#321: How Email Marketing Helps Bloggers Increase Ad Revenue

Today I’m thrilled to share with you some invaluable insights from my recent conversation with Cassie Noyes, a leading expert in email solutions at the ad network, Raptive (previously AdThrive). But before we dive into the heart of email marketing, let me extend an invitation to you.

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The Critical Role of Email in Today’s Blogging Landscape

In this episode, we’re taking a detour from the usual topics like SEO and site optimization to focus on something that’s becoming increasingly crucial for bloggers – email marketing. Cassie Noyes, who spearheads the email solutions team at Raptive, joins me to unravel why email is not just a tool but a vital asset in building a loyal audience and boosting ad revenue.

How Email Marketing Helps Bloggers Increase Ad Revenue | The Blogger Genius Podcast with Jillian Leslie

Show Notes:

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The Journey to Email Expertise

Cassie’s journey into the world of email marketing began in the realm of traditional print magazine publishing, where she honed her skills in audience development. At Raptive, she now dedicates her expertise to helping creators grow their subscriber lists and engage their audience effectively, ensuring higher open and click rates, and ultimately, driving more views and engagement to their sites.

Why Email Matters More Than Ever

With the impending demise of cookies and the evolution of AI in search, owning your audience has never been more important. Cassie explains that while SEO remains a key driver of traffic, having a direct relationship with your audience through email can make you a go-to brand, encouraging direct site visits over incidental search engine discoveries.

The Identity Factor in Email Marketing

The shift away from cookies means advertisers are on the lookout for more reliable ways to identify and target audiences. Here’s where your email list comes into play. Each time a subscriber visits your site, their identity can be captured, allowing advertisers to pay more for those visits. This direct identification translates into higher ad revenue for you as a publisher.

Best Practices for Engaging Your Audience

Cassie shares that the content of your emails should be actionable and immediately useful to your audience. Think recipes or tips that they can apply right away. A welcome series can be a powerful tool to introduce new subscribers to the breadth of your content.

Monetizing Through Email

Incorporating affiliate links or product recommendations in your emails can be a subtle yet effective way to monetize. The key is to ensure these inclusions add value to your subscribers’ experience rather than feeling intrusive.

The Art of the Newsletter

Consistency is king when it comes to newsletters. Cassie recommends a regular cadence, ideally more than once a week, to keep your audience engaged. Keep your emails concise, visually appealing, and easy to navigate, with buttons for links and a moderate use of photos and emojis to draw the eye.

Crafting Compelling Subject Lines

Your subject line is your first impression. It should evoke emotion and curiosity while hinting at the content inside. A/B testing is your friend here, helping you discover what resonates best with your audience and improving open rates.

Maintaining a Healthy Email List

Periodically cleaning your email list is essential for maintaining its health. Re-engagement campaigns can help identify inactive subscribers, and if they remain unresponsive, it may be time to let them go.

Embracing AI in Email Marketing

Cassie sees AI as a promising tool for content creation and brainstorming, offering efficiency and a boost to creativity. However, it’s important to balance AI use with a personal touch to ensure your emails remain authentic and engaging.

Final Thoughts

Email marketing is not just a strategy; it’s a relationship-building journey with your audience. By leveraging the insights shared by Cassie Noyes, you can transform your email list into a thriving community and a profitable aspect of your business. Remember, the power of email lies in the personal connection you forge with each subscriber, turning them from casual readers into loyal fans and customers.

Other Related Blogger Genius Podcast episodes You’ll Enjoy:

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How Email Marketing Helps Bloggers Increase Ad Revenue | The Blogger Genius Podcast with Jillian Leslie

Transcript: #321: “How Email Marketing Help Bloggers Increase Ad Revenue”

Jillian Leslie (00:00:00) – Hi, I’m Jillian, welcome to a brand new episode of The Blogger Genius Podcast. But before I launch in, I have a question for you. If you could tap into a whole new income stream selling digital products with no tech headache and a plan, would you do it?

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Announcer (00:01:00) – Welcome to the Blogger Genius Podcast, brought to you by MiloTree. Here’s your host, Jillian Leslie.

Jillian Leslie (00:01:06) – I have a really interesting show for you today.

Jillian Leslie (00:01:08) – I am interviewing Cassie Noyes. Now she heads up the Email Solution team at Aptiv. For those of you who don’t know what Rative is. It used to be called AdThrive, and it is one of these large ad networks that run the ads on blogger sites. In fact, they are our partner for Catch My Party and run our ads. So you’d think I’d have her on to talk about SEO and Google and optimizing your site speed. But no, Cassie and I talk about email. In fact, Cassie helps the largest captive publishers with their email strategies because today email has never been more important. It is the way you build your tribe. It’s the best way to sell. And as you’ll hear, collecting emails on your site can actually make you more money. When it comes to ads, email has always been a very important piece of every blogger’s business, but I’m going to argue it’s getting even more important. So I think you’re going to like this episode. So without further delay, here is my interview with Cassie Noyes.

