The Money Is In The list
If you have been involved in Internet Marketing for more than five minutes then you will have probably heard that the “money is in the list”. It may seem like a cliché but it is as true today as it was ten years ago and is unlikely to change much in the future. The reason that list building is so important is that most people will not buy straight from your sales page. In conventional offline sales, it takes on average 7 contacts with a potential customer to get them to agree to your offer. The only real way that this can be replicated online is by email list building.
Use Effective List Building Techniques
Unless you have a blog with such captivating content that your visitors cannot wait until you make your next post then you will need an incentive for people to provide you with their details. This needs to be something that is very closely related to the theme of your site and is not available elsewhere. So if you have a site about weight loss then you could offer them access to a free report about the “secrets of increasing your metabolism” (just an example) where they would need to provide their name and email address in order to download this goldmine of a free report. This is one of the most effective list building techniques out there and it has worked well for many years.
More established Internet users are becoming more aware of this form of marketing and they are probably already on several lists related to their topic of interest. These days you need to offer something of real value and not just any old PLR crap. I have found that real unique content written by you or a ghostwriter works the best. Also it needs to really answer questions that are hot in that particular niche. You can do this by searching for questions and answers online at forums and answer sites like Yahoo answers. You could buy a good guide on the subject and then extract a small report from the guide by writing the main questions and answers in your own words. Never copy other people’s material as this can land you in very deep water in a legal sense.
What You Need For An Effective List Building System
What do you need to create an effective list building system? Well the first thing is a quality incentive which we have already discussed. Then you will need an auto responder which will automatically send emails out to your list. There are two ways that you can do this. You can use a service such as Aweber or Get Response and they will save the details of your subscribers on their servers and send the emails for you, or you can install your own auto responder script on your hosting server. If you are new to this then I would recommend going with a service like Aweber to start with. Once you have your auto responder in place then you need at least ten emails written about your subject that will provide value to your subscribers and will be automatically sent to them at a certain time after they have opted in to your list.
Good List Building Tips
One of the best list building tips that I can give you is not to bombard your subscribers with tons of offers all the time. They will unsubscribe very quickly. It is a good idea to provide useful information to them which does not include any affiliate links or links to your own products and services the majority of the time. They will trust you a lot more if you do this and when you do send an email with an offer then they will be more inclined to buy what you are offering because you have built up that trust with them. Try and give as much away as possible in your emails without giving away the crown jewels so to speak. Use cliff hangers to give them a taste of something and if they want more then they will have to buy your course or service.
You Can Broadcast To Your List
Once you have a good size list you can send them occasional broadcast messages. This means that you write one email and then blast it out to all of the people on your list. This is great for upcoming product launches (be they yours or somebody else’s) and can get a really good response if they are worded well. It is not a good idea to overdo this as you will be facing a lot of angry subscribers who will probably vote with the unsubscribe link!
Send Them Back To Your Site
One way that I have found increases conversions is to send the subscriber back to your site when they read the email. Give them a teaser in the email like a cliff hanger and then provide a link back to your blog or web site where they can read the rest of the message. Make sure that you protect your pages so that they cannot be found publically through search engines etc. A great way to do this is by using WordPress and a free membership plug in like S2 member. With this setup you can protect your pages and provide access to other content once they upgrade their membership from a free to a paid membership. Another benefit of driving people back to your site is that it filters the interested parties from the semi or hardly interested people. Why is this important? Well the interested parties are much more likely to read what is on the page if they have bothered to click the link in the email and also they are more likely to buy if they have gone to all this trouble. It is also good for search engine rankings as Google and the others can see that your visitors are returning again and again.
This post on how to build a list should be treated as the tip of the iceberg. What I wanted to emphasize here is the importance of having a list building system and the reasons why it is so important. The quality of your incentive to opt in and the follow up emails that you send cannot be overstated and I will provide more on this in another post.