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What Value are You Providing When Email List Building?

One of the most important byproducts of driving traffic to your site is email list building. In order to be successful with your list building strategy, you need to provide value to your target audience and that value depends on the person that comes to your site. I can tell you one thing for sure, just putting a pop up with a discount or subscribe to my newsletter is not an effective way to build your email list. Actually, I take that back, you can build an email list that way, and watch people unsubscribe.

There are plenty of techniques on the mechanics of email list building. I want to talk more on the psychology of getting your website visitors to actually add themselves willingly to your list. There are three main components, knowing your audience, gaining their trust and not marketing too broadly.

Know your audience

If you want to give value, you have to know your audience. In order to know your audience, you have to do your research. What are they looking for in a product or service like yours? What differentiates you from your competition. You have to use this knowledge to craft your message in order to build a list that is not just numbers but a list that is engaged.

A discount or free white paper, will get you a name on the list, but there is a reason that most email campaigns average a 25% open rate, they are just names who took advantage of the offer and that is really all they wanted. Then the next time you send an email, a fair percentage of those who signed up unsubscribe.

However, if you get them to subscribe, not because of an offer, but because they are truly enthusiastic about your content, then you have an engaged subscriber. The only way to do that is to provide the value they are looking for and the only way to do that is to know you audience.

Gain their trust

You have to think about this as dating. You want to develop a relationship with your audience. Like dating, you don’t want it to move forward too quickly. You don’t want it to be like, “hi, nice to meet you now let’s get married.” You want to gain the trust of your visitor and show real value to your audience.

Every business is different and every audience is looking for something different as well. If you know your audience, you know what makes them tick. Generic content that they can easily search for on the web is not valuable. However, provide them something that they can’t easily find or something that they had not thought about, that will provide value.

You’re not everything to everyone

If you are in a business where you have a ton of competition, you may want to think about finding a niche you can exploit. Broad based marketing will dilute your message and basically it will be the equivalent of trying to talk in a crowded room.

Going back to knowing your audience, what are their pain points? What problems can you solve for them well? Here’s an example of a crowded market, think about iPhone cases.

They probably number in the hundreds, if not thousands. Why would you choose one over the other? Otterbox saw a niche for these cases when they saw that phones break and shatter when they are dropped. The designed a case that you can run over with your car or throw in the ocean and it will protect your phone. Their cases were three times the price but people bought them.

Otterbox is an example of knowing their audience, gaining their trust and providing value for their customers. At this point, much of their audience would willingly subscribe to their list. They checked off all the boxes.

Final thoughts

As I said at the beginning, there are plenty of mechanics to capture people and add them to your list. In order to do it effectively, you have to engage your target audience and provide value to them. Value comes in many forms but if you know your audience, you should easily come up with content that will provide value for them.