Every once in a while we here at Kuno take on a new client with no existing email list. It’s a marketing challenge to say the least when you don’t have a large reservoir of emails to promote campaigns too. Not only that, but those email addresses represent an opportunity for "out of the gate" lead nurturing. You know, slowly nurturing the prospect via email down the inbound marketing funnel by offering unique problem solving content. Building an email marketing list from scratch is a challenge, but with the right plan in place it can quickly be overcome.
- SEO – Once you identify your target demographic and the problems you can help people solve do some simple keyword research and determine what those people might type into Google to solve their problems. Make sure that your on-page SEO is dialed in for those terms you discover in your keyword research and that the full solution to their problem resides behind an opt-in form. If your solutions are compelling enough people will share them via links and your off-page SEO will begin to develop.
- PPC – This is the fastest way to build your list. As long as the PPC ads link to carefully crafted landing pages and you truly offer a unique value proposition your list will grow.
- Facebook – You can do a PPC/CPM campaign and/or a Facebook custom landing page deployment in order to tap into the over 1/2 a billion people on Facebook. You’ll need to decide whether or not you want to convert them on Facebook via a custom form or if you want to send them to a landing page on your website.
- Webinars – This is a great email list builder. Whether you do one webinar per week or just one per month, as long as you can generate enough buzz in social media and include your event on the appropriate directories you’ll find webinars are the gift that keeps on giving.
- Twitter – Why not tap into your existing Twitter network and offer good problem solving content behind an opt-in? Warning: If this is the only type of tweet you push out you will be scorned and labeled as a spammer. If your content is good others will share your opt-in link.
- Advanced Content – DO NOT try to build an email list with a newsletter signup! Produce advanced content that highlights your expertise and is considered unique and valuable. This content can be a whitepaper, how-to guide, ebook, video, podcast, widget, etc.
- Blog – If you’re writing good blog posts people will want to subscribe. Make sure you offer email along with RSS in order to subscribe. Only 17% of internet users utilize RSS. By not offering a subscription to your blog via email you’ll miss out on a lot of opportunities to build your email list.
- Contests/Sweepstakes – There’s nothing wrong with a little moral bribery now and then. Your value proposition doesn’t have to be intangible. Come up with contests or sweepstakes and give away something many people will want. The cost to the visitor? Their email address. . .
- User Generated Content – By encouraging people to leave comments on your blog, review products, upload something, or sign up for an account on your website you’ll get a steady stream of new email addresses.
- Crowdsourcing – This is a highly underused strategy for growing your email list. Why not hire a third party affiliate program like 6Dcast or Sponsored Tweets to tap into their massive network of publishers in order to push your unique value proposition all over social networks?
Rome wasn't built in a day and neither were email lists. However, if you remain consistent and create good content you'll see your email list grow incrementally over time.
Photo Credit: djwaldow