible 00:56:54].
And the premise of the talk is that wisdom is fear in disguise. That when we think we’re being wise, when we think, well, what society would say is I shouldn’t quit my job, I should keep my job because it’s too risky to quit my job, usually we’re actually just scared. And so we use conventional wisdom as an excuse to not actually do what we think is right. And so the fact that you’ve even asked this question and the way you asked it, you already know what the answer is. You just have to understand that fear doesn’t exist. Fear is only in your mind. There is no actual fear. Danger is real. Fear is always a figment of your imagination.
So what I do and what I would advise you to do is to three things. I want you to take a piece of paper and a pen and I want you to write down what you’re scared of as specifically as possible. When you do that, in many cases you find out that the things you’re scared of isn’t actually really…it doesn’t really, it’s just amorphous, it’s the boogeyman, it’s the monster under the bed. So write down your fears, take the same piece of paper and write down that fear is all in my head. And then every single day in the morning, you take a piece of paper and a pen and you write one sentence every morning. And you say, I do not choose fear, I choose clarity. Because when you are not scared, you know exactly what you need to do next to accomplish your goals. So start doing that.
Jamie: Man. Jay, what an ending. I had no idea. This has been my favorite hour in a long time. Scott’s got a lot to live up to in a couple of weeks.
Jay: He’s way funnier than me, so it’ll be terrific.
Jamie: I mean, but you just took us to like to church. That was like therapy. It was wonderful. Well, thank you so much, Jay. This was truly a pleasure. We took notes of everyone that wins a prize.
Jay: Awesome, I’ll send them cool stuff.
Jamie: We will send you some cool stuff for sure. Yeah, thank you so much for joining us. And again, to everyone that was listening, we will send the recording out. You’ll get some nice email marketing from Emma. And sign up for Definitive. It’s a fantastic newsletter. So yeah.
Jay: Social people, get on the Social Pros. Go to the Social Pros podcast, socialpros.com. You can find it on iTunes or whatever. I think you’d like to show lots of cool stuff every week.
Jamie: Awesome. Well, thank you so much for joining us and we’ll see you later. Bye.