If you’re a successful marketer, chances are you know by now that buying email lists is a bad idea. Not only can they be expensive, but they’re usually not effective in reaching potential customers and often put you at risk of being labeled as spam. I’ve even heard stories of purchased email lists leading to the suspension of entire email campaigns due to nearly universal spam filtering, so do your email hygiene a favor and stay away from the purchased lists. But if you can’t rely on buying lists, then how do you build a robust email list yourself?
Here are a few tips…
1. Always get permission
Never scrape the web for email addresses or sneakily get them from your customers. Getting permission leads to higher read rates, and higher read rates means less emails deleted or marked as spam and more visits/purchases on your website. Oh, and provide a clear way to unsubscribe for your recipients lest you end up being marked as spam by default.
2. Give users a reason
Just asking for an email address when a visitor comes to your website is often a good idea, but giving good reasons for an opt-in are even better. Giveaways and promotions are great ways to get emails. People are usually willing to receive a few emails once in a while for the chance to win something of value.
3. Quality newsletters are key
Newsletters that serve a function – say, ones that exclusively distribute you best deals and coupons – are great ways to get emails and spread the word about your emails. Each additional sign-up is going to be a high-value one, so no email scrubbing needed.
4. Get good software
You’ll want to have good online email address verification capabilities as well as a way to automate your list maintenance and email sending. What better way to do this than a high-quality program that does it for you?