Interview With With Ecommerce + Email Marketing Expert Jessica Totillo CosterLaryssa
In episode #167 of the Joy Joya Jewelry Marketing Podcast, I share my interview with Jessica Totillo Coster, founder of Ecommerce Badassery. Jessica’s an ecommerce and email marketing strategist for boutique owners and product entrepreneurs. She uses data and experience to help her clients figure out the next best steps in their business. She’s also the host of the Ecommerce Badassery podcast!!
Not only was Jessica at one point, the only employee of a 7-figure ecommerce store (managing ecommerce, marketing, and more), but she was also the owner of her own multi-6 figure brick + mortar clothing boutique. She’s cut her teeth in ecommerce and digital marketing, and she’s learned all the best practices by finding innovative solutions to marketing challenges, even by being “scrappy”.
You’ll probably catch on in this hour-long conversation that Jessica and I have a lot of synergy and that we both like to nerd out on digital marketing, especially when it comes to marketing for ecommerce brands. We’re going to cover topics like:
– Which is the best ecommerce platform and why?
– The top ecommerce best practices
– A no-nonsense way to plan your email marketing calendar
– Tips for building an email list
– Mistakes to avoid in email marketing, and more.
I hope you’re prepared to take some notes because you’re going to get a lot of actionable tips and advice! Also, Jessica has a free gift for Joy Joya listeners so make sure to listen through to the end. Check out the transcript below.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 00:08
Welcome to the Joy Joya podcast where jewelry is joy and everyone is encouraged to add more polish and sparkle to the world with topics ranging from marketing tips to business development, best practices and beyond. This is the go-to podcast for ambitious jewelry industry dreamers like you. Hi, I’m your host Laryssa Wirstiuk. Through this podcast I aim to empower and inspire jewelry entrepreneurs and professionals so they can thrive while adding more beauty to the world. I’m passionate about digital marketing for jewelry brands, and I’m excited to share my passion with you. As we all know jewelry is joy, so I’ll gladly seize any opportunity to talk about it.
This is episode 167 and today I’m going to be sharing my interview with Jessica Totillo Coster, the founder of Ecommerce Badassery, Jessica is in e-commerce and email marketing strategic for boutique owners and product entrepreneurs. She uses data and her experience to help her clients figure out the next best steps in their business. She’s also the host of the Ecommerce Badassery podcast. Not only was Jessica at one point, the only employee of a seven-figure ecommerce store, managing ecommerce marketing and more but she was also the owner of her own multi six figure brick and mortar clothing boutique. She’s cut her teeth in e-commerce and digital marketing and she’s learned all the best practices by finding innovative solutions to marketing challenges. Even by as she says being a scrappy, you’ll probably catch on in this hour-long conversation that Jessica I have a lot of synergy and that we really both like to nerd out on digital marketing, especially when it comes to marketing for e-commerce brands. We’re going to cover topics like which is the best e commerce platform and why, the top e commerce best practices, a no-nonsense way to plan your email marketing calendar, tips for building an email list, mistakes to avoid in email marketing and more. I hope you’re prepared to take some notes because you’re going to get a lot of actionable tips and advice. Also, Jessica has a free gift for Joy Joya listeners and viewers. So, make sure to listen through to the end to get that gift.
But before we get to the solid gold of this episode, I’d like to take a moment to remind you that this podcast has both an audio and video component. So, you can either listen on your favorite podcast platform or watch on YouTube by searching Joy Joya. I love creating this content as my act of service to you my awesome listeners and you can support the podcast for free by taking the time not only to subscribe, but also to leave a rating and review on iTunes which helps other jewelry dreamers find it too. I also wanted to mention if you listened to episode 165 with my guest Liz Kantner you know that we recently opened registration for our collaborative six-part webinar series called Success with Jewelry. If you want to know what that’s all about, definitely go back and listen to that episode. But I do want to remind you that registration is open right now and if you want all the details, you can follow us on Instagram at success with jewelry, or visit successwithjewelry.com.
In this segment of the podcast, I give out my sparkle award for the week. During this segment, I highlight a jewelry brand that’s really been impressing me with their marketing. The sparkle award is also interactive so you can visit sparkleaward.com to nominate a jewelry brand that’s inspiring you too, and I might feature your submission on a future podcast episode. This week. I’m highlighting the last line, which is a jewelry brand co-founded by Shelley Sanders, who’s now also the creative director. The brand is based in LA but they pretty recently opened their first brick and mortar store in New York City. I found myself looking at their homepage the other day, which you can also view yourself at thisisthelast.com and I was so impressed with how they handle visual merchandising on a digital platform. The homepage is merchandised in such a fun way, making the shopping experience truly enjoyable and exploratory like I’m walking through my favorite Jewelry store, but on the internet. They have sections for things like their latest drop, turn up the charm, which is all their charm jewelry, big love for their statement earrings. Four pieces we never take off and more. If you really want to be inspired by merchandising, or do you want ideas for how you can merchandise your e-commerce Store, then definitely visit thisisthelast.com. I’ll include the link and a screenshot in the show notes as well so you can see what I’m talking about. As I mentioned, you can visit sparkleaward.com to nominate a jewelry brand that’s been inspiring you and I might feature your submission on a future episode.
