One of the best things that any business can do is to generate an Email List, especially, an Email SUBSCRIPTION List. With an email list, bookkeepers can email invoices and sales receipts to customers. Even better, the advertising department (or person) can use an Email Subscription List to send out advertisements to customers and thus generate additional sales. If nothing else, having an email subscription list gives a business an opportunity to remind customers that they exist – that they have products that might interest the customer at any time of year, and to offer extra incentives for getting them to “come in” to the store. Having an email list, you can save hundreds and thousands of dollars on advertising while still making sales.
To further drive this point home, I am going to use a quick example from the blogging world. in the blogging world, there is a saying that is repeated over and over again.
That saying is: “There’s money in the list.”
Some bloggers will even go so far as to say, “Your list is like an ATM machine. When you want money, you go to your email list and send out a sales email, then Boom! Instant Cash.”
You see, in the blogging world, bloggers believe that you don’t need a thousand customers to have a profitable blogging business. All you need is a few loyal customers that you can sell to again and again.
The same holds true for the business world. When you need to up your sales, send out a “Special Sale Email” to your list and watch your bottom line take a jump.
So how do you go about building an email subscription list for your business?
Here are five strategies to get you started:
Email Subscription Company: If you have a website and you sell products online to customers all over the country, then the first thing you will want to build a successful subscription list is to subscribe to a company like Aweber or GetResponse. These companies can help you subscribe and have your customers “Confirm” their subscriptions so that you aren’t marked as “Spam”. As an added bonus, when subscribers “Confirm” their subscriptions, then you know that those people WANT to be contacted about your specials and other news. Aweber and GetResponse handle all of those steps, and all you have to do is set it up, and then send out the occasional “Broadcast.”
A Widget On Your Blog: If you have a blog or website, then you should have what is called a “Widget” on your blog that encourages people to join your email list. It is a very simple way to capture email addresses, and you can make custom widgets from your Email Subscription Company. If you don’t opt for the Email Subscription Company, then you can use a “Plug-In” from your blog site to create a list. Our Custom Aweber widget looks like this (just to give you an idea):
The Fishbowl: This is a trick that is commonly used in the Mary Kay world to get leads and contacts. The consultant basically puts out a fishbowl whenever they do a special event, then they encourage potential leads to fill out a mini-questionnaire with phone numbers and email addresses. The same can be done for any business. A simple $2 fishbowl right by the register, along with a mini-questionnaire about customer service or a request for email addresses is often all that is needed to get the email address. Just make sure to put “Would you like to be notified by email about our specials?” on that min-survey so that you only email the people who are receptive to it. (Another way to do this is to just have a “Guest Book” or sign up sheet near the register, and ask every customer if they would like to join your list as you make a sale.) [ad#Leaderboard]
The Free Lunch: Something that goes very well with the fishbowl is the “Free Lunch” prize. Of course, if you aren’t a restaurant, then you don’t want to offer a free lunch, but you can offer anything from an “Instant Discount” to a monthly promotional product (that maybe you got for free from a vendor). Basically, you’re offering a bribe for their contact information. The nice part about this, however, is that they don’t have to fill out a form. They simply drop in their business card. It saves you a bit on printing out surveys, and still gets you the contacts. Only downside is that you spend a little bit of money in order to give those monthly prizes, but the upside is a list you can sell to again and again.
The “Freebie” Bribe: For online sites, the “free lunch” is known as a “Freebie” and it is also a bribe that goes with “getting the contact info.” This bribe usually comes in the form of a digital product, like an informative ebook (ie PDF file), an audio interview, an informative video, etc. This kind of giveaway is fantastic for anyone who has a Subscription List with Aweber or GetResponse, especially because these companies will send out the freebies for you. It is a huge timesaver, and is often worth the $20 fee to maintain. (Again, remember that this is a chance for you to make a ton of money by emailing your customers over and over.)
Once you have your email list – whether its 20 people or 2,000 – you then begin making additional sales right away. BUT, if you don’t go with a Company like Aweber or GetResponse, then you NEED to make sure you don’t become a Spammer. Sending out mass emails can make the email companies mark you as Spammers, as can ignoring your readers requests to be removed from your email lists. To avoid these things without a list, read my old article entitled: How to Send an Email Blast Without Getting Spam’d.
There are plenty of other ways to get email subscribers, but these are just a simple view that can be implemented immediately.
What are your favorite ways to get email subscribers?