Episode 64

Email Marketing Tips and Best Practices with Nathan Barry of ConvertKit

March 22, 2016

Today we’re talking with Nathan Barry, the founder of ConvertKit. He’s talking with us today about all things email marketing: How ConvertKit works for bloggers and creative entrepreneurs, the ins and outs of creating valuable opt-ins, how to nurture your email list, and how to manage that list in all sizes.

Learn More about the Topics Discussed in this Episode
This Episode Brought to You By:
"Email is the only channel where you actually own that relationship."
- Nathan Barry

Discussed in this Episode

  • How ConvertKit does email marketing differently than other options (6:50)
  • Creating content upgrades that provide value (9:44)
  • Why email is so important right now and why it's here to stay (19:46)
  • Managing an email lists of different sizes (25:07)
  • Segmenting your newsletter list for effective marketing (28:41)
  • Email marketing best practices as an online business (36:07)
  • Setting up email sequences timed out for new subscribers (36:33)


More from Nathan Barry

More from Kathleen

Braid Creative

More from Emily

Almanac Supply Co.


Emily Thompson 0:00
Hello, and welcome to being boss, Episode Number 64. Brought to you by fresh books, cloud accounting.

Being boss and work and life is being in it,

Kathleen Shannon 0:16
it's being who we are doing the work, breaking some rules.

Emily Thompson 0:20
And even though we each have to do it on our own, being boss is knowing we're in it together. I am really excited to be talking today to Nathan Berry, Nathan berry has been a guy that I followed online for a really long time super smart about a lot of things. These days, he's focusing on an email marketing platform called ConvertKit. And we just all switched our email marketing over to ConvertKit. We're really excited to jam with him on all things email marketing,

Kathleen Shannon 0:53
one of the things that Emily and I have been focusing on a lot lately our systems. And as someone who has kind of systems adverse, I like just flying by the seat of my pants, I'm really starting to embrace it. And I think that no matter what stage you are in your business, it is so important to adopt systems early. And there's so many platforms there to help you do that. So today, obviously, we're talking to Nathan berry from ConvertKit. Emily and I are both fans of Asana. Or maybe you use Basecamp acuity scheduling, obviously one of our sponsors, but one of the platforms that I've been using from the get go that I'm so grateful for is fresh books, cloud accounting, you guys know that fresh books sponsors of this podcast, and it's because they work, and our fans love them. You guys have been downloading fresh books and trying it out and buying it because hey, it works for you. So it's a system. And one of the things that Emily says later in this episode is that ConvertKit is simple but robust. And I feel the exact same way about fresh books cloud accounting, it is simple enough that you don't have to have a degree in accounting to use it. But it is robust enough that as you grow, it will grow with you. Try fresh books for free today by going to fresh books.com slash being boss. And enter being boss in the How did you hear about us section? How

Emily Thompson 2:19
are you doing,

Unknown Speaker 2:20

Nathan Barry 2:21
I'm doing really well. Thanks for having me on the show. Of course,

Emily Thompson 2:24
I'm excited. I'm really excited to nerd out with you. I feel like this is probably going to make become our nerdiest episode ever.

Kathleen Shannon 2:33
Like So Emily has been looking into different email platforms for us for a good I don't know, almost six months now because we are growing and found needs across all of our businesses between braid creative, and indeed typography and being boss. And so she recently moved over to ConvertKit and is basically preaching about the amazingness. That is

Nathan Barry 2:56
a little bit. That's good. I like it. My entire job is to convert more evangelists like you.

Emily Thompson 3:06
Oh, good. So um, so you've been around the internet for a while though, I'd like to hear and I don't want to talk about this a time. But I'd like you to just sort of Introduce yourself a bit to our listeners, what you've been up to. And I guess how you how you've grown this online business.

