I know that so many stationers have mixed feelings about this. As event (wedding) based professionals, we are working with an audience that is deadline driven (aka their wedding day). So very often I will hear “well, I don’t really need a list because they are getting married in a few months” or “I have no clue what to talk about” – I see you nodding your head!
Trust me, I get it! I was in the same boat up until a few years ago. I had a “sign up” form on my website, but never did anything with it! I was rocking like 10 people on my list!
I would get so mad at how much effort I was putting into something that was working against me it felt like! So I decided to re-focus my efforts on something I could fully control, my email list (albeit small!).
So I sat down to think about how I could make this work as a “time-sensitive” business and I decided to do what I do best. Educate them.
But you know what I have learned? That I can educate with the best of them (even to brides!) and do you know what that education leads to? Trust. And do you know what trust leads to? Sales.
And honestly, writing about tips, tricks and those types of things to help educate brides comes naturally! I mean that is what we do day in and day out with inquiries, consultations, etc. Right?
So I sat down and put together a list of topics that I wanted to write about and I developed a long “welcome sequence” that runs on autopilot when someone signs up. Each week they get a new email delivered to them that simply helps them. Now, of course, I will occasionally link my website or shop, but still a far cry from “salesy”.
Some of the topics that I write about:
Do any of the titles above ring a bell?? They should! Most of them are blog posts that I have also recommended! Don’t reinvent the wheel! Do you have a lot of content on your blog? Repurpose it!
On my stationery sign up forms, I also include a spot for them to include their wedding date, in addition to their name and email. This is important as it allows me to know exactly where they are in the process of their planning.
I break my list into four segments:
I tag them when they sign up with one of those 4 tags based on how far out their date is. When they’re tagged, they receive a string of e-mails (not as many as are in my welcome sequence) but these let them know that it’s time to start thinking about (XYZ). I show them some samples from my shop and offer to set up a consultation.
I do have to manually do some of the tagging and moving to the next tag as their date gets closer, but let’s be real, we’re not talking about tens of thousands of people on our stationery lists. Remember, quality over quantity!
And while I am being transparent about my process, I also want to say that while I 100% LOVE Flodesk, my e-mail management system that I use for The Cultivated Creative, I am still over on MailChimp for my Heather O’Brien Design system. The main reason is that Flodesk has not yet integrated additional fields for their sign up forms (as of early 2020). They only allow you to collect name and email and you can see that collecting the wedding/event date is 100% vital to how I segment my lists.
Interested in a deeper dive of e-mail marketing as a stationer? Check out our step-by-step e-mail marketing course here!
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