How To Build And Use An Email List

by Renee Warren on Jul 20, 2011

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Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the oldest forms of social marketing and it is still growing strong.

In fact, a recent study found that email marketing commitments increased by 50% in the last four years. The question isn’t whether email marketing has weight in the digital marketing space, but whether you’re using email marketing correctly.

Building an email list is fairly straightforward, but it is not always easy. It is not enough to simply place an email capture call to action on your website.

In most cases, it will be completely ignored. Unless you are offering actual value in return for the email submit, you won’t get a response. Here are four great ways to build your email list from the ground up.

1. Info Product

Creating an information product can be time-consuming, but it is regarded as one of the most effective ways to build an email list. Offering visitors an info product like an eBook or video series in return gives them a real reason to join and find out more about your brand.

2. Signup Page

Whether you have an account signup page or a sales checkout page, you should add the option to join your email list to it. Since you will have already asked for their email, all it takes is an opt-in box. For the best results, don’t put the option at the very bottom of the page. Most people regard the opt-in boxes at the bottom of a signup page as spam.

3. Blog Call to Action

Your blog should be full of valuable information, which means it’s the perfect place for an email capture call to action. You’re demonstrating your expertise with the blog content you are providing. It only makes sense that visitors will be more likely to submit their email addresses on this page. Put the call to action at the top of the blog or at the top of the right-hand side.

4. Contesting

Everyone loves free stuff! If you’re hosting a contest, be sure to incorporate your email list into it. Whether signing up for the list is part of the qualifying rules or the call to action is prominently displayed on the contest page, take advantage of any promotions you’re running.

Providing value doesn’t stop there. It’s about shifting your focus from your brand to your customers’ wants and needs. You must begin sending information within 24 hours of the email capture.

Don’t wait until you get a certain number of subscribers to contact your list. Don’t hold on to your list until you finish working on something big. Put your list to use immediately or you will lose it!

Once created, here are four tips for using that email list:

1. Create a Newsletter

The key to email marketing is consistency and frequency. You want your content to be consistently relevant and applicable to the audience. You also want the frequency to be just right – not too often, not too rarely. A newsletter is a great way to combine both of these factors. Newsletters are delivered at a consistent frequency and feature highly targeted content.

2. Provide Discounts

Providing discounts exclusively to your list shows that you value them. Remember, there are literally hundreds of thousands of email lists online right now and they chose yours. The average person only truly reads and acts on the content of 2-3 lists. Provide a discount code for your product or for a relevant third party product to show your appreciation.

3. Be Entertaining

All business and no play won’t impress anyone. The key is to show personality and stand out from the many other lists out there. Do this by being entertaining. Post a funny video at the top of the email, post a relevant comic or post a fun picture. Whatever you do, find a way to provide entertainment value, not just professional value.

4. Provide Real Value

I’ve saved the best for last. Providing real value is essential. That sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s something that numerous brands miss. Many email marketing messages are designed solely to push traffic to the website or close a sale. The worst part? The less than genuine motive is very, very apparent to the list. Email marketing is just like any other social medium, which means your primary goal should be to establish trust and build relationships!

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What has been your most effective method for building your email list?

 


 

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Geek in stilettos. Founder of Onboardly. Chocolate lover. Traveler. Tall. Canadian in San Francisco. www.onboardly.com...