Earlier this week, I spoke with Tara Newman about how to make more revenue in your business, and next week, I’ll be releasing the episode with Megan Flatt where we talk about personal outreach. So I wanted to take some time in between these two episodes to talk to you about three marketing metrics that you hear about all the time – that don’t really matter: followers, listeners, and traffic.

In this episode, I’ll be talking about the four levels of commitment your audience can fall into, and what those levels mean for your business. We’ll reshape the way we think about our marketing strategy to focus less on quantity and more on quality and connecting with your audience.

four levels of commitment of your audience: clients/customers, leads/prospects, subscribers, and followers

Read the full transcript

Meg Casebolt 0:01
You’re listening to social slowdown a podcast for entrepreneurs and micro-businesses looking for sustainable marketing strategies without being dependent on social media. Social media is a double-edged sword. It’s a wonderful way to stay connected. But it also can feel like an addictive obligation. And it’s even more complex for businesses, your audience might be right there, but you’ve got to fight with algorithms to maybe be seen by them. So whether you want to abandon social media altogether, or you just want to take a month off, it’s possible to have a thriving business without being dependent on social media. This podcast is all about finding creative, sustainable ways to engage with your audience without needing to lip-sync, send cold DMS, run ads, or be available 24/7. Let’s get started.

Hello, friends, it’s a solo episode this week. I’m here. I’m your host, Meg Casebolt. And this week, I want to talk all about revenue and leads and traffic and how all of these different pieces fit together in our online marketing. And this is specifically coming now. Because I’m thinking about the conversation that I had last week or earlier this week, I think we released it with Tara Newman, and we were talking all about how to make more revenue in your business. And then next week, we’ll be releasing an episode with Megan Flatt about personal outreach. And so I wanted to take a minute in between those two episodes, to explain some things about marketing, that took me way too long to figure out about how all of these different pieces fit together. And what are some metrics that people are really obsessed about that don’t really matter. And there are three metrics in particular that I’ve found that don’t really matter as much as we give credence to them. And those are your followers, your subscribers and your traffic numbers. So let me kind of explain what I mean by that for most of our businesses. And I’ll tell you the exception just a minute. But for most of our businesses, it doesn’t actually matter how many followers or subscribers you have, or how much traffic you get. The exceptions to this rule are people who sell sponsored content, or they have paid ads on their site like something from like Google Adsense or media vine, people who are monetized through YouTube, people who sell sponsors on their podcast, people who sell traditionally public published books, if you have a media kit that you have that you distribute, in order to explain the reach of your platform, then you may need to have some of these numbers. If your goal is influencing, then you may need these numbers. But for the rest of us, these don’t really matter. So for businesses that sell services, or products, or software, these are vanity metrics, the number of followers or listeners or subscribers, or the amount of traffic you get, doesn’t really matter. Now, the reason for this is that we have an audience that falls into for different levels of commitment. I struggle with talking on a podcast because I wish that I could share a visual of this, which honestly is probably why I started a YouTube channel before I started a podcast, because then I can actually show you stuff on my screen. So I will create some visuals that we’ll put in the shownotes. To go with this, you can click through from your player or go to social slowdown slash 14 to see those. But since this is audio only the the levels that I’m about to describe to you, you can think of in a couple different ways, whatever works best for your brain. So some people like to think of this as a funnel with people trickling down. Some people like to think of this as a target with the highest commitment at the center. And then people kind of spreading out around you. Some people think of it like a pyramid with the the highest level of commitment at the top. So the idea of this is whatever your visual is behind this, not all of these levels are created equal. Now, the top level of commitment that your audience can give you is becoming a client or customer. These are the people who give you money. That’s the goal of our business is to make money is to have incoming revenue. For the most part, almost all of your revenue comes from interactions with your clients and customers. So that’s our top level this the people who give us money.