Jillian Leslie (00:02:21) – Cassie, welcome to the Blogger Genius podcast.

Cassie Noyes (00:02:24) – Happy to be here.

Jillian Leslie (00:02:25) – You are an email expert. I don’t know much about your background. You work at Rap Div, which is an ad network that we use for Catch My Party to serve ads on our site. But you came into my universe and all you had to say was email. And I’m like, I want to interview you about best practices. So would you share who you are, how you got into email and what you’re doing now?

Cassie Noyes (00:02:51) – Sure. So I head up the Email Solutions team at Raptive, and we work with our creators to help them grow their subscriber lists, engage their subscribers for higher open and click rates and engagement and views to their site,, as well as promoting their brand to encourage return visitors through social media, capturing emails to sort of 360 degree on capturing audience., and how I got into it is interesting., you know, I think you never think I’m going to be an email marketing, but,, my experience started in publishing, so traditional print magazine publishing,, and always was in marketing.

Cassie Noyes (00:03:33) – And so it done then sort of did everything across audience development and,, ended up, you know, I’ve done website, social, direct marketing, everything you can think of. And then with captive came in to really just focus on the subscriber acquisition, acquisition and retention piece., for active.

Jillian Leslie (00:03:55) – Now people say email is super important when growing an online business, and I have been shouting this from the rooftops for years. Why today? Is it even more important to be growing your email list?

Cassie Noyes (00:04:14) – Well, with all the changes that everyone’s heard, you know, I think we’ve been hearing forever that cookies are going away and it keeps getting postponed and postponed, but it’s looking like it’s going to happen. There’s already been a rollout of a small percentage of Chrome browser users, and it’s just going to continue to roll out. We’re kind of waiting to see when it’s actually going to happen, but it is on the horizon., so with cookies going away and then also with AI and the changes that Google is making to search,, really owning your audience is going to be so important.

Cassie Noyes (00:04:46) – And it’s not to say the SEO is not going to be important. That’s always going to be the biggest driver., but you really want the more you can own the audience and have that direct relationship with them. Not only is it going to, you know, make you top of mind as far as a brand is concerned. The more you engage, the more you build that relationship. Someone’s going to start coming to your site directly,, versus just finding you through a search and from identity, which everyone’s hearing about right now. The more every time you your email subscriber goes to the site, the site is able to capture their identity,, know who they are, and then advertisers will actually pay more for those visitors., so I think identity is probably the biggest reason why email’s really, I think, very eye opening. And people are starting to pay more attention to it than ever.

Jillian Leslie (00:05:37) – Okay, so let me say this back to you to make sure that everybody understands what you are talking about.

Jillian Leslie (00:05:45) – Cookies are a little piece of identification that gets put on your browser like Chrome your Chrome browser. And this is a way for our advertisers or really ad networks to track people around the internet. And again, I know it sounds super creepy, but that’s how it works because of privacy concerns and other business reasons., cookies have fallen out of favor, and Google with its Chrome browser saying, hey, we’re going to. And I think the other browsers as well are also going to get rid of these tracking codes, and therefore it is harder for Banana Republic to follow Cassie around the internet with that amazing pair of boots. Banana Republic has a harder time knowing, oh my God, that’s Cassie. She likes my she likes our boots. We can pay more to advertise to her because she’s already shown us she likes these. We’re just now going to have to kind of advertise to everybody or to people we kind of think might be women not going to be willing to pay as much. So if you are a publisher, your Banana Republic ad won’t be as valuable to you because Banana Republic is saying, I, I’m you know, I’m only 20% sure this person is the right target versus somebody who’s seen that amazing trenchcoat or boots or whatever.

Jillian Leslie (00:07:18) – So what you’re saying, though, is if in fact you have an email list, then somebody who comes to your the email list is a way to identify that email address is a way to identify that person. So that person comes to your site and I don’t know how do you as, say, captive, know that that person with that email address has come back? Do you know how that works?

Cassie Noyes (00:07:51) – I do, I we have a performance team that really explains this technically, but the sort of, you know, simplistic answer is that we’re able to to catch it. We have a partner that we go through that can identify that email and know all of the different browsing behaviors associated with it and push that to the advertiser.

Jillian Leslie (00:08:11) – Given this publisher your email address and therefore it’s kind of tied to that publisher. So when you come back to that page, they know it’s you. Now. They’re not they don’t know your name or things like that, but they can identify that, you know, you’re the person who did go to Banana Republic.

Jillian Leslie (00:08:29) – And so that Banana Republic ad is more valuable to you. So the more email you are able to capture, the more you’re able to identify the people coming to your site. And hopefully then you will make more money via ads. Exactly.

