Email is the secret weapon of many successful businesses and internet entrepreneurs.
While social media marketing has received a great deal of (deserved) attention for elevating brand identity; it isn’t as powerful as email when it comes to driving people to take action.
Capturing email addresses and creating an audience of email readers will take you and your business to the next level.
First, let’s take a look at why email is so important.
Next, we’ll examine the best opt-in strategies for building a better email marketing audience.
Why is Email SO Important?
Here’s why: people still guard their inboxes.
They don’t give their email to just anyone.
Because of this, they are much more likely to read and engage with the messages they do get.
In addition, your email is not competing with games, funny memes, or a friend’s new baby.
It’s just your message laid out there for a ready and willing group of subscribers who are actually interested in what you have to say.
By the numbers…
Email has shown to blow other online marketing methods out of the water when it comes to ROI.
Litmus reported $40 ROI for every $1 spent on email marketing.
Compare that to keyword ads which only return $17 per dollar, and banner ads which average a mere $2 per dollar.
Let’s also talk conversion rates.
Email has been reported to offer a 4.16% conversion rate, whereas search results offer 2.64%, and social media converts at less than 1%.
So now that you have an understanding of the reasons to invest in email marketing, here is how to grow your email list.
The Best Opt-In Strategies
The following ways are tried-and-tested ways to get the coveted email addresses of potential customers.
As we said, people keep their emails more guarded, so you will need to offer incentives and position your request strategically.
1. Prioritize Your Opt-In Form
Your opt-in form should be a huge focal point when it comes to the design of your site.
These little forms are the doorway to your list.
Make sure they can’t be missed by site visitors!
Here is an example from the 7 for all Mankind website, a company that sells high-end jeans.
Three seconds after arriving at their site, pop!
Up comes the email opt-in with a 10% off incentive and a promise of exclusive offers, updates, competitions, and in-store events.
Not only that, this opt-in was designed to help 7 segment their customers by gathering gender information.
Take notes marketers, they’ve got it right.
But, what about customers that aren’t sold right off the bat and don’t opt in?
2. Ask for Subscriptions on the Bottom of Every Page
In order to get the most subscribers from your website or blog, you need to make an offer to subscribe at the bottom of each page.
Now, each of these offers should not be like the rest.
You want to customize call-to-actions according to the content on the page.
For example, if you have a page explaining actionable steps a customer can take to achieve a goal, you might add an opt-in like the one below at the bottom of your blog page.
Make opting in easy and be sure the offers are relevant to the situation your visitor is in.
3. Site Registration
Of course, one of the easiest way to collect email addresses is when a visitor signs up for an account on your website.
Juniper reported 77% of marketers report site registration to be effective for building a large, quality email list.
Similar to how Facebook requires a registration to view pages/profiles, or eBay when you are trying to make a purchase, your site should register users with their email addresses too.
In the site registration form, or e-commerce forms for that matter, you want to provide an opt-in option for visitors to receive continuous emails.
Be sure to incentivize your opt-in so visitors are more likely to agree.
Here’s an example of this tactic on H&M’s website.
Note how they incentivize their offer by saying “exclusive offers”.
Who wouldn’t want exclusive offers, right!?
They also collect information to segment their audience, as the 7 for all Mankind opt-in did above, including fields for gender, location, and even an interest in kids wear.
4. Use Social Media
Next up is social media.
Social media is a great tool to reach far and wide, attracting new customers.
It is also a place to build your email list.
Opt-in forms can be placed on your social media sites to call followers to action.
Here is an example of a Facebook opt-in from Salesforce’s page:
When you click on that “Sign up” button, you are taken to this page to complete the email opt-in.
Adding email opt-in buttons on your social media profiles can help you move your audience from social media down the buying funnel to a place where they will click through and convert.
Social media is also great for running contests.
You can offer a prize and require signing up with email in order to qualify to win.
Here’s a great blog about 10 social media contests that generated a total of 10,000 emails for the respective companies.
5. Create a Free Course or Other Downloadable Content
Last but not least, a free course is a great way to engage your audience and earn their email address.
What can you teach?
Well, what industry are you in?
What is your expertise?
What do your customers want from you?
You can share some of your coveted expertise on a topic people commonly ask about in your industry.
Courses can be in written, audio, or video form.
Here is an example from a page on Neil Patel’s Quicksprout website.
This blog targets an audience who is having trouble converting SEO traffic.
So, he tactfully added a side banner offering his free course on increasing traffic.
The blog and course have the same target audience making it an “easy sell” for readers.
Another important point here – the course is valued at $300 but is free in exchange for a simple email address.
Targeted, value-driven offers are a great way to get more email subscribers.
Another note is that these offers don’t have to be limited to courses.
You can offer an infographic (as shown below), a downloadable whitepaper or PDF, a report, etc. in exchange for the email address.
If you give visitors a reason to give you their email address, and something in exchange, they are less likely to hesitate.
Opt-In Strategies: Wrap Up
There you have it, the best recipe for building your email marketing audience comes down to strategically placed opt in’s with incentivized messaging.
As shown in these examples, you need to be funneling visitors toward your email list from many angles.
The main takeaways to remember are:
- Opt-ins Should be Highly Visible
- Opt-ins Should be Frequent
- Opt-ins Should be Relevant
- Incentives! Incentives! Incentives!
Need a tool to help you move forward with your simple strategy?
Well, that’s perfect because I have a solution for you.
Give Sendlane a try!
This easy-to-use email marketing suite provides everything you need, from landing pages to automation and more.
And, the best part for anyone who is just getting started?
How’s a free trial sound?
Best of luck on building your golden list!
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