Nathan Barry 3:24
Yeah. So I started as a web designer, I picked up HTML, CSS in high school, and then gradually got jobs doing software design then led the software design team at a startup. And then from there, I got into building iPhone applications. And just always focus on design and some some development. And then I got into the world of blogging, and that was pretty fantastic. So I then sort of my making a full time living from blogging through selling books and courses, on how to design and market software. And then it just kind of expanded from there. And I was blown away when I found out that email was the best channel for getting getting conversions and sales. I honestly thought it was going to be like Twitter and Facebook and these social platforms, and email got higher conversion rates every time. And so then I learned all these best practices. And then the user experience designer and me got really frustrated when the best practices were a pain to implement in MailChimp and every other tool I tried. And so I said, Alright, I can do this better. And I started ConvertKit. So which is an email marketing platform, specifically for you know, professional bloggers and creators, people like me who are trying to build a large list and then sell products to them. And so that was three years ago, and now we've got a team of 13 people and we just passed 3000 customers and you know, World Domination is next on the horizon.

Kathleen Shannon 4:54
Including I want to mention our buddy Val Geisler who is pretty much one of our boss girlfriends is on your team now as well and i think a lot of our listeners are already fans of hers so

Nathan Barry 5:05
yeah val is amazing

Kathleen Shannon 5:06
you hire good people

Nathan Barry 5:08
i do my best somehow i managed to talk them into giving up the amazing stuff they're doing and and you know helping us really build the company to serve people who are building an audience like there's a lot of tools that you can buy but what we're trying to do is is build a whole community around people who are i guess delivering value every day to their audience and so val has been amazing at that for for us as far as she writes her blog and she helps craft all of our support and all that kind of thing

Emily Thompson 5:40
yeah val has a lot of fun and whenever she told me she was working with you i got really nerdy about that as well so i we actually share a friend west wages is a really good friend of mine and he entered a he's brought you up a couple of times he actually is the one who got me into convertkit and i remember you know seeing it i've followed you lightly over the past couple of years one of the one of my favorite things that you have done was was some stuff around doing tiered prices for digital products some of the stuff he did there is stuff that i've shared with my crowd over and over and clients over and over again i think it's really good stuff and so i sort of followed you when you when you started convertkit and it was just like this like pipe dream thing of like oh this email marketing platform like i can't wait to see what it sort of grows into and west west turned me on to it to actually giving it a try and i've totally loved it and kathleen kathleen mentioned a minute ago i spent the last six months testing out every email marketing platform out there and convertkit is super different so i want to dive in just for a second about what you were saying about you know mailchimp and some of those other platforms being a little frustrating for for allowing you to utilize best practices what were some of the things that you were hoping that convertkit would sort of fix for doing effective email marketing

Nathan Barry 7:09
yeah so first i have to say that i love wes he's a wonderful person and now i love him a little bit more so the big things were i wanted to be able to tag my customers and i didn't want to do something messing around with like groups in mailchimp or or something where i didn't want fake tags i wanted real tags and so i wanted to know who bought what and who was interested in what product i also in doing that i didn't want to pay for duplicate subscribers so when i asked the mailchimp and aweber teams of how to do this they said oh you create more lists and i was like sweet let me create more or less and then i realize wait a second i see how this benefits you i would have all these different lists and at the time my list was about 8000 people and somehow mailchimp was telling me that i had 15,000 people and i was like i it's it's eight you know and then i realized that they were double charging for every duplicate subscriber so i was like oh this isn't gonna work because then i couldn't even send one email just to the unique subscribers it was a mess i was always exploiting and importing it was a disaster so those were those are two big ones another one was content upgrades this became easier once aweber or not aweber excuse me lead pages came out with their lead boxes but before then inside of mailchimp you effectively had to create a new list every time you wanted a new giveaway and then the other thing with those giveaways is you talk to a form and it would send out an email that would say you know are you sure you really really want to sign up to this emily person's list she seems kind of sketchy you know like that was the vibe that i always got from the double opt in emails so i thought wait why don't we just combine this into one email where i mean the point of double opt in is so that we know that hey you own the email address and you really want to opt in so well we didn't convert it was you get to customize all of that and so the email just says hey here's my free guide that you just asked for click this download it and when you click it behind the scenes convertkit verifies the email address and then redirects them straight to the file and so you can customize everything about it and that's what i wanted and so you can also create tons of different forums so you have lots of different giveaways all within effectively one list inside of convertkit so those were the the biggest ones that i wanted to fix