Let’s discuss some recent news related to jewelry or marketing. Each week I share my thoughts about three relevant articles and you can get those links yourself by visiting joyjoya.com/signup. Once you’re on that VIP list, you’ll receive our weekly digest filled with new episode announcements. So, the first article comes from Yahoo Finance, and it’s all about everyone’s favorite topic, Instagram and how the algorithm works. So, basically, the head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, recently answered some questions from users about Instagram and he revealed in this conversation that hashtags don’t really help views. However, instead, they help users understand what a post is about making that post more likely to pop up in a hashtag page. So, basically, it’s kind of affirming what I think we already knew, but maybe we had higher hopes about hashtags like they would help boost engagement or reach in some way. But I think hashtags are absolutely still important because if someone is searching Instagram for something specific, you are much more likely to come up under that hashtag in the search results if you’re using that hashtag, and it kind of brings relevance to your post, it can potentially help people discover you. So, I think it’s important. There’s a lot of mystery around Instagram. I’m glad that Adam Mosseri has being transparent in answering people’s questions. It helps users like you really understand how the app works. The next article is from JCK online, and it’s about the LVMH acquisition of Tiffany and Company. Basically, the headline is that; two thirds of Tiffany staff departed in the year after the acquisition. So, why am I sharing this? I mean, it’s kind of a bummer news that there’s so much staff turnover. I think something like this is not unexpected when there’s an acquisition. But the thing that was most interesting to me about this article is that President and CEO Anthony Leger told Women’s Wear Daily, that Tiffany is looking for workers, “Wider fashion industry” that could bring, quote, “A faster pace of thinking.” He points out that this faster pace of thinking is an important skill set to have in the fashion industry as it’s a fast-moving world. I don’t know if that was like a unintentional jab at the jewelry industry. I mean, is he saying that people with jewelry industry experience are not as fast thinking as people in the jewelry space. I also think it’s interesting that they’re looking to bring on people with fashion industry experience, because I think a lot of people in the jewelry industry forget that in the end of the day, it is kind of part of the fashion industry there. It does have a lot to do with trends, with color, with styling, with looks and people tend to be so like insulated in this jewelry space that they forget the big picture of how consumers are wearing, shopping, and buying. So, I personally think this is a really smart outlook and I really look forward to seeing how this hiring philosophy changes and evolves the company. Finally, this last article was from Women’s Wear Daily, and it is called Stephen Lussier on diamonds dreams and the economy of desire. Wow, what an intriguing article title. After 37 years of being DeBeers group’s Executive Vice President for brands and consumer markets. Stephen Lussier will be leaving the role on April 1, but he will continue to be a strategic adviser to DeBeers as well as continuing to serve as Chairman of the natural diet mean Council. He also recently received at the gala organized by jewelers of America the 2022 gem Award for Lifetime Achievement. I love this article because this interview with Stephan kind of gave some really interesting insights into marketing and positioning for diamonds. So, what does he see as some of the biggest changes in marketing diamonds in recent years? Well, one he says, “Brands need to ensure they are making decisions based on the values that consumers hold” and two the biggest change that Stephen noticed after working nearly four decades in Diamond marketing was that now more than ever, brands are prioritizing their customers, clients’ values and directly responding to those needs. The article notes that the US continues to be the largest market for diamonds in the world accounting for half of global diamond consumption. But De Beers has really been working hard to create demand in other parts of the world. So, one example that Stephen talks about is creating demand for diamonds or what he calls “The diamond dream” in other markets, such as India and China. So, in China, one thing that they did was made advertisements more localized and then inserted diamond culture into the lives of the Chinese people. Today, China probably accounts for 20% of global diamond jewelry consumption. So, $15 billion, the market went from zero to being the number two market in the world. So, it sounds like they know what they’re doing. Another thing that he brings up in this interview is the Forever Mark brand. So, the change in DeBeers business model was driven by a number of things, including the conflict diamond issue, they really created a new way of marketing, which led to the concept of the Forever Mark brand, which you’ve probably heard of before and familiar with. That was launched in 2008. It’s really been a marketing tool that reinforces the core values of diamonds and a way to help the company sell diamonds from their own production. They’ve also had this new code of origin pilot program. So, they’ve been testing this code of origin program for the last 18 months, and Lucia announced that it will be ready in April or May of this year. So, here’s the quote from the interview. DeBeers will work with their site holders to upload info about the diamonds on the blockchain and then inform the retailers how they can find a diamonds history, they will have a certificate link to a QR code that can open up content about the journey of the diamonds. In addition, he touched upon the lightbox brand that DeBeers have. So, DeBeers knew that natural diamonds and lab grown diamonds would eventually diverge and they saw that opportunity to launch the lightbox lab grown diamond brand. Lussier in this interview mentioned that, “Lightbox is an opportunity to be an honest broker with a consumer and transparent about what lab grown diamonds are.” Of course, they’ve really been focusing on their sustainability goals and strategies. So, they’ve been focusing specifically their efforts on climate change. They’re developing their own sources of renewable energy from solar and wind. Another thing that they are working on is converting all their trucks from diesel to electric. The greatest takeaway from this interview, I was super inspired by this article, by the way, he says, you need to inspire people, give them a vision and inspire them, make sure they understand what the dream is. That can apply both to your internal messaging to your team members, and also externally to consumers. As I mentioned, if you want to get the links to the articles I share in this segment of the podcast, you can become a Joy Joya VIP by visiting joyjoya.com/signup. Without further delay. Let’s get to my interview with Jessica. Hey, Jessica, thanks so much for coming on the podcast. I’m excited to have you as a guest today and to share your knowledge with the listeners.
Jessica Totillo Coster 14:30
Thanks so much for having me, Laryssa I could talk about this stuff all day long. So, Im so excited to be here.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 14:36
Awesome. So, tell our listeners a little bit how and when did you first enter this world of “E-commerce, Badassery” and what does that mean to you?
Jessica Totillo Coster 14:48
Yeah, that’s such a great question. So, technically, I started this business by accident. If you remember back when Shopify and MailChimp broke up and every e-commerce entrepreneur was like, I don’t know what to do. So, at the time, I was still working full time running an E commerce business and I was hanging out in all these entrepreneurial Facebook groups, because I just really loved to be around that energy and I knew I wanted my own business, but I didn’t know what it was going to be. So, we started talking to people about Klaviyo, because I had already been using it for probably three years at that time. Then people started and I was just commenting, right? Like just saying, hey, try this and then people started messaging me saying, oh, I’m on Klaviyo, or I’m trying to move, but I really don’t understand it. Can you help me? So, I was like, huh, okay, sure. I had those, it was like my first two OG clients and I was like, this is the best job I’ve ever had, like, why haven’t I been doing this already? I remember sitting on the couch with my husband, and I was telling him about it and he was asking me aren’t you tired? Because I was working full time and it was a very demanding job and then I would come home and work on the client stuff. I said, no, actually, I’m re-energized when I work on that stuff. He was like, so are you going to start a business or, so I hate admitting that it was actually his idea. But I just didn’t think that people would pay me for something I knew how to do so easily. Right?
Laryssa Wirstiuk 16:31
Yeah. Because it was obvious to you.
Jessica Totillo Coster 16:33
Yes. Like, we take our own knowledge for granted. So, that’s something for everyone to think about is you feel like everyone knows what you know, that’s not true at all. So, that’s kind of how ecommerce Badassery started. But in terms of what it means to me, when I was working at that other e commerce business, it was a seven-figure business, I was technically the only, w two employee, and we worked with a bunch of consultants. I felt like none of them really cared about me, and how I was going to manage the things that they were doing after the fact. It’s like they wanted me to be reliant on them. I’m scrappy enough to one, know the right questions to ask I’m not shy, I push back. But I know, not everyone is like that. So, for me, it’s about being dangerous enough in your own business. Like you don’t have to be an expert at everything. But you need to know enough that you know, when someone else is like, be assessing you. So, it was really important to me, to teach people things like SEO and email marketing, because not a lot of people are talking about that. Not for that mid-level ECOM entrepreneur who’s already doing like multi six going into seven figures. So, not all consultants are bad by any means. But I do think that to be a CEO, you have to really, like take ownership over every facet of your business and I just want to be a little part of that.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 18:13
Absolutely. I totally agree with that. At some point on this podcast, I’ve talked about this before that when it comes to marketing, if you want to make sure that you are spending your budget wisely, you at least have to take the time to understand what marketing means. Because like I said, someone might take advantage of you or like try to convince you into something that isn’t really right. So, you don’t have to be the expert at it, but at least know when someone is BSing you.
