You’ve probably heard the phrase ‘the money is in the list’.  The concept is that people who have already signed up to hear from you are at least ‘warm’ contacts and have, effectively, said ‘I’m interested’.

Most professional marketers invest a fair bit of time and effort in building their lists.  The success of their business is in building a tribe of people who are actively following you and are ready to hear from you.

Think of all the big retailers – once you’ve bought something you’re probably on their list and they regularly contact you with offers they think you’re interested in.  With smart software they target the kind of things you’ve bought before – so your local supermarket will give you offers on the products you buy regularly.  Your local DIY store will send you offers and promotions for home improvements if you’ve bought a kitchen or bathroom from them, etc. etc.

Get your list targeted

One of the most popular ways to build a list is to offer a free download in exchange for a name and email address.  This works well – providing you have the right freebie.

Obviously it has to have value for people to be willing to part with their contact details in order to get it, BUT there’s more to it.  The freebie needs to be highly targeted to your ideal client to ensure the list you build has maximum value. 

A general item that is useful to a wide range of people will just build you a list with a lot of people who aren’t really interested.  This will result in low open rates and lots of unsubscribes.

If you get your offer right, you’ll build a list full of people who are keen to hear whatever you have to say and are potential buyers for your products and services.

Make your contacts into VIPs

It’s harder to get people to sign up to lists – we’ve all got dozens of free documents we’ve never read on our computers.  However, we do engage with content online, so it may be useful to offer your subscribers VIP access to a group or membership platform.

This means you can share more value with them in a dedicated group or offer a subscription option to gain access to even more value – like ecourses and live Q&A sessions or a monthly webinar.

Be creative, but also be consistent.  If you make a commitment to your tribe you need to keep it.