Kathleen Shannon 9:44
i would love to take a second to talk a little bit about content upgrades because i didn't understand that that was the word for this thing that we had been doing which is basically creating an opt in or incentive for people to join your mailing list so content upgrades can have been in blog post or let's say we're recording a podcast and we're like hey we have a worksheet to go along with this one thing that i used to do in my own blog that was a huge mistake is i would just kind of embed the worksheet into the blog post that people could download it directly from there but i wasn't building any sort of assets doing that it was just going out there and i wasn't capturing any information back from it on my audience or who was actually reading my stuff so content upgrades are simply if you want to give people added value they can sign up for basically your newsletter and get the information that you're sharing so i just want to share that for for less tech savvy listeners and talk about that's a really great way to grow your email list is to have content upgrades attached to your content that already exists i see a lot of opt ins happening out there and meet them i'm curious what your feelings on this are but i see a lot of opt ins that are like sign up for this free guide and it's like do any of us need one more free guide i think that content upgrades are great for people who are already consuming your content but maybe not necessarily on your list and so nathan what do you think about that emily

Nathan Barry 11:12
so i'm a huge fan of content upgrades one purely from a marketing and numbers side like we had a customer who went back and to their top 15 posts and switched out all the hey sign up for our newsletter type call to actions to a content upgrade that was really specific so like the example one example from my site as i wrote wrote a post on i think it was seven methods for you know designing more beautiful blog posts better graphics for your blog and then my content upgrade for that post was to download and get all the photoshop files for free that i was referencing so it's really really targeted instead of like hey sign up for my newsletter so this customer went back implemented on their top 15 posts according to google analytics and actually doubled their subscribers per day based on just doing that so basically the idea is make it really really targeted and i've actually found a lot of content upgrades that i've really like i'm thinking way back in the day there was a blog called think traffic run by corbett barr and now is the bargain and the company has since since changed to fizzle which is another great company that i love so corbett on his site think traffic had effectively a content upgrade that he called i think the traffic toolbox and i just remember being relatively new to blogging and coming across that and going that's what i need and downloading it and it was just packed full of really really good content and so i always think back to that of like that's an example of a content upgrade that i as a reader really wanted and then got a ton of value and it got me to sign up for his list when i don't know if i would have just joined a newsletter so i would do a lot more of those

Emily Thompson 12:57
i love content upgrades as well i think you're both spot on on multiple fronts and i really like what you said kathleen a minute ago about you know it's not content that you're just going to like throw out there like this is not your main opt in it's not something that's really gonna like pull in a dream customer per se but it is a piece of content that goes along with content you're already sharing so people are already consuming your content they're already in your blog posts and you're just sort of giving them a little bit extra i love content upgrades i think they're great it's such a great way of growing your list and i really love that tip about about going into google analytics and using that data to implement content upgrades on high performing posts afterwards like that's this is what i get really happy that nerds exist because like you have having an online business you have access to an insane amount of data you have analytics you have you know numbers number reporting on your email market like all the things and going in and using that to your advantage is is why online businesses are such an awesome and like i think fast growing thing you just have to use it um i want to talk for a second though about like wait can i jump in real yeah

Kathleen Shannon 14:13
well not to four so one of the things i like to about going to your old posts and looking at the top 15 is that so many times as content creators especially if you've been in the game as long as we have and you have 567 10 years worth of content you've got a lot of good stuff that you've written that you're not really leveraging so one good thing about going into those old posts and creating content upgrades is you can you can probably even repost them and so change the date delete the old post repost again or throw those posts into your edgar account which is a great library and you guys have listened to our episode with laura broder from edgar and we'll be sure to include that in the show notes but you can throw those posts into your social media channels and really push them that way as well. So that way you're really leveraging old stuff that you've already poured so much time and energy into creating

Emily Thompson 15:06
a grade. I like that. So okay, now I want to jump really quickly to value of things like content upgrades or opt ins. Because you know, you hear these numbers often like, you know, your your OPT in should be worth 100 bucks or something like that, in order to make it worth a subscriber to just subscribe. And even you a second ago, Nathan were talking about the think traffic when he had totally forgotten that it was Corbett who did think traffic, like that totally went over my head until you said that. But um, but I want to talk about value, like how valuable should the content that you are asking people to opt in for be?

