20 Tips to Grow Your Mailing List
Mailing lists are one of the most effective marketing instruments, ever. Here are 20 methods how to increase the sing up rate on your web properties and offline. Social media is getting more and more important, but mailing lists are still extremely important in regular communication, lead generation and sales.
1. Never say “Join our newsletter”
This is probably the most important tip in this post!!! Nobody wants to join a newsletter. Newsletters are boring and I don’t have time to read them. Our experience has shown that when you replace “join our newsletter” with clear points what the newsletter will contain and why you should join then the sign up rate will increase several times.
2. Give value
One of the best tactics to build your list is to give something in exchange for the email address. Create a white paper or short course and let people sign up to get that material. Again, you will see very substantial increase in sign up rate. Giving value that is specific to your industry ensures that people who sign up are members of your target group.
3. Add sing up form to every page
Joining your mailing list should be really easy, so add the sign up box to every page. You can also create a dedicated sign up page which tells the visitor what value will they get if they join.
4. Ask them to join the list during transactions
Visitors who are in the process of buying or some other important transaction has already given you a big YES. Use that positive state of mind to ask for a small yes of joining the list.
5. Thank you pages
You think that transactions, specially buying process, are so important that you have to remove all clutter, even the check box for the mailing list. No worries, add the mailing list sign up to the thank you page. It works the same way as previous point, if you got the big yes of transaction the small yes is easy to come.
6. Transactional email
Transactional email is sent to confirm some action visitor has just taken. These emails get opened and paid attention. Ask them to join the mailing list and use the transactional email itself as an example of what they can expect in the future.
7. Partner mailing lists
Find out if any of your partners has a list where yo can add value. Create an offer or message that is useful for the subscribers of that list. Best tactic would be to use something that they would need to sign up for. (Don’t try to sell in your first interaction.)
8. Rented lists
Look for industry newsletters or sites that sell the opportunity to include your message in their regular communication. As with partner lists, find the value that would make the recipients interested enough to sign up for your offer. The trick is in the relevance of the list. If you sell industrial machinery don’t send the message to teenage girls, even if the list is free.
Create a tool that your audience finds valuable and solve their problems. You can then send the results to email address or ask for one in the process of using the tool. One great example is Website Grader by HubSpot.
10. Send to a friend
Every email that you send to your list should encourage people to forward it to a friend or colleague.
11. Social media
Ask people to sign up in your social media channels. Create a special page that asks people to sign up and gives clear reasons why they should do that.
When you are speaking at an event ask the audience to sign up. Tell them that they can sign up for you newsletter on every page of your website and get the information they are paying right now for free, forever. Additionally, if you are the organizer of the event then you can add mailing list sign up to the feedback form.
13. Offline material
Product data sheets, brochures and other printed material should include the information about signing up for more.
14. Direct mail
The older brother of email newsletter is a great opportunity to ask people to continue the discussion online. Ask them for feedback online that includes newsletter sign up with or without giving up the dead tree version.
15. Point of sale
I have joined a newsletter of a food court at the place of their business by writing my name and email on the piece of paper. Every Monday they send me a fresh menu for that week. Use that if you have people visiting your place of business.
16. Loyalty programs
When customers join your loyalty programs always ask permission to send them email.
17. Tell them it’s safe to join
18. It’s about who not how many
Concentrate on the quality of your mailing list. It’s more important that the people on the list actually care about what you have to say than how big is the list.
Ask only for most important information. In the simplest form it’s the email address. Don’t ask for birthday, shoe size or grandmother’s maiden name in the first encounter. You can always refine the list later by offering incentives to give additional information.
If you are in contact with your audience always ask them to join the list. Be it offline meeting or a blog post about list building. On the right site of this post is the sign up form for our mailing list. Sign up for more internet marketing and social media advice.
And don’t forget to share this post!
Check out the related posts:
Facebook, Twitter, and Email compared. It helps you to understand the differences that exist between email, Facebook, and Twitter.
Unsubscribe, Unfollow, Unlike. Don’t Worry!. Rejection! It’s terrible they don’t like me! At first glance it seems like a bad thing but in reality the people who leave don’t really have and interest in your brand.
Image credit Miguel Ugalde
Posted on: May 18, 2011