Creative Strategies For Building Your Email List
August 15, 2017
Let’s say you have your e-commerce website fully operational, but are lacking in one very important area: marketing. Without subscribers, you’ve pretty much got no customers, no referrals, no reviews, and most importantly, no conversions. If you want to survive in the wild world of e-commerce, you need to make your email marketing as foolproof as possible.
Here are some ideas for building your email list that are creative, impressive, and effective:
Make your opt-in form prominent.
Just because your business has a strong social media game doesn’t mean you get to ignore email signups.
It’s important that you realize that compared to your email list, your social media accounts are properties over which you have little control. Facebook decides when your content reaches your followers, and Twitter is a continuous stream of information. Both of these characteristics work against you.
By contrast, your email list is completely under your control, so make sure to place sign-up forms where your visitors can see them easily and use them right away.
Turn your business into an automated machine.
Email marketing can be a chore, especially if you’re doing everything the hard way: manually. Thankfully, there’s plenty of email marketing software online that helps you send emails, and do so with a personal touch. You can even offer incentives for new subscribers, such as an e-book or a lucky draw, wherein the benefits to opting in are a no-brainer.
Make the “What’s in it for me?” crystal clear.
Everyone asks this question in one form or another, especially when presented with the request for personal information, and email is no different. Your value proposition should be clear to the subscriber. This means that what you have to offer must be obvious to them.
Having exceptional blog content that is high quality, consistent, and reliable is a huge point in your favor. Be sure to play up your social proof and outside credibility indicators to demonstrate that you’re the real deal.
Emphasize a strong Call-To-Action.
By “strong,” we don’t necessarily mean pushy, although you could use strong-arm techniques like pop-ups and other devices, but in a perfect world, you want to win the war without a struggle. This means you should be creative.
Connect with your audience on a personal level, using humor, conversation, and even friendly confrontation, anything to stir up an emotional response from your visitors. Implementing a timer or a countdown in the Call-To-Action can be pretty effective as well, as this has the desired effect of creating a sense of urgency.
Create and offer a high-value white paper.
Your email list is built on actual relationships, and healthy relationships demonstrate mutual benefit. Prospective customers are looking for value in exchange for their email address, and a white paper is an excellent form of value.
According to Wikipedia, what a white paper accomplishes is to provide “an authoritative report or guide helping readers to understand an issue, solve a problem, or make a decision.”
To compose an effective white paper, start by taking a look at your analytics to find out what your visitors are most interested in. That should give you a good idea as to what content your white paper should focus on. Include plenty of illustrations, charts and graphs to demonstrate your technical expertise. Upload it to an email marketing software provider to make sure your message gets to the masses.
Include live video broadcasts.
Facebook received millions of daily video impressions in 2016, and video content dominates all internet traffic, which means that you need to get on board, or else be left behind.
Besides, live video broadcasts can be appealing and fun for both the content creators and the viewers. You have the potential to reach out to audiences in the hundreds of thousands of viewers, all at once.
Engage your audience through running a contest.
A well-constructed contest gives your readers a fun and engaging experience, and this doesn’t require too much work on your part. Your contest can entail photo or artwork submissions, quizzes, polls, or pretty much anything that encourages participation. And the kicker: all they have to do to participate and win is to provide an email address. You can even offer discounts just for participating, so even though not everyone will win, they get something just for playing.
Use squeeze pages to get email subscribers.
Squeeze pages exist solely to promote your email list. Your job is to link to it in your posts, ads, emails, and other content. Subscribers use these very pages to spread the word about your site to their friends.
This is a good alternative to actively telling the reader to go to a location on your page to sign up, as it is both more efficient and comes off as less pushy.
Publish a newsletter with niche-specific information.
Newsletters allow you to deliver valuable content to your viewers on a consistent basis, and although having a full-time staff can increase your chances of having rich content, you can still do so on a limited budget.
Begin your newsletter by keeping in mind the needs of your readers. Useful information trumps a sales pitch every time, as do stories. The more interesting the content, the more likely your audience will open your newsletter instead of relegating it to the dreaded spam folder.
Monitor the right metrics and put them to the test.
Your analytics panel will tell you whether you’re doing things right. As soon as you start your email marketing campaign, do a baseline test. Online marketing email software is capable of measuring plenty of parameters, from open, click-to-open, and spam complaints.
The goal of monitoring metrics is to develop a system that shows improvement over time, building strong relationships with your customers.
How have these strategies worked for you thus far? We’d like to know, so please leave a comment below.