Here’s what you’ll learn in this module.
How to use basic tools like an autporesponder and list cleaner
How to get the same features entirely for free!
- How to get people to join your list freely and with minimal incentive – because they WANT to!
- How to build a highly effective squeeze page
- How to send people to your squeeze page in their droves without needing to pay for advertising
- How to create a rapport and relationship with your subscribers
- How to sell from an email autoresponder sequence
- How to avoid the spam box and even the subfolders!
- How to get emails from real-world interactions!
- And much more!
Building a mailing list can be one of the most effective ways to increase your turnover and profits as an online business.
That’s because each email on that list represents a potential customer to market to and to sell to. Depending on the value of your product, this can represent a lot of money.
The only issue? Building that list in the first place can take a lot of time, effort, and financial investment. In other words, you need a big list to make a lot of money as a marketer… but you also need a lot of money as a marketer to build a big list!
Or at least this is what was once thought. Today, it is possible to build a massive email list without spending a cent. And not only that, but you can do so without investing hundreds of hours into the project too. After all… time is money!
This book is your comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about building a huge mailing list on a budget. This is your first step toward building your own digital empire.
Chapter 1: Why a Mailing List?
The first question you may have, is why use a mailing list at all?
Essentially, a mailing list will give you a direct line of communication with a large number of potential customers – something that no other form of marketing can offer you.
When you use social media marketing and build a Facebook page with thousands of likes, you are ultimately at the mercy of Facebook. Facebook could decide to delete your page tomorrow, and you would instantly lose all of the hard work you put in! While that might sound unlikely, it is actually not a hypothetical and it happens all the time.
Remember: this is Facebook’s took, and it is up to the company how it uses it. It is not required to provide you with any explanation for shutting down your operations – meaning
that you might not get the opportunity to clear up any misunderstandings or mistakes.
The same goes for Instagram, and for Twitter.
Unfortunately, relying 100% on a website or a blog is actually no safer. Here, the risk is that Google could change its policies at any moment, thereby removing your site from its listings. Most websites that rely on traffic will get the majority of that traffic from Google searches. So when Google changes its advice as to what is a good way to get to the top of a particular search page, this can instantly cause sites to drop down the ranking.
Just ask any of the countless businesses that were struck down by the Panda or Pigeon updates. Imagine going from the top spot on Google to being completely absent in searches overnight.
With email marketing, you have a direct line of communication with the audience you have worked hard to build. As long as the internet exists, so too will email – meaning that you’ll be able to reach them.
Here is what 99% of internet marketers don’t understand…
The other reason that email marketing really matters, is that it is a particularly engaged form of communication.
Here is what 99% of internet marketers don’t understand, and what can make ALL of the difference when it comes to your success.
The most important thing is not how many followers your brand has. Rather, it is how engaged those followers and, and how much they buy into your brand.
In other words: do people get what your brand is all about? Do they respond to your USP and value proposition? Do they buy into the lifestyle that you are promoting?
Selling is emotional and so it is all about cultivating a feeling from your brand, while at the same time developing a relationship of trust with your audience.
That is why brands that have Facebook pages that simply post about their latest offers don’t drive any sales.
On the other hand, brands that post about things that matter to their audience, and that create amazing content, can drive sales with the click of their fingers!
Email marketing is the ultimate expression of this. When someone hands over their email address, they are inviting you to contact them in a manner that is normally reserved for their close friends and contacts.
People only sign up to mailing lists if they are highly engaged with what you are doing. And then, when they see an email from you in their inbox, they will listen.
This is before we’ve even touched on the fact that email marketing is instant and will even result in a notification on your recipient’s device! That means you can choose the precise time of day they receive your message, which helps to control a number of important variables when it comes to driving sales.
Or how about the fact that email marketing can be seamlessly integrated with a number of other marketing strategies, such as Facebook marketing? You can even use your mailing list to control who sees your Facebook Ads PPC campaign! More on this in a moment.
Your objective then, is to build this kind of highly engaged list – a list of potential customers or clients, that you can monetize whenever you need to. And to do so without spending a dime.
Summary: Benefits of email marketing
• Email marketing is not reliant on a third party for your contact
• Very personal and direct
• Timing is possible
• Engagement is typically high
• Integration with other marketing strategies
• Powerful tools greatly extend potential
Chapter 2: Crucial Tools for Building Your Mailing List
So now you understand the importance of mailing lists, the next question is how you go about building one of your own. Essentially, you are going to need two things: a website and an autoresponder.
