Does anyone else love the start of a new year? There’s so much hope, excitement and this feeling like the world is big blank canvas! Since we’re about to enter a new year, I wanted to share this post so you can start thinking about your business goals for 2022 while you enjoy some time off. Those few days between Christmas and New Years are always some of my favorites.
I get to reflect, dream and set big goals. One of those for me is growing my email list—BIG TIME! This goal has always been there, but it’s been on the back burner. No longer! It’s now one of my biggest focuses because I know just how valuable an email list is! Let me explain a bit more…
Why You Need an Email List
Instagram and Tik Tok are great, but we don’t own that platform. And, while I don’t think they’re going away anytime soon, we all know that we have no control over the way these platforms work, or the changes they make. As time has passed, it’s become increasingly more difficult to get your content seen and to grow.
If these went away completely, how would you get in touch with the audience you worked so hard to build? The simple answer is that you wouldn’t be able to.
Enter, the email list!
A platform you own that does not have an algorithm and allows you to reach your audience in their inboxes. Email marketing yields a much higher ROI than social media marketing too. I’m not saying to ignore social media, but don’t ignore email! It’s going to be the most valuable thing you build for your business.
My Go-To Platform
There are so many different platforms out there to choose from, but my go-to is Flodesk. It allows me to do everything I need to, is affordable and has the most well-designed templates and sign-up forms. The runner-up for me is ConvertKit. It doesn’t have fancy templates (it’s just text and images), but it does allow you to do some pretty awesome tracking and segmenting.
You can read the full review of Flodesk vs. ConvertKit here!
How to Grow your Email List Effectively
1. High Value Lead Magnet
No one wants to hand over their email for just nothing these days, and can you blame them? The last thing I want is more junk mail. Instead of asking your readers to blindly hand over their email address, offer them something in return.
Everyone that is serious about building their email list should have a high value lead magnet, otherwise known as a freebie or content upgrade, to offer people in return for their email address. Start with one great one that pulls in your reader, answers a burning question or gives them guidance on something you know they need help with.
You want to provide your readers with amazing value that’s in line with the content you’re already sharing. Your overall brand message should remain consistent through your freebie offer and the content you are already providing. Otherwise, you won’t get those high-value subscribers you’re looking for!
Here are a Few Ideas:
- Quiz (I use Interact for mine and it works SO well, who doesn’t love a quiz?!)
- Limited time discount (great if you have products)
- Bonus Content (ex: I give the actual numbers from my income reports to subscribers only)
There are SO many different ways you can go with this, so get creative and test different things. If you find one isn’t converting well, try something else until you land on one that works. Better yet, try several at the same time!
This doesn’t have to be anything too crazy. Actually, usually the quick, easy freebies are the most successful. People want the information fast, quick and in a format that’s easy to digest, so take that into consideration when you’re putting yours together.
If you’re not a designer, I highly recommend using Canva to build your freebies. It allows you to design and brand them to your business using a gorgeous template and then download them as a PDF (with working links too!), so you can easily deliver it to your audience.
How to Deliver Freebies
You can set up a simple workflow in Flodesk to deliver your Freebie after people join a particular form. Or with some platforms, you can set a redirect link, so after people submit their email addresses, they instantly get their download.
If you choose to do a workflow, make sure the final step of the workflow adds them to your Welcome Sequence!
2. Effective Sign-Up Forms
Once you have your list, segments and freebie created, you’ll need to create some forms to allow people to easily sign-up for your list. We’re all aware of the pop-up or a simple form in your sidebar, but you can really get creative!
Here are a few other ways to integrate pop-up forms throughout your website or blog.
These are still very effective! The goal is to not make them too annoying. Once a user clicks out of it, it shouldn’t pop-up again for a while, or ever if they’ve joined your list.
This could go within a blog post, at the bottom of the page
I tested a banner at the top of my site a while back and it converted really really well! It linked out to a quiz and grew my list very quickly
Have a box slide in from the side once readers reach a certain point on the page or have been on the page a certain length of time
If you have a few freebies, linking out to them within applicable posts is so smart! Ideally, you’ll get to a point where every post can house a link to at least one of your free pieces of content. Talk about content that converts! You can create a graphic for these, or use a text link
On my homepage, I have a section to take my quiz, and a freebies section that links out to different sign-up forms based on your interests
Simply link out to your sign-up landing page wherever it’s applicable!
Add an option to “Subscribe” in your navigation bar
It’s not enough to only have one of these, you’ll want to utilize a few. Having sign-up options in different places will insure that more people actually see it and have the opportunity to sign-up.
Now, with each of these, you don’t want to just say “Subscribe!!!”, you need to tell people exactly what they’re getting. Each one of these can promote different freebies, so it doesn’t feel as repetitive.
If you’re starting with one, consider changing your wording in your different sign-up options. Maybe one is “Get the Free Guide” and another asks a question, “Are you feeling stuck with growing your blog?”—then you offer the solution with your guide. Different copy will grab different people’s attention!
3. How to Grow your Email List with Pinterest
Once you have a killer freebie to offer people, you’ll want to start promoting outside of your blog as well. As you guys know, I LOVE Pinterest. It’s an amazing, visual search engine and has been a key tool for me in growing my traffic over the years. It’s also a wonderful place to grow your email list too.
- Freebie or Offer
- Attractive Graphics
- Landing Page to capture email address
- Keyword-rich descriptions on your pins
How to Make Pinterest Graphics
By now, you know how to create a high-value freebie. Next, you’ll want to make some pretty graphics that grab people’s attention. Again, I highly recommend using Canva for this, they have gazillions of pre-designed templates just waiting for you! I’m a designer and even I rely on Canva because it saves me SO much time.
I compiled my favorite Pinterest templates into one document and then branded them with my colors and fonts. Then when it comes time to making graphics, I just go in and drop in and image, swap the text and export. It’s such a time-saver and looks SO professional! It’s how I make all the graphics that you see in my blog posts too!
How to Build a Landing Page
If you’re using Flodesk, you can create a Landing Page under the Forms tab. They have several pre-designed ones that you can pick from and swap out fonts, colors and imagery to customize! When you create your pins, you’ll use this URL to link your Pin to.
Your landing page should remind people of what they’re getting in return for their email address!
How to Use Keywords in Pinterest
Remember, Pinterest is a search engine, and it one that makes it easy for you to see what people are searching for. Simply type in a keyword or phrase into the search bar. It’ll start auto-populating with other things that people are searching for. This will help you find the best keywords and phrases to include in your description for your Pin.
Don’t keyword stuff, but aim to get a least 3-5 keyword phrases into your description, plus a call to action to get the freebie.
4. How to Grow your Email List with Instagram
If you’re active on this platform, make it work for you. Include a call to action in your Instagram posts and stories, especially now that we all have access to the link option.
Use the link in your bio to link to your landing page, or a LinkTree that has your freebie offers at the top so they’re easy to find. Make sure above it, you include some language that says something about what they’re getting. For example, let’s say you’re a mom food blogger, you could put something like “Get my weekly meal plan for busy families” and link to your freebie.
Again, you want to be linking out to something that makes sense for your audience and ties back in with your content. If it’s random, you won’t be getting the people you really want on your list.
In your Instagram stories, have the last line of your copy be a call to action—”click the link in my bio to get my….!” Share it in stories as well.
It’s important to have a landing page to send people to instead of your homepage. You don’t want people to have to search for how to sign-up. The easier you make it for them, the more likely they are to sign-up!
I know a big goal of mine in this new year is to grow my email list, and I hope it’s one of yours too! These tips will help you explode your email list growth, so get to work friends!