The other day I was working with a client, helping them think about growing their list and traffic to their site. When I was done writing it up, I realized these growth tips could help you too. So here they are.
7 Ways I Grew My Email List
1. Ask people to sign up for your list. In many ways.
Here's what we know. If you don't ask, they won't sign up. And few people ask. Ever. Some people have active sites but never invite a more consistent engagement with site visitors. I'm getting ready to redeploy Optin Monster but I've also used Drip, and others.
Even more important that simply asking, is asking in a variety of ways. That means in the sidebar, at the bottom of a post, in the header, as they get ready to leave your site (exit intent is something Optin Monster supports). Right now I have 2 active and getting ready to add back a 3rd (which I pause back in November). Three different ways to invite people to sign up for a mailing list, to join a club or to take one of my courses.
2. Hold Events (Webinars & Contests)
Sometimes people don't know how to put my content to use. Whether it's a tutorial, a comparison guide, an infographic, or an encouragement to use a product – people still don't know how to act.
So I hold webinars and run contests to help them learn how to engage my material more effectively. I'll spend 30 minutes walking them thru an infographic on selecting the right membership plugin for them (and then take questions).
This introduces me to a new audience I haven't reached before. It invites them to check out my site and its content. And I get their email when they sign up for my webinar.
Google Hangouts have been fun because these are intimate – 10 people get togethers that let me do Q&A in a much more personal way.
I held a content for a free iPad mini (which was less than $500). The result was tons of folks (over 300) commenting on a single post, sharing my content to their entire networks (over 400,000 recipients in a single day) and sending me their contact info.
3. The Use of YouTube Videos (w/ Calls to Action)
YouTube, you already know this, is the second largest search engine on the planet. So it's not shock that people look there for stuff. So I decided that some quick screen casts, webinar recordings, and even some straight talk to the computer were all worth trying out.
The biggest hit has been a round table I help run, on Monday mornings, that gathers people together in a hangout to talk about WordPress things. Our show (http://youtube.com/
Whether you host a show, talk to the screen or post webinars, the one thing to remember is to create a call to action that routes folks back to where you want them to be (a dedicated landing page, a subscribe form, etc).
4. Never forget face to face interactions
It's silly but I realized I was holding meetups (local meetings) where 30-45 folks would come every month to hear about WordPress and I never put out a sign up form where I could collect emails of people that might want my daily newsletter.
Fixed that pretty quick.
Then I realized I wasn't doing it when I went to present. That was harder. But I worked on it. Eventually I created a simple url to let people sign up – and put it on a business card.
5. Use a Special Offer
Often, right before I publish a new eBook, I'll pick a day and give one (or more) of my old eBooks away for free – but only if you give me your email and agree to join my list. If not, you'll have to spend $9.99 of your own money. And even for that tiny savings, people gladly sign up.
6. At the end of a sale
I sell eBooks on my site. Right now I'm shifting over to WooCommerce. But when it was using Cart66 Cloud, one of the things I had it offer (via a small and simple check box) was the opportunity (at the end of the sale) to join my list.
7. Guest Posts & Shared Content
The more I was introduced to others, by writing on other sites, the more my list grew – as people followed me back to my site and signed up.
I also joined Triberr, where my “tribe” of people like me, can share as little or as much as I like. But by belonging to 32 tribes, I have 1,000 people who can view and share my content with their networks, and my reach is 30,000,000.
3 Ways I Grew my Web Traffic
But I didn't just hope that people would sign up on forms. I had to bring traffic to the site to create the options for potential growth and greater engagement. Here are the three tools I used.
All of the above helped my web traffic, but none more than Triberr. It helped me create networks that would share my content. Tweets would go out – and people would a) follow the links to my site and b) follow me on Twitter. Traffic and Followers – both from Triberr.
[note: requires good, useful, and helpful content – but you have that]
2. Google +
But that wasn't all I used to bring folks back to my site. I also blogged regularly (daily). And I posted each of these to Google +.
Right now you're wondering if I'm joking. But I'm not. Google+ isn't a social network. Instead, it's a powerful way to quickly get your content indexed by them, for search.
Just yesterday, I got an email from Slideshare saying my content was in the top 2% of content shared on their site.
I have just over 200 folks that follow me there. But they share my content. And as they embed some of my decks, others learn about me and come by for a visit.
Over 20% of my 25,000 views come from other sites that have embedded my content. Plus with a Pro account, I can collect email signups that I later load into MailChimp.