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Welcome to the Creative Quill Newsletter, brought to you by Laura Orsini and Write | Market | Design. We will use this vehicle to share tips and ideas on creativity, writing, and book marketing for self-publishing authors. If you'd like us to address specific topics, please be sure to let us know.

<<First Name>>,  you have been more than patient waiting for the Winter Author Blog Challenge results. Take heart — we'll announce the winner later today!

FEATURED ARTICLE                                                                                                                                          MARCH 2013

Use an Autoresponder Campaign to Follow Up with Your New Mailing List Subscribers

by Laura Orsini                                            

Last time, we talked about the importance of building an e-mail contact list and explored the holes your list might have in it. Once you build that list, the next step is to connect with the people on it – on a regular basis. An autoresponder campaign is a great way to do that. An autoresponder is a program or script that automatically sends or replies to e-mails via your e-mail service provider. Even if you’re unfamiliar with the term, you probably have received an autoresponder if you’ve ever contacted a company through their website to request service or help with a problem and received an e-mail response letting you know they got your message.

An autoresponder campaign involves more than a single e-mail, but rather a series of e-mails intended to invite and entice the recipient into learning more about you, your book, your company, and/or your other offerings. It plays off that initial free offer on your site for an item of value (e.g., special report, teleclasses, webinars, sample chapters) in exchange for the visitor’s e-mail address.

If your special report, teleclass, webinar, or sample chapter contains a stellar call to action, you might hear your phone ring or see a jump in sales through your site, or…

Say your free giveaway is a sample chapter of your next book. Joe Smith enters his e-mail and – voilà – your sample chapter appears in his inbox within minutes. But let's say Joe doesn’t immediately open your sample chapter, because he’s a busy man, and while he wants to read it, he looks at the e-mail, closes it, and intends to get back to it tomorrow. In the meantime, tomorrow comes, and 67 new e-mails pile on top of the very important message containing your sample chapter. He goes back through the e-mail and, yep, he sure means to get to that sample chapter, but after he finishes with a couple client calls. Whoop … 59 more e-mails pile on top of the one with your sample chapter. Soon, your e-mail is way down the list, even though Joe really does want to read your sample chapter, which could help revolutionize his business.

Why leave it to chance? With an autoresponder campaign, you follow up with Joe the next day to remind him that he downloaded your sample chapter, and encourage him to open it and read it right now. And then you also encourage him to do something else with another specific call to action.

A couple days later, you send another follow-up message, phrasing it as though you assume Joe has by now read the sample chapter, and asking if he’s had the opportunity to try out the tip you offered on page 3. And so on, following a regular schedule, for a specified period of time. Only you don’t have to remember to send these messages, because they are on autopilot, set to begin going out as soon as Joe enters his e-mail address into your capture box.

We are currently working on an autoresponder campaign to follow up our newly issued special report, "Anatomy of a Book Launch." And just to demonstrate how powerful this type of drip email campaign can be, one of our clients who promotes a health product went from selling 12 units a week prior to implementing his autoresponder campaign to 700 units a week. Who wouldn’t want that kind of success?

In an article for AllMerchants.com, Ken Hill offers some tips on other ways to use autoresponders, including :

  • Use autoresponders to conduct simple polls.
  • Use autoresponder to deliver an email course that provides a hands-on explanation of the benefits of purchasing your product.
  • Use autoresponders to send out excerpts of your book or info product.
  • Use autoresponders to schedule announcements for new blog posts or articles you've published.
  • Use autoresponders to send out weekly tips.

In order to begin your autoresponder campaign, you will need a subscription to an e-mail service that facilitates their delivery. Two good ones are A Weber and Mail Chimp.

Once you’ve begun to build your list, make sure you touch them regularly and cement that call to action with a strong autoresponder campaign. ■

NEXT MONTH: Why Your Book Marketing Messages May NOT Be Working Hint: It Starts with CTA

Clients we're supporting...

