Do you put a lot of time and energy into your articles, email newsletters, blogs, and/or social media posts?
Would you like a way to ensure this content gets recycled regularly and seen by future followers for months and years to come?
You need a crock pot sequence in your email marketing strategy. In this post, we'll cover what a crock pot sequence is, why it's so powerful, and how to set one up for yourself.
How A Crock Pot Sequence Helped A Yoga Studio Do More Business With Less Effort
The first time I really encountered the power of a crock pot sequence was in 2014 when I was doing some regional manager work for a chain of family-owned yoga studios.
My directive was simple, but not easy: Increase membership enrollment and retention without increasing expenses.
Upon digging into the studio’s operations backend, I found a jaw-dropping company asset that was being massively underutilized.
Ever sign a waiver at a gym? When you do that, you usually include an email address in your contact information. You check a box that says you’re okay with receiving email communication, scribble your signature, and go off to class.
These yoga studios had been collecting and inputting waivers for years. Subsequently, they had amassed a list of 60,000 email subscribers! When used properly, an audience of this size can be a gold mine – but it often feels hard to wrangle at first. 💰
You, trying to get a grip on your email marketing strategy. (Source)
Occasional monthly email newsletters would get an okay response from this list.
There was a problem, though: The email subscribers were all in different stages of their yoga journey. Many were totally new to yoga and very intimidated.
And why wouldn’t people be intimated by yoga when wellness culture on Instagram looks like this?
Yoga influencers: “Yoga is for everyone!” Also yoga influencers: ☝🏼
Thousands of prospective members dropped off over the years because they felt like they were “bad” at yoga.
The studio already had a welcome email sequence, which was a great start (You need this sequence too).
The welcome sequence educated prospective new members about yoga, how to get started, and common mistakes made by beginners. We pointed them back to blog articles written months or years ago that educated readers on yoga and the studio (This is the perk to getting your expertise out of your head and into article format).
The result was more new students signing up for memberships in their first month.
In fitness, most new students don't convert to membership right away
So we needed something beyond those first few weeks where prospective clients could continue to learn about yoga and how to approach it for their unique wellness goals.
We also wanted to give subscribers a way to learn about poses without being in a room with 50 other students (And about a hundred mirrors!) and feeling shy or embarrassed.
So we created a crock pot sequence that was automated. It was 90 days in length.
At the end of the sequence, we offered these engaged subscribers a class package or membership special. A substantial percentage of subscribers purchased – they were warmed up and ready to buy as a result of our email automation. 📈
Moral of the story: If you’re serious about growing a business online that incorporates intellectual property in any way, you should consider creating a crock pot sequence.
Let's now dive into what a crock pot automation actually is.
"What's A Crock Pot Sequence, And Why Should I Care?"
A crock pot sequence warms up your email subscribers over time by delivering some of your best past content directly to their doorstep. It focuses more on value than selling in order to create trust.
Here are some of its defining qualities.
A Crock Pot Sequence Is Automated
Blessed be the fruit! The big selling point of a crock pot sequence is that it hums along in the background while you work on other things.
Subscribers receive some of my past content in mid-week emails that are automated, and then every Sunday my newsletter is new.
With this approach, my readers know I’m active and write new stuff each week, but also leverages some of my past work.
The crock pot can also be toggled on and off in case I want readers to skip a week. The way I do this is with a tag called "Pause Crock Pot".
Screenshot of my crock pot sequence. Subscribers are sent a recycled newsletter each week that will have content relevant to them.
A Crock Pot Sequence Gives Rather Than Takes
Don’t ask for the sale in your crock pot. Win your subscribers over the way my boyfriend won me over: Patience, kindness, and dates that were thoughtful and fun. ☺️
Focus on giving your readers value instead. Internet marketing is so loud and noisy these days; if you can come to the table with valuable content that actually moves the needle, your subscribers will prioritize your emails over everyone else's.
Your crock pot can be short to start – even just one or two emails. As you create and publish more content, lengthen the chain of your crock pot until it is six weeks long or longer.
A Crock Pot Sequence Is Evergreen
Just so we're all on the same page: "Evergreen" content is content that is relevant year-round. "Make a delicious cocktail" is an evergreen statement; "Make a delicious New Year's Eve cocktail" is not. (Both are delicious, though. 🍸)
Your crock pot works best when it points to past content or articles that are “evergreen”, meaning that they have a timeless quality and are topical year-round.
This is another reason I like to blend my crock pot in with my Sunday newsletters; it provides a nice mix of timely and timeless material.
Sold on the idea of a crock pot sequence? Great! Here are three steps you should follow through on to get the ball rolling.
3 Action Steps That Will Jumpstart Your Crock Pot Sequence Buildout
#1: Audit Your Past Content
Take inventory of some of your past writing. Yup – all of it. 😈
What material is really good, and would be helpful for people to read about all throughout the year? Your audit should include:
➡️ Past articles and blogs: Do you have a post published somewhere on the internet that would be valuable to your readers? Direct your readers to this virtual real estate.
➡️ Past email newsletters: Which of your newsletters have historically performed really well? Did you send a newsletter that got a lot of clicks or replies? Let's reuse it!
➡️ Past media mentions: People think PR is all about visibility and eyeballs. That's not always the case! Use PR to show your existing audience you're the real deal and have been featured in the past.
➡️ Past social media posts: Who cares that your LinkedIn post was from six months ago? You spent 45 minutes coming up with it, and it got a great response – recycle that bad boy.
These categories should be more than enough to get you started. And if you haven’t gotten organized with a spreadsheet of links to past work, now would be a great time to do that.
Example inventory sheet of past articles. (You can get a copy of this spreadsheet for yourself in my Article Template Toolkit, which is here)
#2: Prioritize Past Email Newsletters First
Past newsletters are already saved in your email service provider. Depending on which software you use, the past newsletters you’ve sent as templates, making them easy to pull from and replicate.
Here's how that looks in ActiveCampaign, my email service provider (aff link):
If your crock pot consists of past newsletters like mine does, you’ve actually already written and formatted the majority of the content. This is a big time-saver.
#3: Set It And Forget It
To set up your crock pot, create a new automation that subscribers enter after they have finished receiving your welcome email sequence.
Set up an automation that will deliver a past email on the same day at the same time each week. This can be accomplished with "wait" steps.
To calibrate everyone at the start, I have wait steps in my crock pot that hold readers until Wednesday, then Friday, then 7:00am in their timezone.
This ensures I give my readers at least a few days between the welcome sequence and the crock pot sequence no matter what day of the week they signed up for my list.
Sometimes it can feel like writing content isn’t worth it. You bare your heart and soul in a post, press publish, get 15 minutes of fame (If even that), and then watch the dust settle. 🙄
It doesn’t have to be that way.
By using a crock pot sequence, you can both recycle past content and give your subscribers a concierge “Delivered to your doorstep”-type experience.
Get yourself organized, set up automations that support you, and watch what happens when most of your email list actually trusts you and believes in you. 🙌
(And if you'd rather have me write and set up your crock pot sequence for you, my company Hefty Media Group does that. Inquire here.)
Thanks for reading. 🙏🏼
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