Jessica Totillo Coster 18:43
Yeah, exactly. Look, there are wonderful service providers out there. There really are, but there’s some really crappy ones, too and there are some people who are just good at marketing themselves but not actually doing the job. I know that because one I’ve worked with them. But two, because I see when clients come to me, I’m often fixing a lot of that other stuff.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 19:09
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. So, why are you passionate about specifically supporting e commerce businesses?
Jessica Totillo Coster 19:18
So, it’s actually less about e commerce business. It’s really about my ultimate goal. The thing that I want to do, why ecommerce badassery exists is to put more money in the pockets of female entrepreneurs.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 19:31
Okay. I love that.
Jessica Totillo Coster 19:33
My vehicle for doing that is ecommerce because that’s what I know. So, been in retail 20 plus years. Ecommerce, gosh, maybe I’m going on eight, or 10. Not really sure it’s all a little bit blurry. That’s the thing that I know that I can do and where I can bring the value.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 19:55
Sure. So, what specific services are you offering to bring that value to these Email entrepreneurs.
Jessica Totillo Coster 20:01
So, it really started with setting up Klaviyo automations, which I’m sure we’ll get into that a little bit today. But really, it was teaching people the platform, setting up the automations, building out the strategy and all of that good stuff so that every ecommerce business owner can make money on autopilot, because who doesn’t want to do that? Right?
Laryssa Wirstiuk 20:24
That sounds amazing.
Jessica Totillo Coster 20:25
Yeah, get those teachings while we’re sleeping. Then what happened was, as I was working with my first few clients, I was like, oh, I think she could use some help with SEO and, oh, I think she could actually use some help with more general marketing and just strategy like what are their best next steps. So, I started having those conversations. It’s funny, because if you go to my website, and you go to like the get ecommerce Help page, the headline literally says, e commerce is hard, because that’s what everybody was telling me. So, now I still do those email setups and I’m known as the clay vo girl around the internet. But I also do one on one consulting, where we just meet once a week for four months, and work out all your best next steps in business. 98% of the time, the biggest focus becomes SEO and email. Because those are the two things that people are just not teaching us heavily.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 21:31
Sure, that makes a lot of sense. So, since you are an expert in e-commerce, at least working with a lot of business owners focus there. I want to chat about e commerce platform because one, I get this question a lot like which ecommerce platform should I use? A lot of people are confused about the differences between one or the other. So, which platform do you recommend and why?
Jessica Totillo Coster 22:00
Yes, hands down. Shopify is my number one and here is why. Because one, it was built specifically for E commerce. Now, this is not to say the other platforms are bad. But that’s not what they were built for. It’s kind of the same way I feel about MailChimp, and a lot of email marketing platforms. They started out as this general email platform, and then they’re like, oh, let’s add on some e commerce features. I would rather see you on a platform that was built specifically for e commerce, every decision they make, every feature that they develop, is designed to help you sell more product. The other way I like to think about this is, so I was a late adopter to the iPhone and Macs in general. I didn’t switch to the iPhone until about generation five for two main reasons. One, I didn’t want to give up a real keyboard. I was like, oh, and because everyone was on iPhone, and they were all like, I think personally attacked, like they would feel personally attacked. If you didn’t also love iPhone. I’m like, why is everyone taking this so seriously. But eventually, I got so annoyed that all of the new apps came to iPhone first and then as an Android user, you have to wait for like a year. I was like this is stupid. So, I switched. Shopify, is the e-commerce platform equivalent.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 23:29
Yeah, that’s a great analogy.
Jessica Totillo Coster 23:32
So, when Facebook released Facebook shops, who did they integrate with first, Shopify. There’s so many apps and functionalities that can get added on and you have so much more choice in the Shopify ecosystem. Really, it takes away all of the headache. So, even in the business that I used to work in, I was not responsible for the initial setup. They had worked with a consultant because I was already working in the company in a different position. So, I didn’t have time to do that. They put us on Magento. I mean, I think we were getting hacked and our website was down more than we were up and making money, it was such a headache. We didn’t have the internal tech team to manage it. We were out. So, it was such a mess. Then I remember a new chief technology officer came in and was like, you guys got to make the switch. So, we made the switch to Shopify, and he didn’t stay for very long. But I am forever grateful for him, because he changed my work life. Like I didn’t have to worry about the tech. I could just focus on selling my product. If you’re some big business and you have the tech team and all that and you want to be on WooCommerce whatever cool, but I’ll tell you like if Shopify is good enough for Steve Madden and the Kardashian’s and the Jenner’s, I think it’s good enough for us.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 25:03
Absolutely. I agree with all your points and I would say the exact same thing. I like to talk in terms of bagels and coffee, because I’m very passionate about those things. So, it’s like, would you rather go to a bagel shop for a bagel? Or would you rather go to a coffee shop that decided to offer bagels because they needed food if you wanted a bagel? So that’s how I see it, I would rather go to the bagel shop,
Jessica Totillo Coster 25:29
Laryssa Wirstiuk 25:32
So what in your mind if you could pick five of the most essential ecommerce best practices what would they be? If only our listeners can focus on five things what would you say they’re?
Jessica Totillo Coster 25:47
Okay, they’re probably not going to be what you think they are.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 25:50
Oh, Im excited.
Jessica Totillo Coster 25:53
So, the number one thing is to get really intimate with your numbers and to understand the levers that you have to pull in your business. So, for instance, I get a lot of people who will come to me ask me, and they’re like, you know, how can I improve the conversion on my website? I’m like, well, what’s your conversion rate, and they say, 3%, I’m like, well, here’s the thing, the average ECOM conversion rate is only 1-3%, you’re already at the top of that. Now granted, the smaller assortment you have, the more niche you are, maybe you’re going to get up to a 5% and then the wider you’ll be closer to that 1%. But ultimately, you don’t have a conversion problem, you have a traffic problem, or an ARV problem. So, we get caught up in —
Laryssa Wirstiuk 26:45
AOV, average order value just you probably don’t know.