Cassie Noyes (00:08:44) – Because if you don’t have the email, like you said earlier, it’s guesswork. What we think this is Kathleen. We think she likes brown boots. If they have my email, they know, oh, we do know she likes brown boots. We know she looked at them at. Three different places.

Jillian Leslie (00:08:56) – Here’s a question. So you’ve got this group of publishers at Div. And each one let’s say is collecting email. Do you have then a network where you’ve got, say, our email list and this publisher’s email list and you’ve got them all in like an enormous bucket. So if say, somebody gave me their email address and then that person ends up on a different receptive site, will, you know.

Cassie Noyes (00:09:24) – No we don’t. It’s all. Unique to each each creator their list.

Jillian Leslie (00:09:30) – So again okay. So therefore it is tremendously valuable for you if you make money via ads on your site to also now grow your email list. But there are additional benefits to having a robust list. And can you speak to what some of those benefits are?

Cassie Noyes (00:09:49) – Definitely, I think I mentioned before, but the more people know your brand. So many people are finding we have so many recipe creators. I cook and bake a lot, so I might put in banana bread. I’ll come to somebody’s site and get my banana bread recipe book market and leave. And I might not come back because I don’t know anything about the site. I don’t know what other recipes, what other content they have. So the important part is that you want somebody the more that they come to your site, which you can accomplish if you capture their. Now if I’m on someone’s site, something comes, a pop up comes up, it’s a box that says, hey, you know, here’s my top ten bread recipes. It’s relevant to what I’m looking at.

Cassie Noyes (00:10:28) – Great. Send them to me. I start getting this newsletter and then I’m I’m introduced to more content so I know, oh, they don’t just do desserts, they do 30 minute meals. The more I become familiar with their content. And also a lot of the creators do such a great job of writing, you know, really personalized, engaging emails that make the reader feel like they’re getting to know them, knowing their personality, they’re really speaking directly to them. Then that brand becomes top of mind. So I’ll say, okay, you know, happy breads. I’m picking this up anytime I want to make bread. Now I know happy breads. I’m going to go directly there., and so I think it’s just a great branding tool and a relationship building tool. And once you someone knows your brand, they’re loyal to it, and they’re going to be someone who’s coming to your site over and over again.

Jillian Leslie (00:11:14) – But let’s say Lisa is the creator behind Happy Breads. Do you feel like Lisa should be investing in promoting Lisa, the creator of Happy Breads or Happy Breads?

Cassie Noyes (00:11:31) – The content, but I think that the happy breads, I think, well, I think they’re sort of one and the same.

Cassie Noyes (00:11:37) – What we’re seeing is people who really have. Yeah, I think with social it becomes so important. You know, the creators that are on social, their faces, on their they’re talking, you feel like you get to know them. It’s almost like they become these little celebrities to,, or big celebrities to people. And you feel like just if I saw them on the street, I would know them. I their my friend kind of kind of feeling and it’s this warm feeling. And so I think it’s one and the same. I mean it’s the content that they’re coming for. But I think the more you can put a face to that content and a personality, that content, those two combined is going to be just as important. But if someone’s coming to your site, you probably want to catch them with more of a, a content offer versus, you know, putting a picture of yourself. It’s you catch them with that content where they say, oh, I want this content right now.

Cassie Noyes (00:12:25) – Then once they start getting your emails, then that’s when you start to build that relationship with them.

Jillian Leslie (00:12:30) – So it’s like you are putting out a like, let’s say a net and the net is the content you’re interested in bread. I make bread. Wow, we’ve got that. Versus like I live in Texas, like you couldn’t care less or I have two dogs or whatever it is. It’s like, I catch you because you’re interested in bread, I make bread. Hey, this is a good fit. But then it’s like, oh, now. And it’s funny. Just over the last couple of days, I’ve really thought I. This idea came into my mind and it is vibes, which is I make the bread. You’re interested in bread, you can you you get my recipe and then ultimately what I want to sell you or promote to you in addition to breads is my vibe. Do you like my vibe? Are you connecting with me? Because maybe I have dogs and you have dogs. I live in Texas and you live in Texas.

Jillian Leslie (00:13:29) – Or I talk about, I don’t know, something that relates to that trigger, something in you. And it’s it’s like this amorphous thing. It could be something like, we both are the same age or who knows, come from the same hometown. But the truth is, I think it’s a vibe thing and that your vibe now is something that you sell with.

Cassie Noyes (00:13:52) – Exactly. I think a good example. I mean, food is just something that it’s just everybody. I mean, food just brings up so many memories and feelings. And, you know, for example, if it’s I’m just going to see someone who has old nostalgic recipes. If I come to their site and I say, you know, I found this chili recipe that my grandma always made, and then it shows me, you know, get my top 20 nostalgic recipes. And I think when they when you start to talk to that person, you kind of conjure those feelings in them. Like I remember sitting around the table, my grandma made this recipe.

