7 Simple Steps To Build An Email List That Works

If you’re a blogger, your readers’ attention is divided.

The noise about social media marketing is too much; you can’t stake the future of your business on it. What about search engine optimization?

Yes, it can be a source of free traffic, but you can’t rely on it. At least, not in this era of rigorous Panda and (Lion) updates. Lol!

You need a much better system, which can give you peace of mind. Email can, social media and SEO can’t!

Email marketing has been the best way to communicate with target audience and build a strong relationship.

It’s quite unfortunate how 75% of bloggers focus their marketing activities on Twitter, Facebook and the latest Pinterest, neglecting what is sustainable.

I’m seriously making plans to write a blog post that compares social media and email marketing.

But understand this: email marketing has no rival. Right from the inception of the internet, communicating via emails has made for deeper connection.

And the popular mantra, “the money is in the list” can’t apply to your business, except you start building an email list today.

So, how do you start capturing email leads and bringing value to the table? Let’s consider 7 simple steps:

1.    Think Long term       email marketing

This initial stage of email marketing, to me is the most important.

I see a lot of people make the mistake of assuming that building a list is for a short while.

Yes, you can build a list to promote a hot product, but you’ve to make plans to convert leads into an asset.

That is, from short term to long term subscribers.

You need to understand that every lead is worth $40 according to Getresponse analytics.

And over the years, I’ve seen the potential in a single subscriber.

Even if they don’t buy your product or visit your blog more often, subscribers can mention you to others – word of mouth marketing. They can give you ideas for your next product creation.

After all, they’ve needs and you’ve to satisfy them, ultimately.

Set standards for your email list. You’re building a business around your blog. It’s not for 2 months, or 2 years. It’s going to be for decades. What next?

2.    Get a reliable autoresponder

The reason why you need to think long term and project your email marketing goal for the future is so that you can use a reliable autoresponder.

I still regret using free email tools. When I realized that a businessman or woman without a list is literally wasting time, I tried migrating to a premium service, but couldn’t.

Guess what happened? I started from scratch all over again. I started collecting email leads again. And driving targeted traffic is hard. But what else can I do – I was encouraged to do it again and again until I succeed.

The two best autoresponder services I recommend are Aweber and Getresponse. I also heard that Mail Chimp is good, but I’m yet to use it. Find out if it’s right for you.

3.    Start a blog or landing page

A landing page can build your email list faster. Although, modern blogging is centered on lead capture, so using a blog can add extra flavor. For instance, when you visit my blog, the first thing you’d see on the header is optin box. Check it out.

Why? Because I want my readers and first time visitors to join my email list. To me, getting people to join your inner circle is what matters. It’s not about writing and publishing daily. It has to be more than that. So, build a landing page or properly place the optin box at the right spots on your blog.

4.    Write your follow up emails

Before you get people on your list, write your follow up emails and queue them up. This way, you can concentrate on driving traffic to your landing page. You can focus on market research and maybe launching an affiliate program to further skyrocket your email list.

Ideally, write follow up emails that can be sent to your subscribers in the first 30 days. This way, you can communicate your personality & brand. Remember, no selling whatsoever – just getting your feet wet.

5.    Obey the 7-rule principle

The last time I spoke to a group of aspiring entrepreneurs, I shared the concept of 7-rule and how it applies to every marketing system.

Did you still remember the popular mantra, “People buy from who they know, trust and like?” And this holds true for email marketing.

Once you convince someone to subscribe to your email list, for the first 7 days, don’t be tempted to send any paid offer. No matter how effective the offer seems, don’t take chances. Use the first 7 days to dazzle your fan.

Yes, every subscriber has automatically become a fan. You either satisfy a fan or they’d move on with their lives. You can apply the 7-rule principle to blogging, email marketing, social media and even to your brick and mortar business. It works. Yes, it does!

6.    Educate your email subscribers

There you’ve it again: “Educate your subscribers.”

I can’t stress the importance of education. You see, people who say the money is in the list actually missed something very important.

