fbpx

Creative Email Marketing

FOR BRANDS WITH A MESSAGE WORTH SPREADING

Marketing Automation Mastery: Double Down on Different

(This is Part 4 of our 6 Part Marketing Automation Mastery Series. If you want to see all the topics we cover in this series, click here.)

I skipped my weekly Automation Addicts Anonymous meeting to take another stab at convincing you that there’s more you could be doing with the wonderful wizardry of the tools available to you for building a scalable and sustainable business.

Come on… join us.

Here’s what I can say…

You should be using every technological tool at your disposal to create amazing experiences for your readers, and you better have a good system to do it.

 

Good Enough Isn’t Good Enough

You (I deeply hope) aren’t aiming to be the Generic Great Value brand in your market. Whoever you serve, you can be sure that their expectations are rising.

People are seeing (and feeling) what a modern, customer-centric experience is like… and shocker, they’re loving it.

Big brands are starting to prioritize customer experience and creating deeper relationships with their customers, and you can bet that if you don’t do the same, you’ll be left behind.

“Great idea, hotshot, except they’ve got millions of dollars and big teams that make it all possible.”

To that, first I’d say, I’m never offended being called hotshot.

Secondly, believe it or not, you’re not actually at a disadvantage. In fact, you’ve got the upper hand over big brands.

 

Different Is Better Than Better

Let’s say you’re running a gym…

Your job isn’t to be the Award Winning Best Gym to Ever Exist in the History of Evers. We all know that title belongs to Mark Fisher Fitness. Shout out to my favorite haven’t-been-there-but-love-it-anyway gym.

See, Mark Fisher actually does an amazing job at being better by being different. 

Let me explain…

If you had a tragic experience with a Unicorn as a child – first, email me every agonizing detail of that story – then you probably won’t pull up Mark’s website and be greeted with tingles of intrigue and hilarious curiosity that result in booking a one-way ticket to New York to join the latex-laden “Ninjas” who inhabit that fantastical fitness facility.

…but if you’re of a very different creative conscious configuration, I might have just shown you your new favorite gym. If that’s the case, then I’d say Mark did his job. And better yet, you didn’t even have to set foot in the facility to know beyond a shadow of a doubt if it’s your vibe or not. Praise the power of the Interwebz!

When you create a category of your own, you make comparison unnecessary, if not altogether impossible. Please feel free to find the comparable competitor to Mark Fisher Fitness. I’ll wait…

Mark created a category of his own. What that category is, I can’t put into words, but it clearly sits somewhere at the intersection of getting fit and not giving a shit (in the best possible way).

My guess – and by guess I mean bet-every-dollar-I-have guarantee – is that nobody is holding a brochure for Mark’s “Enchanted Ninja Clubhouse of Glory and Dreams” in one hand and a Planet Fitness brochure in the other and comparing the amenities.

“Hmmm, well Planet Fitness has a great towel rental policy… but Mark let’s me get in a sweaty squat sesh while dressed up as a sexy spandexed mythological creature. Ahhh, tough decisions.”

When you’re clear on who you’re talking to and what they want, your job isn’t to convince them of anything. It’s to be ruthlessly clear on who you’re for and who you aren’t, and then give the right people an invitation to join the party.

Speaking of which…

 

People Talk – Give Them Something to Say.

To some degree, you get to control the conversation in your brand. You can hear what customers are saying and respond immediately. But what happens to that message once it migrates out to mega-bite you in the ass?

Your brand isn’t Vegas. Stories don’t stay bottled up. People leave. People talk.

Don’t leave it to chance.

Most online brands do the bare minimum when it comes to following up or providing a great experience for a customer after the purchase (or even after an email opt-in!). If you take it seriously and create an amazing experience at each phase, people will take notice.

People Want Something to Share.

If you haven’t noticed by the amount of selfies that flood your Instagram feed every day, people love showing interesting, cool, and unique things that happen to them.

Derek Sivers absolutely nailed it with a short, hilarious, automated confirmation email that resulted in countless shares and thousands of new customers. This is the power of capitalizing on the almost-always-forgotten opportunity to connect and entertain your customers at every little step in the customer journey.

The key point: The best ideas are often the simplest ideas, well executed.

But people also like telling tall tales of tragedy of all the (factual or fictional) experiences they have after a not-so-great interaction with a brand. Go check out your favorite restaurant on Yelp… there are guaranteed to be some scathing critiques of your go-to dish or best buddy bartender.

Whether you’re trying to have the whole internet abuzz with chipper chatter about how absolutely unbelievable their experience has been with you, or even if you’re just trying to prevent grumpy guests from getting their grief out online and damaging your reputation, use the tools that are available to you.

I’ll make the argument that you’re overestimating how difficult it is to get started creating high-tech, high-touch automated experiences. I’d also bet you’re underestimating how impactful it can be on customer satisfaction.

