Organically Make Your Email List Bloom … with the Ideal Combination of Ingredients!
What’s the most effective way to generate solid leads and sales through an email list? Well, you do this by growing an organic list rather than purchasing one or simply having people sign up with their email address “just because” or to get a free gift card or something (though, as we’ll discuss later, promotions can be a powerful hook when used in conjunction with other methods).
Too many times people will use a ‘junk email’ account when signing up for ‘lists’. This could be an email address they don’t use very often, something that can capture what they consider to be junk mail so they don’t need to be overrun by spam. That isn’t going to do you or your business any favors.
The most effective way to make your email list grow and help your bottom line numbers increase is to be organic with it.
What does it mean to have an ‘organic’ email list?
It means a list that grows naturally from prospective customers who are thoroughly interested in the products or services your company provides. In other words, it is done naturally instead of a list of prospects that you purchase or gather from other unknown sources.
A lot of small to even medium-sized businesses get caught up in the idea that a larger email list is more advantageous no matter who these people are. What’s best is an email list of prospective customers and clients who have a significant interest in the specific products and services your company does offer rather than just people who want something for free.
There are numerous things you can do to organically make your email list blossom and grow, providing better open and click-thru rates as well as sales generated through your email list.
First, make sure your website pages are solid.
If the sign-up form is not easy to find, you lose. The most effective thing to do is to ensure you have a call to action on every single page of your website (that’s relevant to building your list), including your blogs. This makes it easy to subscribe and -as long as you have this sign up form ready to go at just about every turn throughout your website- your prospects will sign up when they’re ready, and that is usually going to happen once they realize you truly are a valuable resource and offer the products or services they’ve been looking for.
If you make it too complicated to subscribe, or if you ask for too much personal information, that could be detrimental.
Second, make full use of quality inbound marketing strategies.
Using how-to guides, short videos, and even white papers will create a wealth of content that acts as a gatekeeper on your website. People who are searching for specific information will be directly routed to those pages (usually from search engines, social media posts, or possibly even other sites) and, when they find the information useful, they’ll be far more willing to sign up on a list to stay abreast of your latest offerings.
On top of that, these people who sign up after getting to these guides or videos or white papers will already be interested in the services and products your company provides.
Third, utilize social media marketing efforts effectively.
If you have a Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or other account, make sure you are using it effectively. You could have 1,000, 10,000, or more followers, but if you’re not putting out useful and relevant content consistently, that’s going to hamper your efforts at generating a solid email list.
When you have a new marketing or lead generating offer, such as a video, info-graphic, e-book, or even a promotional offer, be sure to promote it through your social media platforms. Remember, it’s easy and simple for people to ‘like’ pages, but many of them are looking for resources that will help them more directly and that’s what these lead-gen products are designed to do.
If you produce something, take advantage of the social media platforms you’ve already established to move them from a simple ‘follower’ on those platforms to somebody on your email list.
Fourth, consider promotional benefits.
People are certainly going to be interested in a white paper, guide, or how-to resource for specific topics, and that will likely generate organic email followers and subscribers, but nothing is more effective at producing excitement for signing up on lists than promotions.
You can rely on sweepstakes and online contests, which can get people fired up to follow you and sign up for your email lists, but there are other methods you can employ, too. You can offer prizes, discounts, one-on-one meetings and interfaces, and much more.
Think about what your target audience values most and then tap into those preferences when coming up with a promotion. Even if you have an email list already, it may be have become stagnant, so sending out a promotional benefit could get that entire list fired up once again.
You can even use a promotion to encourage those individuals already in your database to “add a friend” or “invite a friend.”
Fifth, attend meet-ups and conventions to get great leads.
There are likely a handful or more conventions in your target market that you SHOULD be attending. Bring a lot of business cards and ask to ‘trade cards’ with those who might seem like a good fit for what you are selling. Or, just ask them for their card. Just be sure to ask if it’s okay if you reach out to them. Then you can feel confident when you put them on your mailing list.
Lastly, get your email list engaged.
When you send an email out to your list, so long as you do it properly and securely, no one is going to have a clue how many other people are on that list and who those individuals are. However, the bulk of those people share a common interest: you and your business.
You can host a webinar, podcast, or even sponsor an event locally. Whatever it is, encourage the people on your email list to become actively engaged in discussions, networking opportunities, and even educational resources.
When people have an opportunity to meet others or grow their network, they’re going to become more active members of your online community.
This not only helps strengthen your current email list, but it also encourages growth. Just as vegetables and fruits require the perfect semblance of ingredients (the right seed, the right soil, the right nutrients, the right amount of sun and water ratios, etc.), your email list does, too.
When you take advantage of these strategies, you’ll see your email list begin to bloom. From there, the sky becomes your only limit.