A website is something that you should hopefully already be familiar with. Most businesses owners reading this will already have a website of some kind, but in case you don’t, it is recommended that you create a site using WordPress (www.worpdress.org).
WordPress is a completely free Content Management System (CMS) meaning that it lets you control how content is displayed
on your website, as well as easily add and remove posts at your leisure.
Essentially, this works like a skeleton or template for your website, providing you with pages and a layout that can then be customized or refined using a little bit of coding or a free theme installation. You’ll need a hosting account to store the files, but other than that, the tool is completely free and endlessly powerful. More importantly, it has a lot of integration with major autoresponders and other software that we will be using.
An autoresponder meanwhile, is a piece of software that will allow you to collect email addresses and then manage them along with the messages that you choose to send out.
This is something that you simply can’t do without if you plan on building and using a large mailing list. That’s because the admin involved would otherwise be overwhelming.
Imagine for a moment that you have a mailing list that you are managing manually that has over 1,000 subscribers. Every day, new people are signing up, and old people are leaving. Simply responding to every request to unsubscribe and then removing that person from your mailing list would start to become a full time job!
Autoresponders handle all these types of things for you – hence the name. Not only that, but they can also provide a number of other useful functions that help with marketing.
That includes such things as being able to see whether an email has been opened or not, and even being able to identify which members of your list is “most engaged” and thus most likely to buy from you.
You’ll also use an autoresponders in order to collect your emails in the first place. This is because you will use an autoresponder to create your opt-in form. That form is where your visitors will fill out their details when they want to sign up.
Most autoresponders will provide you with a basic designer where you can choose what fields you want (this will include the name and email address but might optionally also ask for other details such as sex, age, etc.).
You’ll then be given a small snippet of code to add to your website, and once you do that, the form will appear in just the same way on your page. Now, whenever someone goes through the process of adding their details and hitting submit, their address will be added to your list.
All that’s left for you to do then, is to direct visitors to that page in the first place, and then convince them to hand over their details. We’ll discuss that over the rest of this book.
Choosing the Right Autoresponder
When it comes to picking an autoresponder, there are a number of popular options:
In many ways, Aweber is the biggest email autoresponder out there and is favored by many of the bigger organizations. A good option that will provide you with all the features you could need.
GetResponse is a professional-grade tool similar to Aweber but the main difference is that it is focussed more specifically on autoresponder sequences. This gives you the most control over scheduled emails and automated responses.
Favored by many new start-ups and smaller businesses. This tends to be a little cheaper and has a slightly more welcoming interface. It also has some more advanced features missing however and is a little slower and less polished than the competition.
Infusionsoft combines an autoresponder with a sales platform, allowing you to integrate your sales with an email campaign that can utilize cookies and other advanced features in order to respond dynamically to the actions of your audience.
This is great if you are selling a digital product but isn’t the best ‘pure autoresponder’. It’s also more expensive.
Drip has recently become more popular among online publishers and large blogs. It has all the features you could need and is particularly well suited to creating multiple different campaigns and broadcasts, each with independent data recording and analytics.
However, while these are all good options, they also involve a fee. If you choose GetResponse for example – which is actually considered one of the most affordable autoresponders - then you will need to pay $15 per month for the most basic package, which will only give you up to 1,000 subscribers!
You’ll need to pay $25 for 2,500 subscribers, or $65 for 10,000. This might not seem like a huge amount of money, but if you’re
truly trying to build your list on a budget, then it might be more than you want to afford.
This can become more of an issue then as the list grows, and our hope is that we’ll very quickly start to reach those higher numbers.
For those that want a completely free tool, one of the best known options is:
It’s not terribly feature-rich, and the interface and design is immediately off-putting… but if you’re looking for a free autoresponder that has been around for a long time – then this is it. It will certainly do the job when you are starting out, and you can then export your list to use with a more powerful tool in future.
Other good choices include:
This is a somewhat well-known name among email marketers. It offers a fully-featured service, even if it is a little bare bones. While you’ll pay more for the higher subscription counts, the free tier is still generous in terms of what it offers. The main
restriction for the free version is that you can only send 300 emails per day.
This is a tool built specifically for small businesses. It is designed to be quick and easy to use, while also offering the best pricing.