Cassie Noyes (00:14:25) – I hope you enjoy it as much as I do, and you start to connect with them on the thing that brought them to your site. So I think identifying your individual niche not only for content, but like you said, the the way you are, the way you think, the the things that are important to you,, you know, if it’s a different audience that’s more in fashion and they come to your site and they came for these great boots that you recommended, it’s here’s my top ten wardrobe staples, and you start sending it to them and you’re relating. These are people that are really into, you know, sort of trendy, cutting edge fashion. You start to say, you know, oh, I’m always looking for the best, you know, trench coat or whatever, whatever you feel like that audience came to you for, speak to them in that language., so you can relate to them on that level as well.

Jillian Leslie (00:15:14) – So let’s talk logistics. I get somebody’s email address. So first of all, let’s start even before that how I get some of these email address.

Jillian Leslie (00:15:22) – So let’s say they come to my site because they were on Pinterest and ended up on my site, and there’s a pop up that says, hey, get my ten best recipes or my capsule wardrobe, fall fashion must-haves or something like that. So it’s something that would trigger somebody to want to give up their email address. Or I’m posting on Instagram saying, get these freebies and things like that first. Do you have any advice on the best kind of opt in slash freebie that you recommend somebody offer?

Cassie Noyes (00:15:57) – Definitely. I always say pop ups work the best. I know people think that they’re intrusive, but if you follow specific rules,, I mean, if you’re if you’re to me, it’s always if it’s something that’s relating, there’s a couple ways to go about it. I kind of look at it as an evergreen offer. And what I mean by that is if your site where a lot of moms are coming, they’re busy, they’re trying to find something fast and easy. Make that your offer. Here’s my looking for something you can make in 30 minutes.

Cassie Noyes (00:16:24) – Here’s ten recipes that you can start making tonight. That’s something that’s actionable to them, right? Then they’re saying it’s not oh, are you baking cookies next Christmas? Well, that’s not really going to help me right now., something tonight this is going to solve my problem. And that’s something you can leave on your site all the time. Then there are the seasonal ones, like, you know, the holidays just ended. It’s here are my top ten cookies. And then another thing that works really well is content specific. So like the bread, if somebody isn’t just a bread site, they’re all recipes. But you’re interested in bread when they’re on your bread content, capture them with the bread. You know that they’re reading that. So say here’s my top ten breads. So pop ups work really great. You know there’s embedded forms. There’s different things. There’s things you can say,, you know. Yes. Send me this recipes. Send me this article. They put their email in, it sends them social works wonderfully.

Cassie Noyes (00:17:17) – , if you can capture there’s different platforms and techniques you can use for capturing social. But I think it always comes back to what is quick and relevant to them in that moment. And information that I always use the word actionable, something that’s going to help them solve a problem, right then. Everybody knows their demographics of their site. So if you know it’s moms with kids will appeal to moms with kids, if it’s, you know, people that spend a lot of money on lifestyle and fashion and speak to them on that and offer something to them on that. So really knowing your audience is, I think, one of the biggest pieces of it to.

Jillian Leslie (00:17:55) – If you are trying to optimize your blog posts to grow your traffic and you’re not using my blog post, my updated blog post checklist, you are missing out. What I do is I go through all of the things you need in every single post to make sure they are optimized. You can grab this at Military.com. Slash blog post checklist. Super simple military.com/blog post checklist I keep hearing from many of you that you keep this either open in a tab on your computer when you’re writing blog posts, or you print it out and keep it on your desk just to make sure that you’ve covered everything.

Jillian Leslie (00:18:41) – Military.com slash blog post checklist. And now back to the show. Okay, so now I’ve captured the email address. I think the next step would be a welcome series. Yes. Talk to me about that.

Cassie Noyes (00:18:58) – So the best thing to do is you obviously want to deliver the content that they came for. So I, I always say no more than three email efforts., I think it takes three to engage them., you usually I always send them three days in a row because they’re looking for that first one and we send it immediately. So if it’s yes, send me the top ten Christmas cookies. Well, I want it right now, so we’ll send it to them. Here’s the cookies. You might send it I usually send it over, you know, two efforts. Here’s five of them in the next five. And then the third one is, hey, did you know I have all this other content as well? Like there’s cookies, but also check out my side dishes and my other desserts.

Cassie Noyes (00:19:35) – And so the first two are delivering that content. And the third is just kind of showing them what else you have. So they don’t think you’re one trick pony. They don’t think you just do cookies. They know that you have all this other content too.

Jillian Leslie (00:19:46) – So are you. So that’s interesting. That’s the first time I’ve ever heard that. So it’s like, here are my ten best cookie recipes. And therefore it’s not a PDF. It would be one email with like maybe five links to your blog. And then hey, get part two tomorrow where now there are five additional links.

