Don't let regulatory board limitations on marketing and advertising hold you back from growing your business!
As someone who has worked in health & wellness for over ten years, I know how much of a drag regulatory board marketing and advertising limitations can be.
The list of what you can’t do feels endless!
It can seem overwhelming and even a little scary, especially as a new grad or someone with no marketing and advertising background!
Unfortunately, most marketing agencies, social media managers, content writers, and online marketing courses are entirely unaware of these limitations, making delegating your marketing more than tricky.
You CAN effectively market, advertise and grow your business in the health wellness industry without stepping on the toes of your regulatory board!
Here’s what you NEED to know about marketing in the health and wellness industry.
What are your goals? Is it to grow your audience? Generate Revenue? Improve customer retention? Clear marketing goals will help you plan your marketing strategically instead of just copying what you see others doing online. Your goals will show you where you should spend your time and energy and identify where you can relax and rely on “maintenance” content.
Take the time to read and understand your board regulations to confidently identify what is NOT acceptable. Knowing where the line is will help you gain confidence staying on the other side of it!
Who do you want to reach? Effective marketing is about having your message reach the RIGHT people - not everyone. When you identify your target market, you can create a strategy to get their consent, have them opt-in and move to a channel where you CAN market your services and offers without breaking the rules.
Each marketing channel has different rules. Social media and websites are considered public domains to advertise and market your services and offers outright. Emails and direct messages are considered non-public domains where there are strict limitations on what you can say. When you know which channels can do what, you can help bring your target audience to the right channel, so they get the right message!
All of these questions can be answered when you know your customer’s journey. Take time to map out your customer’s journey so you can strategically move them along to become loyal buyers!
Board regulations do not have to stop you from confidently marketing and advertising your business! Much like in sports, to be successful, you need to know the rules of the game and practice. Having a great coach helps too!
Effective marketing is all about sending the right message to the right people, not trying to reach everyone.
It all begins with finding your target audience (or ideal customer)!
To identify who you should be trying to reach with your marketing efforts, there are three steps you can take.
3 - Analyze Your Offering
Take a good look at your product or service and identify exactly what problem it solves. What is the formula for success you follow, and how is it different from what's on the market?
Once you've identified your audience (or ideal customer), now it's time to organize your audience so you can target those who fit the bill!
There are a TON of different ways to keep your audience organized, including old-fashioned spreadsheets of leads, scrolling through your followers and creating a close friends list, or using CRM software to store, tag, and sort your audience.
Having a HUGE following or massive email list is great - but if your goal is to increase revenue, make sales, or grow your business - that list is only as good as the number of buyers on it!
No one wants to receive irrelevant content. By organizing your audience you can target specific individuals or groups and ensure that your message goes to the right people!
Understanding and organizing your audience is an ongoing process that requires continual maintenance. Schedule time every few months to go through your audience and collect data, analyze metrics and organize.
How to increase your email open rates - and why it matters!
Getting your emails opened is the first step to having your message and content be consumed. If your readers aren't opening your emails, they aren't getting any of the great information you send their way (and are more likely to unsubscribe). "The open rate is a percentage that tells you how many successfully delivered campaigns were opened by subscribers." In 2020, the average open rate for the Health & Fitness Industry was 21.47%, and 21.72% for medical, healthcare and dental. (Mailchimp, 2020).
Catchy headlines aside, here are three simple and effective ways to increase your open rate and get your message read!
1. Subject line
Make your subject lines as straightforward as possible - it's a psychological defensive response to distrust ambiguity, missing information and confusion. It's ok to build some curiosity, but it should still be clear why it's relevant to the reader. Personalized emails have a higher than average open rate, so whenever possible, add your subscriber's name to the subject line.
2. Preview text
The preview text is essentially a second subject line for your email, and your readers see most, especially on mobile devices. The preview text is an opportunity to show your reader that you're not sending spam and you're not a bot. Give them value and let them know what to expect when they open up their email.
3. From field
Knowing who sent the email address has a direct impact on the likelihood of it being opened. Like I mentioned earlier, we distrust ambiguity - so if your reader is at all uncertain of who you are, they are likely not going to open the email. Having a friendly, easy-to-read reply email address and listing your name or business name, so it's recognizable to your reader is an easy way to improve open rates.
These three simple things can make a massive impact on your click rates - and they are also the easiest aspects of an email to test! Testing is an essential part of effective marketing, and this is a great place to start.
BONUS: A/B Testing
The most effective way to diagnose the reason why your open rates aren't as high as you want is with testing. You can start by A/B testing subject lines, preview text, and the To & From field with relative ease. Start with a small percentage of your audience to test with, and remember only to test one thing at a time. Then, you can analyze the data and select the options that had the best results!
Remember that we are far more likely to open emails from people and businesses we know, like and trust. Make it easy on your readers by making clarity a key component to every aspect of your emails!
You don't own your social media content (gasp).
At any moment, whether by accident or not, all of your social media content could be deleted or lost, and there's not a damn thing you could do about it.
There are tons of horror stories about how established businesses and brands lots ALL of their social media content.