Jessica Totillo Coster 26:48
Thank you. Then they just get caught up in tinkering with every last thing on their website, that is a complete waste of time and doesn’t move the needle because the conversion is fine. Now, that doesn’t mean there isn’t room to improve it. But you’re not going to see as big of a jump, you’re not going to move forward as quickly when you’re focusing on the things that are already working.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 27:13
Jessica Totillo Coster 27:15
That’s not always the case, I would say the opposite in marketing, but you know, bear with me, guys. So, that’s really the first thing. Once you understand, okay, my conversion is good, now I have to grow my traffic, then you can think about how do I do that and then pick two or three things to focus on to drive traffic instead. So, I want you to get really comfortable with that stuff, do the research, get the benchmark so that you know what you’re up against. Number two, build an email and SMS list. Ultimately, at the end of the day is the only thing you own right? When Instagram is down for a day, you need a way to communicate with your customers. Even if you are selling on a platform like Etsy, I don’t know all the rules of Etsy. That’s not my jam. But there are ways that you can on social media push people to sign up for your email list. So, definitely focus on building that list. You don’t want to build your entire business on rented land. Number three, which is the I think most underrated is collaborate with complementary companies and get in front of other people’s audiences. That’s essentially what we’re doing here, Larissa needs content for her podcast, I need to get in front of other people. So, here I am sharing the value and you guys can do that, too. There are so many small product-based businesses out there. You know, you don’t have to collaborate with a direct competitor, someone who sells a different product to the same person, exact kind of the goal there. It’s truly the fastest way to get more eyes on your business and I always kind of asked people when they’re like, how do I grow traffic or get more customers? I’m like, well, do you have more time or do you have more money? If you have more money, go run ads. If everything else is good in the background, then just run ads. Don’t think of it as a bandaid because ads will kind of amplify whatever’s going on in your business good or bad. Otherwise, you need to go the organic route and collaborations is going to be way faster than like posting on Instagram app.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 29:38
Sure. I think it has other benefits too. I mean, if you are making an active effort to network with other business owners that share your target customer, not only do you get that exposure, but you can share information, you can compare experiences, you can talk about that target customer. There’re only positive things that can come from that.
Jessica Totillo Coster 30:03
100% I mean, this whole online business thing, it can get freaking lonely, you know. I mean, it’s funny because at this point in my life, most of my friends, they’ve either — and I live in Los Angeles, which is a very transient place. People come in and out, nobody really stays. So, all the people I was friends with a lot of them have moved away, or they’ve moved further away from where I actually live and anyone who lives or has been to LA know you don’t drive that far here because everything takes forever. It’s like, oh, you’re not in a two-mile radius. Probably not going to see you for like three months. So, I have all of these online business friends and because they understand what I’m doing, like your friends don’t get like, oh, you have this business on the internet and like, you don’t go into an office and wait, what? So, to have that community for yourself oh, my gosh, it’s such a lifesaver in those days, when you really want to just throw in the towel and say, screw it. I’m going to go and get a job. They’re kind of your saving grace.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 31:07
Yeah, and I think especially like speaking specifically to listeners in the jewelry industry. One negative thing I see in the jewelry community, there’s a lot of positive, but one negative thing is I think they’re so insulated in the jewelry space that they can’t see the forest for the trees as it is and collaborating with business owners who have different products, but share similar customers, like say it’s a beauty brand, or a fashion brand or a home accessories brand, you can really step outside of the jewelry industry and see a perspective that otherwise you’re blind to, because you’re so in this product space.
Jessica Totillo Coster 31:52
Yes, I love that. It really does we can get so. I mean, here’s the thing, I always tell people keep your eyes on your own paper. Like, you don’t want to be looking at your competitors all the time. But at the same time, you can’t be total tunnel vision, because you’re missing out on so much value and there’s a reason why people who invest in masterminds like the big guys, that’s what they’re doing. Because they know they don’t know at all and they know that they need someone to kind of uncover their blind spots for them and things like that. So, there’s just so much value in creating that community and whatever it is that you are feeling in your business they are too, even if they’re not talking about it, they’re feeling it too.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 32:36
Yeah, it’s very true. I forget what number we’re on.
Jessica Totillo Coster 32:40
That was number three. I have notes. So, number four, is to not project your own feelings on to your customers and this can manifest in a few different ways. I see a lot of people say, oh, I hate pop ups, I don’t want to put one on my website. Just because you hate pop ups doesn’t mean your customer hates pop ups and ultimately, they’re still one of the best ways to grow your list. So, I encourage you to just kind of like your business isn’t about you, it’s about your customer. So, think about them first. The other way I see this happen is with sending emails at all. I think this was actually one of the questions you sent me. But like some of the biggest mistakes is just not sending enough emails because you don’t like getting emails. But remember, it’s not about you, it’s about them. Like they raised their hand, they’re waiting for you to tell them what you have and what’s going on in your business. Then the other way I see this happen is in the pricing of your product. People are I think afraid or concerned or don’t think that their customer is going to spend as much for their product and there’s probably a whole lot of mindset stuff that goes into that. But there have been studies and I don’t remember all the details and one of them was actually specific to jewelry. I feel like maybe she was in a brick and mortar. It was a jewelry designer. She had this product that she was trying to sell, trying to sell, she kept marking it down, marking it down, marking it down, could not move it. Eventually she did the opposite and she raised the price like five times, sold it the first day because there’s so much in the perception of value with your pricing. So, that could be a whole other episode.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 34:30
Thats from a book that I have like within reach somewhere and I can’t remember the title of it. I know exactly what you’re talking about.
Jessica Totillo Coster 34:37
Is that maybe blue ocean.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 34:40
It’s not blue ocean. It’s something about either persuasion, but I’ll look it up and link it in the show notes because literally probably if I reached this so I can get it but I don’t want to mess up the record.
Jessica Totillo Coster 34:56
Fair enough. Yeah, so don’t just assume and from obviously, I’m a service provider. But there’s a lot of coaches or experts in the space who say, like, don’t assume how much your clients can afford to pay you and I want you to think of that same thing when you’re thinking about pricing your product. So, take your feelings out of it, you got to strip the emotion out, and just be really objective about your customers. That leads me into number five, which is getting to know your customers really, really intimately and well like way more than you think you need to know them. Understanding the problems and desires they have, and the outcome that they’re looking for from your product. I know if you’re a jewelry seller, you’re like, I don’t really solve their problem. That’s kind of true, but not really, there’s still an outcome. There’s a reason why we choose to use jewelry, and it’s about how we feel when we wear it. I’ll give you a very random example. So, there is this jewelry brand. She puts a lot of profanity on her product, and I am a potty mouth, which I’m keeping clean for this podcast, but when I wear her stuff, nobody else can see what it says. Unless they’re really close to me and if they’re that close that they’re probably too close. But I know what it says, and I’m like, if I encounter someone who’s grumpy that day, I’m like, my necklace is talking to you. So, it’s like that internal feeling and dialogue. I mean, that is why we wear that kind of stuff. So, think about the end user and why they even bother, because here’s the thing, if it was just about not being naked, like we would all just wear like $5 T shirts and sweatpants, probably, but it’s not. It’s about so much more than that. So, really dig into that. Because once you understand that, everything else in your business is so much easier. Your marketing is easy, your decision making is easier, because you’re just like, hey, how would my customer feel about this?