Before you decide to go for the free options though, keep in mind that $15 a month is still a relatively small investment. Other free autoresponders such as ListWire ended tragically by going out of business, which lost some users large lists with thousands of names on them.
When it comes to online tools like this, the free options are normally vastly inferior to the paid alternatives.
I can assure you, that as you read through the rest of this book, you will not be required to spend much more than this small upfront investment. Should you wish to start building your list entirely for free though, then using i-Autoresponder is your best option.
More Uses for Autoresponders
As well as simply allowing you to build your list, an autoresponder can also open up many new marketing
possibilities that simply wouldn’t have existed otherwise. Some examples include:
Thank You Messages
You can set up an autoresponder to send out all kinds of automated messages. One example is a thank you message, which you can send after a visitor makes a purchase – or even once they join your mailing list.
The latter creates a great opportunity to help increase engagement and make sure that your members feel wanted. They’ll keep checking their inboxes for future messages, all because you took the time to show your appreciation!
Sending a thank you message when someone buys from you on the other hand, can help to improve buyer satisfaction and reduce returns/complaints. What’s more, is that this is the perfect opportunity for you to upsell and try to shift more items or added value in order to gain more profit from the transaction.
You can create an email course that sends multiple messages, each containing a separate “lesson.” This can then be used as a product in itself, or as a free incentive for your visitors.
For example, someone might pay in order to receive your “10 month course to building the perfect body,” or they might be
willing to sign up for that email list for free – which you then also use in order to sell from.
Another powerful feature of autoresponders is the ability to schedule a message. This means that you can decide to send a message at a set time in the future. This might be the same time for everyone, or it might vary depending on various factors (most commonly time zone!).
One of the big advantages of email marketing is that you can choose when your recipients receive your communication – they don’t have to open an app. That in turn means that you can reach them just as they’re getting in from work, which is when they will statistically be most impulsive and thus most likely to buy something from you!
You can also use this feature to send out Christmas messages or similar – which will help to build your engagement and trust. People appreciate these small gestures, and the personal nature of email makes it the perfect fit!
A string in computer talk means a sequence of alphanumeric characters that can be changed dynamically. In this case, you might be referring to a person’s name.
That is to say, that an autoresponder will let you create messages with unique differences depending on the recipient and a number of other factors. By sending messages that include the recipient’s name, it’s much easier to stand out in a crowded inbox, and to create a feeling of familiarity.
Even if the recipient knows that you didn’t really hand-write every single message, it still makes a psychological difference!
Follow Up Messages
If you’re trying to sell a product or service and you don’t get a response, it can be useful to send another one after a short wait in order to remind the recipient. While nobody wants to be a pest, this strategy really can work. Very often, people will intend to make a purchase and then just forget!
Not only that, but if someone considered buying and then thought better of it, a reminder email can be what clinches the deal!
A sales funnel is a series of steps intended to encourage people to buy a product. This is accomplished by gradually increasing the amount of commitment that the person makes to the brand and scaling up the engagement.
This can also be accomplished through a sequence of emails. By sending emails with ever-increasing amounts of detail about your new product, you can take someone from being vaguely interested, to ready to buy. Which is where the next part comes in.
In short, you can use an entirely automated sequence of messages each time someone signs up for your mailing list, and you can then use this in order to sell to them.
This can work like so:
1. They sign up for your mailing list
2. They receive a thank you message
3. They start receiving interesting information every week
4. They notice a special offer for a free online seminar – they attend
5. They are offered a short eBook for $10 – they take the plunge
6. They continue to receive useful information
7. You tease that you have an exciting offer just for them
8. You give a few more details
9. You hype the offer – an exclusive retreat for your top readers where they will receive a one-to-one masterclass
10. You launch the offer
Every new subscriber receives the exact same sequence, which you will have prepped in advance. Thus, each new person who signs up will be taken through a series of steps perfectly designed to provide value, build trust, and ultimately sell a “big ticket” item.
This system works so well, that you can make a living by creating multiple static websites, with pre-prepared autoresponder sequences, and then just wait for the cash to roll in!
Earlier, we briefly touched on the notion that an autoresponder could be used to identify which users were most engaged. This is accomplished by getting certain metrics from their behavior.
An autoresponder can – for example – tell when someone opens your email. It can also tell when someone clicks on a link that’s in your email.
Why is this useful?