Cassie Noyes (00:20:03) – Because we always I kind of tell you, I shy away from PDFs. A lot of times people will get them, they’ll download it and they’re done. They’re not going to read anything else. So it’s kind of a way to keep them engaged because they only get half of them. I mean, you could even spread them out over three. You could say, you know, for the holidays, we did a lot of menus and it’s like.

Cassie Noyes (00:20:23) – French menus, dinner menus, dessert menus, and you can divide those over three. So every day they’re anticipating getting something from you. And then I always think it’s important somewhere at the end to show them links to other content on your site, just so they know., but yeah, you’re building that relationship too. With each email they open, they’re getting more. They’re becoming more familiar with you, and you’re more top of mind than if you got a PDF. You download it, you leave.

Jillian Leslie (00:20:49) – Got it. Okay, so now I’ve done these three emails now. Okay. So we have a tool in addition to our military pop up where you can collect emails on your blog effortlessly. We also sell a tool called Military Cart to enable creators to sell digital products. So I am all about multiple income streams and selling to your list. I think there is no better way to sell than to your list. So in these three emails, am I selling anything? Am I talking about an e-book I’ve created or a course or something like that? Or do you think it should just be content, content, content? At what point do I say, hey, you know what, I also sell stuff, right? I think so I give away a lot of free stuff, but I also have this whole other thing that I do.

Cassie Noyes (00:21:42) – , I think is long. The best way to do it is, I mean, unless you’re a retailer like a banana republic, you know, if you are a content site,, a lot of content sites work in affiliate links. I think as long as it’s relative and organic to what you’re sending them. So if they asked for,, you know, your top breads, you can put a bread maker in there. You can say, did you know I also have these guides to my favorite kitchen bread making tools? So I think as long as it’s really native and feels really it pulls together with that content and it’s not just sticking out like, oh, you know, get this thing that isn’t related to my content. It feels very salesy. I think, again, back to the value that you’re providing. So you’re providing the content. But if there’s something else that’s going to also pull in value, then that makes sense to incorporate it within there to.

Jillian Leslie (00:22:32) – So these three days have passed and they’ve gotten my welcome series.

Jillian Leslie (00:22:36) – Now what? What am I doing?

Cassie Noyes (00:22:39) – So hopefully you have a newsletter, a regular newsletter you’re sending. And so once they go through that welcome series, funnel them into that newsletter to start getting that. And that way you’ve made that introduction. They’ve started to become familiar with your content, and now you’re communicating with them on a consistent basis. And with newsletters, you know, it’s so important to have the regular cadence sending it same day, same time every week., you know, more than one I always recommend. But if you can only do one that’s better than one a.

Jillian Leslie (00:23:07) – Week, you’d like to do multiple a week.

Cassie Noyes (00:23:11) – , obviously different types of, you know, a lot of,, creators will do an RSS, which is one that automatically every time a new post goes live, it sends it out. That’s easy. You know, it’s going out. It’s no extra work. I really recommend, if you can find the time to also do what I call a curated broadcast.

Cassie Noyes (00:23:30) – It’s you’re actually writing it every week and sending it, and that’s where you sort of have that relationship building where, you know, you write an opening paragraph, it could be an anecdote or just something these are, you know, it’s summertime. These are the things I’m loving this summer, and it just has more of a personal touch., but one or the other, both optimally, but, you know, at least one a week.

Jillian Leslie (00:23:52) – Got it. Okay, so now let’s talk logistics. How long should my emails be?

Cassie Noyes (00:23:59) – I would say the shorter the better., people have, I think there’s a stat where it’s seven to 10s that they’re literally looking at your email to see if they’re going to open anything. So I always recommend,, you know, some people put links after links after links. I think the less if you’re delivering five recipes, you know, five links,, instead of putting links themselves using buttons usually get more response. Anything that if you kind of take a step back, I always say as a consumer, when I’m looking at an email, what’s making me open it? So that’s what I do in my job, I actually get I have a whole other email account where I get just promotional emails, and I’ll scroll through it and say, what made me open this? You know, what was you look at links.

Cassie Noyes (00:24:42) – It’s always the top one gets 75% of the opens, and as it goes down, it filters one. At the bottom I get 1%. So what is the most okay you want people to see?

Jillian Leslie (00:24:52) – So you like. Sorry. So you like buttons that say get more, like get more, read more, or get the recipe, that kind of thing.

Cassie Noyes (00:24:59) – And those tend to get a lot higher,, click rates than just a link.

Jillian Leslie (00:25:04) – And what about photos?

Cassie Noyes (00:25:06) – Photos are great. People love photos. You know, anything that’s visual, especially when you’re just scrolling through something really fast., capturing, you know, photos, I guess they they sort of conjure up different feelings, different emotions. And so photos are great.