Nathan Barry 15:49
Yeah, so I would say it's a sliding scale, there's no set rule. I like the $100 idea, because then it anchors at high and you're trying to make it good. I would just say if you're not getting good results, with your OPT in incentive, or your content upgrade, look at how valuable it is like, Did you just throw together a PDF? And is that it? Or did you actually put real value into it. So if you're getting great results with what you're doing now, that's fantastic. Just get out there and promote it even more. But if the conversion rates are super low, you know, on your post, if you're only getting 1%, or one and a half percent of people who come to your post to opt in, maybe take a hard look at what you're offering and see. See if you could up the ante there, could you make it more valuable? I

Emily Thompson 16:34
love that. I also, one of my favorite things about ConvertKit is that you do have your conversion percentages, on your little form thumbnails, which is another piece of that data that as you are running an online business is really important. I remember, I remember working in, in retail back in the day, when they would use like sensors at the front door and their point of sale system to to calculate conversion rates for how many people were coming in and actually buying. And that was those were rates that you based your performance on, like through the day or week, it was really imperative to meet those goals. And a lot of people don't, I don't know, don't think about how those things translate to doing business online. But using tools like ConvertKit, and Google Analytics and all those things like you can set those sort of bars for yourself and work towards them to keep things high converting keep your content valuable, so that people want to keep coming back for what you're putting out.

Nathan Barry 17:38
Totally. And I actually used to ask people a lot wherever I saw they had a MailChimp form on their site or something, I just say, Hey, what's the conversion rate on that? And they always go, Oh, it's and nobody knew. Because like, you can set it up and everyone has Google Analytics installed. But no one has Google Analytics set up correctly. Like we don't even have Google Analytics set up correctly. It's just Nobody does that. And so what I realized at that point is, the only thing that matters is what tools and stats you give people by default, there's all these best practices they can set up. But it's the defaults that matter. And so that's why we built conversion tracking into every single form and convert it just by default. So you don't have to do any work. Another thing that's made a big difference is if you think about the opt in forms on your site, if you're focused on email, which I think you should be, but I'm a little bit biased, you're going to have a few email opt in forms on your site, and there's gonna be a lot of real estate, like prime real estate dedicated to getting people to opt in. Well, so I'm reading your blog, I like your content I opt in. And then I come back and I read another post, you know, a couple days later, and you're saying like Nathan, often in my email list, and it's like, rd did, why are you pitching me a call to action for an action that I've already taken. And so from a development perspective, it's not that hard to show different content to someone who has already opted in, like to pitch them on, you know, buying a book, or downloading something else, or learning more. But nobody implements this on their own because nobody wants to hire a developer to do a day's worth of work for. So we just built it into ConvertKit gave everyone this best practice by default. And now if someone has opted in to your to your list and come back, you can say, either don't show the form, or show this custom content. So on my site, if you opt in, and then later come back, instead of getting a pitch to sign up, you're going to now get a pitch for purchasing one of my books.

Kathleen Shannon 19:39
I have a question whenever you said you think people should be focusing on email, and obviously you're biased, but why do you think email is here to stay? Or why do you think that email is so important right now?

Nathan Barry 19:52
Yeah, so there's a few different reasons one, emails been around for a very long time. So if you I think AWeber was one of the original players, they started, I think in 1998. So the internet was very young, then they've been around for a long time. And so like, in that timeframe, we've got 20 years of email marketing, we haven't had 20 years of anything, you know, hardly, none of the social channels have been around for that long. The other thing is, the conversion rates are really high. So I worked with the the team over at gumroad, which is an e commerce platform that I love to get all of their conversion stats for someone comes from YouTube, or Twitter or Facebook, or any of these places, how likely are they to convert versus email. And basically, the email conversion rates were about double what this other social channel conversion rates were. And then the last one is, let's say, this was, I don't know, eight years ago that we're having this conversation. And the three of us are talking about, you know, a great place to build your audience. You know, all the cool kids these days are on MySpace. And so we put in a ton of effort, we build this great MySpace community, while we're kind of screwed now. And so if you build your platform, and build your audience on someone else's platform, and that platform dies out, which is totally out of your control, I'm thinking more recently, everyone who started building audiences on Google Plus, like, you're not in a good position right now. But if you decide that you don't like MailChimp, or ConvertKit, or any of these other platforms, you just export your list and you import it somewhere else. emails, the only channel that you actually own that relationship on Twitter, and Facebook, and everything else, you just renting that. And so we've all seen it, where with our Facebook fan pages and groups, you know, they used to show to everyone who's a fan, and now it only shows the content to about 15% of people. And then they're asking you, like, Hey, you should pay to boost this post. And that's just a nice reminder, right? In your face of Hey, you don't own this relationship Facebook does. And so emails, the only channel where you actually own that relationship?

