Why You Should Make List Building The Focus Of Your Business
There is an old saying that “the money is in the list” and this is very true.
When you build an email list of people that like your niche then you can generate revenue by offering them products and services that are related to your niche.
Isn’t it Tough to Build a List?
Many people think that list building is really tough, which is the main reason that they don’t do it.
There is nothing tough about it but it will take you time to build a large list of subscribers.
Tools are available to help you build your list and some are free and some will cost you money.
Adding an “opt in box” to your website is something that everyone can do – you do not require graphic design skills for this.
There are many large list owners out there that have absolutely no technical skills. This means that you can build a large list as well.
To build your list you will require an autoresponder for the automatic sending of emails and the code to create your opt in box.
You must entice people to provide their email address to you and this is best achieved with a free lead magnet.
A lead magnet can be in the form of a report or even a video that shares something of value.
These days’ people are concerned about providing their email addresses so you need to provide something of value in exchange for this.
The value of subscribers on your list will far outweigh the cost of creating the lead magnet.
A List is an Asset
There is a lot of value in a niche specific list of subscribers. This value will increase in proportion to the size of your email list.
If you just sell products and services and do not capture email addresses of your visitors and customers then you will lose this added value.
An online business that has an associated list of subscribers is a lot more valuable than one that does not have a list.
Each person on your list has a value and if someone is interested in purchasing your business they will be aware of this.
Money on Demand
When you respect your list members and provide them with valuable content with the emails that you send you will have the ability to make money on demand.
You will have earned the respect of your email subscribers and when you present an offer to them they will be likely to check it out and some will purchase.
Many large list owners have made fortunes with email marketing and you can as well.
Email is more direct than advertising and a lot more effective. Your email subscribers will know and trust you so they will be more inclined to buy what you offer.
Think Long Term with List Building
There are a number of challenges associated with list building. You will need to invest time, effort (and money if you choose) to create a big list.
The long term benefits are worth it though.
How To Get Your First 100 Subscribers
Getting email subscribers can be done in a number of ways but the recommended method is the implementation of a high quality content strategy.
When people read content that is high quality they will believe that you have expertise in your niche and they will trust you.
This will make them a lot more willing to become an email subscriber.
You can use different formats for your content so it can be in text form, a podcast (audio) or a video. It is actually best to mix this up as much as you can.
Be sure that all of your content is top quality because poor quality content will not be looked at by your visitors and they will never become email subscribers.
How do you Define High Quality Content?
This is relatively easy to do. It has to add value to the reader and this is the first important point.
Once they have read your content or watched your video they should have learned something or know how to do something that they couldn’t do before.
Always keep your content relevant to the niche that you are operating in.
If you are in the make money online niche then create content that helps people to make money on the Internet. People will certainly opt in to your list if you do this.
You need to create a content plan.
Determine how often per week you will publish new content and also come up with a list of titles for content that you really believe will add value.
A plan always works better than just making it up as you go along.
With a plan you will never be stuck for ideas because you have already decided what your content will be about.
Your Lead Magnet Needs to be Great
You are not going to get many people that will subscribe to your email list just because your content is great.
There is a real reluctance these days to part with email addresses because of the spam problem.
So you need a great lead magnet to provide the necessary incentive for your visitors to opt in.
The lead magnet can be a written document such as a report or even a video. Think your lead magnet through carefully and ensure that it will add value.
A poor lead magnet will lead to lots of unsubscribes from your list and you don’t want that to happen.
Position Yourself in front of Targeted Traffic
When you are starting out you need targeted traffic that is interested in your niche.
Creating content that is never viewed can seem like a total waste of time but keep going.
Getting only 10 – 20 visitors a month to your website is very demoralizing so this is what you can do:
Establish the relevant social channels for your brand. Be sure to use your name or the name of your brand in your channel.
Depending upon your niche you will want to have channels on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
In LinkedIn and Facebook you can find groups that are related to your niche. Be sure to post regularly to these groups but do not spam them.
You can get a lot of traffic to your website by doing this. Create a specific Facebook page and also use Twitter to get your message out.
There are content aggregators that can help you to get your posts distributed. Finding them is easy – just use your favorite search engine.
You can blog on LinkedIn and Quora for even more traffic. Always be looking at ways to build your following.
Guest posting on high traffic blogs is also a good traffic strategy.
Great Tools For List Building
You can get things done easier and faster with the right tools.
In this article we will recommend the best tools for your email marketing business as well as some others that can be of great assistance.
A Good Autoresponder
You must have a good autoresponder.
There are two options open to you here which are subscribing to an autoresponder service or hosting your own autoresponder software.
With an autoresponder service you will pay a company on a monthly basis to store your list and send out emails.
Hosting your own autoresponder software will require some technical knowledge and if you don’t have this then choose an autoresponder service.
You have to pay monthly for the service but there are no hassles and you can send as many emails as you want.
If you are technically minded then hosted software could be a good option for you as there are no monthly payments.
But your web hosting company may impose a limit on the amount of emails that you can send in a day. You do not want your business to be limited.
Some of the best autoresponder service companies are Aweber, GetResponse and Active Campaign.
You can expect to pay around $20 a month to start with and the cost will increase with the size of your list.
Software To Make Squeeze Pages
There are a number of software services and programs for creating squeeze pages that can save you a lot of time.
Some of the services will create your entire sales funnel for you which is great. This includes one time offer pages, download pages and thank you pages.
Check out Leadpages if you are interested in this. They will charge a monthly fee but they will host your pages for you.
Leadpages will integrate with most of the popular autoresponder services. A complete sales funnel designed in around 10 minutes is possible.
WordPress users can take advantage of free and premium plugins and themes.
