- Email Marketing Is Not Dead, Part 2: Building a List
- Email Marketing is Not Dead, Part 1: Putting Together a Strategy
- The Definitive Guide to Retaining Email Subscribers
- The Definitive Guide to Building an Awesome Email Marketing List
- The Science of Email Marketing
- Email Marketing Is Not Dead, Part 3: Creating Content
Even in this social media-crazy world we live in, email is still relevant. There is one big reason: Email is really the only way to get in front of your current and prospective clients on a regular basis.
No matter how much you and your audience use social media, your messages on those platforms can easily get lost. Will they see your tweet, read their status update in their Facebook news feed, or get your latest blog post in whatever eReader program they use to keep their reading organized? The great thing about an email boils down to this: Your prospects and custoemrs will have to at least glance at the subject line before deciding whether to read or delete it.
In this three-part series on email marketing, we are looking at putting together a strategy (that was part 1) and creating content (part 3) that will engage your target market. In this post, we are looking at how to build a list. Some of the information in this series is courtesy of the HubSpot eBook 7 Steps to Jump Start Your Email Marketing Strategy.
Here are three tips on building your list, and one on maintaining it:
Do Not Buy a List
I have always strongly cautioned my clients against buying lists. You don’t know how the information is collected or even how good it is til you send your first few emails. But worse, the people on the list have not opted in to receive your messages, and you could be viewed as an annoyance, or worse, a spammer, thus sullying your brand’s reputation.
Pull Leads from Directories
It is OK to pull leads from lead directories like LinkedIn, JigSaw, Lead411 and others. Put together a short email to send to these people, including a friendly introduction and an invite to join your enewsletter list, a link to a white paper, guide, tips and tricks list, eBook or other valuable content. Be sure to stress how your company, products, and services can benefit them.
Collect Business Cards
Wherever you are, collect contact information – and the easiest way to do this is via business cards. You could be at a conference, tradeshow, networking event, industry event or association event. If someone gives you their business card, it is OK to add them to your contact list; if they wanted nothing to do with you, they would not give you their business card in the first place.
Choose a CRM App
To keep your list organized, choose a customer relationship management (CRM) application that fits your needs. There are a lot of options out there: Batchbook, Xobni, Zoho, Gist. Play around with them to see which works best for you.
Segmented lists are super helpful, because all of your contacts do not need to get all of your messages – current and prospective clients have different needs, as well as those in different geographic areas, industries, with different business sizes, etc.
Keep your list as clean and updated as possible. When someone changes titles or companies, note that. When someone unsubscribes, remove them from your CRM. When someone becomes a client, note that.
Next up in this series: Creating Content.
Image courtesy of creative design agency ArraeGoogle+