4 simple steps to set up an email subscriber list

4 simple steps to set up an email subscriber list

If you’re not already, you really should add email into your marketing mix. But maybe you are feeling overwhelmed by the thought of getting it set up? Then all you need to do is follow the 4 simple steps below to set up your email subscriber list.

⁠Why you should use Email Marketing

Did you know the ROI on email marketing can be as much as 3,800% (so says Hubspot)! It’s one of the oldest digital marketing methods and still one of the most effective.

Unlike social media where access to your audience is controlled by the platform, you own an email subscriber list. Your list is rich with contact details of potential and current customers. ⁠

Anyone who signs up to your email subscription list is an immediately interested lead. Because they opted to give you their personal details tells you they want more from you. ⁠

⁠By nurturing your relationship with your audience by providing them with regular & helpful emails, you can steer them to become customers without any hard sale. Or if they are already a customer you can encourage them to continue the buyer relationship with you. ⁠

⁠Now let’s get you on your way to set up an email subscriber list.

Step 1: Choose an Email Service Provider (ESP)

The first thing to do is to decide which email service provider (ESP) you are going to use. This is different from something like Outlook or Gmail. It is a specific platform to manage your email subscriber list and to send marketing emails. 

There are many to choose from and the majority offer a free startup option.

Think about what you need from an ESP and do some research. So, for example, you need it to:

  • manage your subscriber list (i.e. the names and email addresses of people who sign up)
  • provide easy email creation and automation (including templates and workflows)
  • allow you to set up a landing page (which will be used to gather names and email addresses)
  • offer segmentation or tagging (so you can send more specific and targeted emails to your audience)
  • provide simple integration with platforms you are already using e.g. WordPress so that you can add subscriber and pop up boxes
  • offer in-depth analytics so you can review how well an email performed e.g. who opened it or clicked on a link

I’d recommend MailerLite, Mailchimp or Constant Contact if you’re new to email marketing. 

Once you have decided on an ESP, sign up and follow the setup instructions to create your first email subscriber list.

Step 2: Create a Lead Magnet aka Opt-in Freebie

We all love a good freebie and can’t resist something that’s going to provide an immediate and easy solution to one of our problems. A fantastic way to get people to eagerly sign up to your subscription list is to use a lead magnet aka opt-in freebie.

Start by brainstorming all the pain points of your target audience. Then think about how you can provide a solution to one of those pain points through a piece of content. This could be a mini-guide, a check-list or a how-to video or podcast. You can easily create a PDF guide in Google Docs. Or make it look a bit fancier in Canva.

Play to your content strengths and make something highly valuable. You want people to think, wow, I can’t believe this was free! 

A lead magnet provides your target audience with a quick win and leaves them wanting more. It immediately positions you as an expert in your field. And in turn, this starts building a “know, like & trust” relationship with them. 

Once you have created your lead magnet add it to a shareable location. For example to your website, to Google Drive or Dropbox. Just make sure to set the share options correctly.

How to set up email marketing

Step 3: Set up a Landing Page

There are many ways you can get people to sign up to your email list. But a priority is to get a landing page set up. 

A landing page is a single page with the main purpose to get people to provide you with their contact details in return for the awesome opt-in freebie you’ve created. Within your ESP you will have an option to set up a landing page.

Don’t overcomplicate what to include on the landing page. Here are some things to include on it:

  • Create a compelling graphic or image in Canva to promote your opt-in freebie.
  • Think about your target audience and address the landing page to them.
  • Ask them a question or write a statement about the pain point your lead magnet will solve.
  • Tell them the transformation they will get from downloading your opt-in freebie and why they must subscribe.
  • Let them know what incredible resources they will receive as being part of your email subscriber list.
  • Provide a very clear Call to Action (CTA) button to fill in the details and sign up.
  • Make sure your landing page is GDPR compliant. 
  • Don’t include any other links on the landing page, just the box to get them to subscribe.

Once you have a landing page set up, now you need to tell people about it.

Step 4: Get Subscribers

Now it’s time to start building your audience.

One important point first of all. Of course, it’s a great feeling to have lots of people signing up but it’s more important to have an engaged list. So don’t be too hung up on the numbers. Be focused on getting the right people on your list and providing the right information to them, at the right time. Then you can nurture that audience towards becoming a customer. 

Make sure you are utilising the landing page to its max and any opportunity to encourage people to become a subscriber.

Through your website

Have links to your landing page on your homepage, scattered through your webpages and blog posts or offer it as a content upgrade (see below about what this is). 

Add a subscriber box to every blog post.

You can also add subscription forms in various formats to your website such as top or header bars, pop up & scroll boxes. 

You can even build it into your SEO strategy by writing new blog posts with focus keywords used within your lead magnet. Then lead people seamlessly to your landing page. 

Add it to the contact form or any other forms on your website – just make sure you tell people what they are signing up for. 

Add a link direct from the menu bar to the landing page.

Through your social media

Tell people about it in your social media posts, videos and Instagam reels across all the platforms your audience is hanging out. Make sure you tell people where to go to subscribe.

Update your social media platforms, for example, add a link to the landing page into your Instagram description, create a Facebook banner graphic linking to it and include a link on your LinkedIn page.

Share it in Facebook groups when they invite you to share a freebie or offer. 

Redirect people who comment on your social media posts and show genuine interest in what you do to your landing page.

Create pins on Pinterest with a link to the landing page.

More ways to get people on your subscriber list

Add a link to your landing page on your email signature.

If you have more time to get more people on your subscription list you could create and offer a free email course or a webinar. People need to add themselves to your email subscriber list to participate.

Get creative and share share share!

What is a content upgrade?

You’ll remember from above I mentioned about using your opt-in freebie as a content upgrade?

Well, a content upgrade is basically when you offer something a little bit more to the information in a blog post. Go download this checklist, listen to this podcast etc, etc which will help you do this.

Now you’ve got people subscribing to your list but you don’t want the emails you are sending to your audience to fall flat. So go grab a copy of my How to write your marketing emails & boost engagement cheat sheet to make sure everyone eagerly opens every one of your emails. [That’s a content upgrade!]

Further help setting up an email subscriber list

If you still need some further support in setting up your email subscriber list let’s schedule a “hold your hand” zoom call to get you set up. Or I can just do the initial work for you. Whatever method works for you, let’s get “set up email marketing” off the to-do list and get new subscribers jumping at the chance to receive emails from you!

I hope this has been useful in giving you the knowledge to set up an email subscriber list.

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