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Email is far from dead, people, and if you don’t have a strategy in place to grow your list, you are missing out on one of your most valuable (and FREE) marketing assets. Emails are an audience that you own, unlike your social followers or website traffic. You can’t control social platforms or search engine algorithm updates, but you will always have your email list.  

Not only does email marketing help you connect with potential new customers, but it also helps your business stay connected to current and past ones. 

So let’s start building that list, shall we?

Collecting Emails

When someone gives you their email address, they are giving you something of value and their future attention.
Asking people to sign up for your newsletter isn’t a compelling reason for someone to give you their information. (no one wants your weekly mantras, Linda!) 

When you collect an email, try to think of ways you can provide value. We’ll get into some ideas here shortly on how you provide value when someone gives you an email. 

Give Something Get Something – Then Keep Giving

What are you giving in exchange for an email address? Many companies use what’s called a Lead Magnet to offer something like a guide, ebook, whitepaper, or other gated content in exchange for an email address. Make sure whatever you give, it’s something of value! Overdeliver whenever possible to really kick off your inbox relationship with your new contact strongly. 

There are many different free and paid email services available that your company can use to collect and send emails from.
Some of our favorites include MailChimp, ConvertKit, HubSpot, and ActiveCampaign. All of these platforms have their own strengths and weaknesses and vary on price. Check them out and see which might be the best fit for you. 

We recommend finding a platform where you can easily segment your list to help you deliver relevant content to the right audiences at the right time. You can segment your lists in a bazillion different ways. A few examples would be;  a list of customers who haven’t purchased from you in the past year, people who have clicked on a particular piece of content or visited specific web pages, or even all people on your list who have expressed interest in a product or service you offer, but never purchased. 

email marketing how to grow your list

Types of Forms

Once you have your email platform and irresistible lead magnet, now start getting those emails!
There are a few different ways to add email collection forms on your website. 

  • On-Page
    On-page or in-line forms are imbedded right on your webpage. They may be within a blog post, included in the sidebar, or any other place on your website. On-page forms stay-put once they are added.
  • Sticky-bar
    A sticky-bar, like HelloBar (which has a free version if you want to test it out!), is a short form, usually just room for a name and email address, that appears at the very top or bottom of a webpage. 
  • Popups
    I know, I know. Popups! Ug, they are SO annoying! And yes, they can be. But they are also effective sooooo….. We’ll stop using them when they stop working, OK?
    Popups have a higher click-through rate (around 2%) than most other ad types and have been proven to increase leads. When the team over at BitNinja created a free eBook as a lead magnet, added a popup for people to sign up for it, they began to see a 114% increase in their visitor to subscriber conversion rate. I mean, that’s just bonkers! This doesn’t mean you will see these results as soon as you add a popup, but test it out! Try different offers, different placements, different timing – like an exit-intent popup vs a timed popup.
  • Landing Pages
    Landing pages or sales pages are pages on your website that are dedicated to the sole purpose of collecting those emails!  Landing pages allow you to tailor the content around your lead magnet, create compelling on-page sign-ups with clear calls to action and maybe even a popup. (see above) 

optin form types on website graphicCollecting emails outside of your website

Don’t forget to also ask for emails in places other than your website.

  • Promote your lead magnet in social media posts. Ask people to share and tag other people who could also benefit from what you’re putting out there if they’ve found the information valuable. 
  • In-person – at your businesses or at trade shows, networking events, etc. Have your employees request emails via a physical sign-in sheet or even by setting up an iPad or laptop with your landing page ready to go. 

Single vs. Double Opt-In

Once people give you their email address, they’ve “opted-in” however there are two different ways to bring these emails into your list. Single vs Double Opt-in.

• A single opt-in means that when someone gives you their email address they are automatically added to your list.
• A double opt-in means that when someone gives you their email address, they will need to confirm their subscription, usually by clicking on a link within an email you send them before they can get added to your list. 

There are pros and cons to both, of course, however by using a double opt you ensure people really want to be on your list, you’ll get fewer SPAM subscribers, and your email list will most likely have a higher engagement rate. 

Cherish and tend to your list

The first time you email someone on your list you have the opportunity to set the expectation as to the type of content they will receive and the frequency they will be receiving it.
Think of your very first email as a warm introduction. The person may know about your company, but now they are in your inner circle! They are your guest. Roll out the welcome mat!

Have a sequence of emails ready to go when someone does sign up for your list. Keep them interested and make sure they don’t forget about you! 

 

Need help with a marketing campaign or lead generation? We can do that! Give us a shout.