Kathleen Shannon 22:03
Well, and then not even that's being threatened a little bit with people's emails going straight to newsletter or straight to spam. So how has ConvertKit addressed that?

Nathan Barry 22:12
Yeah, so with our focus on email marketing, for professional bloggers, we really only send a subset of all email marketing. If you think about all the things, you know, Amazon saying, hey, you might like this product, or your bank saying, Hey, get this other thing, or, you know, you purchase something at Walmart once. And so now they're pitching you stuff. That's all email marketing. And so average email marketing, open rates are in like the one to 5% range. And if you have a one to 5%, open rate on ConvertKit, we're gonna kick you off the platform. Like, that's not cool. And the reason is, because we only send really high quality content. Like, I like to use a blogger liova bouta, from Zen habits as an example, I love him, he's fantastic. If someone opts into his list, it's because they want to receive his emails. Whereas if one of these big ecommerce shops, you know, start sending you emails, it's probably because you've just bought something once and not because you want to consume every bit of content that Leo puts out. And so our open rates, because we only send, you know, really content are radically higher. You know, most things range in the 25 to 65% open rates. And so we get far better deliverability of that, because we only send the high quality email. So that's helped us a lot to stay out of the promotions tab. Gmail is going to continue pushing more and more email that way, because they get to brand it with ads if they do that. But so it's a it's a constant thing, but that's how we keep you know, the majority of our emails in the inbox.

Emily Thompson 23:53
Oh, in this episode, we're throwing some email marketing truths your way and for good reason. I'm right there with online business veteran Nathan with the importance that email marketing should play a huge role in your business. And I also know both as a boss myself, but also encouraging other creatives to operate their own biz online. That time to set up all the forms and the regular emails and employing advanced email marketing magic, like content upgrades. And drip content can be hard to come by. How do you do it? How do you find the time to do all the things? Well, I use acuity scheduling. I do I use acuity scheduling to make time in my business. When your calendar is properly wrangled with clients booking on their own email responders being automatic and the ability to block off time and your calendar that set aside for working on your business and not in it. Then you are able to take big balls to the next level. Schedule clients without sacrificing yourself. Sign up for a free 60 day trial of scheduling sanity at acuity scheduling.com slash being boss now let's get back at it

Unknown Speaker 25:06
okay i've

Kathleen Shannon 25:06
got another question and this question is for a lot of our listeners who might be new to starting the list and i've heard this personally from a lot of people in our facebook group and this is something that even emily and i were talking about we recorded a secret episode that's available only for our being boss clubhouse members all about everything we know about email and so in there someone was asking how do i how do i really take advantage of my list if it's only 10 people and we think that there's strengths to that but i'm curious to hear your thoughts nathan on managing the list and even kind of sales tactics for if you have a really small list let's say zero to even 500 and if you have a really in between list and then maybe a really large lists like 10,000 plus

Nathan Barry 25:56
yeah so the smaller the list is the more engagement you can have with each person so i would email all of them personally if it's under say 3040 people and you should know something about them you could look up you know each of their sites you can learn about them and just ask them hey what are you hoping to learn from me you can have those conversations and that's really a huge advantage that you can't do i had a much larger scale i want to say that it was chris guillebeau who oh man it might have been up to 1000 though knowing chris and how crazy he is it was probably up to like 10,000 subscribers where he personally emailed every single person who joined us list just to have that conversation and to know what they were hoping to learn from him and what they're hoping to get out of it because otherwise you just you want that you know you want it to be a personal connection you really want to serve these people so the smaller the list is the easier that is