Well, if someone never opens any of your emails, then the chances of them buying something from you are slim. If you send that person a marketing message, they might well see this as spam, and actually decide to unsubscribe – or to avoid opening your messages in future.
But if your autoresponder tells you that someone is opening every single email and clicking on every link within those emails, then there is a very good chance indeed that they might buy from you!
They’re ideal to market to in future, and you can even get your autoresponder sequence to do this automatically once a user crosses a certain threshold of messages opened!
Summary: Uses of Autoresponders
• Sending batch emails
• Collecting details via a form
• Integrating with a website/social media profile
• Double opt-ins
• Monitoring open rates etc.
• Scheduling messages
Chapter 3: Getting People to Sign Up
Now you have your autoresponder, and you’ve created an opt in form that you can begin directing traffic toward. Great!
The next step is to make sure that the people who land on your page and see your opt-in form actually go ahead and sign up. When describing the percentage of visitors that go on to become subscribers, we typically talk in terms of “conversions.” The more visitors convert, the higher the percentage that will become members of your list.
It is my advice that you place your opt-in form of every single page of your website or blog. Make sure this is visible throughout your content, and each time someone reads something you wrote, they may be tempted to sign up.
But what’s really going to drive sign-ups is your “squeeze page.” This is a page on a website that has a singular goal: to get people to join a mailing list. Here’s how it works.
How to Build a Squeeze Page
Because your squeeze page has just one very important goal, it’s going to be structured a little differently from the other pages on your website. Importantly, a squeeze page should do away with all other navigation. The idea is that there is nothing distracting your visitors away from opt-in form and the copy convincing them to sign up.
The opt-in form should be immediately visible, and you should include as much text as possible convincing your visitors to sign up. This is where skilled persuasive writing can come in extremely handy!
Persuasive Writing for a Squeeze Page
To do this effectively, try to think about the ‘value proposition’ that you’re offering. This means focussing on what it is that people get out of your email list and how it makes life better.
People want to subscribe to fitness lists because they hope to have better abs and more confidence.
They want to subscribe to money-making lists because they would love a bit more financial freedom and to have fewer
money-stresses. Maybe this is why you’re reading this right now!
Focus on this in your pitch and get your audience to really imagine the benefits of being a member.
At the same time, talk about the value you’ll be providing for your readers and how they’ll be “exclusive members.” This last point is important as people love feeling like they’re members of something.
Of course, for any of this to work, it’s important that your emails actually do provide some kind of value and that they ideally have some kind of USP. It is best to think of your mailing list in a manner similar to a blog in many cases – as a way for you to provide exclusive and valuable information to your most dedicated followers.
But likewise, special offers, breaking news, and other “exclusive” updates can also provide value.
You should also address any concerns that your readers might have head on. People don’t like sharing their contact details because they’re afraid of spam. State clearly that you don’t pass on details and that they can unsubscribe at any time.
Then talk about your incentive (more on this in a moment) and use this to close the deal.
While you do this though, it’s very important to make sure that you aren’t misleading your audience in any way and that you’re being upfront.
The objective is *not* to get as many subscribers as possible. Instead, the objective is to get subscribers who want to be there and who might actually buy something.
Are you going to be providing special offers and deals in your emails? Great: then make this a big focus of your pitch! It might put some people off but that’s fine as they wouldn’t have been potential customers anyway!
One of the most important tools in your arsenal though is the use of incentives or lead magnets. These are free giveaways that you are going to use in order to encourage people to sign up for your mailing list – the kinds of digital products that don’t cost you anything, but which a visitor would normally have to pay for.
That might mean an ebook, a report, or even a short online course.
So you offer a free ebook, or a course, or an app or anything else in exchange for people signing up to your mailing list. In return, you’ll then get a lot more people signing up because they’ll be motivated by the idea of getting something for nothing.
But while this can be a very powerful strategy, it’s also an easy one to get wrong. That’s why you need to do it right.
A bad incentive is any incentive that causes people to sign up who wouldn’t otherwise. If someone signs up for your mailing list purely to get the incentive, then this will mean they’re likely to download their free ebook or report and then never read another email again. As you can imagine, this isn’t terribly valuable to you…
Instead then, you need to make sure that you aren’t using your incentive as a bribe and that it isn’t such an amazing offer that it motivates people to sign up who wouldn’t have any interest otherwise. Mention the incentive at the bottom of your squeeze page and make sure it is something somewhat small like a free report.
