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Why You Need an Email Marketing List

In this article, we’re going to look at how you can start building an email marketing list for a fresh WordPress website — but before that, let’s quickly establish why you should be doing this. You probably have some understanding already, but there’s no harm in recapping, and it’s important to remember the end goal of gathering email contacts.

Here’s the main point: email marketing is an incredibly-powerful tool with superb ROI when used well. And since you can’t carry out email marketing without email addresses (specifically relevant email addresses that were willingly provided), it’s clear why you need a list.

Furthermore, you’re likely to be making an effort to promote your website in general — writing blog posts and using social media to drive traffic in your direction — so why not take the opportunity to capture some highly-relevant email addresses? It would be a waste not to, particularly if you’re using WordPress for something high-value like ecommerce.

With that established, let’s move on to the main goal of this article: setting out some core tips for building an email marketing list through a WordPress site.

How to Create Opportunities

To get people to the point of being able to sign up to your email newsletter, you first need to get them to your site — and that’s the biggest challenge for a new website. Creating a compelling reason for a visitor to subscribe won’t help if you don’t have any visitors. So how do you go about creating the necessary opportunities? Here are some straightforward suggestions:

  • Get conversational on social media. Whatever niche your website serves, you’ll be able to find relevant people active on social media, giving you a tremendous opportunity to introduce them to your content. Don’t be too pushy, though: look for conversations in which your content might be worthwhile, and casually mention it.
  • Generate fresh context-relevant content. As you’re browsing social media or online forums, you may find specific queries that keep coming up. Instead of trying to adapt your existing content, you could create fresh content specifically to answer those queries (handling industry FAQs is one of the best content marketing options).
  • Focus on popular dates. You likely aren’t able to produce content at a rapid pace. Instead of doing that, then, you should focus on making content for notable dates (Christmas, Easter, even the Black Friday – Cyber Monday weekend), because it will get a lot of attention. Merchants invest hugely in BFCM because it pays off. Why not take advantage of all that search traffic by creating some BFCM-themed content?
  • Use the skyscraper technique. Very simply, this idea involves researching the best content that’s already out there (relevant to your niche, at least) and slightly iterating upon it. If someone has a list of 50 tools valuable in your field, for instance, you could write a list of 60 tools, and base it mainly on the existing piece. Succeed in supplanting the old post, and yours will start getting a lot of traffic.

You can also concentrate on technical SEO, run PPC campaigns, or make visitor retention your goal to bring in referral traffic. Regardless of how you approach the problem, the key element is earning traffic. If your current tactics aren’t doing that, then change them.

How to Justify Asking for an Email Address

The principle that drives email marketing lists is that of reciprocity. When you offer someone significant value, you earn the right to ask for something in return — and if it isn’t worth too much to them (and it isn’t inconvenient to provide), then they’ll likely give it to you.

Before you can reasonably ask for an email address, then, you need to provide some meaningful value to justify the subscription. So what can you provide through your newsletter? Well, here’s a shortlist of just some of the things you can offer that might be worth signing up:

  • Downloadable resources. You could create a guide of some kind as a downloadable file (typically a PDF), then offer it to anyone who signs up to your newsletter. You could even offer numerous guides — perhaps as part of a series.
  • Informative posts. Even websites that have set content schedules don’t always update on time. Due to this, you could ask for an email address so you could email that person to let them know when you’ve updated your site.
  • Product/service discounts. If you sell anything through your site (most likely through WooCommerce or something similar), then you could offer a discount on that item for anyone who signs up to your newsletter. This is a reliable tactic.

Now, you don’t have to offer any of these things. You could simply stick to writing high-quality content and make it so good that readers will want to sign up to your email newsletter simply to reward you for that brilliance — but that’s far easier said than done.

How to Ask in the Most Effective Way

Even if you bring in a lot of traffic and offer something great to compel a subscription, you still need to achieve two more things: get the phrasing right, and get the process right. The phrasing is essential because it can make or break your offer. Consider the difference between “Great resources! Just your email address needed! Enter it here!” and “Sign up today for exclusive free guides, tutorials, and articles”. The first sounds desperate — the second sounds confident.

As for the process of getting the address (along with whichever other details you want to collect), you need to optimize your forms. They should be simple and straightforward, because even the slightest issue with clarity can cause problems. Here are some viable mailing list plugins for you to consider adding to your new site — once you’ve chosen a plugin, you can start creating your forms simply and easily.

Wrapping up, building an email marketing list for a new WordPress site is tricky, but not impossible. You need to bring in relevant traffic, offer enough value to justify asking for an email address, and combine strong phrasing with a solid form system to get results.

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