Kathleen Shannon 26:55
i also think it's really easy to convert those people and i mentioned this in the secret episode but i think it's also easy to convert those people into one on one customers so if you're a service based creative selling your service it's really easy to then sell them by asking them to engage in really personal one on one relationship to then hire you in that same way but what about a large email list how can we leverage that to

Nathan Barry 27:20
yeah i actually think you should do the exact same things just at scale so don't move to don't change your writing style because now you're ready to 50,000 instead of 500 you know still keep that really personal style and and that's huge because i've seen people where they change their style to where they're like you know it's like they're preaching to a crowd or they're saying like if any of you that's like this is a one to one email just like write it to me and so one trick that i still do every time is i write the email to a single person and then like swap out you know so if it was like joe comma enter enter you know before i send it i swapped out joe with a merge field so it'll put everybody's first name in there but just keep that mindset of being useful to one person and writing to a single person and then you just happen to send it to 50,000 and then on the personalization

Kathleen Shannon 28:17
that's so much the i think it's so important and it's really good way i think that starting with a smaller list is a good way to develop that one on one voice and then you just keep going even as you grow and the great thing is

Nathan Barry 28:31
none of us just get this giant list thrust upon us you know by the time we get to that point we've worked so hard for it that hopefully we've internalized those lessons the other thing that more and more people are doing that i love is they're starting to segment their list in really smart ways so pat flynn from smart passive income who's also a convertkit customer he sends out in his automated you know welcome series and all that he asks questions of his of his readers and so a few of the questions he has one about what stage your business is at and i think the answers are like just getting started up to $1,000 a month in revenue and then like $1,000 a month and beyond and so when people click that they just get tagged inside of convertkit and then he can later segment content and just send it out to people who you know maybe are the more advanced people or he can send things just to beginners you know because if he's promoting a product that's really just focused on beginners he can segment out and not send to the people who are more established and then on the same thing in another email he asks if you're starting a podcast and if you're starting a podcast or already have a podcast then he will pitch his smart podcast player but if you say that you know i have no interest in podcasting then he's not gonna pitch that and so you can start to get a lot smarter you know with how you segment people and then at scale it's really effective Because when you have over 100,000 subscribers, all that segmenting really matters.

Kathleen Shannon 30:04
I think segmenting is so brilliant for creative entrepreneurs who don't want to focus on just one thing. So as much as we preach, narrowing in and finding your focus, I think that if you like trying lots of different things, you like launching things every month, I'm looking at you, Emily.

Emily Thompson 30:22
Oh, it is not every

Kathleen Shannon 30:25
doing that all the time segmented lists, I think are the way to go for sure. And that way, you can see what's really getting traction, and what sticks, and you can start to really dig into your expertise and tailor accordingly. Yeah, and

Emily Thompson 30:39
I have to say to this tagging feature in ConvertKit, is my favorite thing on the planet. I have found so much value in having this having this function and like being able to like the links, like whenever people click on a link at tagging them, then like those sorts of features, and ConvertKit is what is making me like a raving fan of what of what you've built. Because whenever it does come to using a list. And I think I do think there's a very sincere difference between people who are like growing a list or have a list and people who actually like to use and nurture that list. whenever it comes to using and nurturing a list like that feature, being able to segment people in that way via tags, and in a way that's so usable as they just click this link and then get tagged is what makes ConvertKit so usable to me, and makes me the most excited in terms of what I do launch next, what comes after you know, the thing you're doing now, because as creatives like we all sort of are in this place where you know, we start doing one thing, and then we sort of shift gears every couple of years into doing something else. And being able to carry that list over is only as good as, as the list wants to be carried over. And allowing segmenting and allowing people to sort of come with you, as they want to, depending on what they're interested in is pretty genius to me.

