You know how sometimes, through the natural ebb and flow and ups and downs of work, you forget about something that works really, really well? One day, it's your bread and butter. The next, it's off the back of your mental dresser hiding in the cobwebs until you do some deep cleaning.
Today I want to talk about one of those things.
Today I want to talk about the power of sending your guests, leads, friends, enemies, dogs, cats, a personal email.
The Big Surprise
When you do this, you'll quickly learn three things.
- People actually respond.
- They can see things you can't.
- Most of your assumptions are wrong.
Let me give you a simple example.
A while back I was offering a free “sample” for a side project. Whenever someone would sign up but not buy, I'd send them an email that went something like this:
Saw that you requested a sample and wanted to reach out. To be honest, this is a new project so I'm really trying to learn and would love to get your thoughts on what intrigued you enough to ask for a sample and your feedback on it once you had the chance to take a look. Any feedback or ideas?
By the way, love your business. Hard to imagine having a bad day at work watching kids giggling on bounce houses all day ;)
Let me break that down quickly. I'd start with their name, make it conversational, see if I could get any insight into the gap between why they tried but didn't buy, and then add something at the end to make it extremely clear this was from a person, not a computer.
What Happened Next
What always surprised me was how many people were willing to reply when they knew it was a normal, real person on the other side.
They'd teach me volumes about what in my marketing had caught their eye and even more volumes about where the mismatch was between their needs/expectations and my product.
I can honestly say I learned more in 2-3 emails than I did in a month of watching my analytics or even reading surveys.
Try It. Now.
May I recommend a few people to start with? And may I suggest a snippet from those emails below each one?
“You are awesome, John. Your family is what a marketer dreams about. I'd love to get your perspective on why you keep coming back but also what I could do to make your next trip better than your last?”
Yesterday's Email Opt-Ins (That Aren't Customers)
“Hey Sandy, Just wanted to say thanks for joining our newsletter. Our next newsletter goes out in a few days, any thoughts on what would make that email live up to what you were hoping to get when you signed up?”
Active Newsletter Subscriber w/ No Purchase History
“Hi Steve, just wanted to say thanks for being on our newsletter. It covers a lot of bases but hopefully you find something in there that's useful. On that note, I'd love to get your feedback on Templeton Resort in general. I get blinders on sometimes because I spend so much time here, so if you have any thoughts or ideas on what we do I'd love to hear.”
Keep in mind that you don't even have to ask “why don't you come here,” if you simply ask for their feedback generically on your resort you'll get whatever is top of mind which is much better than leading the witness down your own paths of thought.
Just a couple weeks ago I remembered the value of these emails. The value of reaching out to as many people as my schedule can afford to personally connect and learn from them.
I'm going to up my efforts on this going forward and I invite you to join me.
Have conversations your customers, your leads, your evangelists, your past guests. Try to get a glimpse of how they see you. Try to understand why.
You're busy. I know. But it'll be worth it. I promise.