Truth be told, the money is not in the list. Yes, you got me right. You don’t make money by simply having thousands of people on your list.

You can only make money when you educate and help subscribers become better in their businesses. And this should be your guiding factor.

Education goes beyond sending the latest blog post. Also, Create exclusive videos, white papers, premium themes, plugins, e-books and so on, and send to your subscribers.

Be concerned about their business. Take yourself out of the equation and truly help people develop that interest to stick with you for as long as you live. Educate in a lively way. Add personality to the mix and you’ll see the impact it can create. Show me the money…

7.    Profit, Profit, Profit

I know you’ve been anticipating for this – hmm, you’ve it now. You can make make money with email marketing.

Let me tell you something shocking about life. It’s a bit about psychology. Here is what I mean: people can feel obliged and convinced to reciprocate the love you’ve shown them. If you’re married, you should understand what I’m talking about.

Every person, whom you’ve assisted, helped, informed and entertained, is secretly looking for ways to compensate you. It may not be in cash. The keyword is “reciprocity.”

See, the last time I sent a product to my subscribers, 54 people bought instantly. I was able to generate $2243.87 in 3 days – thanks to email marketing. But I didn’t achieve this feat overnight. It took months of bringing value to my list. And now, the investment is paying off heavily. I’m so happy.

Email marketing hack

It doesn’t matter what business model you’re into, the worst thing you can do is attract traffic to a page that has no email marketing system.

Think long term, create a landing page or blog, drive traffic and educate subscribers. That’s the secret of making money with email marketing. Want more? See email marketing 101.

Are you building your list already? If yes, what’s your experience so far? Leave a comment below – let’s talk about it. See you there!

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30 thoughts on “7 Simple Steps To Build An Email List That Works”

  1. Carol Hagen says:

    I would like to learn more about email marketing. Thank you.

    1. Keep reading Johnchow.com and you’ll definitely learn so much about email marketing.

      1. Great tips here Michael. Thank you for reminding us.

  2. Eddie Isaac says:

    Hi JOhn,
    Appreciate the article. Really nice one. Just quick question, after how many days do you typically send them products. Would they be still interested in products. Is your education just an ebook or series of articles over many days.

    1. Well it depends on you Eddie. You’re the one to make your list receptive. The first email you’ll send is called “welcome message.” There, you’ve to let subscribers know what’s in store for them.

      Tell them you’ll be sending helpful and credible products every once in a while. The product you send varies. E-book is good, but other content formats is better. You could send a video product, a software, plugin, themes, membership access, webinar and whatever your subscribers want.

      Send out a poll to determine what subscribers truly want. Use surveymonkey.com to create a survey questionnaire.

      But the rule is this: don’t send a paid product to subscribers in the first 7 days. Just educate them before asking for their hard earned cash.

      Note: The 7-day rule is just a rule made by some people. You don’t have to obey it just because they said so. Break the rule if you can, and create a world of your own. I hope I’ve been able to help in my own tiny way?

      Goodluck to you – your email marketing success is certain!

  3. Alan Tay says:

    I encountered your article at iTechCode about making $500 monthly with an email marketing system and I personally think it just works, Michael!

    The key of having a list is to send to relevant audience in a personal manner. With some art of pre-selling, I guess it is true that the money is really in the list.

    P.S.: That is how John survive from being banned by Google as well and I think this article could use him to motivate bloggers on how these simple email list building steps can help you when Google sees you as his enemy.

    1. Thank you so much Tay, yes email marketing has and still helps John in his blogging business. It really works better than SEO, SMM or even guest blogging. I’m talking from experience Tay.

  4. Pointing out email marketing’s reliability in the wake of constant Google algorithm updates is a great move. It helps marketers reach the prospective consumer’s inbox, which is more direct than posting a banner ad or sharing a link on Facebook.

    1. Yes you’re right. We need to get into email marketing now that Google is releasing their weirdest wild animals. Thanks for your amazing comment.

      Note: Could you please use your real name when leaving a comment, so that I can address you accordingly. After all, anchor link isn’t as important as it used to be, prior to panda. What’s your real name?

