Many entrepreneurs choose to concentrate on building their social media followers and seldom give any thought to creating and growing a list. Social media followers are valuable but they don’t grow the one list you actually own. And it leaves your audience susceptible to the whims of whatever platform you’re on.
Email, however, is a proven method to reach your audience and cultivate the long-term relationships that translate to cash in your pocket.
Here are four steps you can take now to build and grow your email list.
Step One: Make a Plan
Everything goes better if you make a plan well in advance and that applies to everything from road trips to list-building campaigns. Generic plans never perform as well as specific ones so be as detailed as possible.
Start by sitting down and brainstorming who your target audience is. Don’t skim over this step. The more real thought and research you put into this step, the better you’ll be able to target subscribers – and giving them what they want (and more) is just the starting point of growing your list.
Step 2: Create a Powerful Optin Incentive
Here’s where many people get stuck. They think they have to reinvent the wheel and come up with an amazing product that takes months to complete. Wrong!
All you need is something your target visitor will scramble all over herself/himself to download.
This can be as simple as a tip sheet or template. Some common choices are:
- Webinars/Seminars recorded online
- Video Downloads
- Audio content
- eCourses delivered over several days or weeks
- Checklists and mind maps
- Sample chapters
The most important element is your incentive has to be timely, unique and useful.
Do your best to come up with a list of six possible incentives then choose the one that will delight your potential subscribers the most and be the easiest for you to produce – or outsource. Then produce it! (Remember – Keep it SIMPLE!)
Step 3: Choose an autoresponder and create your sign up form.
You need a contact form for sign-up, so your potential subscriber can get your free gift and be added to your newly-created list.
A good email marketing service allows you to send either broadcast or follow up emails. It also allows you to segment your list for better, more targeted responses. For example, you are more likely to get a sign-up for a new list if you send it to the exact segment of customers who are at the particular step in their journey that would make them appreciate your sign up offer.
Step 4: Set up your landing page.
This simple page has one specific job: make the reader want to sign up. I recommend you do not create it yourself, but outsource the task to someone experienced in landing page creation and set up.
This page should fit your reader’s needs. Consider their learning styles and preferences. If you’re talking to highly visual people such as artists or web designers, try a video squeeze page.
Also, pay attention to tone and voice. Keep it formal for analytical, logical potential subscribers and chatty for social-culture-based, informal groups.
How you’re most comfortable promoting is always the best way to go unless it runs counter to your intended audience’s habits and preferences.
Don’t forget to plan for promotion as well so that you cover every possible “place” where potential subscribers – ones who will most appreciate your free gift – can be found.
As you grow your email list with contacts who want to hear from you, you’ll be ready to lead them through your sales funnel and convert them to paying customers.
Ready to Learn More?
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