If you are an entrepreneur or thinking about becoming one, I’m sure you’ve heard people talk about why you should build an email list for your business, While that isn’t the focus of this post, I am going to share with you why I chose Convertkit.
When you’re just getting started with your business, choosing which email service provider you’re going to use may seem a little overwhelming. There are so many choices for which email service provider to use. Even just the idea of having to send out emails or create freebies for your business can seem like a lot to take on, especially if you are a new business entrepreneur.
The bottom line, though, is that email marketing is super important. Even as service providers, who may not be selling products to a large audience, email marketing can be an amazing tool for growing your audience and booking new clients.
ConvertKit is one of the most popular email marketing platforms for bloggers and online entrepreneurs, and it has every reason to be. It has a ton of great features to help you effectively build and grow your email list and create a great community for your blog and/or business.
FIRST THINGS FIRST — WHAT EVEN IS AN EMAIL SERVICE PROVIDER??
Great question! Before we dive into the email service provider I chose, it would probably be a good idea to figure out what it is and why you even need one.
An email service provider (or some call it an “ESP”) allows you to communicate directly with people who are on your email list.
There are a few different reasons why you might want to cultivate an email list for your online business:
It’s the only form of communication that you own (compared to social media, which is owned by each of those companies)
It’s a more reliable form of communication
The highest percentage of your audience will see each piece of content you distribute (compared again to social media, where the life of a Instagram post is extremely short)
It’s more personal, because it feels like you are talking to your audience one-on-one
You will get the highest percentage of sales from the people who are on your list
Typically, subscribers will join your email list through one of two ways. They either (a) sign up directly to join the list, or (b) they give you their email address in exchange for some type of promotion, freebie, or event.
I see both of these options used fairly often, but unless you’re a huge brand or someone extremely popular, it’s typically easiest to get people onto your list by giving them something in exchange. That’s why sometimes you’ll hear a freebie called a lead magnet. (Just remember to follow GDPR rules, especially if you have subscribers in the UK.)
Once you’ve got a few subscribers, there are a couple different ways that you can interact with them:
Delivering a freebie (usually happens right after someone signs up)
Newsletters (also sometimes called “broadcasts” or “campaigns” and typically sent out at least once per month)
Automated sequences (these can either start after an event is triggered, or you can use them to create a free “email course” that someone specifically signs up for)
A few of the features I particularly love about ConvertKit are:
The easy automation – basically you set it up & let it do the work for you. I use this feature for my more complex welcome sequence, e-courses, sales funnels, etc.
It is super easy to create a “sequence” of emails that you can write ahead of time and schedule when they are delivered. Also a great feature for a Welcome Sequence or e-course.
The ability to “tag” or categorize your subscribers based on their interests or which freebie they opted in on. This ensures you are sending certain subscribers e-mails that tailor to their interests.
The ability to send to only certain portions of your list or filter out certain portions – e.g., a certain tag, segment, etc.
Something else that is awesome, is all features are available on ALL the plans. Unlike many other platforms, you don’t have to pay extra to unlock certain features.
Click here to try ConvertKit for FREE to see if you like it before you commit! No strings attached. You get a 30 day free trial, if you’re not impressed, you don’t have to sign up!!
Here’s why I decided I’d go with ConvertKit:
ConvertKit was created by a blogger, who knows what bloggers want: the ability to email people, send freebies and products, keep track of people including who signs up for what, create forms and pages, and deliver information to your list easily. This is great for online business owners.
ConvertKit offers forms and landing pages. When I started out, I didn’t exactly understand how these would work, but as a blogger or entrepreneur, it’s useful to have both. Yes, there are other programs and options for landing pages (I use Kajabi), but I liked that ConvertKit offers them as part of their services and you wouldn’t need to pay for something else.
I thought big picture that I’d want to be able to send people opt-in freebies really easily and automatically and ConvertKit can do that.
I also thought about what my long-term goals were; ConvertKit can handle everything I’m planning to do.
I was willing to start paying $29 a month because I knew it would allow me to look professional, and I also knew there would be a time where I would need its functionality (I like to think positively).
