Why do you need a mailing list?
Are you the type of person who never checks email and wonders if you should bother growing an email list for your small business? It seems like everyone says email is important, but why?
If someone puts their email on your list, it is a personal invitation to contact them. And they are more likely to open an email then see your social media post or website update.
Because almost everyone checks their email daily, where they might only log in to a social media account a few times a week.
And an email can invite people to explore your website, see a new product, use a coupon or share your post. All of these will expand your reach and inspire more sales.
Study after study has shown that email beats out every other form of online marketing in terms of ROI.
According to Adobe, email has an ROI of $40 for every $1 spent. That beats organic search and paid search combined!
So now that you know why you need an email list, let’s get down to how to create an email list.
What are the best email platforms?
My favorite email platform is ConvertKit. It has a simple to use interface, but very robust tagging and segmenting option.
What’s tagging and segmenting?
It means that you can separate your subscribers by their actions.
So, someone comes to your website and signs up for your list on the page where you sell necklaces. You can have an email automatically sent to them that offers a special deal on your most popular necklace.
The other part of that is Automations. ConvertKit allows you to set up automatic emails that get sent out when someone is tagged.
This is one of the easiest things you can do to increase your sales and traffic. You write these emails once and then they go out to new customers over and over again.
ConvertKit does cost money. It’s $29 up to 1000 subscribers and then $49 up to 3000. (Unlike MailChimp, each subscriber only counts once, not per list.)
One of the great things about ConvertKit is that it integrates with some many other platforms such as Shopify, WooCommerce, ClickFunnels and more.
I’ve integrated ConvertKit with Teachable so that I can communicate with my course students and offer them special deals and updates.
(Legal Note: You are required by law to provide a physical address on the bottom of each email. Since most people don’t want to list their home address, ConvertKit now allows you to use their address!)
You can get a free 14-day trial for ConvertKit when you sign up using my link.
How do I get people to sign up?
Of course, once you’ve created your email list in ConvertKit, you’ll need to convince people to join it. So how do you do that?
First, if you sell in person, make sure that you have some way for people to sign up. Either on a sheet that you then enter into the system or by using a sign with a QR code or a simple link to encourage sign-ups.
On your website, you can create forms or landing pages that will offer something in return for a customer’s email address.
Creating a form or landing page in ConvertKit is pretty simple. First, choose either a landing page or a form. Then, the type of form and the style. Then you just edit the look.
It’s important to offer something of value in return for email addresses. It’s the best way to convince people to give away their email address.
So what can you offer? Depending on your business how about a free sample, a coupon, a printable checklist/ebook/worksheet, or a private Facebook group?
Anything that you can provide for free can be used as an incentive to subscribers. Do a quick brainstorm and try out a few different ideas to see what your customers like best.
RELATED POST: How to Write an Email Sequence
How often should I send an email newsletter?
At least once a week!
Does that seem like a lot? You want to build a relationship with your customers and the best way to do that is by communicating with them regularly.
If you feel like you can’t commit to weekly, then think about what you can do consistently. Consistency is key!
You can email more often during sales or before big events. People need reminders in order to take action.
Need some ideas on what to send your list? Here are 22 ideas to get you started!
- A welcome to my list email
- A funny story
- New products or services
- A client success story
- An exclusive coupon for subscribers
- A sale announcement
- Upcoming events
- A list of your favorite products
- A new way to use a product
- Photos from an event or show
- A “day in the life” story
- A client spot-light
- An inspiring story
- How you come up with product ideas
- An excerpt from a book you’re reading and your reaction
- Suggestions of other small businesses to follow
- The story behind an Instagram photo
- Invite to follow you on social media
- A recent trip with photos
- A story about a special ingredient or material
- A free printable of your favorite quote
- A list of your favorite tools/supplies/apps