Jun 23, 2015
The value provider, the relationship builder, the sales closer, the news sharer, the brand ambassador, the deal revealer – email marketing is the ultimate multi-tasker.
Think about it…
It’s the best way to stay in touch with prospects and keep them warmed up and ready to click, share and buy.
And the more email subscribers you have?
The better your chances of increasing traffic to your blog, staying top of your customers’ minds, reminding subscribers to follow your social media channels and keeping them wrapped up warmly in your sales loop.
You want more subscribers now, don’t you? Let’s explore a few strategic ways you can grow your email database with ease, speed and without being an outright nuisance…
Before you begin implementing any of the ideas below, you need to create a landing page that clearly (and in as few words as possible) communicates the unique selling point of your emails. Can your subscribers look forward to a weekly newsletter packed full of industry insights, for example?
Do you send regular emails that feature your latest discounted offers? Will subscribers receive monthly exclusive offers? You’ll need to answer that, ‘why should I give you my details?’ question immediately.
To increase the chances of your landing page converting, choose as few fields as possible for potential subscribers to fill out. If possible, only ask for prospects’ names and email addresses. Create a goal in Google Analytics to help you track the number of new subscribers your landing page has netted you and tag the landing page’s URL any time you share it in your Google tagging document.
You can’t expect your prospects to give you their well protected contact details without offering something of true value. It’s one of the best ways to generate new email subscribers and propel your lead generation numbers. But here’s the thing: you can’t just offer any old freebie, it needs to matter to your target audience. To identify the most desirable freebie for your target audience you’ll have to create and consult your target personas. You can then choose the giveaway that best solves your audience’s core problems and caters to their core desires.
Free content options to consider offering include, whitepapers, industry reports, online webinars and presentations. Again, your offer should depend on what appeals to your target audience’s deepest inner desires.
For example, say your target audience are digital marketing managers and they want to impress their CEO at their weekly board meeting. In this case you might want to create a short whitepaper or webinar that shows prospects how to track metrics that CEOs actually care about and want to hear (most likely bottom-line figures).
Whitepaper, Webinar, Podcast, Product/Service Sample, Coupons, Free Career/Consultative Advice, Industry Reports, Survey Results, etc.
Another clever way to entice prospects to give you their email details is to create and run an engaging online competition that appeals to your audience’s competitive nature. A great place to create and run your contests is on one or more of your most popular social media channels. Examples of platforms you can use to create social media competitions include Punchtab, WizHive,Wazoku, and Rafflecopter. When you choose your preferred platform simply create a competition that requires entrants to submit their email details to win.
OptinMonster is a tool that allows you to create opt-in forms that appear on your website at that crucial point when your visitors are about to leave. The clever tool follows your user’s mouse and pops up when they are about to click the exit button – perfect for capturing a last minute email address. Why not create a form that offers a freebie (like access to a valuable whitepaper) or gives details on why the user should subscribe to your insightful newsletter?
The beauty of OptinMonster is that is also includes Analytics functionality that allows you to track and analyse the numbers of clicks and views your form accumulates along with the conversion rate for each form.
Pricing options start at $49 per year for a basic package which allows you to create unlimited optin forms across one website, split test your forms, target your forms effectively and report on your findings.
If you don’t have the budget for opt-in monster you can create your own opt-in newsletter sign up form. To capture the attention of your most engaged readers, set your newsletter sign up form to pop up when your reader gets half way through a blog post, for example. If you’ve read this far you might have noticed that we have a newsletter sign up form on our own blog. This simple form (that didn’t take long to create) increased our newsletter subscriber ny 30% in a single month.
Our advice? Keep your opt-in form subtle, small and light on content. And ensure it’s easy to exit out of on both desktop and mobile devices. You will also need to carefully consider where to place your opt-in box. Your blog is a good place to start. Only place it in contextually relevant places on your website – the places your customers would expect to see it and welcome the reminder. It’s best not to place it on any monetary pages of your website as it might override your core objective – to make money.
Do you share other brand’s content through your own social media channels? You can use a tool like Sniply to create a ‘Snip’ or banner that appears on the bottom of the web page you’re sharing. The user is presented with a call to action of your choice – at the Digital Marketing Institute we’ve created a Sniply banner to promote our newsletter. When the user clicks on the ‘Sign Up Now’ page they are directed to our newsletter sign-up landing page and encouraged to join our subscriber list.
Sniply is super easy to use. Simply copy the URL of the link you plan to share and paste it into the Sniply box provided. Click ‘Create Snip.’ A pop up box will then appear with your new Sniply link. Copy your link and use it when sharing your article instead of the original link.
You can set up an account for free which allows you to create an unlimited number of shortened links, 100 conversions per month and one user profile per account. The paid package is €19 per month and allows you to customise and brand your snips and create 5 user profiles.
Sometimes all your readers need is a gentle nudge and a reminder about your awesome newsletter, upcoming webinar or whitepaper giveaway to take the action you desire. But make sure that nudge is relevant – for example, feel free to include a call to action to subscribe to your newsletter at the end of a blog post or in your bio for your guest posts on external sites.
Instead of outright asking customers to sign up to your newsletter on social media, you could always create call to actions that hold access to gated content or unique offers. And don’t forget the importance of context – to avoid annoying fans and website visitors, only place your call to actions in the places that make sense (and are relevant) to their journey.
For example, if you have created a how-to whitepaper on a hot industry topic, your LinkedIn company page and relevant LinkedIn groups could be the perfect places to share it on. But don’t forget: you’ll need to add value and engage with your chosen group/groups before posting your own content.