With all of this in mind, I also didn’t want to stress about shifting mailing lists over and learning a new system down the road. Maybe I put the cart before the horse, but I’m okay with that.
Here are some features that I truly love about Convertkit.
Convertkit is commonly compared to MailChimp as they are the two best beginner friendly email marketing platforms. But this also isn’t a comparison post so let’s continue. Convertkit is easy to use and navigate, they have everything you need to access on their tabs at the top of the page.
When you’re a first time user of the platform as well, you will come to a blank page with a tutorial outlining what each section is used for and how to use it. This helped me a whole lot when I was brand new to the platform, and email marketing in general. The other user-friendly thing I love about Convertkit is creating sequence emails, but I will get more into that later in this post. Creating forms is super easy and straightforward, you don’t need to have HTML coding knowledge or CSS experience to create a form, and what’s even better for WordPress users is that they have a plugin that allows you to do so much for your site and each individual post (again I will get into that later). This makes your experience with the platform better and easier.
Forms are what you will create to allow people to subscribe to your list. Basically, think of it as a sign-up form.
So you have a few options. You can design your forms within ConvertKit itself – either as a separate landing page, or as a smaller box that you embed on your website.
Now, the difference between a form and a landing page is simply the way in which you gather your subscribers.
A landing page is a full page hosted by Convertkit, that your reader would be directed to, and its whole purpose is to capture emails. You usually go this route to promote a freebie, lead magnet or opt-in.
A Form is a sign up box that you embed anywhere within your website. You could embed it in a blog post, on your home page, in your sidebar, etc.
Once you’ve chosen to create either a landing page or a form, and chosen a style, you can click the little magic wand icon in the top right to change the colors. Next, click into the “Settings” tab to name your form, write an incentive email if you’d like a double opt-in process, customize the visuals, and grab the embed code.
Create landing pages
Along with easy to create forms, Convertkit also provides landing pages. These aren’t the highest quality nor are they the best option in regards to landing pages, but if you’re just starting out and don’t have $90 a month for the best leadpages platform then this is an amazing feature that is included in your package. I personally, have not used the landing pages in Convertkit, but it is a great option when first starting out.
Organize your subscribers
This is by far the best feature offered by Convertkit! You can tag subscribers, and segment them. This helps immensely if you’re trying to sell something to a specific kind of subscriber.
On each post, incentive and opt-in, etc., you have tags that show you what your subscribers are looking at on your blog or in your business. Some of them are interested in creating an online course (for example!) and others aren’t at all.
A sequence is a series of emails that gets sent out automatically when someone subscribes to that sequence.
An example of this would be a free email course. A reader signs up for your email course, and then receives a series of emails from you over the next few days – usually delivered 1 or more days apart.
The best part about sequences is you can create all the emails in advance. You can choose how many days apart you want them sent, and then set them and forget them! You can also go in and add emails to the sequence at anytime and as needed.
I haven’t looked into too many other email marketing providers for this feature specifically but it’s one that I hear Convertkit users rave on about and it’s this sequence email creating tool.
Automations are one of my favorite ConvertKit features. ConvertKit makes it so easy to automate everything to do with your list, which makes my life much easier! If something saves me time, I am all for it!
When creating an automation for your list, you’ll choose your “Trigger”, and you’ll choose your “Action”. An easy way to think of it is: When this happens (Trigger) … Do this (Action).
A great way to use automations is setting up a Welcome Sequence. This is basically a sequence of emails that any new subscriber would be opted in to when they subscribe. It is usually 4-5 emails spread out over 1-2 weeks welcoming your new subscribers and showing them who you are and what your blog or business is all about!
This is another amazing feature to help you organize the actions taken by a subscriber.
Convertkit is undoubtedly one of my favorite tools to use for my online businesses.
SO, ARE YOU READY TO GET STARTED WITH CONVERTKIT?
Now that you have been guided through all the amazing things ConvertKit has to offer, are you ready to get started with building your own email list?? If you are, you can try ConvertKit FOR FREE! Get a free trial to see how you like it before making any commitments!
Here’s how to get your Free Trial of ConvertKit:
2. Press the “Free Trial” button.
3. Fill in your information.
4. TA-DA! Now Get Started Building your list!
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