Don’t believe me? I’d gladly show you our data from hundreds of customers that show levels of engagement 2,064% above the industry average.

The key point: The best ideas are often the simplest ideas, well executed.

But people also like telling tall tales of tragedy of all the (factual or fictional) experiences they have after a not-so-great interaction with a brand. Go check out your favorite restaurant on Yelp… there are guaranteed to be some scathing critiques of your go-to dish or best buddy bartender.

Whether you’re trying to have the whole internet abuzz with chipper chatter about how absolutely unbelievable their experience has been with you, or even if you’re just trying to prevent grumpy guests from getting their grief out online and damaging your reputation, use the tools that are available to you.

I’ll make the argument that you’re overestimating how difficult it is to get started creating high-tech, high-touch automated experiences. I’d also bet you’re underestimating how impactful it can be on customer satisfaction.

Don’t believe me? I’d gladly show you our data from hundreds of customers that show levels of engagement 2,064% above the industry average.

Now them’s some pretty engagement metrics, them is…

Yes, really. And yes, you could too.

Whatever you do, just make sure it isn’t more of the same. As Bob Dylan foretold, “change is gonna come.”

 

Scaling Different

When it comes to using marketing automation to stand out, you can’t just do what everybody else is doing.

You need to think and act differently to actually be different.

Always remember that the entire point of automation is to allow you to do things that matter at scale. But to do that, you need to make sure you’re clear on what matters.

Like we’ve talked about before, you first have to know who you’re talking to.

Once you’re clear on that, you can build your messaging and systems to support and scale it.

 

What Is Everyone Else Doing?

Take a look around.

What’s the “norm” in your industry or with your target market?

Look at where everyone is zigging so you can start zagging.

Are your (soon to be irrelevant) competitors all doing webinar funnels? Then maybe don’t be another “me too” brand trying to wrangle webinar leads. As Friends has constantly taught us in Entrepreneurland, sometimes, you’ve got to…

Sure, if everyone is doing the same thing, there may be a reason. It might be working.

But anything that starts getting overused will quickly burn out and you’ll be left stranded on Imitation Island with the other bandwagon brands.

This is where you’ve got to get creative and see the unseen.

It isn’t as simple as looking at what’s common practice and doing the opposite.

“Hey, my competitors are all sending nice thank you emails to their customers. I better stand out with a flaming bag of dog dookie on their doorstep!”

While I appreciate the out-of-the-box thinking, maybe you should back away from the Billy Madison idea bag and try something a bit more strategic.

Read Between the Lines

The best kind of “different” comes from being able to see things that everyone else is totally overlooking.

Almost always, the best ideas and opportunities to impress the pants off your customers comes from deeply understanding the nuance of their needs.

Way too often, I see brands get too ambitious and focus on trying to make one thing, one touchpoint, or one part of the offer do the heavy lifting of the entire customer experience. It’s great to understand the high-impact areas that you can leverage, but better than that is often being able to stack the small wins.

The Compound Effect of Extraordinary

Pain points, dreams, goals, frustrations… none of these occur in a vacuum.

People are complex creatures. Everything in our lives is interconnected.

If you decide you want to get fit and improve your health, you might go to a gym… but you very well might also:

  • Start reading more about beginner exercise programs.
  • Buy recipe books for healthy cooking.
  • Watch videos on proper exercise form.
  • Get a new pair of running shoes.
  • Stop smoking or drinking.
  • Cut back on your TV time.
  • Drink more water.
  • Sign up for a fitness newsletter.
  • Start walking with your spouse more regularly.
  • Get a commemorative Arnold Schwarzenegger tattoo on your soon-to-be bulging bicep.

The point is, you didn’t change one single thing and only join a gym. Everything from your eating habits to your social life will be getting an overhaul.

When you understand all the little ways your customer’s life is changing, you can find an endless supply of incredibly tiny opportunities to make their life easier, more convenient, cheaper, or less frustrating.

You’d be amazed how much more your customers will appreciate you unexpectedly removing a dozen annoyances compared to just delivering on the one thing they’re already expecting from you.

Those are the areas you’re able to often quickly, affordably, and distinctly stand out from your competition.

Think about how those things matter in your personal relationships…

When your spouse takes you out for a fancy dinner on your anniversary, that’s nice. It matters. Good times. It’s also expected and basically what every couple does on that occasion.

But what about when your spouse knows you had a tough day at work and they go out of their way to have your favorite snack, TV show, and your coziest jam-jams ready to go the second you walk in the door.

It’s the thoughtfulness, intention, and unexpectedness that makes it so special.

It isn’t the high-octane romance of the expensive restaurant – it isn’t supposed to be. It’s the fact that it’s comparatively insignificant that makes it surprisingly significant.

This is the magic of the meaningful minutiae.