This serves another purpose in that reports quickly provide value and don’t involve giving away something too big.
If you give away a whole ebook, then you are essentially showing your audience that eBooks aren’t worth anything and can be given away for free. This in turn makes it much harder
subsequently when you come to try and sell future eBooks. Why would someone pay good money for something they have recently been given free?
What’s more is that many free eBooks will go unread. This further undermines their value: why would someone pay for another ebook when the last one never got used?
Instead, consider using a free report as your incentive. Or better yet, how about making the emails themselves the incentive which will encourage future opens.
This can be achieved by increasing the production value of your emails so that they include high quality images and lots of in-depth articles. Think of them more like newsletters.
It can also be accomplished by including giveaways and special offers.
The Quality of Your Brand
Ultimately though, what really encourages someone to sign up to your mailing list for the right reasons, will be their experiences with your brand PRIOR to this point.
That is to say, that people sign up to mailing lists in most cases because:
A)They love the brands and products that the company sells and they want to be the first to hear about them.
B)They have loved the content they’ve read on the website/blog and they want even more of it.
Usually, this happens after months of interaction!
To that end, what’s crucial is that you understand how to keep your audience engaged with useful and interesting content on your site, and that you think about customer satisfaction whenever you create a product or service.
Let’s face it: if you aren’t interested in a brand, then no amount of great sales patter is going to convince you to sign up to their mailing list!
What’s important for every brand to recognize then, is the role of emotion: of creating a feeling when trying to sell an idea.
The best brands are those that have a clear mission statement and a bold visual design that speaks to that mission. In other words, simply interacting with that brand makes you feel a certain way, such that you want to do it more.
You do this by targeting a specific niche and a specific type of person. You can’t appeal to everyone, so what is important is that you find out the kind of person who is most likely to visit your website, and then you create a brand and an ethos that appeals to them.
Design a brand to create fans – not just customers – and they will be eager to sign up in every way they can!
How to Drive Subscribers
• Create a squeeze page – use a web
page with no external links
• Promote with PPC potentially
• Embed your form into your sidebars/around your site
• Create a great free blog where you demonstrate the kind of value you will be offering via the mailing list
• Talk about your mailing list regularly in your other content
• Make it sound exciting – refer to subscribers as “VIPs”
• Offer a freebie called a “lead magnet” or
• Don’t make it too good or you risk only attracting people who want free stuff!
• Make the emails themselves the incentives
• Create a newsletter
• Or offer discounts/news
Chapter 4: List Hygiene and Writing Emails That Get Opened
No matter how good your email marketing technique and no matter how engaging your subject headings, you’re not going to have much luck getting buyers and building a relationship with your fans if no one ever sees or opens your messages.
Perhaps the most important aspect of your email marketing of all then, is simply getting past the spam filters so that your messages can get read. This is something that a lot of marketers struggle with though, so read on to see how you can go about doing it…
The first important key is to avoid using marketing language. Words like ‘buy’ and other related terms (hey, I’m trying not to get filtered here!) will risk sending your email to the spam folder
because it looks like you’re just trying to make money. What’s more, is that words like that will make your readers filter you out as well and ignore you.
So now you know to keep that to a minimum, the next step is to try and ensure you aren’t making a few other key mistakes. One such error is to use too many exclamation marks, or to write in all caps.
Likewise, if you’re going to be using lots of images then make sure that you give them alt tags so that the email client can work out what they’re about.
Try to keep the length of your emails short too. If your email is several thousand words long this is a quick way to get yourself banned.
A simple trick though? Ask your recipients to add your email to their “allowed senders” list. This will help ensure you never end up in their spam.
Something else to consider is blacklisting. If your IP gets blacklisted by Google, Yahoo or Outlook, this can mean that none of your emails get through to those addresses. This happens if you keep sending emails to addresses that constantly bounce – so make sure that you regularly ‘clean’
your email lists to prevent this from happening. This is what we call “list hygiene.”
You want to look for “list hygiene tools” in your autoresponder. These can be used to check for typos like “bob@gmailcom” and will sift through your contacts automatically. You can also do this manually to a lesser extent.
Looking at your bounce rates from time to time is also a good idea. Look for ‘hard bounces’ which are permanent delivery options. Finally, look out for inactive subscribers. If someone hasn’t opened a message for a year, you may as well remove them from your list.
This is a list of contacts that has zero connection to you.
