Issue #94—March 5, 2020
If you're a copywriter or marketer, especially in the health niche, perhaps you've recently used the coronavirus angle (or been asked to use it by your clients) in an email or other promotion.
And if you're following what others are doing or collecting swipes, you're probably seeing it a lot of places. (I may do a "What's in Kim's Mailbox" on this topic alone!)
But the coronavirus is much more than just a marketing opportunity.
Chances are this dastardly virus is affecting your life is some way right now.
If watching the stock market plummet last week wasn't hard enough to stomach, perhaps you've had travel plans postponed. Events you were looking forward to cancelled. Or worse, loved ones who've gotten sick.
So where does this leave you? And what can you do about it?
My advice: with so many things out of control, focus on the things you CAN control:
1) Find ways to connect with clients so you keep generating new business.
The best advice is always to meet people in person at events, as this is typically by far what I've found most valuable over the years for finding potential clients.
But some events you may have planned on attending are up in the air or simply not happening. Natural Products Expo West, scheduled to happen later this week in Anaheim, just got cancelled a few days ago. As of this moment, TCC IRL is still happening in San Diego next week...and I'm planning to be there unless this coronavirus starts getting crazier. Things are up in the air on Traffic and Conversion Summit in San Diego, but supposedly it's still taking place in late March (and from what I'm hearing, the parties, which are far more important, are happening regardless). With all this uncertainty, now is the time to start maximizing other techniques that don't involve face-to-face, in-person meetings. You can use "old school" techniques like actually picking up the phone and calling a past or current client, or shooting over an email. Ask how things are going and find out if they have any upcoming copy needs that you might be able to "fit" into your schedule. Share a promo that's gone out recently that you've done that was successful...or some kind of insight you think they'll find valuable. This kind of outreach can pay off in a big way. Another tactic is to join communities on Facebook or become more active in them and on LinkedIn. Answer questions and be genuinely helpful. In no time, people will start to see you as the go-to expert. If you can swing it, the most valuable "virtual" opportunities are mastermind groups which can cost a pretty penny. But they often pay for themselves many times over in terms of the valuable connections you get that turn into clients...and the feedback and learning that makes you better at what you do once you get those opportunities. There's immense value in groups like Justin Goff and Stefan Georgi's Copy Accelerator and Brian Kurtz's Titans Xcelerator (both of which I've been involved in and recommend)...and others like them that connect copywriters, business owners, and others and use Zoom for regular virtual coaching sessions and meetings. All of these groups and strategies are more important than ever if you find yourself unable to get to a live event in person. 2) Stockpile your "rainy day" funds. The coronavirus could also start affecting your livelihood if there's an economic slowdown or markets continue to scare off investors (hurting financial promo results). I remember back in 2008 after the market crashed many financial copywriters with promos that had been paying them fat royalties saw them get shelved and not mailed again for months (or requiring massive changes).
In the health and especially the survival niches, many opportunities abound...with people stocking up on everything from immune-boosting supplements to home medical supplies and emergency water storage containers. But still, economic and market uncertainty can put a huge damper on conversions and average order value.
All of this means it's time to build up that "rainy day" fund if you haven't already. Even when things are going well, you always want to have an extra cushion so you can turn away projects that are less desirable or enjoy greater negotiating power--since you're better equipped to walk away if you don't get the deal you want.
For the past few decades as a freelancer, I've always paid myself first. Money goes into savings/investments, then to bills, then I spend the rest and enjoy it. Bottom line: whenever you get a nice windfall, always put some of it aside to be your "rainy day" (or "f-you" money) for later. Like when some crazy virus pops out of nowhere and wreaks havoc.
3) Boost your immunity to keep your income boosted.
If you're a freelancer or entrepreneur, you're not getting paid sick days. Sure, you can work when you're sick, but that basically sucks. It's much better to just AVOID getting sick. And it's much more under your control than you may think.
Keep your immune system strong! Exercise regularly. Get 7+ hours sleep a night. Eat healthy food, not junk food or sugary carbs. You know these basics I'm sure.
I do all of these things, plus take a ton of supplements (it's a "side effect" of working in the supplement niche for so long...there's a whole kitchen cabinet in the house devoted to them). Let me share with you some of my absolute favorites...the ones I personally just stocked up on to make sure I had plenty on hand for myself and my family...
--MycoPhyto: This medicinal mushroom complex formulated by an M.D. boosts your immunity like nothing else. I take a few capsules at the first sign of a throat itch or other early cold sign. Because of the 'shrooms and the beta glucan it contains, it knocks it out cold. I also take it before flying to ward off viruses and bugs. You can take it 3 or 4 times a day if you're already under the weather, too. I've found it helps shorten the duration and lessens the intensity if I do get sick (which is rarely.)
--A good probiotic: One thing I've learned from writing probiotic promos is your immune system lives in your gut. That's why gut health is SO crucial for keeping your immunity strong. I won't get into all the science here, but even if you have perfect digestion (like me), you should probably be taking a probiotic.
--Vitamin D3: Take 5,000 IU of this vitamin daily, especially during the winter months. It does a ton of good stuff for you--but it's especially helpful for boosting immunity.
Those are my top 3...I think of them as my personal "coronavirus cocktail". I do take several other supplements like Vital Force, which contains a blend of glutathione-boosting ingredients for stronger immune function and anti-aging.
I find myself always recommending these immune boosters, especially MycoPhyto, so I wanted to share them here. I don't get any commissions off any of this (well, except for that Vital Force supplement link, since that's one of my controls). Keep in mind, I'm NOT a doctor (although I sometimes play one on TV).
So stay calm, don't panic. Use these tips to stay healthy...and the others to keep you wealthy and wise.
Yours for smarter marketing,