Email List Building Tactics That Actually Work | Email Marketing Podcast

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I'm Elizabeth, and simply put, I design brands and websites. I mix in marketing strategy, personality galore, and tons of fun to create custom brands, custom websites, and website templates. These designs convert lookers into buyers and take the headache out of the design process. I believe your brand should be a knockout. I'll help you create a captivating + profitable online presence! Join me, won't you?!

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Email List Building Tactics That Actually Work

Reading Time: 6 minutes

This episode covers all things email marketing — everything you need to know to grow your email list. I’m covering what tools you should use for email marketing, what kind of freebies to offer to get people on your email list, where to put your opt-in forms to get the best results, and so much more! Your email list is an important part of your business sales. If you aren’t building your list yet, this episode is perfect to help you get started. And if you’re on the other end and are actively emailing, this episode will give you ideas on how to do it even BETTER! 

The concept of email marketing along with tools and tips from growing your email list is a pretty hot topic. Why? Because it works and believe it or not, email marketing is more effective than social media for selling your product or service.

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Reasons why email should be an equal (or bigger) focus than social media:

  1. Purchases are more likely to occur via email than social media. 
  2. You do not own your Instagram following! At any point, Instagram could become obsolete or shut down for some bizarre reason and you can’t transfer those followers elsewhere. They ONLY live on Instagram. 
  3. Email marketing gives you a place to share “special” content only for your truest tribe. You can share more intimate details and messages, special offers, and discounts, and connect on a deeper level with your audience. 

Top Email Marketing Tools

Let’s start with what tools you can use to collect emails addresses and start building your email list. I have 2 really great email marketing platforms that I recommend. They are FloDesk and ConvertKit. 

FloDesk is an easy-to-use, beautifully designed email marketing software that helps you design emails people love to open! You can try FloDesk for 30-days, with no credit card required. Then use code "ELIZABETH" to get 50% off your FloDesk subscription! [Test out FloDesk HERE.]

The other email marketing platform that I love is ConvertKit. It is a great email marketing software that helps you grow your audience. It is used by creators of all kinds. I use ConverKit as well as many of my clients and I love it! [Get started with a 14-day free trial of ConvertKit HERE.]

What to offer for building your email list

Now that you have the right tools for growing your email list,  it is time to talk about what to offer to make people want to be a part of it. Long gone are the days where you can say “join my email list” and it actually work.

You have to offer something in exchange for their email. Think about your own inbox experience, you probably aren’t just giving your email out to anyone. Most people want as few emails as possible so you need to give them something in exchange for it.

2 rules for what to offer:

  1. Make it valuable. People need to actually want it to allow you to send them emails. 
  2. Relevant to paid offerings or an overall business goal. You want your email list to be filled with people who are actually potential customers. 

When you are choosing the thing that is right for you to offer as an incentive to join your email list, remember that something relevant to your offerings and something with value is key. Consider these questions:

  • Do you already have content you already write about frequently that you could expand on?
  • What things do you teach that could benefit from a more detailed version like a video or a workbook?
  • What questions do you get asked often from potential leads?
  • What’s something that holds people up from working with you?
  • How could you show authority?  
"Long gone are the days where you can just say "Join my email list" and that actually work for you." - Elizabeth McCravy

Speaking of valuable freebies!

If you are looking for more information about what kinds of freebies you could offer to potential leads, DOWNLOAD THIS GUIDE that dives into what the different kinds of freebies are and examples of each type from different industries. 

This guide is going to give you ideas galore on WHAT you can offer to get people to join your email list, the different types of freebie offerings, and how to create something for free that ultimately can lead to a sale. It also tells you what to put in the freebie besides the content itself!

How to pitch your offer

I’m talking about the way you pitch your freebie. The pitch matters you guys! If you have a great freebie but aren’t selling it well on your website, you won’t get opt-ins or grow your email list. Be offer-focused in your copy. 

In most cases, there’s no reason for you to ever use the phrase “email list” when asking people to get on your email list. Instead, tell them what you are giving them and how to get it. 

For example, your pitch could look like this…

“Put your email address in below to get on my email list. You’ll receive a free ideal client workbook!” 

