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The Stephanie Kase Podcast,. Ep. 25: Why & how we created a 2.5 year long (automated) weekly nurture sequence for our email list with Maggie McGaughy

December 5, 2022

I’ve said it before, and I’m saying it again: Your email list is a CRUCIAL part of your business. For the past year, we have been working on a massive nurture sequence that will serve our audience well, and market our digital products, too! Today on the podcast, I’m interviewing my team member, Maggie, about what went into this email sequence and how it’s going to change our business!

What is the nurture sequence?

Nurture sequences are a sequence of emails that you have in your email marketing system that’s automated (typically). Someone joins your mailing list, gets added to a segment most likely, and then receives weekly emails from you. Eventually it leads to pitching a product or your services, but a nurture sequence is mostly about serving your audience really well. I had a nurture sequence in place before Maggie came along that ran for about a year – somewhere between 50 and 60 emails.

As you’ll see, our sequences are long. But you can take the same concepts we’ll talk about today and apply them to your own nurture sequence! Consider doing a 2 month long one (8 emails). Ours will run for 2.5 years, but that’s definitely a go big or go home mentality. This allows us to automate emails that will go out on Mondays so we don’t have to do that at all. Now, we just focus on our weekly Thursday emails.

How Maggie worked on the nurture sequence

Over the summer while Stephanie was on maternity leave, Maggie worked on the sequence. We decided to separate the sequence into different areas and trains of thoughts, with 5-10 emails each. They each would focus on a different product or idea. For example, she wrote 10 emails that were related to our content calendars. We talked about why it’s important to plan content, programs to use, and things like that. Anything that would get people into the mindset of content planning, while providing valuable information and then lead up perfectly to a little “flash sale” on that product.

Part of our strategy is really helping clients identify their pain points and clearly seeing how we can help. Any time you launch a product, you work on creating content that primes your audience for the product that will be pitched – this sequence is basically automating that for us.

Along the way, we have sales funnels that are triggered as appropriate related to our Reel Trends membership or Reels Mini Course. Those are separated out in the sequence, but they also trigger flash sales on the products being offered. We’re curious to see how sales are in 2023 when we run this alongside our normal sales. You can learn more about sales funnels here, too! It was fun to set these up because Flodesk offers conditional workflow options. So that means we can filter out if someone already has the product or just bought it! This way they aren’t getting emails about stuff they already have. So for any business owners who might be listening, I think that’s a really good thing to know about! We don’t want to abuse the trust someone has given us with their email!

What’s in the emails?

So, again, this sequence has essentially automated our Monday emails. These weekly emails are pretty much free education for our email audience. The only time it’s not free education is if we’re pitching something or have a live sale going on. We link to YouTube videos, we’ve even repurposed popular Instagram captions into emails, or shared other content we have like the podcast. In some emails, we’ve even strategically included affiliate links (like linking to Kat Schmoyer’s calendar when talking about content planning).

I truly believe in really valuable education, especially for business owners and people who are wanting to market their business through content creation. We’ve taken like a lot of what we say on our videos and condense it into a short list that’s easy to read and follow. I think that’s a great tip actually – if you want to start a nurture sequence, look at your content that’s performed well or that you have on hand and start there. Be strategic about what you’re using but don’t reinvent the wheel.

The Details: How did Maggie actually set this up?

Like we mentioned before, we use Flodesk for our email marketing. Maggie was pretty much the one who set this all up, too! We started with a Google Doc. We definitely recommend this in case anything ever gets lost. Write out all of your emails. We laid the emails out by sections and products. Maggie started with an outline so that we could see which concepts we’d be writing about then she began to write the 5-10 emails for that topic. Some of them were tips, some videos, etc., but it took a few months to write out all of the emails.

After those were done, we made a template in Flodesk for the emails so it was way faster to add them into the workflow. I began a new workflow and then I’d create all of the emails in Flodesk from the Google doc. From there, all I had to do was copy and past the copy into the email and update the buttons with the correct links. Between emails, we always added the “wait a day” step – just a little tip for you Flodesk users! After Stephanie came back from maternity leave, we wound up adding in new products and videos she’d been working on, so we had to update things a bit. Around this time, we ran into a problem: we had too many steps for Flodesk. Apparently, it should be about 80 steps or less. In fact, we actually lost the entire sequence. That was pretty tough, but it turned out to be a good thing.

The bright side…

Losing the work we had helped us realize that we had so many triggers and funnels going on. It allowed us to re-evaluate what we really wanted to be doing. Instead, we realized it would be better to build external workflows for those flash sales and send the subscriber there from the nurture sequence. So, our nurture sequence is basically built into a handful of separate workflows, about 10-12 emails long. Then they’re pushed to the next one or another segment as appropriate. This will also make updating them way easier when the next year’s videos come out! All of these are kept in folders (“nurture sequence”, “flash sale, etc.) and labeled really clearly, but it’s super helpful. We also drew out the sequence in Canva so we could make sure we knew what was going where!

There you have it! This was a massive undertaking and I truly can’t thank Maggie enough for all of her hard work. Without her, this never would have been possible. We’re so excited to see what this does and how it helps our audience!!

Future Podcast Episodes

If you’re listening and you have ideas about what to talk about next, please send in your requests! I really do want to know what you want to hear about in future episodes. Email me at [email protected] with your questions!! I can’t wait to hear from you! Don’t forget to leave us a review on Apple Podcasts, too. We appreciate all of the support and love! 

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