  5. You’re completely right. I’m one of those who don’t have a email list, but definitely I plan to change that. My focus for now is to at least create some kind of products to offer for free.
    It’s a smart thing to do and to reward your marketing efforts!

  6. Great Article John you made some very good points. Love your work. Very inspiring and I’ll definitely be back to read some more. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thank you Murray for reading this article – we hope to see you more often.

  7. faisal says:

    That is a good way to build a list, but takes time.

    1. Of course, building a list takes a lot of time. And so is making money online. You need to work it out first, before success can come.

  8. Mi Muba says:

    John; you every advice is like a treasure for me. Being a newbie in blogging I badly need counselling from successful bloggers and your blog is a great source of inspiration for me.
    Is there any free and reliable autoresponder to apply on a blog which has not yet started laying eggs.

    1. Even if your blog has not started earning income, I wouldn’t still recommend you invest some few dollars on premium autoresponder service. Steer clear of free email services – believe me, it’s a waste of time.

  9. Add social media to your email marketing campaigns. Many email marketing providers let you schedule Tweets or Facebook posts to publish when the newsletter is released. This lets potential subscribers read your email newsletter via their social profiles which can help your business gain new subscribers. You can also add links within your newsletter to drive your current subscribers to your social profiles.

    1. Perfect Nick. Getresponse actually allows direct posting to FB and Twitter. I didn’t mention that in the post. Thank you for pointing that out.

  10. Mikka says:

    Hey Michael great post

    I think building a list is the foundation if you really want to build a buisness online. I’m not talking about just making some money online, but building a business!

    It’s something like your virtual catchment area, your lead and customer base…

    And once you’ve understood that it’s much easier to sell to a satisfied customer who trusts you than to a cold lead, you really appreciate your list…

    But of course like you said it takes time and you first have to give value before reciving anything…

    Thanx again for this informations

  11. In you opinion do recommend using a redirect landing page to try to get people to opt in or something more like what you have on your website? I have been messing around with a few things, but I’m yet to find something I really am convinced about.

    1. If you’re a blogger, create separate landing pages on your blog to capture email leads. Landing pages work better for list building, because they’re like squeeze pages, but more targeted and rich in content.

  12. Matt says:

    As a blogging newbie I learn about different strategies every single day and I must say it is because of people like you that I started to like it more to blog. Great guidance here, now I got one more thing to do; creating an email list 🙂 Thanks for the article.


  13. joe scandale says:

    thanks for the great tips! as a new blogger your posts are extremely helpful! Quick question, my blog is still very new and I only receive about 10-15 unique visitors daily. At the moment my funds are limited so my question is should I invest in an autoresponder now or wait till I build a larger audience before I start building my list?

    1. What if you can add 3 – 5 targeted persons on your email list every single day, that would be 3 x 30 = 90 subscribers?

      If you’ve limited fund, invest it into a reliable autoresponder, don’t wait for a large audience. In my humble opinion, the best time to start building an email list is now. I hope you understand my point?

  14. Marian says:

    Thanks for this great post! I too think that building a good relationship wih your subscribers will pay off not immediately but over some time. That’s why I like to give lots of useful stuff that people appreciate. I’m not (yet) a millionaire but I’m moving 🙂

    1. Glad to hear that you’re moving towards the millionaire status. Me too and it begins with relationship building. Solve your subscribers’ problems and they’d be loyal for life. I appreciate your comment.

  15. Appreciate the article. Really nice one. Email Marketing is very important to earn more profit in your business.Thanks for sharing this Useful tips for the email internet marketing.

  16. Tablet news says:

    Thanks for this great post! Email marketing is essential in the process of developing websites

  17. asentria says:

    Thanks for this excellent post! I am a blogger and I will try it just now!

  18. Jessie says:

    My question is, what if I have a site that promotes affiliate products? Physical products? Is it still possible to build a list then?

    I’ve cracked my brains so hard but I haven’t got a clue what content to entice the subscribers. Anyone can share their ideas?

    Thanks in advance.

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