I often get asked, “During your 18 years in online business, what’s the one area that you wish you had paid more attention to?” My answer comes immediately: Building an email list! I waited way too long to start building my list and then I wasn’t consistent in my efforts. I had no plan of action. I thought I just had to wait for people to find me and subscribe. Boy, was I wrong!
Without hesitation, I can confidently say that list building is one of the most vital areas any business in any niche needs to excel at. Why? Because it gives you control — unlike when you’re using SEO or social media, or selling on Amazon (which could all be gone in a flash if Google, Facebook, Amazon, or other sites went out of business or changed their policies or algorithms).
When you have an in-house list, it provides a direct link to your shoppers and prospects that YOU own and YOU control. You have the ability to reach all your subscribers any time you want.
Can Building an Email List Help My Conversions?
You bet! Conversion rates are significantly higher on email campaigns vs. almost any other marketing venue, including social media. According to an article on MailMunch.co (quoting stats from GetResponse):
In other words, if you have 2,000 email subscribers, 2,000 Facebook fans, and 2,000 followers on Twitter — this is what you will get:
- 435 people will open your email.
- 120 Facebook fans will see your message.
- 40 Twitter followers will see your message.
In addition, the blog post states:
Email marketing drives more conversions than any other marketing channel—– including social and search (according to a report by Monetate).
According to another report — 66% of online consumers made a purchase as a result of an email marketing message.
Building an Email List Designed to Convert Even If You Don’t Have a Website
It’s extremely easy to get started. Like everything else, you will have to put in some effort to build your subscriber base. But if you dedicate a bit of time each week, before long you’ll have a list of devoted followers you can depend on to bring you sales. In addition, if you offer quality products / services, they’ll likely refer friends and associates to you as well.
Step 1 – Create an opt-in page
Time-Tested, Proven Marketing Strategies
That Actually Work
A handy checklist set that helps you drive traffic, make more money & spend less time doing it.
I understand that I will also receive weekly articles & videos plus periodic discounts, product notices & more. I can unsubscribe at any time.
On your site or blog, add a form where site visitors can request to receive information from you. This one from Olivine is a good example.
The form can be on your home page (or any / every page of your site), your blog, as a pop-up, and more. I use (and love!) Thrive Themes for opt-in forms, opt-in pages, countdown timers and more.
Step 2 – Offer an incentive
To get people to trust you enough to turn over their email addresses, you’ll want to offer something enticing. This incentive or bonus can be practically anything from a free report to a private consultation to free or greatly discounted products.
My suggestion is to make it as hands-off as possible. If it’s something you have to ship (a sample of hand lotion, for example), you’ll have additional time and expenses. I recommend going digital. These are all super ideas that can be delivered digitally.
- Checklists or Cheat Sheets
- Tips Sheets
(Yes! Marketing Words can write any of the above for you. Tell us what you need.)
- Access to private sites
- Private webinars
- Coupons/special product offers
By using an autoresponder service (I like Aweber) and an incentive of your choosing, you can begin to build targeted traffic right away.
Step 3 – Drive traffic to your opt-in form
There are countless ways to send qualified shoppers and prospects to your opt-in form. Here are a few to get you started:
- Post it on social media.
- Mention it in online groups you belong to.
- Add it to your email signature.
- Run Google AdWords ads.
- Run paid Facebook ads or boosted posts.
- Run sponsored Pinterest or Twitter ads.
- Include a link on an insert inside your product packaging.
- Include the link in your product package design.
- Create videos and post them to YouTube, Vimeo, etc.
- Write guest blog posts and provide the link in your bio.
- Create joint ventures with compatible (but not competitive) businesses.
Next Steps in the Conversion Journey
Building an email list is the first step in your conversion journey. From there, you move on to communicating with your followers and providing what they want.
Thrive Themes can get you there with the massive marketing training library called Thrive University. It’s available to everyone who uses any of the Thrive Themes’ plugins.