How To Build An Email List For Small Businesses: 7 Proven Steps

How to build an email list for small businesses- 7 proven steps
June 15, 2021

Email list building is the foundation of effective email marketing. Email Marketing is one of the oldest but still efficient processes of reaching your target audience and sparking their interest in your product or service. 

Did you know it costs five times more to attract a new customer than to keep an existing one?

Focusing on customer retention is a valuable long-term solution for increased revenue and sustainable growth. Email marketing is one of the best and most efficient ways to achieve this goal.

So how do you build a great list that gets results for your business?

This guide will make it easy for you.

1. Provide great content

If you want people to sign up for your newsletter, you need to make it worth the effort and time. Remember that people will give you their email addresses or open your emails if they expect quality content in your emails/newsletters.

Then set expectations but ensure to keep them. Otherwise, your subscribers will quit as fast as they came in.

For more on this topic, you may want to have a look at the section “Create a great content” of our “How to start a blogging business in 7 steps – Complete Beginner’s Guide”

2. Promote your site or newsletter

For people to signup for your posts or newsletter, they need to know their existence. It’s your responsibility to bring this information to them.

You’ve got multiple options to promote your posts or newsletter content. Among them are the following:

  • Email marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • Content curation, content syndication, content repurposing
  • Influencer marketing
  • Paid marketing

We’ve discussed these options in detail in our post about “how to promote your content” that you can access here.

3. Have lead magnets to give away

A lead magnet is a marketing term for something of value for your audience that you away for free for gathering contact details.

Lead magnet examples:

  • Ebook
  • Guide
  • Report
  • Checklist
  • Educational materials
  • Free webinars
  • etc

It can be anything you can think of that can be interesting for your audience.

Our lead magnets

We offer the following types of lead magnet:

a) Our Workshop video series containing training on how to start an online business from scratch.

How to start an online business
Learn How To Make Your First 10k Online (Stuart)
How to start an online business from home – The ultimate guide

4. Create a personalized and compelling CTA (Call-To-Action)

You have mainly three types of CTAs:

i. Basic CTA

Basic CTA is a CTA that is the same for every visitor and doesn’t change based on the visitor’s attributes.

ii. Multivariate CTA

Multivariate CTA is a kind of basic CTAs but instead of only one CTA, two or more CTAs are being tested against one another. A database is evenly split to each variation, then on the basis of conversion, you can determine which one is better.

iii. Smart CTA

Smart CTA are tailored as per individual persona/ behavior. There are numerous factors you can choose like location, language, preferences, income, and much more.

iv. Why personalized CTA?

A study conducted by HubSpot concluded that personalized calls-to-action convert  202% better than basic calls-to-action that is the same for every visitor and doesn’t change based on the visitor’s attributes.

Indeed the people who visit your site have different needs and expectations. There is no on-fit-all solution. You certainly have different offers to different categories of people. Thus your CTA needs to meet those unique needs.

For example, to our site visitors who are new to online businesses, we prefer to offer them the  “How to start an online business from home – The ultimate guide“. However, for visitors who are already aware of online businesses but who are still skeptical, we are offering them the free training “Learn How to make your first 10k online“. 

5. Create your landing page(s)

When visitors, after reading your call-to-action and decide to take it further, they click on your ads (for paid advertising) or on your links or buttons placed on the articles page. Subsequently, they find themselves on a landing page which offers them to fill in their name and their e-mail address.

To successfully collect emails addresses, the landing page should, at least, contain two things:

a) A sign-up form that your potential subscribers will be invited to fill to give you their emails

b) An attractive reason to join your list, usually called “lead magnet.”

At Dreamed Lifestyle, we use the sign-up form below to collects emails. Note our lead magnet, which is an offer for free training that teaches how to start an online business.

Top of our landing page  – Start your online business free training

Our Signup form & Our lead magnet - Start your online business free training

Click on the image to see the whole landing page.

6. Prepare your email series or broadcasts

Once a visitor agrees to give you their email address, you usually have a series of emails that you send them where you set expectations, such as frequency and content of emails. You may also begin to nurture them by sending them emails about the products and services that you are promoting.

At Dreamed Lifestyle, if a visitor opens our landing page and opts-in, they are added to our “Leads list”. After that, we immediately start sending them a series of emails once per day.

Here are our emails series that we send to every new subscriber:

Email #1: Welcome message that explains what to expect in the following mails.

Email #2: Workshop #1 – How to select the right online business model for you so that you can create and live the life you want.
Email #3: Workshop #2 – The fastest way to get started online with a business model that you can easily build around your job without spending a fortune.
Email #4: Workshop #3 – The easiest way to source in-demand products without ever having to leave your house, store products, or deal with complicated logistics.
Email #5: Workshop #4 – The best way to set yourself up with a startup business that will serve you for the long term and provide you with financial security in the “new economy”.

Email #6: Summary of the workshop free training received through the previous emails with an offer to pursue the free training by creating a free account and instantly unlock Module #1: “The System for Selling Online”!

7. Email list followup

After the email series you have chosen to send to every new subscriber, you then  continue sending emails to your readers, giving them value by publishing posts or newsletters about topics they like and provide solutions to their problems. Remember that visitors come to your site because they have a problem. If you offer them the solution to their problem, they’ll keep visiting your site, reading your newsletter, offering you the opportunity to introduce them to other products and services you might be promoting.

So, with this strategy, you have several chances of getting your consumers to buy your product.

The takeaway

Now you have no excuse to ignore your email list. 

Email marketing delivers huge returns for online marketers ready to learn how to do it right. 

Never forget to keep your promises. Email on the frequency you promised. Not more often. No less often. Provide people what they expect. And your email will grow and your relationship with your readers will reward you. 

Ready to start and scale an online business? 

Sign up for our FREE masterclass today!

“Learn How to Make Your First 10K Online” 

How To Make Your First 10k online

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