As a teacher starting a new business, I didn’t know what I didn’t know – and that’s the hardest part of starting something new. Something I wish I knew from day one was that I would need (and LOVE) an email list. Don’t make the same mistake I (and countless others) have: get your email list started TODAY. And no, you don’t even need a website.
What is an email list?
An email list is a collection of email addresses that interested people have given you. They give you their email address because they want to learn more about what you’re selling or what you have to say. This is going to be your primary audience, and they are super important to your business!
You can have an email list for any platform that you have an audience with: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, you name it. It doesn’t have to be a website, and you don’t have to wait until you have an audience of thousands. In fact, it’s so beneficial to start when your business starts because your email list grows with you!
Why do I need an email list?
The simple answer is: you need an email list because these are the people most likely to buy what you are selling (or will sell in the future). You can read articles everywhere will all tell you email subscribers will make up the bulk of your sales. They have purposefully chosen to follow you and give you their email address to hear what you have to say. They’re not random people outside of your niche. They want what you’ve got, and they’re ready to pay for it!
An email list gives you the power to tell people anything you want to tell them. Share ideas, freebies, products you’re selling, and make connections. Your email list is your personal group of followers that want to read what you have to send them.
How do I get started?
Choose an email service provider. There are several out there, and each one has different features (both paid and free). I personally use ConvertKit, and I highly recommend them! You can get started for free and use the free account until you reach 1,000 subscribers!
Once you choose an email service that best fits your needs, you’re going to set up your account. You can get started right away!
After creating an account with an email service provider, you’re going to create one of two things: a landing page or a form. You’ll choose which one based on what type of following you currently have. Create a landing page if you have some kind of social media following without a website. If you have a website, create a form.
Landing Pages v. Forms
A landing page is a standalone page that people go to in order to sign up for your email list. This is the best option if you don’t currently have a website. It gives people a place to learn what they’ll get from you in return for giving you their email address. On the landing page, you’ll tell them what your email list is about and what kinds of things you’ll email to them. You convince them that giving you their email address is going to be a good thing for them. Then you share the landing page with your followers and they can click there to sign up.
A form is a pop-up or menu add-in that you can add to your existing website really easily. You create a small snippet, asking the viewer of your website to sign up for your mailing list. You can also include a little information about what they’ll get in exchange for giving you their email address. This form can then pop up on their screen after a few seconds when they’re on your website. Alternatively you can add it to a menu so it’s always visible on your website. Most people with a website choose to do both of these options to give people the most chances to sign up.
Another reason I recommend ConvertKit is because they have AMAZING templates for both landing pages and forms. You never feel like you’re starting from scratch; they walk you through everything step by step. It’s unbelievably easy to create a professional-looking landing page or form!
I’ve created my page or form; now what?
Now you let your followers know that you have an email list! If you have a website, you’re going to add the HTML code to your menu or website itself. It’ll vary depending on many factors, but it’s really simple to do and ConvertKit has help guides to show you how.
If you have a social following, make it a big deal! Let them know you’ve started this brand new email list, and pump it up with several posts. Include the link to your landing page so they can go sign up and start getting emails from you.
Many people choose to give a freebie to the people that sign up for their email list. This gives people more of an incentive to give your their email address. People feel rewarded for giving you that information, and it often increases conversion rates significantly if you’re giving them something awesome for free.
If you give your members a freebie for signing up, make sure it’s something exclusive that they can’t get anywhere else. If they can access it another way, they won’t have the motivation to give you their email address. You have to make them want the thing you’re offering so much that they become willing to trade their email address for it.
Once you start offering your followers the chance to sign up for your email list, make sure you create a schedule and continue to send them quality content. Once a week, every other week, twice a week, the timing is really up to you and the niche you are in.
The most common time increments are weekly emails because it’s not overkill (people WILL get sick of you, it happens) and it’s not a ridiculous amount of work on your part. Don’t make every email a sales email, either. People didn’t subscribe to read your ads. Give them stories, freebies, sneak peeks and a few sales pitches, but make sure they feel connected to you and your content.
If you notice that people aren’t signing up as much or at all, consider changing your freebie that you give at signup (or add one if you don’t have one). Make sure you continually update to keep people wanting to sign up. Your content should stay relevant.
The Bottom Line: You need an email list!
Want to know more about why an email list is so important? Ready to dive deeper into landing pages, forms, broadcasts and maintaining email lists? Get started right so your email list is successful from Day 1! Join me in Successful Email List Creation for the deep-dive into successful email lists.
This course was created just for learning about successful email lists. It’s short and sweet and fills in all the gaps if you have more questions! Come join me and I’ll make sure your email list becomes your most valuable asset (as it should be!).
Click here to read more about starting your own business, best practices, and becoming successful on your own!
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