Any blogger, SEO or marketer would be well aware of the importance, and power of a strong mailing list, and building a base of subscribers through the power of email.
You could choose to promote your content through many other mediums – social media in particular. You could even have a large base of subscribers who receive your updates through RSS. You could even be getting a ton of traffic via Google and other search engines. But the fact is that you need to be focusing your efforts on building a sizeable email list that grows with the passage of time.
Email lists have some of the highest success rates in terms of clicks (CTR), inbound traffic and sales/revenue. This is simply due to the fact that traffic generated through email lists is extremely targeted – only people who are highly interested in your products and services will willingly give out their email address to you.
Remember that these people have voluntarily opted-in to hear from you. You are getting laser-targeted traffic, simply by taking a few seconds and sending a single email to hundreds of thousands of people!
Here are a few things you can do in order to substantially accelerate the growth of your email list … starting now!
1. It all about the looks! You may not know it, not realize it or may not want to admit it, but looks matter. Your website interface matters a lot more than you might think! Give your blog that much-needed interface overhaul, because the simple fact is that if your website looks good, not only will it attract more visitors but it’ll also urge people to subscribe to you.
2. Make your opt-in/subscription form as visible as possible. You want your readers and visitors to be able to see it wherever they might land or whichever page they might be on, on your blog. I recommend adding a widgetized header above your content which shows up on all pages of your blog. If that is not possible (if the theme you’re using doesn’t allow for it), simply put it on the sidebar of your blog. Whatever you do, avoid using one of those annoying pop-up style optins.
3. Optimize your optins for conversions. This includes placement and visibility, as discussed in the point above, as well as adding that extra bit of something to the optin forms to grab your visitor’s attention. Be creative with the text; try going for something other than the redundant ‘subscribe to my email updates’ – try something like ‘get our awesome updates by entering your email here’, or ‘subscribe below to get free tips right in your inbox!’. Use a totally different color scheme for your optin box than the rest of your website. However don’t use overtly-annoying or flashy colors, arrows or the like. Keep it classy!
4. Put epic, subscribe-worthy content on your blog. Your content should speak for itself when it comes to why people should subscribe to your blog. It should be a big enough reason for people to give you their email address. Concentrate on providing your readers with the best possible content, spend time creating and crafting your posts, and put up valuable and quality content that not only gets a lot of traffic, it is also shared by many people over Facebook, Twitter, G+ and the like. This involves coming up with catchy, attention-grabbing titles, a kickass opening and of course a grammatically and factually correct, informative and an interesting prose! Besides, Google too loves great content, so it’ll be like killing two birds with one stone!
4. Integrate your optin/subscription page with other pages of your blog – particularly the about page. Whether you realize it or not, the about page is one of the most important pages on your blog. All new visitors will almost always check your about page and this is why you need to integrate your optin with your about. Keep all information simple and straightforward, tell people about your blog and who you are, and add an optin form after every paragraph.
5. Give something to your subscribers in return. This is a sure-shot way of doubling, maybe even tripling your subscriber base within a short period of time! For instance most of the SEO and IM blogs usually give away free eBooks on generating traffic, or a free evaluation copy of their best plugin. Give your readers something of real value, something that they’d want, and something they’d probably have to pay good money for to get otherwise. From their perspective, it will be a big motivator for them to subscribe to you because everyone like a free meal right? From your perspective, you might be giving stuff away for free, but think of it as an investment for the future – you’re getting legitimate email IDs and the power to get in touch with people whenever you want, a massive selling tool for the future in itself!