When you’re starting your business, you have to keep in mind how you’ll keep in contact with your audience, customers, or readers. On the internet, email is the best way to do that.
According to HubSpot, 99% of email users check their inboxes at least once a day and 50% of people buy from marketing emails at least once a month. It’s no question that email marketing is a powerful tool that shouldn’t be ignored in your business.
Think about it. Your following on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and even YouTube could disappear overnight.
You think you might have a bustling platform on these social media networks but what if you woke up tomorrow and your accounts were disabled? It sounds dramatic but it happens every day.
This is why you must have a website for your business and an email list that you 100% own and can control.
But how do you get started building and growing an email list? Get started with this list.
Choose an Email List Provider
The first step to building your email list is choosing what provider to subscribe with to start building your list.
There are tons of providers out there that offer free trials and free accounts for under a certain amount of subscribers. Once you hit that amount threshold though, you’ll have to start paying.
Some providers that offer free trials are:
When you’re making the decision of what provider to go with, you’ll have to make sure the product fulfills your needs for building and maintaining your list.
What is your ultimate budget for when the free trial ends? For instance, Flodesk has one flat fee no matter what size your list is while Convertkit’s fees go up with the size of your list. However, Convertkit has more functionality than Flodesk does, so your decision would come down to functionality.
Will you need functionality like building robust landing pages for your email list lead magnets or the ability to sell digital products within the same tool? Then Convertkit would be your best bet. If you don’t need any of that and just want to be able to easily create beautiful emails that are cohesive with your branding, then Flodesk is your best bet.
These are just some of the questions you should ask before making your decision.
Create a Lead Magnet
Once you make your decision on what email provider to start with, it’s time to create your first lead magnet.
A lead magnet is a marketing term to describe a “freebie” that you’re giving away in exchange for someone’s email address. This email address is later used to communicate with your audience, readers, or customers, let them know about sales and events, new blog posts or podcast episodes, and paid offers that you want to market to your list.
A lead magnet is also the start of your “sales funnel” where your ideal client gets their first “behind the curtains” experience of your business. If they’ve been thinking of buying from you and go to sign up for your email list, how will you convince them that their email address was worth giving out?
Tired lead magnets are out and high value, hard to pass up, lead magnets are in. So, choose to create a freebie that your ideal client would be more than willing to sign up for.
Over Deliver on Your Lead Magnet
The more that someone gets out of your lead magnet, the better. This is your time to shine and show them that your resources and work are worth it.
Imagine if someone gets exactly what they want from your free products. It becomes more of a no-brainer for them to eventually buy from you. Even if you don’t sell anything and only run a blog or podcast, it keeps them coming back for more of your content.
It also widens your impact. The more impact you can make with one person, imagine how that trickles out. It starts to drive a word-of-mouth domino effect.
Some tools you can use to make sure you create a high-quality lead magnet are:
- Canva: Use it to design your free guide with branding.
- Thrive: Use to create quizzes your audience can sign up for and get curated links and guides based on their match (you can also add them to segments based on their match).
- Crowdcast: Use to run your free webinars.
Draft a Word-of-Mouth Worthy Welcome Sequence
Finally, the best thing a lead magnet can do is get one subscriber to tell someone else how your resources helped them.
If they’re blown away by your free resources, you can’t drop the ball there. It’ll leave them confused. Make sure to follow up an impressive lead magnet with a welcome sequence that makes them feel like they’ve “found their people”.
Using whatever email list marketing provider you’ve chosen, you’ll be able to draft specific email welcome sequences for your lead magnet.
Welcome sequences should include a warm welcome to new subscribers, how they should treat your emails so they don’t end up in spam, other ways to connect, what to expect from you and your emails, and ways you can get to know them a little better.
A simple way to structure your welcome sequence is by laying out three welcome emails. Your first email is a warm welcome with a little bit about yourself and what to do to make sure future emails don’t end up in spam. The second email should include other ways they can connect with you online like social media accounts to follow you on, maybe a coupon code only for new subscribers, and what to expect from future emails.
Lastly, your third email should include getting to know them better. Ask them questions like what topics they are interested in, how they found you, or what is an opinion they have about a controversial topic in your niche that your brand sticks out in. For example: What do they think about the pay gap and thoughts about how we can close it?
You can even integrate polls to create mini-studies with your email welcome sequences to get to know your newer subscribers a little better at first glance. Use a tool like TypeForm to create these polls.
Your Email List Should Not Be Underestimated
As you’re building your email list, remember quality is better than quantity.
Master your first lead magnet and aim to get your conversation rates up before moving on to other lead magnets. It is easier to perfect one magnet and understand your subscribers from there than creating multiple where your subscribers are all over the place.