Laryssa Wirstiuk 37:15
Yeah, it all goes back to the customer.
Jessica Totillo Coster 37:18
Those are my five.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 37:18
Those were great points.
Jessica Totillo Coster 37:19
Laryssa Wirstiuk 37:21
I loved it. So, transitioning a little bit from ecommerce into email marketing, which is one of my favorite things to talk about these days, I find myself really been digging into it a lot. So, I’d love to focus on that and I know you’ve driven some really great results for your clients specifically with Klaviyo. So, tell me about you have a system that you use, correct?
Jessica Totillo Coster 37:47
Yes. I do.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 37:47
Let’s hear about that.
Jessica Totillo Coster 37:49
Yes, absolutely. So, it’s called the STAR method and it wasn’t always called that I made that up because I love a good anagram. Is that what it is, every time I have to ask because I forget that word.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 37:54
I think acronym.
Jessica Totillo Coster 38:03
Oh, maybe you’re right. Yeah, you know what I’m saying I love one of those. But this is the exact process that I used to use to create my email marketing calendar when I was working at my day job, which this was only one of 50 hats that I wore. We had a really wide product assortment and 200,000 active subscribers, and we couldn’t advertise on social media. So, email was a really important channel for us. So, I spent a lot of time optimizing not only my experience, and how I was going to manage this, but the subscribers too. So, this is how I like to approach email, because so many entrepreneurs tell me, I don’t know what to say and that is why they don’t send email. So, this process, kind of one makes it way easier. But two is going to fill your email marketing calendar so much faster than you think. So, I want you guys to picture, you’re looking at a monthly calendar. I like to do this minimum a month at a time quarterly. If you could do a whole quarter even better, obviously, you’ll go in and refine it. But I want you to have that visual picture. So, the first thing, this is the STAR method. So, the S, we’re going to set the foundation with all of your important dates. So, those are going to be your calendar holidays like Mother’s Day, St. Patty’s Day, then you’re going to layer in all of your social media holidays and you just pick the ones that are relevant to your business. So, that’s like National cookie day and I can’t think of any others because I’m on the spot on the podcast.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 39:51
There are some weird ones out there.
Jessica Totillo Coster 39:52
There definitely are some weird ones. Then you’re going to put in and I’m just double checking my notes so I have the order right here. Then I’m going to add in any business events or workshops, or if you’re doing markets, anything like that, layer those dates in. Next up, put in your product launches and don’t forget to leave a runway, I like to do a minimum of two weeks when I’m launching a new collection or product, well, depends a little bit on the details. Then you can layer in your promotions and any recurring content you have. So, if you do a weekly blog post, or you do live sales on social media, layer those things in. When you do that, you’re already going to have way more emails than you thought you could send. Because when you talk about those promotions and those events, you’re sending more than one email, and we can talk about what that looks like. So, when you start with this process, now, let’s say maybe you’ve recently only been sending once a week, maybe now you have two opportunities to email people every week. But you notice there’s a few holes. So, how do you fill those in, because you want to be consistent and get people used to hearing from you all the time. That’s when you’re going to add in value added and lifestyle content. Let’s talk about what those are. So, if you think about one, what else does your customer care about related to your product. So, if you sell jewelry, she probably cares about fashion and style, and probably beauty so you can start talking to her about that stuff and become a resource. If you sell fitness apparel, she probably cares about actual fitness and nutrition. So, you can kind of just fill in those spots with that type of content. But where do you get that content from and how do you actually structure it. That’s where the tea comes in, we’re going to start telling some stories, and make them be your stories, or they can be stories of your customers doesn’t really matter. You want it to obviously be related to your product. But stories the reason why and I know so many, I think a lot of entrepreneurs are probably sick of marketers telling them to like do storytelling, but there’s a reason and that’s because it works and it makes people feel like they can relate to you. And then they’re nodding their head and they’re like, oh yeah, she gets me or I feel like that too. Then they just become more connected to your brand. So, I love to use that. Then you’ve got the A is the adding value. So, those two kinds go together. Now so you’ve got this calendar, and then you can start plotting out all of the emails that you’re going to send. The R is really important because it stands for repeat, resend and repurpose. So, let’s talk about the repeating thing. Because I struggle with this too. I always tell my audience like when I am calling things out that we’re doing wrong. It’s because I’m doing it wrong, too. Or I’m struggling with it also. But I think we feel like we talk about why we started our business, or we’re telling the same stories over and over again. We’re like I just talked about this, like how can I talk about this again. But nobody is paying as close attention to us as we are.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 43:35
It’s so true.
Jessica Totillo Coster 43:37
So, we can’t be afraid to repeat ourselves over and over again. I always use this example of a post that I did on social media. I talked about when I was a little girl I used to sleep in my new shoes. True story. I shared this post and I had shared it multiple times before. But the most recent time I shared that someone commented and she said oh my god, I used to sleep with my new shoes too. Like I thought I was the only one. But she had already been following me for two years. That was the first time she ever heard it, or it clicked or even showed up in her feed. Like who knows. So, don’t be afraid to repeat yourself. The people who already know it, they’re not going to say Larissa is telling me the story again, they’re just going to tune it out. Like they don’t care. if they do say that they’re probably not buying from you anyway. They are not your customers though.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 44:35
Jessica Totillo Coster 44:36
Don’t worry about it. Then the resend this is where I think people get tripped up and it’s so funny because it’s such a simple thing but I’ve had multiple people tell me like, oh my gosh, you gave me permission to do this and email feels so much easier now. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you send an email. If you’re stuck with what to say, one, go back in your archive, go like six months, what was an evergreen so non time sensitive message that you sent in the past that performed really well, whether that’s because a lot of people replied to you, or they’ve made a lot of purchases, just resend that email. Yeah, you don’t even have to change the subject line or the content, because they’re not going to remember that you sent it to them. So, that’s one part of it. But also, when you’re thinking about those product launches, those promotions, those events, like sending one email the day of is not enough, we need to invite people, we need to tease them, we need to breadcrumb. So, any big event in your business is probably a minimum of three emails, I always like, let’s frame it around a promo that you’re going to run over the weekend. At a minimum, you want to send a launch, you want to resend it to anyone who didn’t click it the day before and then you want to send a last chance. That’s three emails right there for one topic. So, that’s going to fill up your calendar super-fast. Then the last thing is to repurpose other content. How much time energy and effort do you spend creating content for Instagram that I think it’s like 5% of your audience sees. What if you took that content and you did a round up, here’s what you missed this month, or this week, or something like that, and just stuck it in an email. Now, you don’t want to necessarily repeat everything. Because then people don’t feel like they need to be in both places. But a lot of them aren’t going to be in both places anyway. You spend all this time creating this amazing content, don’t let it just sit on like the shelf collecting dust, put that stuff out there and maybe it’s not your own content, maybe you’re doing a roundup of other people’s content that you know is going to be valuable to your audience and then you become the resource and people are going to stick around because they’re like sweet, I don’t have to scour all the fashion blogs, because the rest is just going to send them to me. So, though, that’s my STAR method, I encourage everyone to send more emails than you’re comfortable with. I kind of encourage everyone to kind of get to the limit of your comfort zone and then just go like a little bit outside of it step by step, because that’s usually where the magic is at.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 47:37
That’s a good tip. I especially like the last thing you said about repurposing content. It’s something I talk about a lot. I don’t have endless hours in a day. So, I like to make the most of the one effort that I put into, like communicating with someone. So, I mean, like you said, if you’re going to take the time to create awesome content, make that content work for you. I think the challenge I find with when I tell clients that or I suggest that it’s like, wow, I never thought about repurposing it in this way. So, I think it does take a little bit of creativity and perhaps working with someone who does this for a living to help pull it out of you. But when someone does or helps you see that outside perspective of all the ways you could be repurposing the things that you’re doing, it’ll open up a lot of new potential for you. Not only just with email, but possibly help you to expand to other platforms like YouTube, for example, everyone knows that video content performs well on Instagram. I know so many small business owners who are like tripping over themselves trying to make really amazing video content and that’s amazing, but like, make it work for you. Put it on YouTube, YouTube is one of the biggest search engines found in a new way. One thing I just literally yesterday suggested to someone, like if you’re doing an Instagram Live, maybe consider downloading that video putting it through like an AI like transcription tool so you can pull the text out of it and use that to make like a blog post, for example, which can only help you with your SEO.