This is also why you should never BUY a list from someone. Buying a list of emails means most likely buying emails that have been scraped off of the web or tricked into signing up for things they didn’t want.
Even if that’s not the case, you’ll still be using someone else’s audience. This is a list of contacts that has zero connection to you, and that you haven’t built trust with. In short, they have no reason to be interested in what you have to say.
PLUS buying lists is expensive! And we’re trying to build this list on a budget!
When you think of spam and email marketing, you’ll normally think about the kinds of spam messages that recipients and subscribers find clogging up their inboxes. Email spam is notorious and one of your most important jobs as a marketer is to differentiate yourself from that spam.
But what about you? As the email marketer yourself, you’re still not safe from spam!
That’s because there are plenty of scripts out there that will just scour the web for anything they can sign up to. Likewise, there are people who will enter fake e-mails to get into gated content, or just because they can.
Less malicious are people who accidentally enter typos when they’re trying to sign up. Or people who abandon their old e mail accounts. Of course some people on your mailing list may no longer be among the living!
Again, it’s your job then to try and keep your mailing list “clean” in order to reduce bounce rates and to make sure all your messages are being delivered to the intended recipients.
You can even add a spam filter to the opt-in form itself – most autoresponders should allow this feature.
One great solution that can help you to deter people who sign up for anything and everything AND that can help you to combat spam, is to use a double double opt-in.
This means that people who sign up will be asked to confirm their interest via a follow-up e-mail, in turn meaning they have to engage with the message and prove they’re human. This also forces a person to not only sign up, but also look out for your message in their email.
This will catch everything from people who can’t really be bothered to read your messages, to people who unwittingly entered their email incorrectly!
Even with the best will in the world, it is still possible for a well meaning internet marketer to end up getting blacklisted. If it does happen, you’ll need to search for “unblacklisting” forms online for each of those clients. Usually, it’s possible to get yourself removed from these lists.
And remember: ideally, list hygiene doesn’t JUST mean removing emails that are there mistakenly. It also should mean removing anyone that doesn’t want to be on your mailing list. These people are only serving to hurt your analytics, and to risk getting you blacklisted.
Bottom line: it is FAR better to have a list of 10 people that hang off your every word, than 1,000 people who never open a single email!
One of the most important reasons to use strategies like double opt-ins to keep your list clean, is that this is the free option for list hygiene. Otherwise, you might need to pay for a list cleaning tool, which can get a lot more expensive.
Still, this is a useful option to have in your back pocket. While autoresponders might include list hygiene tools, these are far more powerful and will be better at finding inactive subscribers and faulty addresses.
Good choices include:
Keeping People Engaged
Of course, a lot of your ability to keep your audience hanging off of your every word is going to come down to your ability to write compelling emails that they want to read in the first place!
It’s very important that you are careful with balancing out the informative/entertaining emails with the sales emails (there’s a slight exception if the value you are providing is primarily in the form of discounts and offers!).
Make sure that you space out your big sales pushes, and that you provide lots of genuinely useful and valuable information meanwhile. Likewise, try to take a more personal tone with your subscribers that shows you value them letting you speak to them directly in this manner.
If you notice that your engagement is slipping, then think of ways that you can draw attention back to your messages. One of the best options? Give away a big freebie! This works just like the incentive/lead magnet, except this time it is going to be delivered to people who are already on your list.
Doing this will give them a great reason to open up that email, but it will also make sure they feel valued and even grateful toward you. This can drastically improve your relationship with those members going forward.
The Best Subject Headings
Other than “avoiding the spam folder,” the role of a great subject line is to immediately pique interest. This is a fine line to walk while avoiding being bombastic, but the first tip is to ensure that your emails each have something genuinely interesting and unique to say. If that is the case, then you shouldn’t have to lie about what’s inside!
That said, try to speak again to the emotional side of your readers. That means using a little bit of mystery in your headlines, so that they are compelled to click to learn more about what you’re saying. You should also look for topics that haven’t been covered over and over again, and that therefore sound inherently new and exciting for people interested in the niche.
Finally, try to use questions where possible, and always refer to the readers by name.
