Imagine crowds of people walking the streets. They see a beautiful building filled with people smiling ear to ear. There’s a buzz of excitement. An event is about to happen. There will be spot prizes and free gifts.

The crowds make their way to the door of the building and leave their details at the welcome desk so they can take a good look around and find out what all the excitement is about.

Over time, thousands of people may visit your website.

Those who join your email list are those that made their way into the door of your building and left their details.

Your job as an Email Marketer is to entice people into the door and keep them entertained so they keep exploring each room.


To answer your question, What’s an Email List For, I’m going to cover three important points, What, Why and How.

1. What’s an Email List

2. Why Build an Email List

3. The How to Build an Email List

So let’s start with the simplest one.

What's an Email List?

Image Credit: Free on Canva Pro

What’s an Email List

An email list could also be called an email database because it’s a list of your customers or prospects and their email addresses.

Sometimes you may have more information than just a name and email address, it all depends on how many details you requested when you created your capture form.

An email database could well be your businesses most valuable asset. Here’s why.

Why Build an Email List? So your message gets heard.

Image Credit: Free on Canva Pro

Why Build an Email List?

In a nutshell, so your message has the best chance of being heard.

Here are 7 important reasons to start building your email list today.

1. It’s Yours

Imagine pouring your heart and soul into building a tribe on social media, only to have it snatched away from you?

I’ve seen this happen many times. Facebook accounts get shut down, you lose your group and access to your contacts.

It’s much safer to build your tribe on your own platform (e.g. a membership site) and far simpler to build an email list.

You own your email list.

2. It Keeps Your Website Top of Mind

Having someone subscribe to your email list is the difference between having someone visit your site once and having someone visiting your site again and again.

3. It’s How You Build Relationships

Trust is built over time. Strong relationships are built over time.

By sending out regular e-mails to your prospects and clients, you foster friendship and goodwill. Especially if you’re sending out valuable information and inspiration and not just promoting offers in every mail.

4. It’s Personal

You can say things to your email list that you can’t say online. Your email subscribers are your inner circle. You can show some vulnerability or let them in on your secrets.

Treat your email subscribers like VIP’s. Allow them access to events earlier than everyone else, you can extend special offers to them.

5. It’s Automated

You can send emails out in your sleep.

6. It’s a Money Making Machine

People don’t buy from you until they know, like and trust you.

Owning an email list gives you the best chance of dribbling out offers and special offers to your prospects and customers.

When you launch a new product or service, your email subscribers are the first to hear about it. And they’ll also be the first to buy into your new idea.

Because you’ve taken the time to build a relationship with them. You’ve offered them value, day in and day out. And they’ve also got to know you, your heart. They get to know you genuinely care about them.

Which is why email outperforms every other marketing channel.

7. It’s How You Get Heard

Do you check your emails on your smartphone while you’re sipping your first morning cuppa? And every hour or so after that? You are not alone. Cellphones have made it remarkably easy to keep in touch with our business throughout the day.

Emails are your best chance at breaking through all the noise on the internet.

And you can see who opens your emails and who clicks on your links — and when.

The How to Build an Email List

Image Credit: Free on Canva Pro

The How to Build an Email List

Keep in mind that the purpose of all content marketing is to

  • Educate
  • Engage
  • Inform
  • Inspire
  • Entertain

Some Quick Tips

Most people sign up to an email list in order to get something in return, a freebie, information or inspiration.

You also want to continually give your subscribers a reason to open your emails.

So make your headlines catchy. Draw them in.

And then deliver so much value in your emails that they keep coming back for more.

Here are the latest, greatest strategies you can use to build your email list right now.

How to Build an Email List (Fast)

I’m presenting these 7 strategies a little differently than my previous 7 points — as a countdown, placing them in order of the easiest strategies to the most advanced strategies.

The 7 Fastest Email List Building Strategies

How to Build an Email List Fast

Image Credit: Free on Canva Pro

7. Create a Sales Funnel

Create landing pages or squeeze pages to offer valuable freebies to your audience and promote your entry-level offers.

I’ve covered this topic in-depth already, so I’m not going to reinvent the wheel.

Read more in this post: What’s a Sales Funnel?

6. Content Upgrades

Have you ever started reading a brilliant post and a few paragraphs in, a pop up appears offering to send you the PDF version of the post? Or a handy checklist or cheatsheet? Or even a free e-book?