Nathan Barry 32:08
Yeah, one of my other favorite things is having a bunch of different forms. Because, mmm, like you were I, well, before I focused on ConvertKit, I would create a new product probably literally every month. You know, I just I had tons of fun doing it. And like let's just make stuff all the time. And I'd be really interested in design. So I teach all these courses on design. And I'd be really interested in marketing. I'm like, Hey, guys, this list building thing is cool. Let's do a course on that. And I just do all the stuff. And then I come to find out like, oh, man, I've got 20,000 people on my email list. And they're all have opted into like this whole range of stuff. And who knows. But then in ConvertKit, we just built on this feature, where I can go and say, okay, anyone who's opted into, and you know, I checked the boxes of a bunch of different forms, put them in the design segment, everyone who's opted into these other forms, put them in the marketing segment. And so now what I have is, I've got about 35,000 subscribers. And there's 20,000 people in the design segment, and a little over 20,000 people in the marketing segment. And then I also know what the overlap is. So then I can say, oh, you're just interested in design tutorials, I'll send you that, or you're just interested in marketing, and I'll send you this. And then the people who are interested in both the system is smart and figures it out. So what I love, and this is purely because I just like you and I make make new products all the time is that I can create those, you know, the what would be less than another tool, but segments in ConvertKit after the fact. So I can say oh, let's just round up all of these forms, and all these types of content. And everyone who's interested in that is now in this particular segment.

Kathleen Shannon 33:52
Okay, so as someone who maybe isn't as tech savvy as

Emily Thompson 33:57
if, okay, you're doing so much.

Kathleen Shannon 34:01
So much better. So basically, I asked Emily, Emily was like, okay, we're getting you for braid creative on ConvertKit. So I actually was like, Can you do it for me to Emily, but my question is, now that I'm seeing all the segmenting and tagging, and I am embracing technology these days. I was wondering if ConvertKit has some sort of training or videos, once you sign up? Is there a way to learn best practices for segmenting people or really how to get the most out of your platform. And this is something only talks about all the time, like a platform is only as good as the amount that you use it right. And so let's say you sign up for ConvertKit and do nothing with it. Like is there a way to just learn more about how segmenting works and why kind of like the theory behind why you should do it?

Nathan Barry 34:48
Yeah, so we have a knowledge base that we're adding to every single week. I think we actually added two articles to it already today. Just trying to make it a lot better. You know bousman writing amazing content on a blog about, you know what subject lines you should use in high school, your lesson profile all this other bloggers, Matt on our team teaches a workshop every Thursday afternoon on, you know, ConvertKit basics. And then he also he's the one if you look at any of our blog posts that they have sketch notes and things like that, Matt works those in. So I have a knowledgebase articles specifically on segmenting that we can link up in the show notes. But it's like 1000 words just on my theory of why and how you should segment your list. And even comes with some fancy sketch notes from Matt.

Kathleen Shannon 35:38
Nice. Well, I want to challenge all of our bosses to really focus on email this month. It's something that Emily and I are thinking about a lot and really seeing it as an advantage and as an asset to our business, especially as we get serious and intentional and strategic about growing being bossed specifically. So we'll be sure to include a ton of stuff in our show notes. Emily, do you have any other questions for Nathan or any other insights you'd like to share on email?

Emily Thompson 36:07
I have, I have a question. So you've brought up a couple of times these sort of best practices, I wonder if you have like a drill down of like your top three or five, like best practices for email marketing as an online business.

Nathan Barry 36:22
Okay, so we've covered a few of them with content upgrades and taking customers the biggest one that I haven't covered already. And it's a common one, but it's so important you need to do it is to just set up, you know, an email sequence after someone signs up for your list, so they get your best content timed out just to them. And then once they trust you, and like, Wow, I've really learned a lot from this person, then it has a perfectly timed sales pitch for your products. And that's something that I found to be a total pain to set up in ConvertKit. or, excuse me, in MailChimp. And so I designed the interface in ConvertKit, just to make that really, really easy. So it's all there in one screen, you can move between your emails and treat it really as a sequence. So that's, that's the big one that I would say, making sure that your newest subscribers, you know, are getting all your best content, getting that content that you wrote three years ago, that you want everyone to find, put it in an email sequence, and it works really well.

