How to Build an Email List That Makes You Money

Building an email list still matters. The business and marketing worlds have been talking about it for ~10 years now. But it’s still powerful for these four core reasons, as outlined in last week’s post:

  1. Your subscriber’s inbox is still a sacred, personal space.
  2. Emails are HIGHLY trackable.
  3. Your subscriber’s inbox is a decision-oriented place.
  4. Your subscriber’s inbox is where trust is built.

So the question naturally becomes…

“But how do I actually build an email list?”

There are countless ways to do it, technically.

A mom-and-pop corner store could put a paper on their counter and ask patrons to jot down their email address in exchange for the weekly promotions while they’re checking out.

An automotive body shop could require an email address on their customer’s contact information form and then email then monthly with the latest recall notices and an oil change coupon.

And there are plenty of other tactics out there.

The most common ONLINE tactic to building a list, and what we’ll focus on in this post, is this basic process:

  1. Person visits your website
  2. You offer them something in exchange for their email address.
  3. They take you up on that offer.
  4. They receive the “something” and you receive their email address.

Seems simple, right?

It can be. But if you’ve ever tried to actually do this before, you know it can also be a complete frustration.

How to Build an Email List That Makes You Money by Brit Kolo of JAM Marketing Group, online marketing strategy for creative entrepreneurs

I’m going to show you how this can be a straight-forward, simple process, but first, let’s get something clear:

When it comes to email lists, size does NOT matter.

(Cheeky, but oh so true.)

The point here is NOT to build a gigantic list of thousands and thousands of email addresses.

Why? Because, let’s be honest,

Subscribers don’t pay you anything. Clients do.

[bctt tweet=”Subscribers don’t pay you anything. Clients do.” username=”britkolo”]

You can have a list of 10,000 email addresses and make $0 from it.

Meanwhile, you can have a list of 50 email addresses and earn new clients and recurring revenue month in and month out.

So it’s not about the size of the list. It’s about HOW QUALIFIED the people on that list are to buy from you.

If you’re thinking, “Yeah okay, Brit, but still… the larger the list, the higher chance of getting a customer,” I urge you to go listen to this podcast episode from one of the leading experts in online marketing, Tara Gentile. Through her conversation, Tara makes the important distinction between list building and LEAD generation.

Listen right here:

We all call it “list building” but at the end of the day, that list needs to supply us with qualified leads, ready and willing to buy.

So the goal now is to build our list of qualified leads. Let’s do this.

How to Build an Email List That Makes You Money, JAM Marketing Group

Step #1 – Identify what your prospective client needs to know more about before hiring you. 

To do this, answer these few questions:

  • What did my current clients ask me before beginning their contracts?
  • What do I often have to teach my brand new clients before working with them?
  • What are the common objections to NOT working with me?

Step #2 – Package that information in a format that your prospective client will appreciate.

Again, there are countless formats to choose from; an ebook, a mini course, an informational brochure, a price quote, a complimentary strategy session, an audio series, a discount, free shipping, a template, a quiz…

But what does your prospective client truly want? (Million dollar question, right?)

Different audiences prefer different things.

A sure-fire way to know what your prospective client wants is to… get ready for it… ASK THEM.

If you have clients currently that you’d like more of, ask them what they often opt in for. If you’re targeting a brand new ideal client, find where they hang out and pose the question.

Step #3 – Offer it on your website in exchange for their email address.

This is the easy part. Once you’ve got your information formatted in a way your prospective client will appreciate, offer it front-and-center on your website.

If your website is on WordPress, I suggest using an opt-in plugin like Sumo or MailMunch. They integrate seamlessly with your email marketing software so no download/upload of a CSV file is needed.

Overall, your ideal client still matters most. If you’ve followed this blog for even just a short period of time, you know this.

Getting your ideal client on your email list can greatly benefit your business. To do that, identify what your ideal prospective client needs to know from you right now and how they want to be given that information. Offer it on your website and your email list will grow.

Next week, I’m answering the natural NEXT question – “So once I get my ideal prospective client on my list, how do I SELL to them?” Catch ya then!

Need help building a qualified list full of leads? I can help. In fact, that’s what I do for most of my current clients at some point in their marketing strategy.

Remember? The email inbox is where trust is built. Without trust, the sale can’t happen. So it’s always part of the strategy I build for them.

Let’s discuss how we can work together to build a list of qualified leads. Schedule your JAM Session with me here.

(When you click, you’ll go straight to my appointment calendar and get to select the exact date and time you’d like to chat with me. Super user-friendly and in just a few clicks, you’re scheduled. No emails back and forth trying to find a time that works for both of us. Nice, right?!)

Talk to you soon!

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