The delightful devil in the details.

The terrific trivialities.

The power of the precious particulars…

Okay, you get the idea.

Key point: Your difference isn’t dependent upon your resources nearly as much as your resourcefulness.

How to Automate Awesomeness

The reason I’m pushing so hard to identify the little things is that those are also far easier to build systems of automation around.

It allows you to design and deliver potentially millions of those little wins on autopilot to an infinite number of customers and subscribers.

The first step is to standardize special.

I constantly see well-intended founders brainstorm amazing ideas that end up floating around in Somedayland because they have no way of consistently delivering the experience to their customers.

If you first start with creating a special experience that you can set as the standard and scale to all your customers, it will begin the process of creating reliably positive experiences for all your customers.

I always look at it like this…

It’s better to do it at 50% capacity 100% of the time than 100% capacity 50% of the time.

Here’s what I mean by that:

If you thought of an 11-Star Experience (if you didn’t read about this concept yet, click here) but you can only deliver it to half of the customers while totally dropping the ball for the rest, you’d be better off making sure that every single customer at least gets the 5-Star Experience first.

If you can’t consistently deliver “good” experiences, you certainly won’t be able to standardize the exceptional.

Once you’ve become clear on the ideal customer experience then you should look at automation to be able to start scaling it up.

A personalized welcome video is always a great touch and surprisingly simple to implement.

Once you’re consistently able to nail that level of experience, start adding to it.

Maybe you want to send a handwritten thank you to each customer, but you keep overloading yourself and realizing you’ll never get to it, so you just give up.

You could scrap the idea, or you could look for the scalable way to start delivering that experience with a fully automated solution for just a couple of bucks!

 

Take Action

Brainstorm all the little ways that you’re different. You can look at your competitors and see their gaps and shortcomings, but don’t get too caught up in comparing yourself. Instead, think about where you can create your own category.

What can you offer – either products, content, or approach – that nobody else is doing?

A word of caution: Just because it’s different doesn’t mean it’s going to work. You still need to validate that people actually want what it is you have on offer.

A great place to start is to look for underserved segments in an existing market. Meaning, people are already spending money in a particular area, but they aren’t getting a good enough result. That’s where you can come in with something amazing and different and build a stand-out business.

 

Conclusion

Nobody wants another “me too” brand. I’m not guessing you’re excited about just doing more of what everyone else is doing, either. The good news is that doing what everyone else is doing doesn’t really work anyway.

Doing your own thing frees you up to think way outside the box and create something transformational.

There are a million ways to scale up your speciality when you’re, say it with me now…

RESOURCEFUL!

Go build something people care about by designing a business that feels uniquely, completely, and oh-so-sweetly “YOU.”

Nobody can copy your recipe for Awesome Sauce. So get in that test kitchen and start whipping up your marketing masterpiece.

Once you do, then we can talk about taking that sucker onto the production line and getting it out to the masses.

Next, we’re diving into a concept that is at the core of any great marketing campaign: personalization and segmentation.

ABOUT US

We’re a strategy-first email marketing agency that helps you master your messaging, build lasting relationships with your customers, and create email strategies and systems to grow your income and impact.

JOE KERNS
Co-Founder of MAJiK Marketing. As an Email Marketing Master, Creative Copywriter, Business Builder, Exceptional Experience Engineer, Joe loves helping turn great ideas into thriving businesses. Click here to work with Joe.

Need more help?

No time to tackle the marketing monster alone and looking for a bit more support?

> Click here to learn how we can help.

 

Marketing Automation Mastery: Where It Works and Where It Hurts.

Marketing Automation Mastery: Where It Works and Where It Hurts.

[PART 1]

Still hazy-eyed and sluggish, you take the first sip of coffee to start your day.

Ahhh… sweet, sweet outsourced energy.

You boot up the computer, which miraculously lights up without any caffeine coursing through its circuits… unimaginable.

You open your email and are immediately bombarded with dozens of brands trying to steal a minute of your attention. They’re selling something, and you probably aren’t buying.

Marketing Automation Mastery: Using Automation the Right Way.

Marketing Automation Mastery: Using Automation the Right Way.

[PART 2]

Have you ever been at the gym and see someone using a piece of equipment totally wrong?

I mean, like, “that person is going to hurt themselves but I can’t look away” kind of wrong.

Well, I hate to say it, but when you jump into building automations with knowing what you’re doing, most end up looking like…

Marketing Automation Mastery: Scaling the Best Experience You Can.

Marketing Automation Mastery: Scaling the Best Experience You Can.

[PART 3]

Much like the way cranberries somehow found their way into every known juice on the planet, automation technology is digging its digital hooks into almost everything we do.

In the right hands, this tech can be one of the most powerful ways to ensure that every single subscriber gets a consistently positive (and personalized) experience with your brand.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!