Today’s topic: Email lists, and why even today they are still important. Why do I need that? I have social media. No one uses email anymore, you say. We will tell you all about email lists and more importantly why you MUST have one to make money with your blog.
Wait, why email? Isn’t social media the cool new thing these days?
Well, that’s true. Social media is all the rage these days, and for good reason. It’s probably the most effective form of marketing on the planet today, maybe the most effective form of all time. It does wonders for your traffic.
But consider this: 90% of the people who get to your website, however they find you (via word of mouth, social media, search engines like Bing! or Google, for example), don’t come back. They visit once and leave forever. That’s kind of a problem if you want to start a website that generates ad revenue and ultimately generates you an income. You want them to come back and come back regularly.
How do you get those visitors to come back to your site?
It’s quite simple: you get yourself an email list set up – and get your visitors to sign up to it. The trick is to get people to give you their email address willingly, so that you can contact them regularly and entice them to come back check out all the cool stuff you’ve been writing about. All that is known as email marketing.
How do you get people to give you their email address?
So now you know you need an email list. But how do you get someone to give you their email address? Simple: you don’t. No one is just going to hand you that information.
Way too many people already have their email address and they are already overwhelmed by the sheer amount of legitimate emails they receive on a daily basis (and we’re not even mentioning the spam emails they get). Just think about your own inbox… you know what we’re talking about here. So they aren’t exactly in a big hurry to hand their email addresses over to someone who is going to pile even more emails into their inbox.
No one gives that info away all willy nilly, but they WILL give it to you, if you know how to ask. How do you ask? By giving them something. Saying things like “sign up for our email list in order to get this FREE (insert e-book, free credit report, free Aardvark calendar or anything else you think they just can’t live with out)” works a lot better than saying “please sign up for our newsletter or email list (which probably contains absolutely NOTHING that they’d want to read anyway).
The term some marketers use here is an ethical bribe… you bribe people to give you a chance to contact them over email by offering them a great incentive they ACTUALLY WANT in order to get on your list.
Tip: No one cares about your “newsletter”.
This leads us to a very important point. We want you to say the following out loud with us: Nobody gives a damn about your newsletter. It’s harsh, I know, but it’s true.
No one wants to hear about all the fancy new office layout or the new site redesign or whatever. People are busy and selfish. They don’t care about YOU, they care about THEM. They have problems and they want to know how to solve them. Focus on what they need. More importantly focus on how YOU are the one to solve their problems for them.
Send your subscribers great content to establish yourself as an expert.
Now that you’ve got them subscribed to your list, it’s all up to you… and it comes down to 2 main things: quality and consistency.
Quality: Don’t email people junk, send them useful stuff. It’s that simple.
If you expect someone to read what you have to say regularly and not immediately unsubscribe, then send them somehthing that’ll actually have some value to them. Maybe the best tips of the week for whatever topic of newsletter they signed up for, be it puppy care tips or whatever. Do it right, it’ll be worth it in the end. This is not to say you can’t send them offers for quality services they can use, that’s fine. But for every offer you send, plan to send 3 to 5 useful pieces of information that makes them feel your email is worth opening.
Consistency: Send out your newsletter regularly so your readers know when to expect them.
Sending your newsletter messages out consistently is crucial.
People (and search engines) like consistency, a reliable, predictable schedule that shows them “you’re serious” and in this for the long haul, not some guy out to make a quick buck.
Over time your email list will grow, and so will your customer base.
It will take time, but it is a moral imperative that you become a trusted expert in their minds. Why? Because when they want more information on a particular topic, or more importantly, if they want to buy something on the topic who do you think they will be turning to? Some random guy who sends out an email once a month. Are they going to ask themselves “What would Yoda do?” No, no they won’t. They will turn to their trusted expert on the subject whip out their wallet and hand that trusted expert some hard earned cash. Now do you see why you want to be their own personal Yoda (aka trusted expert) on the subject? That’s what we thought. Now you have seen the light, young grasshopper. Now go out and prosper!