How to get an email list – cheaply and effectively
How to get an email list is an important piece of information you need to know if you are going to build a website that works for you.
Technology is always changing but email marketing has been and will continue to be, one of the most effective income building strategies you can employ.
Why do we need an email list?
In simple terms the answer is so you can build a relationship with your readers.
If you can get subscribers on to your list and introduce yourself to them, you can then provide them with information or tools to help them with whatever reason they had for visiting your site in the first place.
Email marketing is not spamming your list with lots of sales pitches. It would annoy you and it definitely annoys me. It is about providing a service to your readers by educating or sharing resources. Once you have their trust and you make a product recommendation, you may make an affiliate commission, or profit from the sale of your own products
It is a simple process but remember it can take seven interactions before a customer will buy from you.
How do I use my email list?
The first step is your welcome or your Thankyou for Subscribing email. You also want to make this first email engaging and clear as to what they are going to get for being a subscriber. The second step is sending out an email asking if they are getting the help they need from your website. Ensure you give them an appropriate contact where they can ask a question or propose ideas for new posts.
Now you have two interactions and from here on in you need a marketing strategy but that is for another day. Here we are focusing on getting an email list.
Getting an email list
To get an email list you need a website with engaging and useful content. Once you have traffic or readers you will need a way to get them to subscribe. It is always useful to tell them how and where they can subscribe.
So what are my options?
You can have a subscribe box in the side bar of your website. You can get this from several sources. My social media plug in gives me the option to provide one.
You can have a pop up that asks people to subscribe
You can have a static subscribe form on each of your pages or posts.
What happens when someone subscribes?
If someone subscribes then at the very least they expect an email confirming their subscription. In today’s world they expect it in their inbox almost immediately. Now you cannot achieve this unless you have an auto responder.
What is an Auto responder?
An auto responder takes all of the hard work of your first few emails away from you. You can set it up and then let it do the work for you. Though it should do more than this, like analysing your email marketing once you become more accomplished. Allowing you to upload email lists you may already have to their service is a must.
If you use it effectively then your subscribers will get a great service from you right from the start.
There should be no complicated or time consuming coding, just easy to use tools that make it quick and easy to compose emails that will be sent at regular intervals. You should also have the ability to create a template with an image or logo for your emails so your subscribers will start to recognise your brand.
There are lots of auto responders on the market. The main ones are Mailchimp, Aweber,Getresponse and Mailerlite. What you want in the early days is one that gives you a free service whilst you get used to their platform. However, you will want it to be able to grow with you and give you more marketing options. These will always be a paid service. Both Mailchimp and Mailerlite give you a forever free service up to 1000 subscribers.
My choice: MailChimp
You should by now have had a pop up asking you to subscribe. You may have clicked it away and that is fine. You can always subscribe later by entering your details in the subscribe section in the sidebar.
I chose MailChimp after looking at other services because first of all it was free to play with before I needed to decide. It gave me lots of options for how I wanted my pop up to appear or to have a static one if I so wished. Now I don’t know about you but I generally find pop ups annoying and I certainly don’t like those that seem to have no clear X to remove it. And I certainly don’t like ones that pop up before you have had a chance to read or continue to pop up as I try to continue to read.
MailChimp gives me lots of options for how I want my subscription to appear and it allows me to create all of my emails with a template of my choosing. It offers me reports on how many of my emails have been opened or not. The creation of an email is relatively simple and they have lots of posts to explain how to use their platform.
Now I am not saying I didn’t have to read several of their posts to get to grips with it when I first started but it was easier to understand and apply than some of the others I tried. More than that I am happy with the professional look of the emails and my subscription form.
MailChimp pricing options moving forward:
Note all of the other auto responders I have mentioned have a 30 day free plan but do not have the forever free plan that MailChimp offers.
The Forever Free plan lets you have a free email marketing service forever. However, you can only have up to 2,000 subscribers, and you can only send up to 12,000 emails per month.
This makes it ideal for those starting out. It would be hard to get this many subscribers within 30 days.
Prepay is the next level. You can access all the features, but without the commitment of a monthly fee. As MailChimp puts it,
If you’re not a frequent sender, you can purchase credits that work like stamps for email.
For example, you could buy 300 email credits for $9.
The monthly plans include all features and support. They start from $10/month for up to 500 subscribers.
I hope this has been of use to you in understanding how to get email lists. I am sorry if you thought I could send you to a free list of people you could email. Well I could but you would get little if any response from spamming people this way. Would you buy from a random email or would you be suspicious?
If you have any questions or you want to leave me your thoughts please feel free to comment below and I will get back to you as soon as I can. If you have not yet subscribed please use the subscribe here box in the sidebar to the right. Sorry you missed my pop up.