6 top tips for growing your email list
Ask a successful online marketer what the secret is to their performance and nine times out of ten they will start talking about their 'list' – the list of email addresses they have obtained from people engaging with their content.
According to marketing software provider Hubspot, the average email list degrades by over 20 per cent a year (due to email address changes, opt-outs, etc.). So, it is important to keep up your efforts to attract new signups. Here are six ways to achieve that:
Spread your signup forms widely
Some business owners go to a lot of trouble creating a powerful signup form but only attach it to their home or contact pages. This is a wasted opportunity.
Prospects might get hooked on products or services featured on any page. If there is no signup form for them to fill in, they are unlikely to go looking for one. Using sidebars and headers is a simple way to ensure that signup forms are always close to hand.
Don't forget to ask
From a business owner's perspective, it might be blatantly clear what a signup form is for. The same is not necessarily true for your web visitors.
It is important to take your prospect by the hand and invite them to complete the form. The combination of design and persuasive text that you use for this purpose is termed a 'call-to-action' (CTA).
Offer an incentive
We all have an instinctive WIIFM (what's in it for me) response when someone asks us for something. Even if you are 'only' asking for an email address, your prospective customers are going to want something in return.
'Lead magnets' or 'lead gens' can be in the form of valuable information (a white-paper; report; cheat sheet, etc.), a tool (piece of software; calculator, etc.), a discount voucher or something else of value.
The more targeted you can make your offering, the more likely you are to attract valuable leads. Monitor your retention figures to check whether new signups are staying with you or bailing out after getting their freebie.
Use smart pop-ups or none
Pop-up signup forms are a bone of contention among website owners. Some feel they are intrusive while others rave about their effectiveness. The truth lies somewhere between these poles.
Although they generally have a higher conversion rate than static signup forms, pop-ups that spring to life instantly are annoying to many visitors and they might click away or refuse to enter their details. The reason for this is that you haven't provided anything of value to them yet.
If you want to make effective use of pop-ups, try setting them up so that they only appear after your prospect has read a certain number of articles or stayed on a page for at least a minute. Having qualified themselves by their interest in your content, they are more likely to want to stay connected.
Think outside of the (pop-up) box
There are many ways to ask for an email address that don't require a webpage-based signup form. Invitations to sign up can be added to transactional emails (within a sales receipt or delivery confirmation email), social media content or even as part of a standard email signature.
Maintain your standards
In your drive to boost your email list, remember that it's the quality of your content and the 'fit' between your brand and people's needs that creates loyalty. This is why you should never spam, purchase email lists or churn out thin content in order to populate a list.
Do you have any other tips to add to this list? What has worked for you in the past? Please leave a comment below.
Topic: Email marketing