OR 

“Like free stuff? Get a FREE workbook to help you identify your ideal client!”

The second one is client-focused, needs-focused, and concise. 

Stay away from language like, “Subscribe to receive updates from us.” and instead tell them what they get by giving you their email address. If you are giving away something valuable lead with that, not the fact that they are joining an email list. 

You want to make it easy for people to join your email list! Remove any opt-ins and as for the least amount of information possible. You could ask for their first name and email or even just their email. Then, they will get the freebie in an email immediately. Avoid the step of needing to confirm their subscription so they just get one email.

Where to offer your freebie on your website

Before we talk about GOOD placement, let’s talk about places NOT to put your freebie offer! 

I recommend not to do pop-ups. A pop-up is when someone scrollls to a percentage of the page and a box pops up asking for their email address. Most commonly people put these on their home page, which is the worst spot for them. 

Ditching automated pop-ups is an unpopular opinion, but look at your own way of interacting with websites and you will see what I mean. You probably just click it off and keep trying to get to where ever you were going. 

Good places to put your freebies

Always have the option for someone to sign up for your emails in the footer of your website. You put them in the driver's seat! Anytime they want to sign up, they can!  This could be a button they click and then it pops up (versus with an automated pop-up, they have 1 chance, then it’s gone.)

You can offer different incentives throughout your website. The longer you’re in business, the more incentives or freebies you can build up to offer your audience. I currently have 8 offered throughout my website, but guess what? I started with just one. 

Here are some ideas for where to put your opt-ins on your website:

  • Blog sidebar
  • End of every blog post 
  • Website footer
  • Dedicated “freebies” page
  • Mailing list page 
  • Website section on home page or service page 
  • Shop purchase/product page 

Offering different incentives in different places will ultimately attract more people and grow your email list because you are providing resources for all those varying big questions your audience has! Always tell them what they are going to get out of giving their email and make it worth it for them. 

Getting people on your email list from Instagram

Let’s talk about getting people on your email list from Instagram. Instagram stories is a great place to talk about your freebies or content that you are only going to be sending to your email list and encouraging people to be a part of it! 

Before link stickers existed on Instagram and only certain people had the “Swipe Up” feature, I would talk about something that was happening for my email list and encourage people to DM their email address if they wanted to know more. This is easier for them than me sending them to a landing page and it didn’t take long for me to input the information myself! 

I would also type out a short link to the landing page or a sales page with more information. I use the WordPress plugin Pretty Links to create shorter, quick links that are easy to type, spell, and remember! 

" It’s better to reengage a cold email list than to wish you had a list a year from now." - Elizabeth McCravy

Start before you are ready!

Some people might disagree with me on this logic, but worked for me. Go ahead and start to grow your email list even if you feel like you won’t be able to start sending out consistent content to your list.

This is what I did and I recommend doing it! I started creating opt-ins on my site forever ago but I didn’t start emailing my list until later

 It’s better to reengage a cold list than to wish you had a list a year from now.

Is growing your email list something you really need to do?

Email marketing is such a huge thing right now. Before you jump in and say “I need to start emailing!” Ask yourself if you really do need to grow your email list? Will this move your business forward and is it applicable to your business type? 

I hope this episode has been helpful and you learned something new to try with your email marketing, whether you are just starting or have been building an email list for a while. Don’t forget to download the free guide for creating the perfect opt-in! 

Learn new email markeing tactics that actually help you grow your email list with Elizabeth McCravy.

March 19, 2019

Explore more categories:  Email Marketing, Marketing, Podcast

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see my top biz resources

see my top biz resources

podcast

freebies

template highlight

gabby podcast kit

Oh, you wanna know more?

design

business

marketing

template showcase

personal

listen to the podcast!

I'm Elizabeth, and simply put, I design brands and websites. I mix in marketing strategy, personality galore, and tons of fun to create custom brands, custom websites, and website templates. These designs convert lookers into buyers and take the headache out of the design process. I believe your brand should be a knockout. I'll help you create a captivating + profitable online presence! Join me, won't you?!

Hey there!
of the year

@ELIZABETHMCCRAVY

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