Weekly Teaching Tip – March 21, 2016
by John Henny
I know, kind of a slightly bratty headline, but stay with me and I will show you a better way.
There was a time in the not too distant past, when those of us would fire up our computers, wait 10 minutes for them to come to life and then attempt to dial into the great World Wide Web with our home phone connections.
We would often have to contend with busy signals, and keep a timer by the computer so we wouldn’t get charged for going over our allotted time, but at some point we would hear the magic buzzing and dingings of our computer talking to this amazing network and logging on.
Then, it would happen…..those magic words “you’ve got mail!” WOW!!! Someone has reached out to me through this magic device and delivered a communication into my little emailbox.
Searching the web and finding sites on singing was a treat. When they asked if you would like to sign up for their newsletter….why you betcha!!! More of that exciting mail and information….YES!
Now today we are flooded with email, and the last thing anyone wants to do is join another email list. So why do so many voice teachers still put this on their websites?
Because it seems to make sense – if someone is interested in singing, why wouldn’t they want my newsletter?
There are a couple of problems with this.
First – you need to be actually cranking out a newsletter on a regular basis, which the name suggests can be a rather lengthy document.
Second – the person you are asking to sign up can’t possibly know if they even want your newsletter, as it is something to come in the future. They have to trust that you will provide useful content.
But let me ask you a question – why do people seek out your service, or any service for that matter?
It is because they want or need to solve a problem. That’s it. They want to know what you can do for them, they want you to solve a problem.
And newsletters don’t solve any problems, at least not in a way that’s easily definable by your potential clients.
In this new online era, people are more protective of their emails and contact info, and giving you this info means they are giving you something of value. They should expect value in return.
Rather than having people sign up for a newsletter, solve a problem.
What do I mean?
Let’s say you got a couple of annoying sunspots on your face that you wanted to get rid of.
You go to Google and look up “getting rid of sunspots.”
A dermatologist has done his homework, done some SEO on his site, and comes up high in the results. You click on the site and basically get a sales pitch for his services, and an offer to get a newsletter if you put in your email address.
Do you do it? Probably not.
Now you go back to Google and see a result for an article on how to remove sunspots with home remedies. You click on this and are taken to another dermatologist’s page.
This one is different though. This dermatologist has a page packed with information and images about how to help diminish sun spots, really great information. She is not trying to sell you anything, she is helping you solve a problem.
On the same page you notice the dermatologist is offering a free guide to keeping your skin more youthful looking, if you enter your email.
Do you do it? I’m thinking yes.
Now she starts sending you emails that have even more information on skin care and sunspots, along with an offer for a free skin consultation.
What are the chances you go to her as opposed to the first dermatologist?
In fact, she has a better chance of people visiting her site in the first place because she is offering solutions to a problem. The first guy is just hitting you up with a sales pitch. Most people will leave his site quickly, but a greater percentage will hang around her site, reading other articles, etc.
The whole time, she is establishing herself not only as an authority, but as someone who is willing to help, someone who can solve your problem!
Perhaps you already have a blog, that’s great! Now create an offer that ties in with your most popular blog subject and offer it to people.
Rather than having a simple newsletter signup, create something of value that you exchange for the person’s email. It doesn’t have to be a 90 page ebook, in fact, the more it specifically solves a single problem, the better.
Doing this one simple thing will not only get you a bigger email list, it will also establish you as someone of value in the subscriber’s mind. The likelihood of them purchasing from you is greatly increased.
So no one wants your newsletter anymore, but they do want your help. Be a problem solver and watch your business grow.