Make no bones about it, building an email list from scratch is bloody hard.
So why bother?
The Direct Marketing Association reported that email marketing on average sees a 4300% return on investment. Not bad huh!
Although it’s worth stating that our assumption here is that this is when marketing to an ‘engaged’ and ‘relationship’ built list – rather than just any email list – otherwise we may as well all just buy a list and be done with it.
So building your list from scratch is worthwhile, but don’t be under any illusion that emails will just ‘arrive’ – they won’t. You need to graft. You need to be brave and step out of your comfort zone.
Getting names on the list
We’re not Kevin Costner in ‘Playing the Field’ (if you don’t know what we’re referring to, shame on you and please go and watch it) – there’s no ‘build it and they will come’ – rather for you and I it’s ‘build it and then do everything you can to reach your audience and let them know what they’ll get so they’ll come’.
And you better make sure what you’re giving is something they really want and it is truly valuable – otherwise they still won’t come! The more value you provide to your list, the more they’ll trust you and the better relationship you’ll create. And ultimately the more value you’ll get from them.
Always always make your list about what you can give the audience – what is the most valuable thing you can offer that they want – what can you create for them to salivate over and of course pass on to others? Don’t make it filler, it has to be truly useful.
Once you’ve hooked individuals into what you’re offering, then you also need to make it as easy as possible for them. Don’t assume everyone will understand how to join a list or even what a list is. Tell them exactly what to do and remove any unnecessary barriers – i.e. long sign up forms, etc.
When you’re ready with a valuable offering and the sign up process is as simple as possible then it’s time to get your message out to your audience wherever they are. Whatever it takes – this is the time to hustle!
How to promote your offering
Brainstorm as many ideas as you can to promote what you’re offering to get people onto your list. Once you have about 100 ideas, pick 5 of your top ideas and do them to the absolute best of your ability again and again.
A few ideas to start you off include:
- Speaking engagements
- Guest posts
- Providing testimonials for others
- Thoughtfully commenting on others blogs
- Adding ‘helobar’ to your website
- Starting a conversation via social media
- Send your offering to influencers for free to review/share with their own community
- Run a competition
As you promote your offering and begin to get emails on your list, don’t forget every single person signed up should be treated with kindness. Each individual should be made to feel like the only person who matters to you. And, any time you email, make sure it’s something they want.
Whilst building an email list can be exhausting and takes a lot of sweat equity, the payback for your business is more than worth it and your list will turn into your customers and advocates for years to come if treated right.
No time like the present, get cracking now. If you need any more help/guidance on building your list, drop us a line.