How I'd grow Letters to Pablo

February 26, 2020

Letters to Pablo is a website that helps you learn Spanish. You sign up, and every week you receive an email with a question.

You reply to the email answering the question in Spanish, and a native Spanish speaker replies with corrections.

I love the design, but the copy could be improved. If I only read the header, I’d have no idea what the service does.

I’d pay more attention to the benefits: ”Turn your Spanish from basic to master.” The subheader is ok, but I’d emphasize the low commitment - 5 minutes a week.

When it comes to marketing, clear positioning is very important: the target audience aren’t people who can’t speak Spanish at all. They wouldn’t be able to respond to prompts.

The potential customers are people who already know at least a bit of Spanish and want to improve it.

Pricing needs to change: the lack of it undermines the project’s credibility.

I understand that the founder probably wants to keep it free in this initial phase to attract users, but people expect to pay for a service like this. When they see it’s free, they get suspicious.

How would I find customers? I’d start by creating an affiliate program, and partnering with online Spanish teachers.

They already have an audience of Spanish learners that trust them. If they recommend Letters to Pablo, their students would definitely listen to them.

In my opinion, this product could be a perfect complement to their online lessons - not a competitor.

Students could use it to practice between lessons.

A collaboration like this would be a win-win situation for everyone involved.

It shouldn’t be too difficult to find online teachers that want to get on board.

They could find and reach them on popular aggregator platforms. Since online language teachers don’t earn much, a supplementary source of income at no cost or effort would be a solid incentive.

I would invest a small portion of the budget into influencer marketing, and find influential Spanish teachers across blogs, podcasts and newsletters.

They don’t receive many sponsored requests, and their audience isn’t oversaturated, so it should be both cheap and effective.

Letters to Pablo can give the influencers discount coupons for their audience, and track their performance.

Once they have data on the campaigns, they could cut on those that didn’t bring results and double down on the best performers.

Then I’d reach Spanish learners where they hang out: FB groups, subreddits, forums…

Instead of spamming with links, I’d tell an interesting story showing the human side: How did the founder come up with the idea? What’s the motivation behind the project?

People will listen.

SEO is going to be very tough, especially in the beginning with a domain authority starting from zero. However it’s a channel that should be cultivated for the long term.

Doing some research, I can see that their competitors get the majority of their traffic from Google.

The first page for commercial keywords like “learn Spanish online” is occupied by big websites with high domain authority.

But these big websites that cover multiple languages can’t go niche on every informational long tail keyword, so Letters to Pablo has an opportunity here.

The search volume for these long-tail keywords is decent. A good content marketing strategy can drive a significant amount of traffic in the long run.

Plus, the SERPs rank less than exceptional results. An effort to create a really good page could pay off.

The last marketing channel I would leverage is Facebook. Letters To Pablo doesn't have a Facebook page, and I feel that’s a mistake.

There are a lot of Spanish learners on FB. With a little creativity, they could publish one short post per day and get decent free traffic.

I’d also leverage FB Ads’ granular targeting to reach Spanish learners, and offer them a lead magnet.

E.g. a free email course for beginners: a 7-day automated sequence with an offer to join Letters To Pablo at the end, once trust has been established.

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Every month I pick a new website and write a marketing case study explaining exactly how I’d grow it