Recently updated on October 1st, 2019 at 11:46 am
It’s not a secret that a well-targeted email list can drive insane profits to your business instantly. Imagine you have a fantastic and profitable offer to send to 100000 subscribers by a single mouse click. Let’s say your sent emails convert well at 7% conversion rate and you make 7000 sales by just single mouse click. That’s how profitable email marketing can be when you get your email list right.
Email marketing is the most valuable asset of every successful business online. The most exciting thing about email marketing that it can passively and automatically drive you long-term revenue once you get everything set.
Before building up your email list, you need to know how to do it properly. There are ways how you shouldn’t build your email list and you might end up wasting your time following such practices. Let’s find out what’s right and what’s wrong when trying to grow your successful email marketing empire.
Can I buy an email list?
Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts to a successful email marketing asset. Getting an effective email list requires some work and time to be put in. Buying email lists is probably the worst option you want to take in your business, it won’t be effective and it can bring you some serious problems.
First of all, purchasing and utilizing someone’s email list is against the law. If you decide to go against this law you are potentially at risk. You might end up having huge penalties on shoulders – up to 41,484$ per unsolicited commercial email sent (according to the can-spam act 2003).
If you buy an email list from someone, don’t expect emails you send will get high open and conversion rates. Contrarily, your big part of emails will be marked as spam, because the audience you are communicating with has never heard of you.
Also, it is totally not permitted by any email marketing platform as they can easily identify that the list is not yours, consider you as a spammer, and shut your account down.
In addition, your brand’s image also gets hurt, nobody wants to hear from a brand which they have never subscribed to. So if you have an idea of buying an email list – put it aside, because we are about to learn how you can get your email list built in the right way.
How to build up your own email list:
Building up your own email list means you will hold the strongest marketing communication channel forever until people unsubscribe you. 89% of Americans check their emails every day, and 60% of B2B marketers consider email marketing as their most profitable business strategy.
Such statistics indicate that an email list is still a powerful business asset, which continues only to grow. It can take a while to build up a valuable email list, but it’s totally worth it. If you are an online business who doesn’t utilize email marketing at all – you are missing out a lot!
Starting with Email Service Provider
It all starts with the ESP – Email Service Provider. There are numbers of email auto-responders that you can use online. The majority of them offers a free limited version or free trials where you can easily kick-off and start growing your email list for free.
ESP is an effective online tool, which does more than just automatically responds to your subscribers.
What else Email Service Provider does?
- assists with email address collection
- help to write and design email content
- allows creating email campaigns
- automatically sends prepared emails
- allows storing and managing contacts
- helps to analyze your campaign performances
- gives options to comply with legal laws
To start with, you need to choose your email auto-responder software. Here are the most popular and best email marketing service providers:
They are all fairly good for both – beginner and advanced levels, so don’t think too much if you are just starting out. The most important thing is to actually start, but before that, make sure your email service provider allows to export collected email list, so you can transfer it to another ESP if you’re unhappy.
Also, define your email marketing needs and make sure your email auto-responder can satisfy them. For example, if you are planning to do an Affiliate Marketing, MailChimp might not be the best option to pick and Getresponse email marketing platform works better for affiliate marketing.
Setting up a landing page:
Lead capture page, squeeze page or landing page is a page on your website where a visitor can legally share his email address with you. A landing page is a perfect place to provide people some value.
It’s always a good idea to have some nice relevant content along with a free gift to your audience. Free gift is called a lead magnet. It can be a free ebook, video/audio file, or a free discount. That gives a visitor a good reason to subscribe and share his email address with you.
There are easy ways to get your lead magnet, for example, you can write a short ebook containing a few pages of valuable information to your audience. Or, if you are an affiliate for someone, chances are that the product’s vendors can provide you a lead magnet that you can share across with your visitors for free.
Offering something for an exchange to the email address is critical for successful conversions, so make sure you don’t miss that.
Once you have your lead magnet ready, describe it, and simply explain to people why they should exchange their email address to it.
Also add “Enter your email” field (opt-in form) where a visitor can leave his email address, and connect it with your email service provider. Once someone fills in the form you will be able to see a new contact in your email list – voilà!
If you don’t know how to set up an opt-in form on your landing page, you can check this guide.
Make sure your opt-in form also asks for your visitor’s name. Capturing your subscriber’s name is a good marketing strategy for personalized emails. You can use their names inside your email content to create more engagement and trust.
The amazing part about sending personalized emails – you don’t have to manually put those names in every letter you send. Your email autoresponder is smart enough to do this all automatically for you.
You can also build and design your favorite landing pages with many email service providers either with free or premium versions. Your ESPs will also make sure that emails are collected in a legal GDPR compliant way.
