If you are reading this post, then you already understand the benefits of email marketing. What you need now are the steps to take to start building a list of targeted and engaged subscribers – and that’s exactly what this article will provide you with.
When it comes to successful email marketing, I’m an advocate of using both a blog and YouTube channel so you can get as many subscribers as possible.
In other words, you’re using the first and second-largest search engines, and you have an easy way to add compelling calls to action (CTAs) in your blog posts, as well as YouTube video descriptions or comments.
This article outlines everything you need to know about how to use content marketing as a way to gather email subscribers on both channels.
We’ll start with some of the basic technical aspects to actually capture subscribers when they are on your website, and then move on to the tactics for building a list on your YouTube channel.
For the sake of the article, we’ll assume that you’ve already chosen the best email marketing software for your business, and you’re ready to jump straight into strategies that actually work.
Success in email marketing comes down to three things:
Your free offer is the most important factor that will determine whether or not you manage to build a strong list of subscribers.
Also called a “lead magnet”, “carrot content” or “bribe-to-subscribe”, your offer is an incentive that only your email subscribers will receive.
To build and grow your own list effectively, you need a lead magnet that is useful and relevant to your target audience.
It’s all about transactions and you’ll have to give to get.
Keep in mind that people are super protective about their personal information these days, and in order to get them to part with their email address and increase your conversions, your lead magnet will have to be extremely valuable to them
There are many different types of lead magnets that you can create, including:
Content offers like:
If you find yourself short on resources, you can repurpose some of your existing content to create a high-quality lead magnet.
Alternatively, you can offer non-content lead magnets, such as “free shipping”, or “new collection notifications”.
For instance, a lot of shoppers on a fashion eCommerce store will gladly join the list so they can be informed about new arrivals first.
Not all industries can benefit from content offers, and you might find that simply building a community and offering an invite sometimes works better than the promise of an e-book, as in the example below:
The main thing to consider is that your lead magnet provides immediate, concrete, and tangible value to your subscriber.
Your lead magnet must:
For instance, MyJobSearch.com does a great job of collecting email addresses to offer their visitors a better resume as you can see in the screenshot below. This includes tips, tricks, and access to some of the resume templates in their extensive database.
This technique is particularly effective because it’s so relevant to their visitors and very much in-line with what they’re looking to accomplish.
So, in essence, they are building their list of subscribers while boosting online sales at the same time.
Other ways to get more people to sign up on your website include:
You can also use creative list building widgets, including:
Gamification, in particular, has been proven to be extremely effective for building your email list in a way that is fun and engaging for your audience, as you can see from this example from RugsUSA.
Your call to action is the message you share with potential subscribers in order to encourage them to perform the specific action of signing up to your email list.
Popular CTAs for list building include:
Your CTA can be the determining factor between a successful lead generation campaign and one that fails dismally. It can give you the best conversion results or dampen your efforts. That’s why most marketers work on making it as creative as possible, even if they have to sacrifice their sleep.
But to get the best conversions, you need to optimize your call to action, both the text and button.
Amazing Blog or YouTube Content + Optimized Call to Action = Huge Email List.
So, here are the tips to optimize your CTA:
Pro Tip: To make your CTA even more effective, first highlight the actual problem and then offer the solution through your CTA.
Make sure your text is positive and delivers exactly what your audience wants, as in the example below from Neil Patel’s blog:
The opt-in form is how you will get your subscribers’ information so you can add them to your email list.
It is the link between your prospects and the lead magnet that you’ve created with them in mind.
Your opt-in form needs to be enticing if you want people to pay attention long enough to leave you their contact details.
Here are a few tips to help you create a high converting opt-in form:
Most importantly, keep your opt-in form simple.
All you need right now is your visitor’s name and email address. There is no need to ask them about their nicknames, birthdays, etc.
In fact, asking too many questions might scare them away, so just get the essential information. You can always get the rest later during your email communication.
Your next step in building and growing your email list is to find the right places to display your offer in an optimal way.
There are a lot of universally accepted best practices for placing and optimizing your email opt-in forms.
For instance, you might have a simple subscribe button integrated into your website or social media content with a simple email form that pops up when someone clicks the button.
Alternatively, you can use an opt-in form embedded on the page or a dedicated squeeze page for gathering emails from your visitors.
The list is endless for places to put your opt-in form (with your lead magnet) on your pages.
As you can see, there are tons of options for placing your opting forms.
However, some are more optimal than others, which means that if you want to get effective results, you need to be strategic about placing your forms and lead magnets where your target subscribers are more likely to see and act on them.
Here are some of the best places to add your sign-up forms:
The best places to have a signup form are the ones where there is a high level of traffic, such as the home page.
Make sure your form is placed in a visible area (ideally above the fold) so that visitors don’t miss it.
In addition to the homepage, you can also have your form in these different areas of other high-traffic pages, such as your About page, Contact page, and even your popular blog posts.
You can also embed an opt-in form on your blog pages, using either in-line sign-up forms or end-of-post sign-ups.
One of the main benefits of this type of embedded sign-up form is that it is non-intrusive.
It simply sits on the page and humbly reminds visitors that they have the option to sign up and get your free offer.
Studies show that the top 10% of pop-ups convert at a mouthwatering 9.8%. But, that’s only if you use them the right way according to Google’s interstitial ad guidelines – otherwise, you risk getting penalties from Google.
You can use various types of pop-ups to gather emails on your website, including:
There are many ways to build a list, but pop-ups and overlays are among the easiest ways to fill your email list with targeted prospects who are eager to hear from you.
Also known as a splash page or squeeze page, this is a targeted landing page dedicated to one thing only: getting your visitor’s email.
This standalone page gets better conversions because, unlike sending visitors to a homepage where they might get lost, a landing page has only the elements required to move the visitor toward the ultimate goal.
Here are some of the best practices to follow when building a high-converting landing page:
Most of the advice in this article pertains to building a list on your website or blog.
But, as I mentioned before, I’m a huge advocate of using both your blog and YouTube channel to get subscribers.
Here are some tips to use to get more people to sign up on YouTube.
If you follow the steps outlined above, building an email list from scratch won’t have to be an overwhelming process.
These tips will help you build your list quickly and effectively and ensure that it’s filled with engaged subscribers who are likely to become loyal customers in the long term.
Over to you. Which of these tips do you intend to implement first on your blog or YouTube channel? Share your thoughts below!
What are your thoughts?