Having a blog is not only an amazing (and safe) way to keep your content backed up and accessible, it also:
🙌 Increases your searchability (optimized SEO if your content uses keywords clients search);
🙌 Looks incredibly professional on a website; and
🙌 Allows those who don't use social media to get access to your knowledge!
If you don't have a blog yet, now's the time!
✨Start by simply copying your best social media posts and adding them first.
✨Choose the posts that have the words your readers are most likely to search online.
✨Always add the SEO description and keywords to each blog post.
If you don't have a blog, what's holding you back from starting?
Wellness Industry Communications & Marketing Expert
Is it them...or is it Me?
When things are quiet, when the sales aren’t rushing in, when the DMs are slow…our inner dialogue can get pretty wild.
Am I posting enough?
Do I sound ok?
Do people think I’m smart?
Is my content helpful?
Am I good enough?
You scramble to throw together some content, make a post, pop your face on the internet to remind everyone you exist.
You share your morning coffee to try and act calm and confident when inside you feel anxious and overwhelmed. You post a fluffy to-do list while clenching your jaw and hoping it makes you look in-demand. You talk about that ‘secret project’ you’ve been working on to remind them, and you, that you have a plan even though you feel lost.
Then you feel all the insecurities rushing in and wonder - do they know?
Have they figured me out?
Those negative and unhelpful thoughts multiply exponentially when we let them run wild in our minds. The more you think about it, the more you feel about it, react impulsively, feel anxious, and send out an energy of desperation and despair.
You rush to create promotions, launches and offers to try and get the ball rolling. You throw together emails, try to get engagement in stories, and let those emotions and thoughts push you into action and pretend it’s motivation, not desperation, without ever stepping back and thinking it through.
When we can take a step back and look at ourselves, our thoughts, feelings, reactions and behaviours, we open up an opportunity to truly see how we are holding ourselves back.
When the inner critique starts - stop.
What thoughts are running through my head?
Are they true?
Who would I be if I just let this thought go?
You CAN choose to let go of the thoughts that aren’t serving you and take hold of new, more balanced thoughts.
You CAN calm your energy, feel more confident, and embody that magnetic, irresistible CEO you dream of becoming IF you can just stop.
Posting for the sake of postinG
Rather than sticking to a routine of constantly and impulsive sharing every piece of content you think might be helpful as soon as it comes into your mind fueled by scarcity, insecurity and desperation - stop.
What thoughts are running through my head?
Are they true?
Who would I be if I just let this thought go?
Let the dust settle.
When your emotions have calmed, and your mind is quiet, come back to the content and ask yourself honestly:
Is this content strategically aligned with my long-term goals and strategy?
Is this content about making me feel better or about my readers?
Is this content truly what my reader NEEDS to see or learn at this moment?
Is there a benefit to taking a step back and looking at the big picture before rushing into action?
Social media is powerful.
It influences us.
When we get caught up in the noise and that desperate energy that holds us attached and addicted, we can get lost.
So how do we find ourselves again?
How do we step out from the noise?
How do we reclaim our boundaries and our confidence to use its power without getting sucked in?
How do we embody the magnetic energy that naturally attracts dream clients?
These five simple steps have helped me find balance and hold firm boundaries while still getting the most out of my social media marketing.
5. Fun & Dance.
My favourite part of my creative process is that every 25 minutes, I take a short dance/play break. Yep. I crank the tunes and dance around my house to bring back the spontaneity, creativity and FUN to the creative process.
When we can pause and reflect on our energy before creating and sharing online, we can tap into a magnetic and empowering energy that helps transform any piece of content into a marketing masterpiece.
It takes practice, but over time you’ll be able to tap into your magnetic and empowering energy and share online with authenticity, from a place of inner knowing instead of fear.
If you are ready to step up your content creation game with planning, strategy, and Magnetic ENERGY, be sure to sign up for my FREE connective content planning workshop by clicking the link below!
"You can do it all - but not all at once."
That’s been my mantra for the past few years, and it’s served me well, especially in my writing.
Over time, in life and business, and with some wisdom, we all eventually learn that you can’t expect anyone or anything to do it all.
Social media is no exception.
Yes, social media is powerful - but it can’t do it ALL.
You can sure as heck try to make it your one-stop-shop to build an audience, drive sales, get referrals, and grow your business. It might even work for a while too!
The challenge with using social media for EVERYTHING is that you end up setting many different goals all at once and all in the same space.
If your social media goals and strategy include sales, growth, connection, retention, referrals, and everything in between - you’re going to exhaust yourself.
In social media, you have zero control over when new followers join, what they see (if they see you at all), and in what order.
How can you strategically bring your readers through a customized buyer’s journey of connection and content?
Now, before you hit me back with the “I don’t have time to add emails to my marketing - social media already takes up so much time,” STOP.
Email marketing does not have to be a time thief.
Email marketing does not have to be complicated.
Email marketing does not have to reinvent the wheel.
You have tons and tons of content that you’ve created and shared on social media. You can reuse it - with a few minor tweaks - and create an incredible email series that strategically brings your readers through your buyer’s journey!