Content Upgrades are bonus content you offer to your readers in exchange for their emails.

Content Upgrades are quick and easy to create and they are the perfect way to capture emails by offering valuable information.

It’s also a great way to find out what challenges your subscribers are facing, what problems they would like solved.

Now the best time to do this is as you’re creating a post, but if you’re like me and only learnt this strategy after you’d published hundreds of posts, you can start by creating content upgrades for your most popular posts.

  • Go to Google Analytics and research your page views. (Click on Behaviour, Site Content, All Pages).
  • Then create and add content upgrades to each of them by summarising each post.

You can turn your longer posts or a series of posts covering one topic into e-books. Shorter posts can become checklists or cheatsheets. You could also offer a free video, quick start guide, report, survey, worksheet, assignment, challenge, you name it. Get creative.

5. Exit Pop-Ups

Virtually the same as a Content Upgrade, except that this pop up is designed to appear as someone is about to leave your website.

Love them or hate them, popups convert like crazy and an exit pop-up is the least annoying because it’s the most unobtrusive.

4. Run a Competition

Find some sponsors, rustle up some amazing prizes and launch a competition online. Make sure the prizes are solutions to your customers biggest problems or goodies they simply can’t live without.

3. Create a Tribe on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is one of the fastest-growing platforms online today. And it’s the most professional.

I found it easiest to build targeted connections on LinkedIn. I know have over 15,000 connections, they are ALL women. Most of them are women entrepreneurs.

So I created a couple of groups on LinkedIn to serve my target audience and give them a space to get to know each other and share ideas.

Fempreneurs UniteMompreneurs UniteFempreneurs Unite

Mompreneurs Unite

And Invite Contacts to Join Your Groups

I send out messages daily to my contacts to invite them to join my groups and my email list. Interestingly, though, I’ve had a number of amazing ladies join my groups who are not my contacts. So I’m about to employ a new strategy.

Welcome Message to new Group Members

Craft a welcome message to new members and include a link to subscribe to your email list. Keep it really simple. Your message could go something like this.

Welcome! Thanks so much for joining my group.

Wonderful to have you as part of my growing tribe of {insert your niche here}

Would you also like to become part of my inner circle? And get handy tips on how to grow your business online?

Sign up for my email newsletter here, http://join.inspiringmompreneurs.com/welcome

Of course, you can use this strategy for any group you’re running, whether it’s on LinkedIn or Facebook.

2. Create Webinars

Creating a webinar is a brilliant way to build your authority online and position yourself as an expert in your niche.

Use your webinar as a lead magnet (freebie) or content upgrade. Use your webinar in your sales funnel.

Host webinars with other powerhouses in your niche, or go the whole hog and…

1. Launch Your Own Online Summit

Coming in at first place is creating your own Virtual Summit. An Online Summit is an event, kind of like a Conference or Convention, except that it doesn’t happen at a Hotel or Convention Centre, it happens on the net.

The format I’ve seen most Summits take is a daily series of interviews with high profile speakers. So on each day of the Conference, you’ll get to watch 5 to 10 videos, each around 30 minutes to an hour in length.

This is a higher grade strategy.

It will take you at least 3 months to create and promote your own online summit. Yet it’s still one of the fastest ways to build your email list. Because all the speakers you invite on your summit will be promoting your summit to email lists. And to sign up for the summit, each participant will have to register on yours. How cool is that?

Conclusion

Now that you know what an email list is, why you should build an email list and you’ve learned some advanced list building strategies in the how to build an email list, it’s really simple to answer your primary question.

What’s an Email List For? Get website visitors into the door and keep them in the building.

Image Credit: Free on Canva Pro

What’s an Email List for?

For companies (or digital entrepreneurs), an email list is to get people in the door and keep them there.

The best way to build long-lasting relationships with your prospects and customers, making it the perfect marketing tool and your most valuable business asset.

For email subscribers, it’s the perfect way to get to know, like and trust a company (or digital entrepreneur).

Eager to learn how to build a profitable business online as a digital entrepreneur?

Join my email list — click here.

If you purchase anything through a link in this article, you should assume that I have an affiliate relationship with the company providing the product or service that you purchase, and that I’ll be compensated in some small way at no extra cost to you.