Jessica Totillo Coster 49:37
Laryssa Wirstiuk 49:38
You’re literally doing no extra work maybe like five minutes worth of work and you are creating new opportunities for yourself to be seen and discovered in new ways.
Jessica Totillo Coster 49:49
Yeah, because here’s the other thing too. We all consume content in different ways. So, YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google also owned by Google. I don’t really go on YouTube honestly, that’s not my first place to go. If I’m trying to learn something, I actually prefer to read it. My husband spends hours on freaking YouTube, like, hours on YouTube. So, if you have an only there, I’m probably never going to see it. But if you repurposed it into a blog, I’m more likely to read it. Or maybe you broke it down over multiple captions on social media, maybe let me structure this easier for you. Let’s think about you create a video and maybe if you’re selling jewelry, you’re going to talk about how to mix and match styles. How to mix and match metals. Maybe you have like five main points, well, that’s your whole piece, right. But then each of those points can become their own piece of short form content that maybe you turn into a reel or you do an Instagram Live or something like that. They can also be broken out into a five-part carousel. You can take that same piece of content that you created, if you spread it out maybe it’s every three months. So, first, it’s a video, then you release the individuals, then three months later, it’s a carousel like, nobody’s going to remember that you talked about that. I’ve gone back and I’ve taken stuff off of Instagram from a year ago, and literally just reposted the exact same thing, because nobody remembers, and you have new people coming into your orbit all of the time.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 51:40
Not only does nobody remember, but especially since you are presenting it in different ways and presenting it on different platforms. Most people won’t notice. Even if it’s the same content, it looks different. It’s like a, what is that phrase like a wolf in sheep in wolf’s clothing or what sheep’s clothing? You know what I mean? It’s almost like you’re putting a disguise on it. That because in our digital world, we’re not paying such close attention that someone’s going to sit there and like, analyze oh, like this. It’s a flash decision that someone’s making that’s affected by the way it’s being presented.
Jessica Totillo Coster 52:23
This comes up a lot with reels, I think, right now, since they are so popular. But if you look at some of the top product businesses that are killing it on reels, and these are two people that I know who last year, they actually changed around, like their whole organizational structure so that they could become the content creator in their business. I’m not saying you have to do this, but it’s a great example. They’re essentially saying the same message over and over and over and over and over again and they’re just doing it to a different audio, maybe they’re switching up the colors or whatever it is that they’re doing, but it’s the same thing. They’re just talking about their product, and they’ve blown up. But both of them blew up when they started doing this. So, I think we get in our own head, and we kind of overthink what this really needs to look like and be and we’re trying to be so intricate, and that it doesn’t have to be this way, simplify it for yourself as much as possible.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 53:28
I’m a big fan of simplifying.
Jessica Totillo Coster 53:31
Laryssa Wirstiuk 53:33
Love it. So, also when it comes to email marketing, oh, I can’t even tell you how many questions I get. Larissa, how do I build my email list? Because obviously, if there’s no one on your list, and you’re putting all this time into creating wonderful emails and the STAR method, like it’s going to fall on deaf ears. So, how do you actually build a list do you have tips?
Jessica Totillo Coster 53:59
I sure do. The thing is to think about what’s in it for them. Why are they giving you their email, we have to remember that it’s a human on the other side, and they’re getting a lot of other emails. So, what is in it for them, you need to give them something and sure that can be a discount and I I know a lot of people are afraid to give discounts in exchange for an email. I don’t think it’s a bad thing. It’s not training your customers to wait for a sale. It’s just taking away some of the risk. So, you have that option. But there’s a lot of other ways you can do it as well. This is one of the few times I recommend you take a page from like the online educational space is a free PDF about something that they’re trying to solve. So, it could be a style guide on mixing metals or stacking necklaces, something like that. Maybe it’s a workbook to help them find their personal style. People will sign up for that. It’s something contest I know of some other businesses that have actually tested the discount versus the PDF. The PDF actually does better than the signups.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 55:09
Jessica Totillo Coster 55:10
So that’s an option. Then the other one and was really trending right now is quizzes. Create a quiz. It’s so funny, like, we’re busy, but we’re also kind of bored. So, if you can gamify something for us, we’ll be all over it. So, quiz can be really fun and maybe it’s helping them understand because here’s the other thing. Remember, at the beginning of this, I talked about you take your own knowledge for granted. Fun fact, in a previous life, I was a fashion stylist. Nobody knows how to figure out whether they’re cool or warm. Should I wear silver jewelry? Or should I wear gold jewelry? Right? So even something as simple as that, which you feel everyone in the world knows, guess what, they don’t know. You could do something like that. Depending upon the style of the product that you sell, maybe you’re kind of speaking to a few different customers. So, it’s like, what is your jewelry personality? There’s so much fun stuff that you can do around that. What makes the quiz so amazing is you are getting zero party data from your customer, like they are telling you exactly what it is that you want to know. Granted, this is a little bit easier if you think about skincare. So, are you dry? Are you oily? Do you break out, that kind of stuff, but you can really do it in pretty much any industry. If you use really great tools, they will integrate with your email marketing platform, hint, hint, Pre-hook and Klaviyo. I’m not sponsored by either one of them, by the way. But Pre-hook will send all of that info to Klaviyo which then you can use for segmentation and dynamic content and all of this cool stuff that you can. Quizzes become this landing page, essentially, on your website. It’s something you can send them too. So, you can talk about it on social media in your stories, and it gives them a reason to go somewhere else. Telling them to like go find the pop up on my website for 10% off your purchase, when they’re not even sure they want to purchase that’s a little bit harder to do. But for something like a free PDF download, or a quiz that gives you something to talk about.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 57:33
Totally, those are really great tips. I have a few thoughts about it too. With the quizzes also, because they take, I don’t know what, five minutes to fill out. But it’s five more minutes that they are spending with your brand that they may not have otherwise. So, they are engaging and you are also leaving them with a feeling. So, in a previous episode I just recently did I talked about ways to have more fun with your marketing. So, quiz is, it’s fun, it’s entertaining, and then subconsciously, whether that quiz taker realizes it or not, they just had like a boost of dopamine with your brand. They will go through the rest of their interactions with you kind of remembering that moment that they shared with you. The other thing about quizzes, I also just recently talked about this is that especially for millennial women who grew up with like, magazines
Jessica Totillo Coster 58:33
Yes, oh, my God, I used to take all of those.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 58:39
You know what I’m talking about. You took quizzes in those magazines, and I think it’s a little bit of like fun nostalgia, so that if your target customer is that person it totally resonates with them because they have a good feeling around that, a nostalgic feeling.
