There’s a lot to consider when beginning your email marketing strategy and adding the first subscribers to your list. And before you can even start to market your email list, there are a few things you need to do before anything else. In this blog we’ll walk you through how to start and grow your email list successfully!
The first step is to choose your email platform. This post breaks down our favorite platforms and why.
Every system will work a little differently, but all of them will let you create and customize different lead-capture forms, which you’ll use to collect subscriber contact information. You’ll be able to integrate these lead-capture forms onto your website, your social media, and with other marketing tools you might have. Keep in mind, your lead capture forms can (and should) contain an incentive, which we’ll talk about more later in this blog!
Here are the three forms you should create when getting started:
In-line forms: These are forms that show up as you’re scrolling on a webpage that are embedded in the site.
Pop-up forms: The form that pops up on a site you’ve been browsing
Page forms: A full page-length form that looks like another page on your website.
Choosing your platform and creating these forms are great first steps. This will allow you to capture email addresses and names! Without subscribers, email marketing just doesn’t work. It’s like giving a presentation to an empty room…not worth your time. In the rest of this blog, we’ll tell you when and where to use these lead-capture forms to add subscribers to your list. we’ll also cover other tips for promoting your email list so you can get more people to join over time. Let’s dive in!
Your website is an obvious place to promote your email list, since it’s already the hub of your brand and business. No matter how you’ve built your website, you’ll be able to embed your lead-capture forms (in-line and pop-up) directly into the code pretty easily. Once someone fills out the form on your website, their info will be sent directly to your email platform.
The key to getting subscribers is to make sure these forms are easily accessible on your website. Having multiple entry points to the email list gives web visitors more chances to sign up. For example, you might include an in-line form on the homepage of your site, and then include a pop-up form as well.
Hint: When using a pop-up form, make sure to adjust the settings to ensure it doesn’t pop up immediately! Wait until someone scrolls at least halfway down the page, or is on your page for 30 seconds or more, THEN trigger the pop-up. Nobody wants a form shoved in their face right when they land on your website. Give your website visitors a second to look around first!
To encourage people to sign up for your newsletters, it’s also a good idea to include an incentive. For product-based businesses, that usually means offering a discount or free shipping. For service-based businesses, you can offer a free resource or guide that offers valuable content for your audience.
Social media and email marketing should work together in your marketing funnel. Social media’s job is to warm up leads and get them onto your email list.
Your link in bio on Instagram is the perfect way to use your page form to collect subscribers. In fact, not only should you add the link to your bio, but you should promote it in your stories, and write CTAs in your captions that encourage followers to join your email list.
You can also share your free incentives and resources on Facebook groups, and use Pinterest posts that link to your page form as well. Whatever other social media platforms you use for your business–add your page form as a link. You can never promote your newsletter too many times!
Creating valuable incentives is how you’ll get followers to join your email list. Service providers should generously give away free support through downloadable PDFs, video tutorials, or courses to get more email subscribers.
Your website and social media platforms will be the easiest way to add subscribers to your email list. But here are a few other options you can try:
When doing any in-person networking or marketing events, we recommend putting QR codes on your business cards that link directly to your in-line lead capture form.
In your newsletters, encourage people to share or forward the email with other people who would resonate with the content. Leverage the audience you already have and take advantage of word-of-mouth marketing!
Ads are also a great way to gain subscribers. We wouldn’t recommend using ads to promote your email list until you are at least a year into your business. So many new business owners will change their offers when trying to narrow down the niche and scope of their business. And that’s okay–but since free resources should lead your audience to a well-established offer suite, the first year of business isn’t the best time to start with ads.
…There’s more work to be done! When someone joins your list, they need to receive a welcome sequence right off the bat. Head to this blog to learn how to write your welcome sequence. This sequence will introduce subscribers to your brand, start to build a connection with them, and show them that your business aligns with their needs and values. It’s crucial that a new subscriber gets an email from you right away, which means your welcome sequence needs to be written and automated before you start adding subscribers to your list.
Of course, the welcome sequence is just phase one. To get to phase two, you’ll also need to maintain and engage your audience! After all, once they’re on your email list, subscribers will expect to receive emails from you on a regular basis. And you’ll need to deliver. To learn more about maintaining an engaged email list, head to this blog post.
Putting together your email marketing strategy involves a lot of little steps, especially at the beginning. The good news is that once you set up your lead-capture forms and embed the link on your website and post it on social media, collecting subscribers is mostly a hands-free process.
That said, we know that not every business owner has the time or the energy to handle this themselves. So if you’re looking for in-depth support setting up your email list, take a peek at our email marketing intensive. We’ll get your lead-capture forms all set up, plus a whole lot more.