Jillian Leslie (00:25:23) – Got it. So. And here we go. Emojis. No emojis. What? Your thought emojis are good.

Cassie Noyes (00:25:30) – Just, you know, like everything you in moderation., we do see subject lines. People will open them more with emojis. But as long as you’re not overdoing it and it makes sense with what you’re, you know what your subject line is then.

Cassie Noyes (00:25:44) – Then we do see them performing well.

Jillian Leslie (00:25:47) – Let’s talk subject lines. Because subject lines if nobody you could write the best email. And if nobody opens it, it doesn’t matter.

Cassie Noyes (00:25:57) – And that’s I think, what people.

Jillian Leslie (00:25:58) – So think.

Cassie Noyes (00:25:59) – Subject lines are always an afterthought, but it shouldn’t be an afterthought.

Jillian Leslie (00:26:04) – How do you think about crafting a subject line that somebody will click on?

Cassie Noyes (00:26:10) – I think it’s fair. Well, I always kind of go back to those same things as far as, you know, getting a reaction, conjuring some type of an emotion, appealing to somebody whose needs and what they’re thinking. And,, you know, again, sort of knowing your audience if, you know. I mean, the holidays are so easy because we just wrapped up a ton of holidays. It’s, you know, quick and easy side dishes you can make this week. Things like that where you read it. You know, I’ve got to open this right now., something that’s, you know, asking a question, is it? And you don’t want to give too much away, right? So it’s you want to kind of catch their attention with the subject line.

Cassie Noyes (00:26:44) – And then there’s the preview text underneath of it. And that’s where you give them a little more context. So it could be, you know,, you don’t know what to make for dinner tonight. Question mark. And then text. We’ve got ten quick and easy recipes you can make this week., and that’s enough to get them curious and then tell them what they’re going to get when they open it, because you do want to make sure you give them an idea of what they’re getting, and then you deliver on it. So it’s not that sort of bait and switch. It’s this is what you’re getting in. Yes. When you open it, this is exactly what we’re delivering to you.

Speaker 5 (00:27:15) – .

Jillian Leslie (00:27:15) – Do you? Okay. Do you spend a ton of time on the subject line?

Cassie Noyes (00:27:20) – We do. And the creators we work with, we. A lot of times we’ll do a B testing just ongoing. And just to see, you know, all of the email service providers will allow you to do that.

Cassie Noyes (00:27:29) – , and I think you don’t have to do it for everything. You start to get a feel of what your audience is responding to over time, if you just do a few of them. So I think once you start to as long as you know, to me, analytics are so important. So just even looking through all the ones you’ve done and so which ones are really jumping out, which ones are getting the highest open rates?

Jillian Leslie (00:27:47) – , now what now what is a good open rate when you go there killing it. What are you seeing?

Cassie Noyes (00:27:54) – Well, the average that you really want to hit is 25 to 35%. Anything over 35%. You’re killing it. So I mean okay, 50%. You’re doing something right.

Jillian Leslie (00:28:04) – Now, what about culling your list? How does that what? When do you recommend somebody do that?

Cassie Noyes (00:28:11) – Sorry. What was that? When they do.

Jillian Leslie (00:28:12) – Culling. Culling. You know, getting rid of, like, dead weight okay. Cleaning out your list. Okay.

Cassie Noyes (00:28:18) – We do that.

Cassie Noyes (00:28:19) – We try to do that at least quarterly. If you can’t do it quarterly every six months. And we do what we call re-engagement campaigns. So we’ll sort the the subscriber list or this person hasn’t opened anything in three months. Will they’re probably not going to open anything. So we’ll send them an email that’s like, hey, we missed you. We see you haven’t opened our emails in a long time. We don’t want to lose you in some type of very compelling subject line that will jump out like we missed you, or we haven’t seen you in a while. And when they open it, say, you know, we just want to make sure you’re not missing out on all of our great content. Maybe throw a couple of your best,, performing pieces of content in there if they don’t open that, and then we’ll unsubscribe them from the list.

Jillian Leslie (00:29:01) – Bought it. And let’s talk about AI. Where do you use AI in writing emails? Because to be honest with you, I love it for writing emails.

Cassie Noyes (00:29:11) – It is great and actually my team has been using it more and more., we still have copywriters, but we found that it’s once because we work with the same creators over. So if it’s your own brand you’re writing for, as you know, I will start to train on your voice. So the more we’re seeing, the longer that we use it. We can crank out emails in no time. And it starts to really the first couple are a little bit little wonky. Oh, I’m not quite sure if that’s the voice I want, but the more and more you do it,, the better it is. And especially for newsletters, because it is short content, you’re not writing a long feature with it. I highly recommend it. I think it’s great.