Jessica Totillo Coster 58:57
Yeah, the nostalgia this is why like, think about the holidays. The sense, the food, all of that brings you back to like those cozy moments, those happy moments with your family. Nostalgia sells really well. So, that’s such a great point. I’m going to have to steal that and start sharing that by the way.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 59:20
Steal it. Because thats how I feel when I take a quiz because I’m a millennial woman. So, whenever I see a quiz, I’m like, oh, this reminds me of like team guard Cosmo or whatever.
Jessica Totillo Coster 59:35
You know what else too, like that’s the customer making a micro commitment and conversion with you.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 59:43
Jessica Totillo Coster 59:44
As they take those tiny steps. They click the link. They went to your website, they filled out the quiz, they opened your email with their results. All of those are steps getting them closer to making a purchase because to go from Initial click to purchase is really hard. You have to build that relationship with them first. And that’s such an amazing way to do that.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:00:09
I am going to steal the word micro commitment. We’re even now.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:00:14
Love it. This is why you need online business friends, guys. So, I think we’re actually local to each other we figured out.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:00:21
Yes. There was one other thought I had to about the eBook download, which I love and I am always telling people to do. But the pushback I get is Laryssa, nobody reads anymore. Nobody wants an eBook. Well, I think you have to think more about it this way. Like, say you go into a brick-and-mortar store, or even let’s talk about coffee again. My favorite coffee shop has little free stickers that they switch up the design all the time. I don’t need stickers. Honestly, I’m probably not even going to use these stickers or put them on anything. But they are free and they look cool. So, guess what I am taking when I go to the coffee shop, I’m going to take a sticker, with the e book who cares if no one reads it? The point is that someone’s going to see that and be like, oh, cool, a free thing that I never saw before. I definitely have to download this. Guess what? You will have their email address. Who cares if they don’t read it? Because they probably won’t honestly, because it’s true that people don’t read things, or they are just distracted and they forget about it and they move on to the next thing. But now they’ve made a micro commitment with you.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:01:40
Yes, exactly. You do have to think about what that initial onboarding experience for those people are. You can’t just like have them download the thing and then ghost until you have a sale. That welcome and all of that good stuff to really create that relationship. But that’s them giving you the opportunity to do that and they’re opening the door for you.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:02:05
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:02:06
Step on through friend, step on through.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:02:08
I love it. So, what are some big mistakes that you see in email marketing,
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:02:15
The number one is not sending enough emails, for sure. Just to give you a little framework around this is, generally, the bigger your list, the wider your product assortment, the more emails you can send, the more niche you are, the fewer emails, at a minimum, I’d love to see you sending at least one email a week, you can slowly increase that. Maybe you send two emails for four weeks, check your numbers, if they’re still good, then continue to do that. Increase it by one every time and see what happens. I used to send minimum of four emails a week. But not everyone was getting an email every day. Because you’re going to segment out a little bit. Depending on your business, maybe you just exclude everyone who’s purchased from you in the last 14 days. So, once they make a purchase, you kind of leave them alone for a little bit. Another thing you can do to actually send more email is randomly split your list into two segments, 50-50 it doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Take this same email and split the send over two days. So, you send it to one half of the people on Monday, you send it to the other half on Tuesdays. So, this way you have people getting emails every day, but no one’s getting an email every day.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:03:41
That make sense.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:03:42
So, I used to do that as well. Ultimately, just figure out how you can send more emails, friends, please just do it. Most of the time, when you send more email, you will make more money. The other side of that is forgetting that it’s a human on the other side of that email. Email is not a place to say buy my product, buy my product. What about now do you want to buy it now? How about today? If you go back to that STAR method, we need to add value and create an experience. A lot of people ask me about like, well, should I do email or should I do SMS? It’s not an either or it’s both because they serve different purposes. Email is where you get to build a connection. Create a relationship. If you’re a really small business, encourage people to reply to you and start having conversations. Plus, it’s really good for your deliverability which is conversation for another day. An SMS is more of a notification channel. Hey, this went on sale, hey, you left this in your car, hey, we got this new product so it’s not an either or. But really just put yourself in the shoes of your customer and think about if you were in a brick and mortar, how would you talk to them? They’d come in, you’d be like, oh my god, I love your shoes. The weather’s really great. Look at what we just got. You’d show them some of your best stuff. You’d ask them some questions. So, try and recreate that experience in email, if you can.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:05:20
Yeah, don’t be a troll.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:05:22
Yeah, and then you can also say it that way.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:05:28
Don’t hide behind your digital identity.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:05:31
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:05:35
There’s like so much we could talk about. We could probably talk for hours and hours and hours. Hopefully, this is still engaging to listeners. But I definitely want to get to automations, or at least, the basics of automation. So, why is the automation part of email marketing important and which ones would you say are the most essential to have?