You can produce excellent looking squeeze pages using a premium theme such as Optimize Press or a premium plugin like Instabuilder.
Software for Email Capture
All blog owners should capture email addresses and there are some WordPress plugins that you can use to do this.
There is the Sumome plugin and the MailMunch plugin for a start.
Popups can be created as well as top bar forms and side forms and there are a lot more facilities on offer.
Software for Surveys
A good method to get email subscribers is to run a survey on your blog or website. Survey Monkey offers a simple way to do this.
They have a free version that will collect 100 responses and this is recommended before you buy the full product.
There are a number of other survey plugins available so get searching.
Checking your Grammar
An email that goes out with bad grammar will not get a very good response.
Most of the popular autoresponder services will have a spellcheck facility and some may check grammar on a basic level.
If you want to ensure that your grammar is top notch then try Grammarly. You can install it quickly and easily on Windows or as an extension for Google Chrome.
Each time you use the Internet Grammarly will monitor your grammar and make suggestions to you.
Getting Responsive Subscribers
It is the aim of all email marketers to have a list full of people that read their emails and make a purchase when they present offers.
This is unrealistic, but what you don’t want is a list full of tire kickers and freebie seekers.
There is no way that you can totally control this of course but there are some things you can do to minimize getting the wrong kind of subscribers.
What are your Traffic sources?
Where your traffic comes from is a very important factor. Traffic that originates from a source that is cheap will rarely produce a list of buyers.
Resist the temptation to use “safe lists” for traffic or a similar service where you have to subscribe to their list and then they will join yours.
These people will never even read your emails let alone make a purchase.
You must ensure that your traffic is targeted.
If your niche is making money online then traffic that originates from the Warrior Forum is likely to produce better subscribers because it is targeted.
Don’t go to general forums to get your traffic – it won’t turn out well. Using Facebook ads is a good idea as you can really be specific about the demographics.
Although almost everyone is interested in making more money, traffic from unrelated websites is likely to lead to freebie seekers and tire kickers.
They just want information. Warrior Forum members are genuinely interested about making money online so they are likely to be more responsive.
Use the Double Opt In Confirmation Facility
Another mistake that a lot of email marketers make is to immediately redirect a visitor to their lead magnet download page once they have opted in.
You have no idea whether the email address used by the visitor is real or not so this is just giving away your lead magnet for free.
Yes you can lose a few opt ins with double opt in but you will end up with a better class of subscriber.
If they are prepared to go to the trouble of confirming their interest then they are more likely to read your emails when you send them.
If they can’t be bothered then you don’t want them anyway.
To increase the number of opt ins be sure to get people more excited about your lead magnet and your email newsletter after they have opted in.
Direct them to a web page which will do this. Tell them that you offer a great deal of value with your lead magnet and your emails.
Be up front with your subscribers and tell them that you will send emails that contain offers sometimes.
Measure your open rates and click rates all the time. Your autoresponder service will provide this information.
Tell your subscribers that you are doing this and it will deter some tire kickers.
Track Activity and Clean your List
Take a close look at the subscriber activity in your list.
If you have a number of subscribers that have not opened any of your emails for a while then it is best to get rid of them.
There could be several reasons why a subscriber is not opening your emails:
- They don’t like your email content
- They do not use the email address any more
- They have forgotten who you are
- They are freebie seekers
This is a great way to cleanse your list:
Find all subscribers that have not opened emails for 3 months.
Remove these people from your primary list and add them to a new list.
Send out three broadcast messages to them on different days advising them of the situation and asking them to re-subscribe if they want to continue receiving your newsletter.
Do Not Make These Email Marketing Mistakes
You want to make money from your email marketing efforts and you need to ensure that you do not make big mistakes, or else you will end up with unhappy subscribers that will unsubscribe.
So take notice of these big email marketing mistakes and make sure that you avoid them.
Don’t Use Misleading Or Hype Up Subject Lines
You need to do everything that you can to get your emails opened. Using a subject line that is misleading or pure hype is not the way to go.
Your subscribers will not appreciate this and it will drive them to the unsubscribe link very quickly.
Hype subject lines include things like “You Can’t Miss Out On This” or “You Have To Open This Now”. People will be insulted by this and think that you are stupid.
They will not open these kinds of emails because they know you are selling something.
A misleading subject line is even worse. You have probably seen subject lines like “Your Download Is Ready” or “You Have Been Verified”.
Do not use these tactics or your list will unsubscribe in droves. Another classic is to use “Re:” so that it looks like a reply to an email the subscriber sent.
You will soon have no subscribers if you do this.
Allow People To Reply
If you send out your emails and they have “No Reply” in them then this is bad. Your subscriber will get a bounce back if they try and reply.
Don’t deny your subscribers the chance to interact with you so let them reply to you.
If you use the “No Reply” tactic it looks like you do not want to talk to your subscribers. This is a really bad thing and you must avoid it.
The whole point of email is to communicate two ways so be sure that this is enabled.
Sending Emails that have no Value
You see this all the time in the make money online niche. People send out emails that have no value in them whatsoever.
They just send emails about the latest products and services and they are all sales orientated.
Your subscribers will not appreciate being bombarded with sales messages. Take the time to build trust and a good relationship with your list.
Provide advice and guidance and case studies to solve problems where you can. They will appreciate this and be more willing to buy when you do make an offer.
Avoid Long and Short Emails
This is all a question of balance. Really short emails can be perceived as hype even if they are not.
A very long text based email will probably not get read as it is too much trouble. People are far too busy to read thousands of words in an email.
Sometimes you will have a lot of information to pass on to your subscribers. The best way to approach this is to break it down into a number of different emails.
You must always think about the reader and whether or not your email will overwhelm them. This will take a bit of practice but it is worth getting it right.
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