Email still matters in 2019. We might be living through the social media age, but email marketing remains a fantastic way for businesses to build their brands and stay in touch with their customers.

So it makes sense that you’ll be building your own email list, right? Problem is, building an email list isn’t exactly easy peasy. It takes time, effort and lots of knowledge. It’s well worth it, though, with research showing that returns on email as a business growth medium are extremely high.

Awesome, right?

The even better news is that we’re going to show you some marketing love today with our top 7 strategies to grow your email list in 2019.

Let’s go!

1. Offer a Lead Magnet

This one will never get old, and it’s pretty much email marketing 101. Basically, to get people to subscribe to your list you have to give something away for free. Why? Because no one is going to just hand over their personal email address to you otherwise. Why would they?

Not just that, but the thing you give away for free has to be fabulous. Like, so utterly amazing that the end user senses they’re getting the best deal here. You might be getting their email address, but they’re getting your free stuff.

What can you give away for free? Generally speaking, here is the kind of stuff most businesses use as lead magnets:

  • eBooks
  • Checklists
  • Case studies
  • Cheat sheets, infographics or brochures
  • Free trials

For example, if you’re a digital marketing agency and you’re creating an eBook it could be something like “21 Tips To Use Digital Marketing To Instantly Grow Your Business Online.”

Just think how awesome that’s going to be to the right person.

Whatever it is you create, it has to be so packed with value that folks are just dying to give you their email address.

lead magnet example

Simple lead magnet offering 10 days free trial. Source: nightwatch.io

Here’s a quick tip, though: Make sure you send over your lead magnet as soon as they’ve subscribed to your list. If you leave it too long, you’re going to have this new friendship off to a bad start.

The best way to place your lead magnet is on your blog. If you don’t have one, you really should start blogging as soon as you can! You can also promote your lead magnet on your social media, for example using Facebook ads or Youtube.

2. Create Valuable Content

Content marketing is a great way to grab yourself more leads. How? It works like this: The more valuable, in-depth, actionable and generally amazing content your produce, the more people will come to you.

At the end of the day, internet users are on the lookout for content that best satisfies their queries. Not just this, but they’re on the lookout for free content.

Essentially, it’s all about spreading goodwill to people by giving them your knowledge for free. Once they can see that you’ve got the answers they want, they’ll start to crave even more of your knowledge. And the only way they can get access is by subscribing to your email list.

So put together a strong content marketing strategy that answers your audience’s questions. Drop knowledge bombs on them with in-depth, long form and detailed content that in some way improves their lives.

Consider creating topic clusters that demonstrate your unique, expert and all-encompassing knowledge on a particular subject. Go further than your rivals by putting together skyscraper content that knocks the socks off them.

The more in-depth you go, the more people will trust you and subscribe to your list. Start generating relevant content ideas on a daily basis, experiment, and you will quickly find the right blog topics to fuel your content marketing strategy and build an audience.

3. Make The Most of YouTube

Are you on YouTube yet? If you’re not, what are you waiting for? Not only is YouTube the world’s second biggest search engine but more than 5 billion videos are watched there every single day.

Video marketing is huge, and it’s only going to get bigger. Video is a great way to interact with your audience and give them more value. Even better, you can use YouTube to build your list.

How?

Make a video and end it with a call to action that sends people to your squeeze page for a content upgrade.

neil patel youtube video screenshot

   A call to action video from Neil Patel Youtube channel

For example, let’s say you’ve made a great video about SEO metrics. At the end of the video, you tell your viewers that you’ll soon be hosting a webinar where you go into even more depth about SEO. To join, they have to click a link in your description before signing up with their email list.

4. Run a Contest

People love free stuff. If you offer freebies for participation, you will grow your email list.

Then. the question is, what type of free stuff do you give away, and what type of contest do you run?

The first answer is simple. Your free giveaway must be something that’s relevant to your brand, and which your target audience is going to go crazy for. For example, it could be a brand new product that you’re about to launch, or it could be access to your exclusive mastermind program, or a free company t-shirt.

Whatever it is, it must be awesome.

In terms of the type of contest you can run, here are some ideas:

  • Photo contest – Use Instagram to let people share pics of themselves using your product. It’s got to be funny
  • Video contest – See above but switch photos up for videos
  • Sweepstake – For this one, all people need to do is give you their email address for a chance to win. No other effort required

5. Use Popups

But research shows popups are great at attracting sign-ups, if you don’t annoy people with them.

The key is basically to show the popups at the right time, in the right place and show the right kind of content.

When’s the right time? Well, it’s generally a good idea not to display your popup too soon. If it pops up literally after the user has just arrived on your website, it’s going to annoy them. With tools like MailMunch, you can intelligently time your pop-ups. You can select a certain time spent or page or content consumed before your pop-ups appear.

In terms of the right place and the right piece of content, think about what your ultimate aim is. For example, if you’re planning to tempt people with a lead magnet such as an eBook, you might want to display your popup just as they’re reading a related piece of content on your website.

Let’s say your eBook is about digital marketing. If the end user is reading an article about digital marketing, now’s a good time to display your popup. Make sure, of course, that your eBook is an upgrade on the article. Otherwise, why would they bother to sign up?

mailmunch popover form

Example of an exit intent popup from MailMunch

On the other hand, if a site visitor is just about to abandon their cart, a popup offering them a free eBook is hardly going to work.

Here are some more tips:

  • Keep your pop-up simple
  • Make sure the benefits are clearly outlined – consider using bullet points
  • Use a compelling call to action to persuade the end user to sign up

6. Optimize Your Confirmation Page

How’s your confirmation page looking? If your answer to that question is, “I’m not sure?” It means there’s work to be done.

It also means you’re currently missing out on a valuable chance to grow your email list.

The confirmation page is a bit of a money maker for a few reasons. One is that many brands ignore it, which means if you optimize it you’re sweating your competition. Another reason is that the confirmation page reiterates the benefits of subscribing to the end user. In other words, it reminds them of why they’re signing up. This helps to keep them in the game.

To optimize your confirmation page, then, make sure to reiterate the benefits. Then, add a compelling call to action that asks them to confirm. And don’t say “confirm when you’re ready.” Say “confirm now.” It’s always a good idea to create a sense of urgency like this.

7. Leverage Social Proof

Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could write this on your squeeze page:

“Join the 10,000 other marketers who have signed up to my email list today!”

Sounds amazing, right? The problem is that for you right now, it’s probably a lie.

Before you get offended, here’s a solution: Add one or two customer testimonials to your squeeze page for social proof.

Literally, all you need to do is show people that others have already signed up to your list and are enjoying your amazing emails. Bingo.  

Conclusion

These are the top 7 strategies to grow your email list in 2019. Essentially, you’ve just got to have fun with it all. Create great content, build relationships, give stuff away for free and don’t annoy people with your popups. Then, your email list is yours to keep and grow. Just keep sending people awesome emails and build your brand like a pro.

Oh, and make sure your emails are well designed, too. That’s always important.

 

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Kas Szatylowicz

Kas Szatylowicz is a social media manager and outreach coordinator at Nightwatch — a search visibility tool of the next generation.

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Content marketing guru at MailMunch. I’m passionate about writing content that resonates with people. Live simply, give generously, stay happy.