Having an extensive email list is usually something that business owners and entrepreneurs strive for. However, if you have 1,000 email addresses on your list, but only half of them fit your target audience or if most of those receiving your emails just delete your email as soon as it hits their inbox, is bigger better? The reality is that it is not the size of your list that matters but the quality and engagement of the people on your list. While having a large engaged email list is the ultimate goal, it is important that you build that list with only quality contacts.
How to Grow a Quality Email List
It is never too early to start building your list. Even if you are just getting started in your business and do not have products or services ready to sell yet you should, at the very least, have a landing page that leads to a call to action (CTA) such as an opt-in of an e-book. This will give you email addresses of those that are interested in what you have to sell or information you have to share. When they are already interested in your products or services then you have a much higher chance of getting a sale from them down the road. Remember, you want quality and not just quantity on your email list.
Ideas for growing a quality list:
- Offer a giveaway – must be something that relates to your products or services
- Give them a link to download a helpful eBook when they sign up
- Share a checklist or an infographic or some other information that will help solve a common problem of your target audience
Another great way to grow your list even more is by collaborating with others via a teleseminar, summit or a giveaway, or promoting a joint event. This gives you visibility to those on the other person’s list and the other person has visibility to those on yours creating a win-win-win for both of you and your audiences. When doing joint ventures, each person brings something to the table, for example, if one person has a list of 10,000 but the other person only has a list of 500 but is a graphic designer or a copywriter and they provide those services to the joint venture, you do no longer need to hire someone to do those tasks. Remember, there may be value beyond the quantity of their current email list.
Purpose of Having an Email List
Your email list is what you will use from time to time, preferably on a consistent basis, to share information with those that have requested it. This is a great and inexpensive way to let people know about your blog posts, speaking engagements, specials, new products and services, etc. However, that should not be the focus of the emails you send. Instead your focus should be on building trust, providing relevant content and showing up as an expert in your field or industry by providing value to your subscribers. This will result in having your subscribers “stick” and not just unsubscribe after they receive the freebie they opted in for.
Things to use your email list for:
- Communication with clients – Fill up your events by marketing to previous attendees or to attendees from events you have spoken at that signed up to receive future information.
- Become the place clients look to for information – Keep up with industry news or other items that would be of interest to certain clients or a specific group on your list.
- Provide How-To information for commonly asked questions that they could share with others (which could also add to your email list).
- Promote products or services – Let those on your email list know about specials, new products or services, or about an event you are having. This is secondary to communication and providing useful information.
Beware of Spam Laws
Keep in mind the spam laws and, if you aren’t sure what they are, be sure to check them out before you start building and using your email list. To help you, below are some of the basics to keep in mind.
- Opt-in – Every person on your email list must have opted-in to be sent emails by you and/or your business.
- Must have permission – Being given a business card at a networking event with their email address on it, is not permission. They must willingly opt-in via your website, landing page or other opt-in method.
- Must give an unsubscribe option – Subscribers must be able to easily unsubscribe from receiving your emails in the future.
- CRMs – You cannot send mass emails through your normal email system such as g-mail or yahoo. You need a CRM or Customer Relationship Management Service. Some of the most popular ones are Mail Chimp, Constant Contact, Aweber and InfusionSoft. However, there are many to choose from so pick one that has the features you want and/or need.
What are a few of the items that are popular with your subscribers? I would love to hear your email success stories!