Even if your email list is substantial, it’s important to keep finding ways to grow your subscribers. An email marketing database typically degrades by about 22.5% every year, which means you need to keep topping it up with new subscribers.
Email marketing best practice dictates that growing an email list naturally is the most effective way of creating an engaged and legitimate audience. The more engaged your audience, the more likely you are to get them to convert.
Growing an email list is a daunting task, but these 10 tips easy are to incorporate into your marketing strategy:
1. Make your CTAs great
First things first. If you want to promote your email list, you need to know how to sell it. Work out what makes it great, why it’s different from other email lists, and who your audience might be.
With that information, come up with your key messages and create a simple statement that you can use to promote signing up to receive your emails.
For example: “join our email list for more information on digital marketing” is functional, but it’s not particularly captivating. “Sign up to hear the most exciting things to happen in Digital Marketing each month” shouts a little louder.
You can adapt this for the channel you use it on, but having a clear understanding of why it’s worth signing up for will make your promotion more compelling.
2. Offer gated downloadable content
The key to growing your list is collecting email addresses. A simple way of doing that is by providing value in exchange for customer data.
Create great content that will appeal to your audience, and offer it up for download in exchange for a name and email address. This is called ‘gated’ content and requires hiding the downloadable content behind a form. You can use a simple form builder and incorporate this into your landing pages. You can use marketing tools like Hubspot to track these contacts and move them into your email lists.
What’s important is that the content feels worth filling out a form for. It should be more in-depth and with more perceived value than a blog post. Typical examples are survey reports, longer-form guides and case studies.
3. Run online events and webinars
Holding an online event or a webinar is a great way to collect email addresses and get people to opt into your email list.
You can use registration forms that collect email addresses when someone registers to attend. Include an email marketing opt-in checkbox and get people to subscribe to your emails at the point of registration.
4. Create fun quizzes
Whether your audience is B2B or B2C focused, quizzes are a great way to get them interacting and engaging with your content. It’s good for conversion rates too, interactive content converts 2x more than passive content.
Online quizzes should be relevant to your audience, and help them either find the answer to a question they have, or tell them more about themselves. Some examples of popular quiz formats are personality quizzes “which Harry Potter house would you belong to?”, or knowledge testers “how much do you know about Digital Marketing?”, shown in the example below.
How can you use a quiz to capture email data you ask? Put the results page behind a form. Once someone has started a quiz, they’ll want to find out the outcome, so use this to capture their data, in exchange for the big reveal.
5. Run a competition or giveaway
We all love free stuff, so running a competition with a great prize is a no-brainer for collecting email addresses. The tricky part is collecting relevant contacts. Here’s how to go about it:
Promote it on relevant channels. Is your audience more focused on Facebook or LinkedIn? Does your website have frequent traffic?
Make the prize appealing to your audience. Think about what your specific audience wants. Anyone would enter a competition for gift vouchers. Only marketers would enter a prize draw for a free course on SEO.
Make your messaging resonate. Promote it in a way that responds to your desired audience’s goals and needs.
6. Add pop-ups on your website
If someone has organically found your site, and is looking through content, you can assume they would be interested in signing up to hear more from you. Create a pop-up that automatically triggers when someone has completed specific tasks (for example, looked at 2 blog pages) to encourage them to subscribe and hear more.
Here’s a great example from Contently:
7. Add an opt-in option at the point of purchase
You’ve made a sale! Now make the most out of your captive audience.
Make your new customer aware of your newsletter or email campaigns, and encourage them to sign up to stay informed.
You can do this by incorporating a tick box into your check out form, to make it as easy as possible for them to sign up.
8. Promote your newsletter list on social media
Social media can be a useful way to get your existing engaged audience to join you on another channel. If you aren’t already promoting your newsletter via Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn, your followers may not be aware of it.
Here’s an example from Fast Company:
Our suggestion? Promote it by doing a sneak peek of what you are sending out each month, and pique their interest.
If your existing social media following is looking flat, consider paid adverts that can be targeted to a specific demographic to capture relevant contacts.
9. End blog posts with call to action
If you’re writing fantastic blog content, and you have an engaged following, use this captive audience to promote your newsletter.
A simple way of doing this is by creating a CTA at the end of each post, or by incorporating CTA banners throughout your blog post to remind your audience that they should sign up for even more great content.
10. Partner up
So, you’ve tapped into all of your other channels, how can you grab attention further afield?
Working with a partner company or entrepreneur is a great way of expanding your potential audience.
- Run a joint webinar, podcast or online event
- Feature each other’s content in your newsletters
- Create guest content like webinars or blog posts
- Ask for a shout out in their newsletter
The options are endless. The key to ensuring this approach results in improving conversion rates is finding someone whose audience is similar to yours, so that your content is appealing to them.
Everyone’s inboxes are inundated with emails, so getting someone to add even more can be a difficult task. Grabbing your audience’s attention and then convincing them you have great content they want to read is crucial.
In summary, the key to getting someone to subscribe to your emails is to:
- Give them something of value in exchange for their data
- Make it clear what your emails will be about
- Appeal to the right audience
Once you’re sure you’ve got that covered in your approach, it’s about trying and testing the channels and the tactics that work best for you.