5 Proven Ways to Grow Your Email List

5 Proven Ways to Grow Your Email List

December 13th, 2016


Republished from Infusionsoft.com, December 6th, 2016. Written by Jake Johnson.

Most small businesses live and die by their email lists. So, naturally, growing that list is a priority. Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done. Many business owners put the basic blocks in place: a website and landing pages with lead capture forms, a blog you can subscribe to, and an e-book or whitepaper to give away in exchange for an email address.

Those are solid efforts, but if you want to kick your list growth into hyperdrive, you have to get creative. Here are five proven ways to grow your email list.

Content upgrades

Content upgrades are smaller pieces of content that can have a big impact. They are generally tied specifically to the context of a blog post and are highly actionable.

Are you doing a how-to post on a technical subject? Create a checklist that readers can download in exchange for an email address—published a post on how to write better emails. Make a pack of email templates that your readers can use immediately. Have a body of work already published related to a topic you’re currently discussing? Package those posts into a PDF and offer that up for further reading and study.

When done right, content upgrades can significantly increase your conversion rates. For instance, Backlinkco.com reported a 785 percent increase in conversions in one day by simply putting content upgrades to work for them.

Networking events and conferences

Everyone loves a good networking event or conference. But awkwardly standing around, clumsily introducing yourself to strangers after having one too many gin and tonics, is not (always) an effective way to leverage said events.

The usual flinch is to tell these random strangers what you do. But a better approach is to redirect the conversation to find out the challenges they’re facing. Then, if appropriate, you can discuss how your business solves similar problems. Mention that you have written about these solutions, ask if you can send them some articles or an e-book you’ve written, and get permission to opt them into your mailing list.

This positions you as a valuable resource instead of just another person trying to sell your services. So they may not be ready to purchase at the event, but you’ll be top of mind when they are.

Customer Incentives

Often, business owners are so focused on creating more leads that they neglect the goldmine sitting right underneath them—their current customer base.

Here’s a tactic to reward your existing customers and create leads in one fell swoop. Create an e-book, webinar, or some other lead magnet. Then, create a promotion for your customers that rewards them for sharing that content with their contacts.

For example, you could discount future services for every lead from customers sharing the lead magnet. Using a platform like LeadDyno, which integrates with Infusionsoft, you can create affiliate links for each of your customers that send people to a gated lead-capture page. This way, you can track the leads from each customer. It’s a win-win for you and your customers. They get a great deal, and you grow your list.

Leveraging your sales and support teams

Your sales and support teams constantly communicate with your prospects and customers. Often, these are missed opportunities to opt these folks into your email list.

Many existing customers, for whatever reason, are not on your list. Perhaps they came in straight from a phone call, or maybe somewhere along the line, they opted out. A customer service call is an excellent opportunity to opt them in. The upside is they have regular exposure to your brand, and now you can increase incremental sales by offering them upsells and cross-sells.

Conversely, there will be times when your sales team will talk with prospects who aren’t on your list. Make it part of their regular practice to ask for an opt-in. If the prospect becomes a customer, you can cross and upsell. You can nurture them until they are ready if they don’t buy now.

Co-marketing with complimentary brands

You are most likely in contact with or aware of brands that complement your offer. Extend an invitation to work on a content asset that allows you to share leads.

We did this with our partner Wistia by creating a comprehensive micro-site on video marketing for small businesses. We marketed to each of our prospective lists and then had an opt-in option for both brands’ email lists. The result was thousands of leads each we wouldn’t have had exposure to otherwise.