In our paperless world, a sturdy e-list is this generation’s rolodex. Having key customers, influencers, and a wide range of clients on your ever-expanding e-list is vital to seeing your brand recognition and small company grow. But how do you build upon this list, and — more importantly — how do you make sure the right, targeted people are getting on it? Below are a host of techniques, suggested by a number of renowned outlets, to help your e-list thrive and prosper.

 

1 Make it easy — and fun — to join.

If you want people to add themselves to your list, make it an easy step for them to take. Consider having a pop-up on your website, a tag at the bottom of your page, or a button on social media channels that succinctly reads “Sign up for more.” But also feel free to have fun with the copy — it should match your company’s tone and brand. A Blue Apron pop-up may read “Want more recipes?” while a HGTV one might say “See more houses.” Keep the call to action intriguing, and make it simple for your would-be customers to sign up.

 

2 Create shareable content.

We’ve discussed how vital compelling content is to promote your brand, and this content can also be a driving force to securing more names. If you include amusing, salesy, or topical content — be it an article, a new discount, or some other engaging media — in your emails, it may prompt viewers to share it with others and thus sign up for your list. And per the first point, make it easy for people to sign up once they’re forwarded that fresh email!

 

3 Promote an online contest.

Hubspot recommends to “use your social media accounts to host a free giveaway in exchange for contact information. Encourage entrants to click through to your website and sign up using their email address.” While mapping out your social media strategy, consider a way to share interesting content while also getting something in return. A giveaway or steep discount now and then can allure new people to your pages.

 

4 Include an anti-spam policy.

Everyone receives junk mail; what sets your emails apart? “Assure potential subscribers you’ll only send relevant info, and you’ll never sell or share their personal info,” Forbes says. You want to ensure your audience that you respect their privacy and that they will only receive content from your company. Don’t give them a reason to not sign up for your list — they’re email is clogged enough!

 

5 Check in with your growing e-list.

Occasionally send out surveys to see that your list is happy. This will show a sense of personalized care and commitment to your list as subscribers and company members. This survey may include a quick questionnaire about what kind of emails they like receiving — sales? newsletters? videos? Then, you can segment your lists to create more personalized emails to each group based off of their responses and preferences.

 

6 Leverage face-to-face meetings.

Going to a professional fair? Having a meeting with new partners? Carry business cards, pass around a sign-up sheet, or include a fishbowl where people can enter their contact info to win a prize. If you can, take a tablet or iPad with you so people can sign up themselves (if you’re at an event where that makes sense). Each interaction is a new opportunity to acquire more contacts!

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