It’s safe to say that the bigger your mailing list is, the better. Having a robust list gives you more opportunities to sell and to build your reputation. Here are 8 sure-fire tips for growing your list:
- Prioritize Building Your Mailing List
Make sure you’re putting at least as much effort into building your mailing list as you are to your social media efforts…hopefully more. Getting “Likes” on Facebook is one way of gauging your popularity, but you can’t control how your message is spread to your Facebook connections, and it can be difficult to effectively communicate with them directly.
- Make it Easy for New Subscribers to Sign Up
Make the links to your signup page prominent on all the pages of your website. You can do this by placing a full-width banner at the top of your site, as well as within your margin or sidebar area. You might even want to use a pop-up or lightbox window as part of a particular landing page (provided that it only shows up once per user visit).
- Be Up Front With Your Value Proposition
Two things should be immediately apparent from your opt-in page: (1) what a person will receive if they sign up for your mailing list, and (2) why that thing would be valuable or useful to them. Don’t assume that a potential sign-up will be able to understand exactly why something has value just from a brief description. Explain exactly what’s in it for them, and don’t leave your value proposition to chance.
- Offer Something of Value
It’s important to make sure that when you claim to offer something of value and substance in exchange for an email sign-up, you follow through. You don’t want to give away too much (in terms of volume or content), but you need to make sure that a new subscriber doesn’t feel as if they were tricked into giving you their email address. Over time you’ll gain experience in what’s appropriate.
- Leverage the Trust You’ve Built Up
Your mailing list sign-ups are going to come from two sources – people who have never been to your website before, and those who have. With respect to the second group, you can improve the sign-up rates on your squeeze pages by leveraging the trust you’ve already built up with them. If they’ve been to your site many times before, then they know from your prior posts and other downloads what you have to offer. Reference these things as part of your sign-up pitch to help convince your current readers that your newest offer is right for them.
- Run a Contest
Putting on a contest or product giveaway can be a great way to drive new traffic to your site and grow your mailing list. One of the most effective approaches is to make the item you’re giving away related to your niche.
- Review Your Past Experiences
Go back and look at what’s worked for you in the past. If you’re using Google Analytics or some other analytics service, carefully go through the numbers in order to identify the techniques that you know work well. As the say, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
- Don’t Forget About the Offline World
Do you attend business networking events? Do you ever get new readers or subscribers by mentioning your business and website to people you meet? Have a set of business cards with a direct link to your splash page printed on them, and be ready to give them out when the time seems right.
Now that you know how to grow your list, it’s important that you communicate with them effectively and that’s the subject of the next post. We’ll talk about engaging your readers and subscribers, and giving them exactly what they want so they become loyal subscribers.