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:05:56
Yes, and guys, if you tuned out, come back to us. This is probably the most important part of the episode.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:06:03
This is the most important part; we are testing you because the champions who get through this episode will get this true solid gold of it.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:06:13
Exactly. So, automation is important for a few reasons. But one, it’s how you actually make money while you sleep and on autopilot, right? So, it works for you. You don’t have to be worried about it all the time. But two is they convert better generally, because it’s based on your customers behavior. That’s what triggers these emails to actually be sent. There’s something really, really powerful about that. You can kind of liken it to ads. For instance, when people ask me like, oh, should I do Google ads, or Facebook ads, I’m like, one, it depends a little bit on your product. But two think about the experience on Facebook, you’re kind of looking at your nephews or you’re reading the news, or whatever it is and then you have this ad, it just kind of interrupts what you were already doing there. Versus on Google, you’re going there and you’re searching for something specific. So, email is kind of the same way those campaigns sort of interrupt whatever it is that you were doing, while the automations are kind of there along the way with you because the customer took an action. So, that’s why they’re really important and shouldn’t be ignored. I know that it can get a little overwhelming and you feel like you need to have like all of these crazy conditional splits and all of this, like cool funnel stuff. You don’t let’s, let’s keep it simple to start out. So, the most important one really is the welcome because that is your first impression with the customer. You want it to match whatever it is that you’re giving away. So, if it was the PDF you want to kind of talk to them about what’s inside, so that they’ll be more inclined to go read it. If it’s the quiz, you want to email them their results, which in most cases should be the best products for them specifically. Then if it’s the discount, don’t get too crazy in that first email, just give them a discount and get them back to your website to shop. Then you can go in and introduce yourself, talk a little bit about why they want to buy from you, give them a little bit of the behind the scenes. I know you think people don’t care, but people are voting with their dollars. As a small business, you are the thing that sets you apart and people want to support other people. So, don’t be afraid to share that stuff. Then you can kind of get them like, hey, come hang out with us on social and all that good stuff. So, think about how you would talk to someone in person. What if you were at like a party or something like that. Think about that when you’re creating that welcome. Then you also want to think about your abandonment email. So, I think the most recent statistic, I think cart abandonment has gone up. It used to be average of 68% of people would abandon a cart now I think it’s closer to 75. Well, that’s a lot. So, you definitely want those emails to bring them back. That can be really simple. Hey, did you forget this because most people just got distracted, right?
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:09:19
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:09:20
There’s probably a kid pulling on their leg, somebody called them texting them, whatever. So, you want that abandonment. Then the other most important one is your post purchase. So, just because you got the sale doesn’t mean that your job is done, especially for those first-time buyers, this is your chance to solidify that relationship with this new customer. So, that they’ll come back leave you a positive review and then shop with you again. So, when I think about the content here, I’m going to ask myself, what does this customer need to know and understand to have a good experience with my product? There is something that you can educate them on, whether it’s how to care for it, how to wear it. I’ll give you a couple examples, they’re not jewelry examples, but it’ll help illustrate this. I have a client who she sells handbags, she’s got five main styles and then they all just have a bunch of different colors. But every bag really serves a different purpose. They’re very feature, and then benefit heavy. So, we sent information about each bag, how to use it, how to care for it, how to get a dent out of it, if you get a dent in your leather bag, and what’s funny is, and I knew this was going to happen, that was part of the intention, but she was actually on a podcast. She had mentioned how we had done this for her, and that her customer service inquiries went down. So, important, because the time energy and effort that you spend replying to those customer service inquiries is just as important a metric in your business as your conversion rate is. So, how can you decrease that because it’s going to save you so much payroll time or if it’s you doing it. Another example is, this was from my previous day job, there was this new product that came out in the industry, it was brand new technology, it was like a really big deal. Everyone was loving it, the bloggers were giving it insane reviews, we were selling them like hotcakes. Then we got all of these return requests. We’re like, oh, my gosh, like what is happening? Because there was a little bit of a learning curve to using it and we did not do our job in educating the customer. So, what we found and we figured this out, because we went back and we looked at the data, we had all these customer inquiries coming in, chat live chats coming in. What we found is when the associate would kind of troubleshoot using it with them, and they would kind of get it and then they would come back and say, okay, never mind, I’m keeping it and they were just as in love. So, what did we do, we created a post purchase email, if they bought that product that explained all of this stuff to them ahead of time and then all of that stopped, and then people were in love with it? So, if you’re not sure what customers need to know, it’s in your customer service inquiries. It’s probably in your DMS on Instagram, it’s in your bad reviews, it’s all there for you.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:12:41
Those are two really good examples. I think that does a good job of illustrating not only why it’s important, but also like the types of content that can go in that post purchase email.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:12:52
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:12:53
That’s awesome. Well, this has been an amazing conversation. I know my listeners learned a lot and I love hearing this stuff because I think about a lot of it all the time. It’s nice to hear someone else also reiterated and even say it in like a different way that may reaches people that didn’t hear it before or get it before so I think that’s really great. Is there anything else you would like to share? How can people find you, it’s your time to shine, Jessica?
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:13:26
Thank you. I would say the one thing if you take nothing else away from this episode today, it’s we have to put ourselves in the shoes of our customer if we want to be a really good marketer. Ultimately, that is your job. If you’re going to be the CEO of your own company, unless you’re going to go pay a bunch of money for an actual good marketer. We need to learn how to do this, and you should learn it anyway so people don’t take advantage of you. The best way to do that is to get really, really intimate with your customer. All the other stuff matters but if you don’t have that as the foundation, then you’re going to end up making the wrong decisions in your business. If you’re ever hung up and you don’t know what to do, if you’re indecisive like me, if you overanalyze like me, just take those few steps back and say, okay, does my customer want this? Is this going to help them and then you can move forward with your decision. If you want to hang out with me more, I would love to have you can find me in all of the places as E-commerce Badassery so that’s my website, my podcast, my name on Instagram, all the places and then I have a little free gift I’d like to share with the audience.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:14:50
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:14:51
Amazing so if you go to ecommercebadassery.com/joya, J-O-Y-A I have something special for you. I’m not going to tell you what it is. You’re going to have to go there and find out.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:15:04
I don’t even know what it is so I’m going to have to go there myself. Well, thank you Jessica. This has been amazing. Thank you for spending the time with me and for sharing all of your knowledge.
Jessica Totillo Coster 1:15:17
Yeah, this has been a blast. Thank you so much for having me.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 1:15:23
What did you think about my interview with Jessica? If you want to hear more from her, you should definitely check out her E-commerce Badassery podcast, which is available wherever you consume podcasts. You can visit her website ecommercebadassery.com. Or follow her on Instagram at Ecommerce Badassery. As she mentioned you can also claim your free gift for listening to or watching this podcast by visiting e-commercebadassery.com/joya, you can always email me Laryssa that’s L-A-R-Y-S-S-A @joyjoya.com. If you love this podcast, please share it with a friend who’d appreciate it and don’t forget to subscribe as well as leave a review on iTunes. To purchase a signed copy of my book Jewelry Marketing Joy visit joyjoya.com/book for more information. Thanks for listening. Remember to subscribe so you never miss an episode. For more information about working with Joy Joya, visit joyjoya.com where you can sign up to download our free eBooks about various topics in jewelry marketing.