Jillian Leslie (00:29:50) – And how do you feel again? Nobody knows anything. But I ask this of all of my guests. Talk to me about how you think AI is going to evolve and change our businesses over the next six months, over the next six years.

Jillian Leslie (00:30:09) – What are people talking about it. Like, are you guys freaking out or you like, hey, we’re we’re. This is no problem.

Cassie Noyes (00:30:17) – I think we’re not freaking out. I think we’re just sort of anticipating, you know, there’s obviously pros and cons to everything. And we’re looking at the cons and the ways that we feel like it could really help our creators,, to be more efficient. You know, there’s obviously newsletters, there’s just brainstorming., you know, they’re all everyone’s going to write your own content. It’s unique to you. But just I think I in my personal world, too, it’s just great for brainstorming things and coming up with different ideas., I also think, you know, with AI in the way that the changes are going to happen with the search engines like Chrome,, and SEO, you know, there’s not going to be as many links that are populating, I think just kind of thinking in terms of. How that have how I and the changes in how people are searching for things and getting content makes that brand awareness so much more important.

Cassie Noyes (00:31:08) – So you know that you’re not going to come up in searches often. So let me really build my email list. Let me start being active on social. And and I think I coming actually that’s something people should be doing have been doing, should have been doing for a long time. But everyone obviously SEO is where most of the work is being done, and I think it’s going to cause people to kind of shift more and focus on brand, which I think is really important. And that’s really great in the long run for everybody.

Jillian Leslie (00:31:36) – I just did a real today. If people are not following me, follow me on Instagram at Milo Tree and I just did a reel that said is blogging dead in 2024? And my answer is yes and no in just what you said, which is it’s no longer just blogging like it’s no longer I understand low competition keywords and I can write the right post to get that traffic. It is now what you’re talking about, which is brand building. My blog is a very important part of my business, but I am now a brand or I am connected to my blog like I need to be stepping out in front and being active on social, writing my emails, doing all of that like I feel like it is now much more 360 than it was.

Jillian Leslie (00:32:33) – I could just get really good at this one skill and, you know, kind of like not game Google, but understand the algorithm enough so that I know if I use these keywords and, you know, all this number of photos and whatever it is, my site speed and all of that stuff and not that that isn’t still important, but it’s going to become a part of the equation. And, you know, because it eventually and I use this example, you’re going to be taking a photo of your fridge, of what’s in your fridge and you’re going to say, hey, my special AI tool. That’s like my best friend, what should I make for dinner? And it will know exactly what to make. So therefore I might not need, you know, the bread blog. But if I have a connection with Lisa, that’s when I need Lisa. Right?

Cassie Noyes (00:33:30) – And also another thing with AI, if it does say that it’s pulling, you know it’s not a person, so it’s pulling things in from across the entire, you know, all different sites where the content coming from a blogger is so much more valuable, you know, that it’s tested.

Cassie Noyes (00:33:48) – I mean, I’m going back to recipes, but, you know, it’s tested. You know, the person’s an expert, you know what you’re getting. It’s dependable. You trust them. There’s that trust element of it. And I think that’s where it’s their opportunity to shine and seeing what their unique value is. And this is where, you know, I go to Happy Bread because her recipes, my bread comes out perfect every time. She is an expert. She’s trained in it. She’s been doing this for years versus I it’s kind of a gamble. You never know. Is this really going to turn out the way I want it to? It’s I don’t know who this is that’s recommending to me. It’s some abstract machine somewhere. So I think that’s the other piece of it too, is like that human element in who you are as a person is so important.

Jillian Leslie (00:34:28) – I agree, I think that the way we are going to compete against AI is by being human, by leaning into our humanity again, selling that vibe which you know, your eye can’t have in the way that another human being can.

Jillian Leslie (00:34:46) – And so for all of you out there going, oh my God, I really have to put myself out there, I’m going to say, yeah, you do. I don’t know what that looks like for you or what your comfort level is, but start thinking about your vibe. Start thinking, ask your friends like, what is my vibe? You know, like, really think about this because this is your brand. This is the stuff that you can’t necessarily touch, but that you, you are constantly giving off, that people are picking up from you because our humanness is going to be super valuable and trustworthiness. You were just talking about that. I don’t know who to trust. I mean, I read my news now with so much skepticism because we all do. Like, who knew? You know, there’ll be a study. And I’m like, who said this? Like, I don’t know. Whereas before I would have believed anything and I can see myself getting more distrusting. I don’t like that in myself, but I am so therefore I’m much more apt to listen to what somebody I trust says than to just, you know, Google it and and go, okay, this is the best dishwasher or this is the, you know, how do I know? You know? So therefore it really matters who I’m listening to.

Jillian Leslie (00:36:01) – And I think one.

