If you’ve been running your business for any length of time, you have more than likely heard or read the following statement over and over again: “The money is in the list.” An email list is possibly the most important asset your business can have but it is unfortunately one of the most underused and misused one as well.
It takes time and dedication to build an email list that is actually responsive and that opens the emails you send rather than just deleting them. Build a great relationship with your email list and they will open every email you send them. Cultivating and keeping that relationship positive is not a onetime deal. You must continue to do things that reinforce and maintain that bond, so they continue to be interested in not only what you have to say but what you have to sell.
There are many things that you can do to build an email list that will be loyal and eager to hear anything you have to say. By following the tips and strategies outlined below, you will show your email subscribers that they can trust you, and your list will continue to grow in leaps and bounds.
People Love Free
Offering something for free on your website in exchange for a visitor’s email address and name is a common practice. The key element here is not to just offer something for free but to offer something of value for free. If it is enticing to the visitor and offers them something that they see value in, they will most assuredly fill out their information and clock to get that free product.
So, what do you give away? That is going to depend on a few different things, the biggest one being what is your business about? The niche that you are in determines what you can offer your visitors in the way of free products in exchange for their email address and name.
You always want your free offers to be relevant to what your business niche is. Having a site about weight loss, for example, and offering a free product related to animals leaves visitors scratching their heads. Now some may still sign up for your email list if your free product about animals sounds interesting enough, but you have put doubt in their minds as to what you’re about and that is not the way you want to start off with your subscribers.
When your business is online, you can give away free information which, depending on what it is, is very valuable to people. Some ideas for free products that you can offer to your visitors include:
- Ebooks about your niche
- Reports that solve a problem
- Mini courses that are spread out over a specified time period
- A “toolbox” of resources they can use and that you can continue to add to periodically to keep increased interest
- A regular, weekly newsletter for subscribers
Make sure that anything free you offer is relevant to your niche and is written well. Free garbage is still garbage and you don’t want your subscribers to drop you as soon as they get your free offer because they think it’s terrible.
Don’t Spam Your Subscribers
Once you have a visitor sign up for your email list to receive your free offer, it is your responsibility to keep them happy, so they remain subscribers. This is accomplished by continuing to deliver something of value, by not sending too many emails, or for trying to sell something every time they click to open an email from you.
There is nothing wrong with offering something of value to your subscribers that they can purchase once in a while. The problem many businesses make is that they try to sell something every single time an email is sent out. This is a quick way to lose subscribers. You also don’t want to send too many emails for the same reason. Knowing the difference between not enough, too many and just the right amount of emails is important and will keep your subscribers happy.
How Many is too Many?
The objective of an email list is to grow a base of subscribers that want to hear the information you have for them, as well as to make money from that list by suggesting products for them to buy. These products could be yours or others that you get a commission from. This is not a bad thing at all, but where it can go wrong is when the emails are too numerous and too pushy.
You want to send out emails often enough that they don’t forget you and not so often that they are sick of the site of your name popping up in their inbox. Even a business that has excellent information for their subscribers can send out too many and it will still become a problem. A good amount of emails is no more than 2-3 per week.
If you offer a newsletter to your subscribers, this will be one of the emails they receive from you each week. They should receive it on the same day every week which will develop a sense of anticipation with your subscribers, especially if they love what is in your newsletter.
The second email you send out should be something of value that is not a sales email in any way This can be a link to a relevant article or story about your niche, a few tips on solving a common problem or question that comes up in your niche, or a link to a relevant video. Don’t be afraid of sending your subscribers other links that are not yours. You will solidify yourself even more as a resource worth listening to.
The third (and final) email of the week can be an email that is two-fold. It can offer some value but should be written with whatever product you want to sell, set up as the solution to the problem. An example of this would be writing about a common weight loss problem that many people have. Your product should solve this problem. A few times during the email, mention how this product has solved this problem for many people and make the readers excited about getting it so it solves their problem too. Then put the link to the product in the email where they can purchase it.
You don’t have to send three emails every week and you can even space out the sales emails every two or three weeks rather than every week. The main points to remember, to build a lasting relationship with your email list are:
- Offer them something of value for free in exchange for their email and name
- Don’t spam them with tons of emails trying to sell products
- Don’t email more than 2-3 times a week
- Only send a sales email out once a week at the most, once every two-three weeks is better
Be human in your emails, share stories, ask them to send in their own stories and interact with them. Also be sure to give your subscribers a way to share your information through their social media channels which will help you gain even more subscribers. It can be a slow process to gain subscribers, but if you follow the tips above, you will not only grow a good list, but you will keep them too.