Be Useful But Incomplete
As you develop your email marketing plan and really your content marketing plan in general, it’s hard to figure out what and how much you should share for free. You have to share some of your knowledge to attract your audience to you. You have to show them that you know what you’re talking about and earn their trust. But at what point do you stop? Where do you draw the line between free content to get their attention and paid content so you can pay your bills?
While that line can be a bit arbitrary, a good concept to use to figure it out is to make your free content – including what you share on your blog, your lead magnet and the tips and ideas you share freely in your emails – useful, but incomplete.
Think of what you’re helping your audience do. That’s really what any product does. It helps another person do something. This is particularly true when we talk about info products. You’re helping your readers solve a problem. This could be figuring out how to run profitable Facebook ads, or it could be keeping them from being bored with some form of entertainment.
Look at what you’re doing to help your customers solve a problem. Then break it down into steps. This could be broken down into time, or into tasks. If you’re entertaining your readers with a book or a game, you one of those parts could be a little taste of the entertainment. If you’re helping them solve a problem like creating Facebook ads that first step could be setting up an Ads account, or installing a tracking pixel, or even setting up a funnel on their site. You pick what you want that first step, task, or taste to be.
Make sure whatever it is you share will help your subscribers see some progress or see some results. But, and this is important, you don’t want to give away the whole system. You want it to be useful, but incomplete. For example, you can share how to install a tracking pixel and build an audience, but not how to create an ad for that specific audience.
You want to give them a taste of the story, but not the ending. You want to show them how they can benefit from building a list and even share how they can grow that list, and then recommend the auto responder service they will need. In other words, make the content useful but incomplete. Those are the components, tools, or physical products they will need to purchase to make it all work or get to the next level.