12.06.20165 min read

5 Proven Ways to Grow Your Email List

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. A lot of 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 highly actionable. 

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 put to use right away. 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 to many gin and tonics is not (always) an effective way to leverage said events.

Forgivable-Occasionally-having-one-too-many-drinks.gif

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 talk about 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 when they are, you’ll be top of mind.

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 both reward your existing customers and to 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 offer a discount on future services for every lead from customers sharing the lead magnet. By using a platform like LeadDyno, which integrates with Infusionsoft, you can create customer affiliate links for each of your customers that send people to a gated lead-capture page. This way you can track the leads that come in 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 are in constant communication 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 a great 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 your sales team will talk with prospects that 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. If they don’t buy now, you have the opportunity to nurture them until they are ready.

Co-marketing with complimentary brands

You most likely are in contact with or aware of brands that compliment what you offer. Extend an invitation to work on a content asset together 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 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.

green paper airplane

Did you like this article? Get articles like this delivered weekly to your inbox, gratis.

close button

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

5 Reasons to Subscribe:

1. Weekly tips to dominate sales and marketing

At our core, we're focused on helping you become a sales and marketing machine. We tap into the genius of the best salesfolks and marketers out there to give you daily tips to grow your leads, make more sales, and keep more customers.

2. Expert small business resources that cost you zero dollars

Want to go deep? We have you covered with free guides, webinars, and tools on a range of topics from marketing automation, CRM, and digital marketing to building sales and marketing strategies from the ground up. All for free. All for you.

3. We're focused 100 percent on small business success

We exist for one reason: helping small businesses succeed. We give you the ideas and insights you need to blow the competition out of the water. We serve business owners who are hungry to put in the hard work to grow their business and own the market.

4. We do the work for you

Running a small business is a 110 percent endeavor. You don't have time to surf Internet for the best small business insights and ideas out there. We'll do that for you with the best original content from our team and from industry experts and small business owners.

5. But wait, there's more!

Small business success means more than just sales and marketing, so we also hit on a range of topics to help your small business thrive, including personal and business growth, customer service, and business management.

6. Righteous GIFs

OK, we said five reasons, but we like to overdeliver...and GIFs. We really like GIFs. You're bound to see some righteous ones.

GIF of Ferris Bueler principal's assistant

P.S. We'll never give out your information. We'll only use it to send you awesome content and resources, if you're cool with that.