For Your Convenience: A List of Spam Terms to Avoid in Your Emails
• Online dating
• 100% free
• Subject to credit
• Earn $
• Meet singles
• Money making
• While you sleep
• Work from home
• Online degree
• Name brand
• Long distance
• Message contains
• No disappointment
• Gift certificate
• No gimmick
• No obligation
• No selling
• Per day
• Vacation offers
• Per week
• Off shore
• Free consultation
• Great offer
Summary: Writing Emails That Get Opened
• Don’t use spam words
• Ask to be moved to the inbox
• Write subject lines that are personal, engaging, and eyecatching
• Use double opt-in
• Avoid images and large attachments
• Don’t make emails too long
• Make unsubscribing easy
• Avoid overly tempting lead magnets
• Manually remove non engaged emails
• Don’t buy lists!
• Use a spam filter on your form
• Build up to selling
• Keep providing great value!!
Chapter 5: Getting People to Your Opt-In Form on the Cheap
Now that you have your squeeze page and you know how to write amazing emails that stay out of the spam folders, your final hurdle is getting people to the squeeze page.
This is the point at which many guides would recommend using PPC (pay per click) advertising in order to send people to the list. However, as we’re looking for the most cost effective strategies for building a list, we are going to stick to the free options instead.
Fortunately, there are a number of free ways to get people to find your list.
Run a Blog
By now, you should have picked up on the fact that you should be running a blog. This is one of the single most effective ways to create a brand and to build trust, authority, and recognition with an audience.
Think of your blog as the first step in your sales funnel. This is how your audience finds you (through SEO and social media – which are also free) and then slowly come to discover that your content is of the very best quality. The next step is the email list, which can then lead to those big sales.
Creating a blog is free and simply involves an investment of your time. But you can make surprising progress with just a few short articles a week – as long as you have something new and interesting to say.
For bonus points, try vlogging instead! This is a brilliant way to create a more personal relationship with your audience. They will be far more likely to feel as though they know you, and thus they will be much more open to the idea of receiving emails from you!
When looking at your web design to assess if it is fit for purpose, you should always ask yourself what the primary objective of your design is. This is something that many
webmasters and business owners simply can’t answer, which demonstrates a severe lack of planning and strategy on their part.
A good web design in 99% of cases, should be one that directs people to the mailing list.
A good web design in 99% of cases, should be one that directs people to the mailing list. If the whole site is designed to guide people to this page, then no matter what the entry point, they will ultimately be likely to find your opt-in form and start signing up.
Competitions, Giveaways, And Tools
We’ve talked about incentives as a method to get people to sign up for your mailing list, but what about using them to bring people to your brand in the first place?
If you have a really great giveaway, then this can even get shared by people who want to help out friends. This is why it can pay as a business to occasionally take a hit with a big loss leader. If you have something on your site that you normally sell for $20, try giving it away for free for 24 hours. This could potentially lead to a lot of buzz and new traffic.
Likewise, why not get people to enter a competition by providing their details? This is something people again might even tell friends about!
Finally, many people will happily hand over their details when signing up for an online service. Any website can add a service or tool with just a little bit of basic coding, and this can be a great way to build a bigger list!
Every now and then, the digital marketing world gets the chance to crossover with the brick and mortar side of your business. For instance, if people buy from your store, why not ask them if they’d like to receive their receipt by email and also sign up for your newsletter?
Use a Pop-Over
Finally, consider using a pop-over or a light box that will appear on top of your blog content. This should appear when someone scrolls a little way down your page. While it can be a nuisance,
countless studies show that this strategy is immensely successful when it comes to getting people to sign up for lists.
Summary: Getting People to Your List
• Use a blog combined with SEO
• Design your site to “point” at your opt-in form/squeeze page
• Give something away as a limited deal
• Collect emails in person
• Provide some kind of service
• Add a pop-over
Conclusion: List Building On a Budget
Using the strategies outlined in this module, you hopefully now see that it is extremely possible to build a large and extremely targeted list on a very small budget. You will accomplish this first by ensuring your branding is on point and that people are really excited by what you are doing.
Next, you get an autoresponder (free or otherwise) to create an opt-in form. Place that on your website, and make sure it includes a double opt-in and spam filter.
Now create a squeeze page that you use in order to convince people to sign up. Combine this with an incentive (freebie) but make sure it’s not “too good.” The main selling point will be the quality of the emails themselves!
Write regular great content, making sure to mention your mailing list regularly. Write amazing emails that people love reading. And occasionally give the whole thing a boost with a bit of old fashioned promotion like a competition or deal!
And that’s really all there is to it – you’ll build a massive and (more importantly) highly TARGETED list. All without spending a dime!