When you are trying to build an email list on a budget you may be overwhelmed with all the various aspects of the process. There are several different parts involved, but I am firm believer in keeping things simple while remaining effective. There are a lot of articles online that will lead you to believe that you need to make this process complicated, but the truth is you do not. I have build many email lists from scratch using simple, effective techniques.
Why You Need An Email List
Having an email list is like having free, targeted traffic to your business opportunity on demand at your disposal 24/7. Your email list will include people who have subscribed to your content because they like it! It’s essentially your own audience. You can keep your email list engaged on a regular basis whenever you come out with new tips, product recommendations, or personal progress!
Know Your Ideal Customer
First, you want to make sure you have a solid understanding of your ideal customer or target market (your subscribers). You should understand their needs, expectations, pain-points, desires, etc. To help make this process easy, you can create a buyer persona, which is like creating a fictional character that represents your ideal customer. Knowing your ideal customer will also help you understand what type of content to create.
Offer Something for Free
Next, in building your mailing list, make use of the fact that people love to get things for free. It can be something as simple as a coupon, promo code, free ebook, report, or something your readers will find value in. You want to make it something they will find irresistible.
If you’re going to offer a promo code or coupon, you won’t need to actually create any content – just have the first series of your autoresponder contain the information for them to access their discount. However, if you are wanting to give away free content, such as an ebook, you will need to create the content yourself, purchase PLR (Private Label Rights) content, or hire a content marketer to create custom content for you.
Create A Discernible Opt-In Form/Squeeze Page
You’ll need an opt-in form/box on your blog that CLEARLY features your irresistible offer. Make your opt-in box is obvious and easy to fill in. If you’re new to creating opt-in forms, you can create using a free list management software such as Sendsteed.
You can also create a squeeze page is basically a one-page website that features your offer along with an opt-in form so subscribers can sign-up to your list. Both opt-in forms AND landing pages will allow subscribers to get their freebie and become part of your email list. I highly recommend having a squeeze page as you will learn about further down in this post.
Whether you use an opt-in form, squeeze page, or both, you definitely want to make the sign-up process to the mailing list fast and easy. Nothing turns people off faster than a website that is complex and confusing. It’s said that the average person only visits a website for a few seconds before moving on. Therefore, complexity will lose your subscribers to your mailing list.
Set Up Your Email Campaign & Automation
Here’s the part that is confusing to many people, but it’s not that difficult if you keep it simple. You will need an email marketing software that will store your subscribers and allow you to automate the list-building process. There are many different options available, but all offer different features and pricing types. Some allow you to have unlimited subscribers for one flat monthly rate, such as Sendsteed, others have more features like built-in CRMs, and charge you based on your list size.
Most important elements of an email marketing software in MY OPINION
- Email deliverability – emails should get to your subscribers’ inbox and NOT their spam folder.
- Functionality – the software should be easy to navigate and user-friendly
- Pricing – I don’t want to pay an arm and leg for the software
- Features – it’s always nice when the software includes the ability to create opt-in forms and squeeze pages, so that I don’t have to pay for another 3rd party service and integrate it
- Customer support – sometimes help is required, so it’s nice when support is readily available and responsive
Essentially, you just want to create a list and then set up the first automated email that contains the freebie the subscriber initially signed up for. Once they opt-in to that form or squeeze page mentioned above, they should automatically receive that first email that contains the free offer. You can always continue adding to the automated campaign – called an email series – later and send your list one-time email broadcasts anytime you have a new product, service, special, or update.
More is Better
Once your form or squeeze page is created and connected with your automated email series, make sure your blog’s visitors can see that opt-in form or landing page! Put it on the homepage, on every page of your blog, in your blog’s sidebar, etc. – put it everywhere. Don’t rely on people clicking on your mailing list subscriber link the first time they see it and definitely don’t fool yourself that they will click back to a previous web page in order to find that elusive mailing list link. They won’t do it!
Share It Everywhere
Finally, share your squeeze page on your social media platforms and let your followers know about your freebie/offer. Promote it everywhere your readers are found. The more people who see that freebie and opt-in, the larger your email list will become and soon you’ll have hundreds and then thousands of engaged subscribers waiting to hear from you!
This post shares with you how to build an email list for your online business, and I hope you found it useful. Once you start building your list, you have to keep your subscribers engaged or they’ll forget about you. Then, when you go to email them, they may think you are a spammer. It’s important to keep yourself fresh in your subscribers’ minds by emailing them at least every week with useful content.
If you’re looking for an all-in-one email marketing system that allows you to create capture pages and pop-up forms while having unlimited lists and subscribers for one flat monthly fee, I recommend checking out Sendsteed. It’s part of the Leadsleap platform that has been around since 2008.
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