Want to know one of the biggest reasons your leads aren’t converting into customers? It’s because you don’t give them a good reason to do it right away. When given the option to do something now or later, the majority of people will choose later. And often they’ll then promptly forget about it. But by using a few simple tricks, you can get some of those wait-and-see leads to become customers…
...So what is an Evergreen Deadline?
Some of you might be wondering what an Evergreen Deadline is. Simply put, it’s setting a dynamic end for the offer you are making that is based on when the recipient opted in.
For example, you could offer a free presentation to all new subscribers to your newsletter – but it expires in three days. While your new subscriber might have previously put that opportunity to one side, now they have to watch it in three days.
The “Evergreen” in Evergreen Deadlines is named after the evergreen family of trees that stay green and healthy in any weather condition throughout the year. An Evergreen Deadline is exactly the same, and when done properly will be useful to you all year round.
There are two main reasons that you might want to use an Evergreen Deadline:
You’re trying to sell something.
You want to be sure your audience consumes your content.
How can your business use an Evergreen Deadline?
Almost any business can use an Evergreen Deadline and see a dramatic increase in conversions; however, using them in the situations below can be particularly effective:
You want to ensure that your audience is consuming your content.
How many of your audience who are opting in are actually consuming the content that cost you time and money to produce? Probably a pretty low number.
What’s the point in creating content that nobody sees? With an Evergreen Deadline you can push your audience to your content shortly after they receive it by telling them they only have a few days to do so.
You’re building a list and offering products to buy
By using deadlines, you can drive your leads to purchase; but with Evergreen Deadlines you can ensure any lead feels the same sense of urgency, no matter when they first come into contact with you or your business.
You offer a service and want to do free trial
An Evergreen Deadline is a great way to offer a free trial for a service or piece of software.
You sell through a live event, like a webinar or presentation
You can use Evergreen Deadlines to maximize the conversion rate for no- shows. If somebody doesn’t come to your event it’s harder to sell to them, but what if you could make your replays available to view for a short period after the event? And then you could run a campaign to these no- shows where they have a limited time to watch the videos in which they’ve shown interest.
So now that you have a few general ideas, let’s get into some specific examples of real-life Evergreen Deadline campaigns.
(A) Freemium Content With Limited Availability
Like I said above, what’s the point in making a free premium (freemium) piece of content if nobody is going to read it. With this example campaign, we’re going to be offering a high-quality and very informative video presentation that the recipient will only have a week to watch.
The content needs to be great. It has to provide value and entice the audience to watch.
The deadline needs to be appropriate to the content; if the content is three minutes long, then the deadline should be shorter than if the content takes two hours to consume.
Giving a deadline encourages your audience to take the next step from being interested in your video to actually watching it.
If they only have a week to watch it, they’re much more likely to take time out of their day to do so. In this case, we’ve set a week for them to watch an hour-long video presentation. If you wanted, you could even split the videos into a video series to make them more digestible, but for simplicity here use one video for this example.
These are the emails we would send:
1.) Introduction to Content
First, you want to introduce your content and showcase how great it is. Let them know the deadline for viewing it. Stress the limited availability; your freemium product is “so good I can only give it away for so long.”
2.) Talk up the product again
Wait a day and then email again. This time you want to include samples and testimonials for the product. In this case, we’d tap people who have seen the video to say how great they thought it was.
3.) Time is running out!
Email a day or so later to let them know they only have 3-4 days left to watch your video. Include some content from previous mailings, but this one should place more emphasis on Scarcity.
4.) Today is the last day
On the last day of your time period let them know it. Tell them how amazing your product is, and then we would put a countdown timer in the email. Timers are very effective for creating urgency.
5.) You only have two hours!
Similar to the above, though much more urgent. If you’re planning on selling the product, maybe include a Recommended Retail Price (RRP) that the audience will have to pay once you do start selling it. You want to emphasize that the product is premium, limited and scarce.
(B) The Timed Discount Evergreen Deadline
This kind of deadline is very simple. You’re probably already sending any new subscribers a
confirmation email when they subscribe (and if you’re not, you should be), but now this email contains a discount code.
This code can be for a specific product, or just for anything they purchase from you.
It should be of value to your subscriber. If it’s 1% off something they won’t care, but 20%?
If you’re offering a discount on a particular item, I would recommend a low-dollar offer on one of your best sellers.
When we set a deadline like, this we would usually set it for three days. During that time frame we would send the subscriber three emails:
1.) First reminder.
This email reiterates your offer and clearly states the expiration date.
2.) Time is running out!
This is similar to your first email, but you’ll want to use more urgent language. This isn’t a friendly reminder that there’s a deadline; you’re telling them the deadline is fast approaching.
3.) The deadline is today!
This is a short email that gives the deadline in hours rather than days. You’ll also want to reiterate how great your offer is here. Very urgent language should be used, too. You want to create a fear of missing out for your lead.You can also send a fourth email an hour before the deadline, but that’s optional. If you’re sending this optional email, you’ll want the subject to be, “Only One Hour Left!” or something to that effect.
(C) The First-In Bonus Deadline
This one is interesting, as it isn’t actually time-based. With this sort of deadline, you’re giving a bonus to the first few people who complete an action, such as subscribing to your newsletter.
Your bonus needs to complement your offer. For example, if you’re offering an electronic juicer you could offer a recipe book.
The bonus needs to be of value. You can’t expect a lead to want to buy something because of a worthless bonus. Imagine a bar trying to entice people to buy drinks with a free glass of water for each alcoholic beverage you bought.
State the value of the bonus in your marketing. Make sure that people know your free item would normally be sold for a specific value.
You could even combine this with a Tripwire offer. For example, if you’re offering a discounted premium item, you could also offer a free gift for the first 100 customers.
A bonus offer deadline is really good for businesses that are offering a physical bonus, but have limited storage space. You can limit the bonus to the first 100 customers, and as such, you know you only have to fulfill 100 bonus orders.
(D) Early-Bird Discounts
You could set two deadlines on your offer. For example, the first 100 customers get a bonus – anyone buying within the deadline gets a lower price and people who buy after the deadline have to pay full price. With this you’d want to go for a slightly different email sequence:
1.) Early-bird Offer
Tell them the early-bird offer if they’re either in the first set of customers or they buy within
a certain very short deadline. You probably want to only set this for one or two days.
2.) Early-bird is Over
But they can still purchase for a lower price. Give them a bit of urgency here, making sure they know they have already missed out on the best offer, but there is a chance to buy in at a lower price still.
3.) Offer Almost Over
On the last day of the offer make sure they know it’s the last day. Urgency is the theme for this email.
4.) Only One Hour Left!
This is a super-short email, the most urgent of all. I’d recommend mentioning the price that the item will be after the promotion is over.
If your campaigns are getting lots of opens but very few conversions, an Evergreen Deadline might be the answer. Give them a try and start implementing these ideas as soon as you can. I bet you won’t regret it!