Lise Cartwright of Hustle & Groove is a freelance writer and self-published author based in New Zealand. In June 2012, she quit her job to go full-time in her side hustle. Now, she helps savvy blog and business owners monetize their side hustles so they can do the same!

In the first of a new blog post series, which we’re currently calling “Email Marketing Stories, we chatted with Lise to learn more about her company and what role email plays in growing the business.

(Spoiler alert: Lise DID use email marketing to increase her ebook sales by 50% in 4 months.)

What inspired you to start your business?

I was sick of being told how to spend my days. I wanted my time back to be able to create a day I wanted to be in, not what someone else had dictated to me. I know it sounds a little silly, but that’s how I viewed my job and I wanted out.

When did you start your business?

I started my freelance writing business in September 2011 as a side hustle while working in my full-time job. In June 2012, 10 months later, I quit my job to focus full-time on Hustle & Groove.

What role does email marketing currently play in your business?

It plays a major role. It’s 80% of what I focus on when marketing my business, and I love learning everything I can about it!

email marketing to increase ebooks sales

What email marketing service do you use and why do you love it?

ConvertKit! I was using Mailchimp up until April 2016, when I made the switch. I love ConvertKit because it just has so much to offer…tagging, automation, and simple email design. Since I have made the switch, my email open rates have increased by 20%, which is huge in such a short period.

Is there anything you wish your email marketing service did better?

Given that I’m still fairly new to ConvertKit, I’m not sure about this. So far, I haven’t run into any issues. Every time I do run into a problem, a quick Google search provides the answer, like customizing forms, etc. And the ConvertKit support is brilliant at answering any questions I have.

email marketing to increase ebooks sales


How frequently do you email your list? Why did you choose this frequency?

I have an automated email go out once a week, as well as a whole bunch of automated email sequences based on how a user joins Hustle & Groove. So a subscriber could be receiving 3-5 emails from me in any given week.

I like the weekly email so that I can keep in touch with my readers. This frequency only increases if I’m doing a live workshop or launching something.

How do you decide what you are going to write about in your emails? Tell us about your content brainstorming process.

My emails are always based off of my blog posts, so I write a little blurb about whatever blog post I want them to read. I’ll also provide a tip about running or starting a business that only subscribers see. I don’t share that anywhere else.

Do you have any email automations incorporated in your marketing strategy?

Yes, I have several lead magnets and content upgrades that lead into various email sequences and sales funnels.

email marketing to increase ebooks sales

If you had to measure ROI (return-on-investment) from your email marketing, what kind of ROI would you say you’ve gotten?

I’m only just beginning to properly monetize my list, but since implementing ConvertKit, my ebook sales have increased 50%. I’m able to measure this because I’m tracking the links using PrettyLink and have an automation rule in place that tags someone who purchases, so it’s easy to track. As I create more products, I’ll do the same so I can track them.

email marketing to increase ebooks sales

How else does your business benefit from your email marketing efforts?

Email marketing helps to increase comments on the blog and grow our following on social media platforms. To me, it’s about being able to connect with my readers and email marketing is the #1 way that I’m able to do this.

If you had to give other business owners one tip about their email marketing, what would it be?

Set up automated email sequences for as much of your business as possible. Whether you’re selling a product or service, make it work for you. Create a welcome series to your blog or business, an onboarding series for customers/clients, and email sequences for people who purchase your products plus any content upgrades/lead magnets you’re giving away.

So tell us my dear Bixans, in the comments below, what’s one tip from Lise that you could implement in your email marketing to take it to the next level?