Email marketing is NOT dead: Five email marketing strategies to grow your email list

Some might think with so many new social media channels emerging, email marketing strategies are no longer a priority. We are here to tell you email marketing is not dead! Email is one of the most powerful and personal marketing channels in your arsenal because you fully own the communication with your audience. The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and Demand Metric found in their 2016 survey of U.S. marketers that email had a median ROI of 122 percent. The ROI reported for email was more than four times higher than other marketing formats examined, including social media, direct mail and paid search.

Since email continues to reign as one of the best forms of communication with your audience, we want to share the best email marketing strategies to capture subscribers and grow your email list.

1. Make it easy to subscribe

Featuring sign-up forms in key areas of your website will increase the opportunities a visitor has to stay connected with you. We have listed a few areas below for you to consider.

Pop-up box

Image from Choice Media & Communications.

Although some marketers find pop-ups intrusive, they are proven to increase email opt-ins for brands when done right. The average rate for high-performing pop-ups is 9.28 percent.

Website homepage

Image from ACIStrategies.

The homepage is the first thing a visitor sees on your website so you want your email sign up call-to-action in a prominent location. We recommend featuring the sign-up form below the main image on the homepage as shown in the example above.

Website sidebar

Image from Rusty Shelton.

Featuring a newsletter sign-up form on the sidebar gives the user an opportunity to sign up while browsing your interior pages.

Feature as a global element

Image from Zilker Media.

Placing a newsletter sign up call-to-action in the footer of your website as a global element – an element that is standard across all pages on your website – ensures the visitor always has access to opt-in.  

We are big fans of Michael Hyatt, author of the New York Times bestseller Platform. He does a great job of driving conversions on his website with clear calls-to-action. The first tab on his navigation is labeled Get Started and leads the visitor to landing page to sign up for his new ebook. It is clear throughout his website that his top conversion is joining his email list.

2. Show users why they should subscribe

A user will more likely subscribe to your newsletter if you make it clear in your sign-up form the type of content you’ll be sending in your newsletters. Ensuring the content on your other channels – such as your blog and social media – is valuable and delivered consistently will keep your audience wanting more. We have also found sharing testimonies of users who value the newsletter help convince visitors to sign up.

3. Offer a clear incentive

The micromedia mindset – thinking of yourself as a media outlet – is all about delivering value to your audience and communicating with them with an ongoing conversation in mind instead of a short sale. Making valuable content exclusive for your email audience will increase subscriber opt-ins. It doesn’t have to take a lot of leg work on your part to come up with exclusive content – you can take an existing resource and revamp it. A few great examples of exclusive content to offer are white papers, infographics, ebooks, webinars, training sessions and free chapter downloads.

The hardest part of email marketing can be keeping your audience engaged after they subscribe. One of the best ways to do this is by setting up a drip campaign full of incentives to keep the subscriber engaged. Drip campaigns are best because they allow marketers to send out automated messages based on the triggers and segments defined.

4. Utilize your rented media (social media channels)

As you work to build your following, start directing your interactions on social media to your owned media – all media where you fully “own” the connection to your audience – by promoting incentives on your rented media channels. By creating a contest or giveaway on social media, you can require users to submit their email to enter. Get creative with the contest and maximize your audience’s involvement by asking them to share the contest with their followers. The goal is to reach your indirect audience through your direct audience on your rented media channels.

Another tactic to consider is running lead-generation social media ads. We love social media advertising because you can get a lot of bang for your buck and target specific audiences.

5. Make it interactive!

We have found offering a personalized, interactive experience through a website quiz to be the most motivating factor for a user to get engaged with content. Quiz marketing has been so effective in growing email lists because it offers a clear value proposition to the website visitor. We have seen a simple value proposition work with our most successful quizzes The Confidence Code and The Narcissism Test – both have been taken over 150,000 times.

A website quiz can also be a successful audience capture offline. Everywhere you meet someone – in interviews, speaking engagements or networking events – you are able to point them back to your owned media and continue the conversation. Learn more on why a good quiz is such an effective lead magnet on our Founder & CEO Rusty Shelton’s blog.

For more tips on email marketing sign up for the monthly Zilker Media newsletter here!

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