There’s no doubt that email marketing can be one of the best ways to engage prospective clients, upsell and engage existing clients, and re-engage those who have previously done business with you. However, there have been many changes over the past few years that put restrictions on how you can legitimately collect email addresses and market to people. Do it the right way, and you can enjoy great results; do it the wrong way, and you can be marked as a spammer and perhaps even have your email marketing account shut down. Learn how to build your email list the right way to get results.

Is email marketing still an effective strategy?

The short answer is yes!

Email marketing one of the best ways to get people engaged with your company on a regular basis. It’s the easiest way to stay in touch, update people on new products or services, or share your expertise. Your email subscriber list will help you increase engagement, generate leads, and drive conversions. As a matter of fact, email marketing is very profitable when done correctly, with the average ROI being 3,800% according to a SalesForce article. Those are some hard numbers to ignore!

Getting started on building an email list

There are many ways to collect email addresses for your list. We’ll review a few of the more effective ways to get emails that will actually add value to your list.

Put a subscribe box on your website

Make it easy for website visitors to opt in to your email campaigns by placing a subscribe box on your website so they can sign up if they see value in the information you are providing. It’s a great way of building a high-quality email list.  It should be simple and straightforward, and only ask for the bare minimum amount of information you need to market to someone effectively.

Create a signup form on your Facebook business page

How to upload a corrected SRT fileDid you know that you can create a custom tab on your company Facebook page to encourage people to sign up for your email list? You can! There are several options to customize the tabs on your Facebook page, and one of them is creating an email opt-in form. You can use a few different email marketing services when connecting to Facebook, including Mailchimp and Constant Contact.

Include a link to your newsletter signup form in your personal email signature

So many small business owners add the usual information in their signature line:  name, title, company name…..why not add a link to your signature line as well?  It’s easy to do!  Use an encouraging call to action and link to your email signup form. An example could be, “Get our coupons!” or “Free marketing tips to your inbox!”. Give people a reason to want to give you their email address.

Offer email-only specials

Everybody loves a good deal, so why not offer an incentive to people by offering email-only discounts?  It’s another way to encourage people to trust you with their email list.

Want more great ideas on how to build an email list?  Here are 29 ways to collect email addresses.

The “don’ts” of collecting email addresses

spammerWhile there are many ways to collect email addresses, not all of them are a good idea. Here are a few ways NOT to collect email addresses.

Never scrape emails from other websites

More is not better when it comes to emails and scraping emails from other websites is one of the most ineffective ways of getting emails. Here’s a few reasons why:

  • Good emails aren’t out there to be scraped
  • Your bounce rate will increase significantly from unwilling participants
  • Your spam reports will increase
  • Easily obtained emails are getting emails from MANY sources

Scraped emails provide no value and a lot of risk to your email list. Don’t do it.

Don’t buy or rent email lists

Bought and rented lists often give you a bunch of emails for people who will probably never open your email. Even worse, your domain may end up being blacklisted by email and internet service providers rendering your entire email campaign futile so unless your goal is to be labeled a spammer, don’t buy or rent email lists. Everybody hates spam. Not only that, it’s illegal—the US government passed the CAN-SPAM act way back in 2003.

There are many ways that small business owners can build their email list. It is a lot of work, but the results can really pay for themselves. When it comes to email marketing, it’s always quality over quantity. It’s not a matter of getting thousands of email addresses; it’s about building a list of emails for people who want to hear from you.  Especially with the new GDPR email rules in place, it’s more important than ever to follow the rules.

Learn how to build your email list the right way to get results. You’ll be pleasantly surprised how much it can impact your business!

Patty Hughes
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