“Hey! You in?”
If only getting people to subscribe to your email list were that easy…
Creating an email list is important when you promote your business online. (And seriously, who doesn’t?)
It’s how you can speak directly to individual customers, share detailed product information, notify current clients of future product offerings, share your newsletter, etc.
Essentially, email is your direct line of communication to your customer – whoever he or she is.
What strategy are you using to acquire email opt-ins? Is it working for you?
Whether your answer is yes, no or um… take a few minutes to read through these 11 tips for a more successful opt-in turnout.
1. Take time to research
At this point, you’ve probably had enough life experiences to know that heading into something blindly is never a good idea.
Look into what’s worked for your competitors – and other companies in and out of your industry – and tweak their approaches to test for your campaigns. Just make sure you’re not plagiarizing…or using a set-it-and-forget-it approach. What works for one company may not work the same way for yours.
If you’re still having trouble crafting the perfect headline, you’re in luck. Grab access to our free headliner tool here:
2. Have a strategy in place – before you begin
Once you’ve done your due diligence when it comes to background research, it’s time to put together your strategy.
Decide on the copy you’re going to use, where you’re going to use it, how you’re going to use it – the whole she-bang – and take detailed note of it. This way, once you find that one thing or another needs adjusting or updating, you’ll have the original to compare it to. So you can avoid making the same mistakes over and over again.
3. Offer the option to unsubscribe at any time
While there are laws in place requiring companies to not only ask permission to send email messages, but also offer the option of unsubscribing at any time, this can also be a marketing tool of sort.
When promoting the option of signing up along with the reminder that subscribers have the ability to unsubscribe at any time, there’s less pressure left on the decision.
Many people avoid signing up for emails thinking they will be spammed or overwhelmed with annoying floods of sales messages. Knowing they have an “easy out” will make them more likely to commit.
Want a no-brainer unsubscribe feature? Sendlane includes one for you, on every single email you send. Customers will be grateful for the no pressure opt-in and you get peace of mind knowing your marketing efforts are fully compliant.
4.Don’t forget to split-test
No matter how much experience you have, there’s always a new design or approach to try out.
Test new images, new CTAs, new content, etc. and track your results. Compare them with your original approach and see how the two measure up. Make the higher performing one the new original. Run and repeat.
5. Give other content a shot once in a while
Do you always tack an opt-in form to your daily blog posts? Always run the same old social ad on Facebook?
Don’t be afraid to consider attaching your opt-in message to different forms of content.
Articles and infographics are great, but what about videos? Use your split-testing skills to determine which works better for your Facebook campaign – a blog post supported opt-in or a video supported opt-in?
Other content options/ideas include infographics, webinars, online courses…the list goes as far as your creatives and company initiatives can reach.
6. Put your opt-in form in a strategic spot
Using heatmap testing, you can determine where on your web pages your users are most likely to click. Hotjar is an easy-to-use tool for measuring this. If you have a smaller company with generally low website traffic, you can even ask a few colleagues or work contacts to provide user feedback.
Once you know where the “hot spots” are on your page, make sure your opt-in form or pop-up shows up there. The more active the area, the more likely your readers will be to see and (hopefully) click and subscribe to your email list.
7. Entice by pre-selling your content
Are you offering something good for signing up? Because most people aren’t going to just hand over their email unless they’re getting something in return.
Don’t just ask your readers to opt-in to your email list by filling out a form to download a new e-book, digital magazine, infographic, etc. Include a brief description of what benefits that content can offer them or their business.
People want to know what they’re getting. And why they need it. The more enticing your teaser, the better the response rate.
8. Offer a reward in exchange for a sign-up
This doesn’t have to be anything too crazy. If you’re running a pop-up on your site’s landing page, you know the likelihood of visitors sharing their email addresses to get regular newsletters is hit-or-miss.
You offer a little reward for doing so, like a 10% welcome code to apply to their first purchase.
Add this offer to your newsletter sign-up CTA, along with the reminder that they can unsubscribe at any time, and bingo! Savvy shoppers just can’t resist a bargain.
9. Don’t underestimate the power of color
Different colors can evoke different emotions, believe it or not.
Ever wonder why school walls are painted soft blues, grays or whites? Because the use of soft colors can create a calming effect. The same goes for why that ultra cool, high performance convertible of your dreams is typically red. Red is vibrant, passionate and exciting.
Additionally, when it comes to fonts and buttons on different backgrounds, contrasting colors can greatly affect how well a visitor will be able to see and thus, click-through your opt-in messages.
Choose colors that evoke the emotion you’re looking for and compliment your brand. Use combinations of these that stand out visually. Then start split-testing to select the best performing pairings.
10. Don’t worry, be flexible
With so much split-testing and different options and avenues to try out, it’s normal to start stressing about picking the “right” combination for your business.
But not to worry.
As you’ve probably realized by now, things in the digital world move at an exponential pace. If you spend your time perfecting every little detail and trying to put your strategy in play for the long haul, you’ll always be behind the curve.
Do your research, put together a strategy – but don’t waste time getting everything perfect the first time. Split-testing is your friend. You can try it one way and then re-test it piece-by-piece until you find something that takes off…until the next social update comes along.
Keeping an open mind and remaining flexible to testing new things can help you stay up to speed (and hopefully markedly ahead of) your competitors.
11. You’re tracking all of this, right?
The most important take-away, affecting every one of these tips, is that you MUST always be tracking your performance.
Sendlane and Click Perfect can help you easily and affordably track your Key Performance Indicators or KPIs, giving you the right metrics for conducting smarter split-testing and thus, smarter strategy development.
Get More Subscribers
“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”
Aristotle was on to something here.
Did he realize he was talking about opt-in strategies to earn more email list subscribers?
But still, he’s right.
Applying any single one of these 11 approaches may help you move the needle here and there. But considering them all as merely parts of a greater whole will help you realize the success you’re seeking when it comes to growing your subscriber list.
I’m interested to know what tips you are most excited about implementing on your website?
Or if you have seen more success using one of these tips over another, tell me about it in the comments below.
When he isn't working, Alex enjoys meeting new people, reading and playing guitar. You can also find him cruising on his Yeti skateboard and exploring Southern California!
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Also published on Medium.