Kathleen Shannon 37:24
Okay, I have a question about this, like logistics. And I've even set up a meeting next week with no need to really hammer it out that I can't wrap my mind around. So speaking to the founder, it might be easiest just to ask you my selfish reasons for having a podcast so I can figure stuff out from the horse's mouth. So let's say I set up a sequence because I think that is genius. I have so much good content from years ago that nobody gets from whenever my list was 500 people that now the 8000 people in my list have never seen. So I love the idea of picking out my best content and making turning it into a sequence. But then I have a question about the kind of the more fitting in the more timely broadcasts as well. Will they just be getting two emails from me that week? Or how would that work?

Nathan Barry 38:09
Yeah, I think they'd be getting two emails from you. The only thing that I would try to avoid is two emails on the same day. And so I would pick a day of the week or maybe two days a week that you might send your broadcast. So if your newsletter goes out every Tuesday, then just go into your sequence and set it to so it can send any day but Tuesday, and that way, they won't get two emails in a single day. I think two emails in a week is totally fine. And the more recently they've subscribed to your list, probably the more excited they are about your content. I know that's how I was with, you know, following corporate virus stuff with thing traffic, I was like, send me more, you know, I'm so early on, you want to consume as much as possible. And so two, three emails in a week is is not too much.

Unknown Speaker 38:52
Okay, cool. I think that's really just what I needed to hear.

Nathan Barry 38:57
I give you permission to send more.

Kathleen Shannon 39:01
Thank you very for that permission.

Emily Thompson 39:05
No, I think it will in I think for most of us unless you are like, like guys who sort of, you know, loves these, looking at these numbers and getting conversion rates up and you know, checking to see what your open rates are like, if you're just trying to share content. I think that like not most of us have brains that are wired this way. whenever it comes to something like you know, drip content or, or, you know, war broadcasts and how often you should do it, I think that i think there can be a lot of confusion around doing that. And I that's again, I'm just gonna sell ConvertKit for you apparently. One of the things that I love most about ConvertKit is that it's robust enough that you know, your conversion rates you have, you know, the ability to do these sequences or drip content. So it's robust enough to do the things that you need to do but it's not overwhelming because there are so many options, there can be so many questions, it is really straightforward with just you know, here are the things that you need. You need forms and you need a lot of them. And here are the here are the metrics that you most need. And here are your broadcasts and your sequences that you have built a really robust system. That's really very simple. And I think that there's some pretty hardcore magic in that, and I'm impressed.

Nathan Barry 40:26
Well, thank you, that makes the user experience designer and me very, very happy, because that's like the Holy Grail.

Unknown Speaker 40:34
Well, good.

Kathleen Shannon 40:35
Well, thank you so much, Nathan, for joining us. It's been really great having you on the show. And we will include links to everything, including signing up for ConvertKit at our website, which is now being boss club, and we'll be talking about email more on our blog. We have it in our secret episode. So you guys be sure to check out all the things. Yeah, that's all I got.

Nathan Barry 40:59
Sounds good. Thanks so much for having me.

Emily Thompson 41:01
Sure. And where can people find you online?

Nathan Barry 41:04
Yeah, you can find me at Nathan berry calm, and berries spelled with an A. And then at Nathan berry on Twitter. And these days, I probably only publish a blog post once a month or so. But there's lots of good stuff that I've written over the years that you can sign up to my email list to get and then of course, everything I do now is at ConvertKit calm.

Emily Thompson 41:27
Awesome. Thank you so much. Thank you.

Kathleen Shannon 41:30
Thank you for listening to being boss. Please be sure to visit our website at being boss club where you can find Show Notes for this episode. Listen to past episodes and discover more of our content that will help you be boss in work and life. If you liked this episode, please share it with a friend and show us some love by leaving a rating and review on

Emily Thompson 41:48
iTunes. And if you're looking for a community of bosses to help take your creative business to the next level. Be sure to check out our exclusive community at being boss clubs slash clubhouse, where you get access to our closed and very vibrant slack group monthly q&a calls with Kathleen and myself a book club and more. cultivate your tribe and find your Wolf Pack at being boss dot clubs slash clubhouse. Do the work. Be boss and we'll see you next week.