In the last post, Where is the money?! In the list! Part 1, we discussed the e-mail list, how to build it and the fact that you need to build credability and deliver quality messages. I also mentioned that you should not SPAM your list.
In this post I’ll discuss 8 Ways to Build your List
There are a lot of ways to build your list, you definately need traffic but you also need to provide quality content on your blog or static website (you’re not really using a static site, are you?).
- Give your subscribe box prominent placement on your page, generally this means “above the fold” or the first visible screen without having to scroll. Graphics and proper placement should draw the visitor to the form. Remember, getting people to subscribe to your list is a high priority.
- Multiple subscribe boxes. EVERY page on your site should have a subscription box. It’s easy if you’re using a blog for your site, if not then ensure that the template you are using is designed well so that you can place a subscribe box on each page.
- Why should the user subscribe? Provide them with a reason! Quality information on your site will go a long way.
- Incentives. This may, or may not work. How often have you subscribed to a service, received the bonuses then unsubscribed? You can certainly try it, but it may not be the deciding factor for your visitors. Know your visitor, and give them what they want — perhaps you’ll never need to give them an incentive.
- Word of mouth. Today, this goes a long way and is probably more powerful than any incentive. Visitors that like your site, and your message are more likely to tell their friends. Similarly other webmasters will be more willing to mention your site on their site/blog.
A few other methods are shown below, all valid…
- Subscriptions from other lists and websites. You can team-up with other similar or complementary websites and work on a co-registration system. How this works is, when a visitor subscribes to your site in your “thank you” note you invite them to register for another complementary site.
Co-regs may not always be highly targeted to your market, so use this with caution.
As with any type of co-reg agreement, there needs to be something that the reciprocating site owner will get in return. Perhaps they’ll want you to sell his products to your list, or at the minimum they will expect the same reciprocation on any sign-ups to your list.
- Capture their name and address after checkout. If you’ve sold them something, chance are they are already a subscriber — but ask them again! It doesn’t hurt, and if they are not already a subscriber you may have just added someone to your list.
One thing to note, you should run “separate” lists. What this means is that people that sign-up from your site, before having purchased are one type of list. They may or may not buy anything from you, you will need to win them over by providing high quality information.
However someone who has just purchased something from you, is very likely to purchase subsequent products. Although both are valuable to your list this second list are those individuals that already like you, your product(s) and the message you are delivering and are probably more likely to purchase from you repeatedly. You may want to offer these individuals discounts on your products or other incentives.
- Advertising in complementary newsletters. Just like it says, you may want to advertise in complementary newsletters. It may be a paid ad, or like in option #1 – subscriptions from other lists and websites the site owner will look for something in return.
These are only a few ways to build your list. You can certainly get creative and try other methods — just remember, ethical and honest! Otherwise you’ll find yourself with no list and no visitors, and quite possibly a tarnished reputation that will be very difficult to fix.
You don’t have to use all these approaches, but employ as many as possible. Now go out there and build your list!