Taras Collum is a financial educator whose goal is teaching the average family to be financially savvy so that they can get out of debt, save for college, and plan a secure retirement. For those  living paycheck to paycheck, these things probably won't become a reality. Details in coming issues about the new program he's unveiling in June!
Blogs we're following...

This co-authored blog is a great insiders' look at various aspects of the self-publishing. From writing to marketing to dealing with comments and demands from fans, they cover all kinds of topics of interest to working authors, as well as those who are as-yet unpublished, but looking for helpful info. 
Sites we're using...

Want a promotional giveaway with more staying power than a bookmark? A bumper sticker could be your answer, and BuildASign.com is the perfect place to buy them! A single bumper sticker starts at $2.99, (but why would you order just ONE?) and they're as low as 60¢ apiece if you order 1,000. Great prices - great customer service.
 
 
 
Resources we're recommending...

Connie Kadansky, of Exceptional Sales Performance, is an expert at coaching her clients to "get their ASK in gear." If you find yourself hesitating to prospect or promote yourself and your business, chances are you're experiencing Sales Call Reluctance®, and Connie is just the person to help you overcome it. Call her today to start earning what you're worth!

Conferences upcoming...

The 16th Annual Norther Arizona Book Fest will take place in Flagstaff at the Coconino Center for the Arts on Saturday, May 18. With a theme of music and literature, the event will partner with the Grand Canyon Guitar Society and feature musical performances as well as authors and workshops in various genres. NAZBookFest.org
Contests for submitting...

Fiscal Press will give an annual prize of $500 to $2,000 against publication royalties for a novel on the theme of business or entrepreneurship. Judges' decisions are final. Submit your manuscript of up to 90,000 words by April 30. GUIDELINES
 
 
 
Books we're reading...

OK, I just started reading this one, so I don't have a verdict on the controversy yet, but I suspect there's more to Sheryl Sandberg's message than the alarmists and hyper-reactionaries are allowing for. Buy here.
Movies we're watching...

Nothing bugs Finicky Movie Girl more than romantic costars who have no chemistry (ahem, Colin Firth and Renée Zellweger come to mind). Which is why she was soooo pleased that Jenna Fischer and Chris Messina have fabulous chemistry in this touching, believable movie. No, it's probably not an award-winner, but it's an immensely satisfying little romance. Available on Netflix.
Freebies we're offering...

Far too many new authors wait until they have their books in their hands to begin thinking about marketing. The best time to start marketing is when as soon as you write the first sentence of your book. This 13-page special report will walk you through all the steps of planning a successful book launch so that you  have readers ready and waiting...
 
 
 
Places Laura's speaking...

Thinking about writing a book? This 4-hour workshop will teach you the basics, from writing to editing to cover design. And Laura will be there talking MARKETING! Just $97 includes lunch. April 20th - Deer Valley Airport in Phoenix. RSVP here.
THIS MONTH'S OFFER...

Social Media Review
. If you're still relying on Facebook as your only social media connection, you may be missing a few channels that would work to enhance your brand and online presence. Call today to book your Social Media Review from Write | Market | Design. Just $29
regularly $129. 602.518.5376. Be sure to mention the Creative Quill Newsletter.
Many people who want to be writers don't really want to be writers. They want to have been writers. The wish they had a book in print. 
James Michener
 

Get your ringside seat for the launch of a movement!

Join Write | Market | Design for the launch of Dr. Natasha Deonarain's new book, The 7 Principles of Health, and learn how to join the Health Conscious Movement. If you're sick and tired of being sick and tired ... if you or someone you know are in debt because of healthcare costs ... if you or someone you know have received a disease diagnosis, it's time to reclaim your power over your own health future. This life-changing book explains the steps we need to take to create the shift that will release us from our old fear-based thinking and propel us toward true, lasting health and happier lives. 

Don’t wait any longer to find optimal health!

You have the power - it's time to believe it! RSVP and reserve your seat today!

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<<First Name>>, while chances are good it's Monday, April 1, or later when you're reading this, we did indeed get the March newsletter out in March!

Wishing you continued peace & prosperity —

 

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