The second level, the second tier of commitment, are leads or prospects. This is kind of the word that you hear about these people. These are people who have expressed an interest in giving you money, but they haven’t done that yet. So for E commerce businesses, a lead would be somebody who has put things into their cart and then left they’ve abandoned their cart for service providers. These are people who have booked discovery calls or watched a webinar that you created for software companies, your leads are the people who have signed up for a free trial. These are people who have given you some attention They have invested some of their time into your products. The third tier of commitment that people can make to your business in your marketing are your subscribers. These are people who have joined your email list, or they’ve agreed to notifications about new podcast episodes, new YouTube videos, you have some sort of channel like a substack channel or a medium, and they have subscribed to whatever it is that you are, whatever content you are creating. So what this means is that you can contact them when it’s convenient for you, and it will actually get to them. When I send an email, it lands on my subscribers inboxes. If you’re subscribed to this feed, then your podcast player will automatically download when I release a new episode. Now it’s up to you whether you open my emails, or don’t listen to my podcast, but it’s there, it’s waiting for you. And then the fourth tier, the bottom tier of commitment that your audience can have with you is to follow you to be a follower. And what happens here is that you post something to a public channel. And then these people may or may not actually see it, it’s not your followers choice whether or not you show up in their feeds, like with a podcast, I can go in and I can decide which to listen to. But with if somebody is following me on a channel, they don’t decide whether or not to see me unless they go seek me out. It’s the algorithms choice about whether they are showing your content to your followers. So those are our four levels of commitment. Again, I’m walking through this a couple times, because I don’t have a visual here. One is your clients, two is your leads, three is your subscribers. Four is your followers. Now the goal of your business is to make revenue, which comes from your customers. So probably you have fewer customers or clients, whatever your terminology is here, you probably have fewer customers than anything else, your audiences probably much larger than your customer base. But your customers are the ones that are closest to you. They’re the highest level there. If you can retain them and keep them on board, then you don’t have to keep growing your audience, the goal of your marketing, all of your marketing efforts, the goal is to move people from that follower and subscriber level, that level three and four into becoming leads into expressing some sort of desire to give you money in some way or work with you or try or software or book, you know, buy your product. And then your sales process goal is to turn those people from leads into clients. So marketing just gets people to express that they

want to work with you. And then it’s your sales job to turn those people who are interested into how do I actually get you to give me money. You do not need a million followers to make a sale. You don’t need 10,000 people on your email list to make a sale. You don’t need a certain number of podcast listeners or YouTube subscribers or LinkedIn connections or Instagram followers to make a sale. What you do need is connection. You need people to trust you. And often and I found this in my own business, I found this in many of my friends, businesses, clients businesses, what we find is that the smaller the audience is, the easier it is to move people through that nurturing process of discovering you of trusting you of deciding to buy from you. Because those people can get to know you better. And you can respond to their individual concerns in a more personalized way. By being more clear and more specific about who it is that you serve. It makes you more responsive, and it decreases people’s hesitation to work with you. Now, so much marketing out there, including SEO. So I’m throwing myself into the mix here. So much digital marketing out there is about trying to get new people to find you. But depending on what phase of business you’re in, being discovered by new people by cold traffic might not be a goal that you need to focus on. Because you might already have people in your audience that you could nurture in order to turn them into clients. And that would take a whole lot less time and a lot less work than trying to discovered and pull people through and get them to trust you really quickly in order to buy from you fast. That’s why my SEO agency, we don’t really pay any attention to what our clients overall traffic numbers are. And by that, I mean you know, the number of total people visiting their website, what we’re paying attention to is how many leads they’re getting out of that traffic. And for any business that isn’t based in the influencer model. Again, if you’re selling services, products software, then having a billion page views doesn’t actually change your bottom line. Because that is the number of pageviews doesn’t have a direct correlation to the number of purchases that you’re getting. So my elevator pitch, which I share every week on my YouTube videos. If you guys are subscribed to that you’re probably tired of hearing me say this is Hi, I’m Meg Casebolt, the founder of love at first search where we help online entrepreneurs to show up in search results and then turn that new traffic into leads subscribers and sales. So I want you this week as you’re thinking about your marketing stuff. Think about changing your perspective from focusing on the aggregate numbers and those vanity metrics to connection. thinking less about those big picture. I have this many followers, this many subscribers, I have this many page views and traffic. And instead, think less about the quantity and more about the quality of relationships that you are building. And if you’re feeling like you’re struggling with this a little bit, maybe take a week back off of you know, trying to be found by new people, and take some time to do outreach to people that already know you. If you liked this episode, we’d love if you can subscribe. I know I said subscribers don’t matter. But I would love to have you subscribe to the podcast so that way I can be right there coaching you through some of this stuff. we’d love if you could share it with a friend if it was helpful, or post a review on Apple podcasts to help other entrepreneurs and small business owners to be less dependent on social media for their digital marketing. Thank you so much for listening to the social slowdown podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe or come on over to social slowdown.com and sign up for our email list so you never miss an episode. We’d also love if you could write a review to help other small business owners find the show you can head over to social slowdown comm slash review or grab that link in our show notes for easy access. We’ll be back soon with more tips to help you market your business without being beholden to social media Talk to you then.

Please forgive any typos as this transcript was automatically generated by otter.ai.

revenue, leads, and traffic. 3 marketing metrics that don't really matter