If you, like the best email marketers (!), have a strict opt-in policy then you’ll know that growing an email list can be hard. You’ll also know that it’s totally worthwhile and way better than shortcuts. Let’s face it, if you have a million people on your list but only 1% of them open then you’re no better off than if you were to have fifty thousand people on your list and a 20% open rate.
So, the methodology is sound, growing a list in the right way is good. Emailing people who don’t want to be emailed is bad. Simple! The hard bit is, how do you find those people that want to hear from you? Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Send emails that people want to forward
People love to be the person who ‘discovered that new thing’ and this rings true in email. If the content you send is great, people will want to share it. If you want to amplify this, maybe include a ‘forward to a friend’ prompt.
Host an online contest
Offer up your product or service for free to one lucky winner, all you have to do to be in with a chance is win is give your email. Not only does this mean you’ll grow your list, you could also make the winner of the contest a case study and generate even more content from them.
Advertise on social media
Facebook in particular has done loads of work to make it easier for companies to build out their email lists from within the Facebook platform. Lead Ads are exciting as the chances of collecting an email address is much higher when people don’t have to leave Facebook, it can create challenges though. If people don’t come to your site when they sign up, make sure you convey in a timely email how and why you’re emailing them.
Put a popup on your site
Not everybody likes popups, but if used in the right way, they can be a great way to keep your email list fresh. If people are on your site, but not quite ready to buy, they might be willing to give you their email in exchange for offers and new product news.
Collect email addresses in person
Hosting at events, holding conferences or having email cards in store are all great ways to grow your list. Just keep in mind that you might have to factor in admin time for this, and pray you can read people’s handwriting!
At the end of the day, however you decide to grow your list, never forget the basics. Send emails that your audience want to read.