Think about it this way - if you could control exactly what posts a new follower should see, and in what order, what would those be?
That is where you start.
Next step - why the heck should they give you their email address in the first place?
Inboxes are sacred, and no one wants to join another newsletter.
Offer something of incredible value in exchange for your reader’s precious email, and then take them on a journey (strategically) without the noise or distractions of social media.
Before you jump ship and sign-up for an email marketing platform, stop for a second and set some goals.
You can have a different goal for each email series - and you can create an infinite number of other email series’.
Take the pressure off your social media content and take control of your reader’s journey through your content with email!
Do you use email for your marketing? Let me know below in the comments!
Wanting to be a better salesperson does not make you:
We all know that No sales = No business.
Fostering strong relationships will absolutely grow your business, but NOT if you altogether avoid sales. My last post was about how relationship building is more important than a quick sale, but NOT an effort to label sales as bad.
If you can’t or won’t sell yourself and your business, you’ll end up with a lot of friends, you’ll give away a ton of free value, but you won’t be able to pay your bills.
I like to think of sales like food.
We need it to survive. It’s not inherently bad or good. Almost all of us have a complicated relationship with it.
Some food we eat a lot, some we only eat once in a while or on special occasions.
It can taste delicious and makes you feel instant gratification. You look forward to it, savour it, and when it’s over, you can’t stop yourself from wondering when you’ll have it again.
Or, it can taste terrible, leave you with a stomach ache and feeling sick.
Sales aren’t bad.
Selling isn’t bad.
It’s an essential component of building a healthy, balanced business. ;-)
So why do sales feel so icky sometimes?
Because we don’t know if the person selling us cares beyond the sale.
Relationship focused business is NOT about avoiding sales.
It’s about fostering strong relationships, seeing the human behind the sale, and creating a safe, trusting and open space where sales happen naturally without the icky feeling.
When you care about the person behind the sale, you care beyond a yes or a no. You want to help, offer your services, and see them succeed. But you also see and nurture the strength and resilience in the other person, knowing that your relationship is essential regardless of the sale.
Bullet lists of words are not what inspires or maintains company culture.
How can you choose the right values and then get your team and clients to buy into your values and culture?
In this video, I take you through the difference between core values and other common business values, as well as the simple process of creating a value story that inspires!
Relationships > Sales.
There I said it.
Yes, to run any sort of a successful business you need sales. Although fast or immediate sales sound like a dream - they often come at the cost of establishing any consumer trust or brand loyalty.
Relationship-building sounds tedious and time-consuming, but the truth is - business is about the long game.
One sale today is not more important than:
All relationships are different. Sometimes we connect instantly and know we’re a guacamole and salty tortilla chip kinda match.
Sometimes they take time and need a lot of nurturing and growth.
Sometimes they just don’t work.
Welcome back to being human.
Business is about serving humans, not selling humans. When we come from a place of service and focus on relationships instead of sales, we get benefits far beyond a sale today.
So how do you start building relationships and honouring the human behind the screen?
Listen. Care. Serve.
Can I get an amen?
After ten years in Ottawa, I’m still not used to these harsh winters. I grew up in pretty mild climates, and through most of 20’s I spend winters in the South training for swimming.
I find myself craving trips to the sun and sand. I’ll be sitting on the couch wrapped in my flannel snuggie in front of the fire, writing an email sequence for a client and all of a sudden drift off in my mind imagining a tart margarita and the feeling of hot sand burning my feet.
This year I decided I didn’t want to hate winter anymore. My trips to the south were all put on hold, and I didn’t want to be miserable for seven months (damn Ottawa).
I got some new gear, and I can confidently say that winter doesn’t have to suck, IF you prepare, dress appropriately, and TRY to like it. For Real.
Here are a few things that made a big difference for me. None of these are sponsored or paid in any way - they are just my honest favourites:
AKU Boots - These ‘hiking’ looking boots are fitted just right, not too tight, fully Gortex (waterproof), and are incredible for keeping my feet dry and warm.
Fjallraven Parka - Ok. I spent the extra money, and it was worth every penny. Warm (verging on HOT), comfortable, and looks good. What’s not to love.
Columbia Mittens - Screw gloves; my fingers always end up cold. I got these fantastic mittens, and I will never go back. My fingers stay toasty, and I don’t care if I can’t open my phone because it’s too cold to text anyway.
New Attitude - I’ve committed to trying to enjoy winter. I used to get distracted by how cold and uncomfortable I was and never really give it a chance. Now that I’m geared up and prepared, I have no excuse and find I can be more present and open to the fun around me.
You can take this as a simple gear recommendation post or look at it as a metaphor for most things in life. Preparation, spending a bit more for better quality on the things that matter most, and committing to a new attitude can make pretty much anything more enjoyable.
Here’s to making the most of even the coldest winters! Hit LIKE if you are ready to have some fun in the cold this year too!
PS - If you are looking for more than just gear and want some incredible winter hiking and outdoor recommendations, head on over to www.girlgonegood.com for everything wellness and wilderness! She’s my go-to for pretty much anything outdoors.