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Growing Your Email Marketing List

Deciding to start Email Marketing is a great leap in the right direction.  Chances are, you’re starting off with a small email list of your current clients.  That’s great!  Now let’s look at how you can grow your email marketing list to make your messages heard far and wide.

Growing your email list is a constant struggle.  The average email list loses about 30% of its contacts every year due to unsubscribes, bounces, or spam reports.  This is on top of those who just stop opening your emails out of disinterest or just ignoring their email altogether.  For this reason, it’s important to keep your email list fresh and market to interested consumers often and as soon as possible.
The easiest way to grow your list is by putting a method to signup for it on your website.  There should be a signup button on every page of your website, including the search and checkout pages.  Make the signup link prominent on the home page.  There’s no reason anyone should have to hunt for it.
Further entice customers to signup by giving them a reason to!  People want to know what in it for them, so offering a list of reasons to signup is valuable.  Do you offer up to date product news or news related to your industry?  Do you run contests?  Most importantly, do you offer coupons in email?  (Hint: the answer to all these questions should be YES.)  Most email marketing programs offer an autoresponse to new signups. Offer a one time coupon for new signups, and watch your list (and sales) grow.
If you run an online store, you that customers enter their email addresses at checkout.  This does not imply that they are giving you permission to market to them, unless you specifically ask!  Be sure to add a checkbox (that’s checked by default) that asks if they would like to opt-in to receive special offers and discounts via email.  This will help your list grow while preventing spam reports.
Leverage your social audience to grow your list.  When you send out your regular promotions via email, you can also send out some of those same promotions via social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.).  When you do, be sure to include a link to signup for your newsletter.
A popular way to increase your list size is to run a contest or a survey.  For entering your contest or survey, offer a small coupon or potential prize drawing, and require an email for your list!
When you sell a product online, do you pack it yourself?  Retailers often forget that customers will read everything included in the box.  Send a thank you note that asks them to signup!  You can even include a QR code on your note that takes them directly to your signup form.
Popular email marketing platforms like Constant Contact have an easy way to allow your customers to signup for newsletters via text.  This allows you to include short line on your website that says something like “Text your email to 555555 to signup”.
If you have a physical store, it’s easy to put out a signup sheet, or leave a fishbowl for business cards.And of course, don’t forget to just ask.  If you’re on the phone or face-to-face with a customer, it never hurts to smile and ask for their email address.