Cassie Noyes (00:36:02) – Other thing too. You had said, you know, what is my vibe? One thing you can do send your your audience, your subscribers a survey. Just do a quick survey and ask them what makes you come to my site. What do you love about my content? What would you like to see more of? And that way you get that feedback from them and it can you can tailor your content around. And to get that, you know, you can ask them anything you want. Like, what’s the one thing that comes to mind when you think of Happy Bread?, and that’s where I think you find out what your unique niches and what your brand voice can be coming directly from your subscribers. You could always put something on your website. Here like a small pop up asking them as well. And I found that’s the most you can get.

Jillian Leslie (00:36:43) – I love that. Okay, so as we wrap up, if you have advice for how to do this easily because it sounds like a lot you way you’re telling me I got to do an email.

Jillian Leslie (00:36:56) – You know, I got to then do weekly emails. What are some shortcuts that you would say? You know what, don’t do this, but do this. Like make sure. Here are the three fundamentals to keep in mind.

Cassie Noyes (00:37:07) – Right. And there is so much and it can be overwhelming. And everybody goes oh my gosh I can’t do all of this. I think the two there’s I kind of put it into different buckets. There’s the first step is getting subscribers. That’s the first thing. So you want to do some sort of a way for people to sign up on your site, whether it’s a pop up or it’s, you know, a form on the site saying, you know, to always do an offer. I don’t say sign up for my newsletter because people don’t know what they’re getting. So as long as there’s some way on your site for people to enter their email, that’s the first one., and then the second one is it’s great to send them a welcome series. If you can’t do a welcome series, send them one email.

Cassie Noyes (00:37:45) – You know, saying thanks for here’s my top recipes or things that I that they asked for. And then really just sending at least one newsletter a week. Because if you don’t do that, if you get their their email and they don’t hear from you, you’ve fallen off the radar. If they’re not seeing you on a consistent basis in their inbox, we all know we scroll our inbox real quick, then they’re not going to open. So I think getting a way to capture readers and then continuing to engage them and build that brand awareness and that relationship with them, those are the two most important things to do.

Jillian Leslie (00:38:18) – I think that’s great. I think that’s great. So it is doable. Yes, it is doable with not a not a ton of effort. Just get something out there.

Cassie Noyes (00:38:26) – And most of the email service providers, MailChimp, ConvertKit, they have things built in where you can either do a pop up or a form. So you don’t need to have any fancy, you know, outside platforms to start.

Cassie Noyes (00:38:37) – You can at least get started, or I know your tool,, things that are easy to implement and they don’t have to feel intimidated by,, there’s lots of different ways to do that.

Jillian Leslie (00:38:47) – Wonderful. Well, I have to say, we’re entering the Wild West. It’s always been the Wild West in blogging. It just feels a little wilder. That’s what I would say, but exciting to say.

Cassie Noyes (00:38:56) – It’s exciting. Lots of good things, good changes, I think.

Jillian Leslie (00:39:00) – And I think that when things are in flux, there are opportunities. You just have to be looking for them.

Cassie Noyes (00:39:08) – I completely agree, get out of your comfort zone a little bit. It’s it’s always good.

Jillian Leslie (00:39:13) – So, Cassie, if people want to reach out to you, have questions, anything. Where should they go?

Cassie Noyes (00:39:19) – , they can reach me at,. Probably the best is my email address. So it’s just sea noise and it’s attractive and that’s the easiest. Dot com.com. Yes. Great.

Jillian Leslie (00:39:34) – Well, honestly, Cassie,, I’d love to check in with you again in six months or a year, just to see how things have evolved and change.

Jillian Leslie (00:39:43) – I want to say, though, thank you so much for coming on the show.

Cassie Noyes (00:39:46) – Oh, it’s been a pleasure talking to you. Thank you for having me.

Jillian Leslie (00:39:50) – I hope you guys like this episode for me. My biggest takeaway is that it’s just the simple things. It’s about showing up consistently. It’s about knowing what you stand for. It’s about connecting one on one with your audience and providing value. It’s not about complex technical systems or that there’s a way you can game this. It’s really about authenticity and I love that. So speaking of authenticity, if you want to take what Cassie is teaching and talking about and go that next step by actually selling your authenticity through digital products, please go check out Milo Tree Card. Because again, simple technology, simple selling. Get your products up and out so that you can test them so that you can see how your audience responds to them super quickly. So you can pivot and iterate and find gold. If you want to get on a call with me, go to MiloTree.com.

Jillian Leslie (00:40:57) – You’ll see a place to sign up for a free 20 minute coaching session where I’ll help you come up with your digital product strategy. This is not rocket science, it’s just about putting one foot in front of the other. And I just love to show you the path. Plus, in today’s world, it has never been more important to have multiple income streams again. MiloTree.com. Sign up for a 20 minute session. I’d love to meet you and I will see you here again next week.

How Email Marketing Helps Bloggers Increase Ad Revenue | The Blogger Genius Podcast with Jillian Leslie

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