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A Simple and Effective Guide to Build a Credible Email List from Scratch

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Picture this: you have a business and everyone advises you to start a newsletter. It is a great idea to have one and you’ve been told about the numerous benefits of email marketing. But then, you don’t have an audience yet. You can’t send out newsletters to random people who aren’t your target audience, as it would only be a waste of effort with minimal to no results. How then do you build a credible email list from scratch? 

Building an email list from scratch isn’t as easy as it seems but once you have your list, it can skyrocket your business sales. This is an essential strategy to upscale your business and statistics show that 64% of small businesses use email marketing to reach customers. It also helps increase customer retention rate

In this article, we will explore some of the most simple and effective ways you can build a credible email list from scratch as a small business owner. 

1. Choose a Credible Email Marketing Platform

email list

The first thing you must consider before building a list is your choice of email marketing service provider, as this can make or mar your email marketing tactics. Email service providers like Gmail and Outlook would work for simple email campaigns but you would need a more robust platform to help with automated email campaigns and a growing email list. In an earlier article, we shared some of the top email marketing service providers you should consider.

When choosing a platform, consider the overall goal of your business and how it can help you achieve that. This will not only make it easier to curate your list but will also help you properly segment your audience and make creating campaigns easier. 

2. Build a Branded Sign-up Page

Sign up form
Source: Typeform

Now that you have chosen your preferred email marketing platform, you will have to bring your audience onboard. If you have an email list already, you can simply upload them directly on the platform. Afterward, you can create a sign-up page where new subscribers can fill out a simple form to opt in. The link to this page will be shared with anyone interested. Every email marketing service provider has this option and it’s up to you to customize it however you want. 

Make it as appealing as possible and include your preferred form fields, including the Email Address, First Name, and Last Name. Other form fields such as Address, Date of Birth, and email segmenting options can be based on your preference.

3. Create a Timed Pop-up Form

pop up form
Source: GetResponse

A timed pop-up form, as its name implies, is a form a website visitor sees after they have been on the site for a specific period. The best email marketing platforms have this feature, and you can easily set up the form to appear immediately to the site visitor or after about 5–10 seconds or more. You get to determine the timing but bear in mind that users often leave web pages in 10–20 seconds unless something of value holds their attention for much longer. 

You can design the form to reflect whatever you want visitors to see. The end goal will be that they get compelled enough to add their email address and join your list and there are different ways to go about this. You could create a form that simply asks for their details or give them a reason to sign up by using some of the tactics explained in the next point. 

4. Give Incentives to Sign Up

pop up form discount incentive
Source: ConvertFlow

Why should anyone give you their email address for free? Think about this before setting up your list. For most people, you need to give something in return to entice them. This is called a lead magnet, which has been proven effective over time, as 50% of marketers report higher conversion rates after using it. Some ideas for free incentives include:

  • An ebook or worksheet
  • Registration for a webinar
  • A coupon
  • An online course
  • An email series on a helpful subject
  • A PDF of a cornerstone article on your blog or a case study
  • Templates

Tailor any of these incentives to what your business or website is about and use it to your advantage. Many people would want to sign up to access the free incentives and you can grow your list from that. 

5. Use Your CTA Well

CTA call to action
Source: One

Call to Action (CTA) is a secret weapon to getting more people to take action and you must use them well. Many people are getting bored of the usual CTAs used in email sign-up forms, so switching things up a little can make a difference. Rather than the generic “Sign up” or “Subscribe”, you can include power words such as:

  • Free
  • Featured
  • Start
  • Create
  • Explore
  • Exclusive
  • Access
  • Join
  • Save
  • Upgrade

These words push the reader to take action but ensure that your choice of CTA is in line with the copy of the form. For example, if the form offers a free webinar, your main CTA button can be “JOIN NOW!”. If you are offering helpful templates for business marketing, your CTA can be “EXPLORE TEMPLATES”. This switch could be the difference in making more people sign up for your email list. 

6. Share on Social Platforms

social platforms
Source: Salesforce

If you have an existing audience on your social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, this will be a great time to take advantage of that. Let your audience on these platforms be aware of your newsletter. Pitch it in the best possible way so they will be compelled to sign up. Market the value they would get from signing up, which should stand out from what they already get by being a part of your social network. 

Build a Credible Email List Today

Building an email list starts by choosing the ideal email marketing platform. A platform like MailDrip, for example, makes it easier for anyone to get started regardless of their marketing knowledge. All you have to do is create an account and start customizing your sign-up page. You also need a platform with effective customer service at no cost to you to guide you where you need help the most. 

If you’re struggling to create a marketing strategy for your business, fill out the form below. The team will get you a free marketing strategy to help you get started immediately. 

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