If you are looking at free page builders – MailChimp is a very good solution.
With MailChimp, you can have an email service provider and a landing page builder in one. That can save you a lot of time, especially if you are just starting out.
Your landing page builder doesn’t necessarily have to be integrated with your email service provider. You can also use external platforms like WordPress, Elementor, Clickfunnels – even those platforms are not email service providers, they work great for building and designing your lead capture page!
If you have a dollar to invest, Clickfunnels offers high-quality landing page building and design features. It’s not only a landing page building platform, but also a massive online sales funnel creator. Clickfunnels incorporates all cores of successful marketing funnels and it’s widely used by most successful online marketers.
Clickfunnels can save you a lot of headaches. That means that you don’t necessarily have to deal with website hosting, different landing page builders or email service providers – with the Clickfunnels you can get everything done in one place.
How to get traffic to your email list:
Now that’s the most interesting part. To grow a big email list, you want to get people to visit your landing page. It’s not about the quantity, but about the quality, so you really want to target the right audience which is interested in what you’re offering.
There are several ways how you can drive free traffic to your page.
Social media platforms:
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Quora, Youtube, Reddit, Blogs & Forums are good places where you can get free traffic.
Analyze your target audience and think where is the best place to find those people. For example, statistics show that 79.5% of Pinterest is used by women, so if you are in a fishing niche, chances are that Pinterest may not be the best source of the traffic to your site.
If you are just starting out, focusing on 3-4 social media platforms is a good idea. Try to build up your audience by providing only quality (no spam) content. Try to actually help people and answer their questions.
You can easily link your email capture page with any of these social media platforms and get a decent amount of traffic from them. Either you can leave a link in your Instagram’s bio section, or blend it with valuable content when answering someone’s question on Quora.
Quora and other forums can be an amazing place where you can drive tons of targeted traffic. Remember to always provide value and keep your answers on point to other people’s questions. By providing spam-free and helpful content, you get better chances of people clicking your link and visiting your site.
Here’s a good example of how your answers on Quora and other forums should look like:
Google organic traffic:
Another very powerful traffic source for your email list can be Google. Why Google is great? It’s because you are providing people content based on answers to what they are looking for.
In order to rank on Google – you need to be a content creator. Find the keywords that appeal to your niche, analyze the competition, and consistently publish 1500-3000 word length articles based on your keywords.
Trying to rank your landing page on Google is not the best idea. Landing pages typically do not contain a lot of content and Google doesn’t like it. Write a value, word-rich informational content that ranks and attracts visitors. You can get their email addresses by having your subscribe form either on your page’s sidebar of blended with the content.
If you are just starting out, try to target low competition, long-tail (3-6 word) keyword phrases in the beginning. As later your website gets stronger, you can aim for more competitive, short keyword phrases that get many monthly searches.
To start ranking on Google, you need to have at least 10-30 published articles that actually provide value and help people. Nowadays, it takes a bit more time to start ranking on Google, however, it still remains the most profitable evergreen traffic source you can utilize in 2019!
Testing and monitoring:
Luckily, there are tools available for you to test and analyze your overall email marketing performance. It is often an integrated function of many email service providers. With the help of such tools, you can analyze which emails performed well and which not by knowing their:
- Open Rate (% of subscribers in your list who opened your emails)
- Conversion Rate (% of subscribers who completed your campaign goals)
- Click-Through Rate (% of subscribers who clicked the link in your email campaign)
- Unsubscribe Rate (% of people who unsubscribed you)
- Spam Rate (% of reported emails as spam)
- Bounce Rate (% of how many emails haven’t reached your recipient)
- Forward/Share Rate (% of subscribers who forwarded/shared your content)
Every email list is different, so always try to test and find out what works best for your email list. Studies say that online businesses experience their email marketing revenue growth by 20% if they invest in testing and monitoring their email lists.
With your email service provider, you can create special test campaigns based on your defined success goals – it could be revenue growth, traffic to your site, or just an increased open rate.
Email marketing can be a system based on automation principles, and today’s technology offers fantastic opportunities to integrate it into your online business. In order to get a profitable and effective email list, you will probably need to work hard. That work may involve building up a website, writing content, and most importantly – getting traffic to it.
No matter how time-consuming it can be, it is totally worth it. Once you get your email list ready – let it all do for the software and watch how it automatically grows your business revenue. Remember, there are always ways to scale up and improve, so don’t forget to always test and monitor how your email list performs.
Paul Lian is a researcher, writer, and founder of WayToChanges.com. With over eight years of experience in blogging, digital marketing, copywriting, and digital products, he has built multiple six-figure income streams. Through his blog, Paul shares his best expertise, strategies, and tools to help readers achieve financial freedom and success in their own digital ventures.