Article by: MaryEllen | Monday, May 20, 2019

By Charles George

In 2012, my wife and I welcomed our first child into the world.

My son, Thomas, was born with congenital heart disease. Congenital heart disease affects 1 out of every 100 babies born today. It is the most common birth defect, and more children die from congenital heart disease than cancer or any other cause of childhood death.

When my son was born, my wife and I spent eight months out of the first year of his life in a hospital, over an hour away from our home. During this time, Thomas endured two heart surgeries and two other lifesaving operations. This time in my life was unbelievably stressful. Each day, we celebrated each moment, and each victory, no matter how big or small.

Once Thomas came home from the hospital, over the next two years, he grew and developed into an amazing little boy. Even with all the long hospital stays, surgeries, and everything he endured, he loved life. He greeted everyone by saying “Happy to see you.” and then gave them a fist-bump. His optimism and love for life were contagious!

When Thomas turned three years old, he faced another heart-surgery. This time, the complications that he endured in the days and weeks after his surgery, he could not overcome.

Watching my son die is the most devastating experience of my life. The challenges that parents face upon losing a child are paramount. It has affected every aspect of my life. It is like crossing a bridge, where you can’t go backward.



Healing By Helping Families in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

One of the best ways to heal from a devastating experience is to help other people who are experiencing similar circumstances.

For more than 16 years, I have helped a wide variety of businesses implement direct marketing campaigns.

After our loss, I reached out to a non-profit, who helps parents with a babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) of a hospital. Other than when my son died, the most stressful time of my life was when Thomas was in the hospital for the eight months out of the first year of his life.

Staying for those long periods of time in a hospital and watching my son fight for his life, brought a level of stress that I have never experienced. Every “normal” aspect of daily life was disrupted. So many aspects of our lives were challenged. However, this level of stress is common for families who have a baby in the NICU.

My goal was to improve this non-profit’s marketing and increase their revenue, so they could help more families with babies in the NICU.

This organization was doing so many things well. They had guest bloggers contributing articles and content daily. They were active on social media and had a good following. What they were not doing very well is email marketing.

Yet, email marketing is one of the most profitable marketing channels. According to the Direct Marketing Association for small businesses in the United States, every dollar invested in email marketing yields a 4,300% return on investment.

ExactTarget reports for small businesses in the United States, each dollar invested in email marketing yields $44.25.

“66% of consumers have made a purchase online as a direct result of an email marketing message.”- the Direct Marketing Association.

Finally, companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales ready leads at 33% lower cost according to Forrester Research.

Improving The Email Marketing Results

So, to help this organization with their marketing, I first analyzed all the activities across all digital marketing channels. Next, I identified their audience online to increase their presence. The goal was to attract more NICU moms, doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals, who support families. Plus, I identified a list of potential new sponsors, who have similar audiences.

Once I identified their audience, I started building the email list and implementing a weekly newsletter that MaryEllen Tribby teaches in InboxEmpire. In the newsletter, we included content and resources that are beneficial to moms, who have a baby hospitalized in the NICU. In addition to the newsletter, we sent one or two promotional emails each week.

Things started slow, but as the email list grew, the email open rates started improving. Before I started working with the organization, they were sending one newsletter every two or three months and open rates were about 12%.

Today, open rates are over 22%. Click through rates improved as people started expecting the newsletter in their inbox each week. The increased open rates led to higher engagement and more people clicking.

Today, the email list is at about 9,000 subscribers!

Each newsletter averages about 125 clicks. Plus, I taught the organization, how to plan the content of each newsletter, make offers, and use the newsletter to engage the audience and drive revenue. Moreover, I showed them how to track success to ensure the email list is growing and their email efforts are profitable. MaryEllen teaches each of these critical activities in her course.

We sent the newsletter consistently each week, and more families started requesting support. The request support button is the second most clicked link in the newsletter now. The button in the newsletter with the most clicks is the donate now button.

Plus, the weekly email newsletter is now one of the core communication channels with the non-profit’s audience. Email engagement is high with subscribers emailing the founder and CEO each week based on the content in the newsletter.

As a result of implementing the weekly newsletter model that MaryEllen teaches, their email marketing is now profitable and generates donations each week.

All in all, since I first started working with this non-profit, their online audience has increased and is now more engaged primarily because of the weekly newsletter.

What’s more, over the years, I have applied what MaryEllen teaches in her Inbox Empire course, to several different sites in different niches. I’ve gotten similar results each time I have implemented MaryEllen’s methods.

What MaryEllen teaches you in InboxEmpire is applicable to any type of business in any niche. It is a highly scalable business model that only requires a few hours each week, and can be done from anywhere in the world as long as you have an Internet connection.

About the Author

Charles George is passionate about helping purpose-driven authors create a lifestyle business by combining publishing with digital direct marketing.

One of the fastest and most profitable ways to build an audience is through email. Download Charles’ free report 101 Ways to Increase The Size of Your Email List.