9 Tips To Build An Engaged Email List
Building an engaged email list is still relevant and very useful in today’s time. In fact, 89% of marketers still consider email as their primary distribution channel. Given this high number, the saying “email is dead” can never be further from the truth.
However, building an email list isn’t enough. A brand or business needs to employ engagement-based email strategies to turn that email list to an interested audience. These are audiences that are excited to read the contents of your email.
If you aim to achieve such a thing for your business, I have listed proven tips for building an engaged email list. So get your pen and papers ready, and let’s get right to the topic.
1. Maintain a healthy email list
The first step to creating an engaged email list is to check your current list. If you’ve been struggling to hit your desired conversion rates, then it’s safe to say that your email list isn’t as active as it once was. This is usually the case for businesses that have already been around for several years.
What you need to do is to clean your email list. Look for the accounts that are not active and have not engaged with your email for quite some time. These inactive accounts contribute to your bounce rates and other undesirable email metrics.
Doing this might significantly decrease your email list, especially if you haven’t done this in a while. However, a small engaged email list is better than a big list of emails that don’t engage with your marketing campaigns.
Don’t worry if you’ve found your big list to deflate in numbers. The following tips listed here would help you in building an engaged audience.
2. Know your market on a deeper level
Market research is a process that’s overlooked by businesses that have been in operations for several years. Some don’t bother doing this since they think they have a clear picture of what their audience wants.
What they don’t realize is that interests change with time. What was liked and loved by your market a year ago may not be the same this year or the following years to come. Another aspect to look at would be your market’s issues and challenges.
If you can determine what these problems are, you can use that information and structure your email content around it. You can highlight your product in a way that is presented as the solution to their problems.
Identifying the problem and giving out a solution is a combination used by various businesses due to its effectiveness in converting people. Unfortunately, most companies settle on only surface-level information about their market and they think it’s enough.
If you want to create an engaged list where recipients are excited to open and read your email, you need to understand your market on a deeper level.
3. Add a human touch to your emails
With automation present in almost every business process today, it’s important not to forget to add a human touch to your campaigns. What some businesses fail to realize is that their great dependency on technology is what’s causing them to lose clients.
Customers, clients, and prospects are humans too. If they receive an automated message that feels dry and inauthentic, they quickly dismiss that campaign or message. Sending out an email blast that’s too promotional and has zero effort on making it relatable can do more harm to your list than good.
So to add a human touch to your emails, here are some details that you should integrate into your emails:
3.a Address them by their names
Many businesses have started to do this since it sometimes grabs the recipient’s attention. It gives a personalized effect that makes people want to read the email content. It makes the recipient feel like the email is talking to them, which is the opposite of a dry email blast.
3.b Personalize your email content
If you’ve gathered enough data on your market, you can use that data to create content that connects or relates to your email list. Businesses can tailor their message based on the specific problems that their market is facing.
Brand designers use personalization to make their business relatable to their market. It’s even the go-to strategy of growth hacking agencies to help grow their clients’ businesses and make a name in their niche. This simple strategy greatly helps scale and create a brand name in the industry their business operates in.
Even this Austin drug rehab understands how important personalization is for their clients. They made sure to highlight that certain strategy since tailoring a plan to the needs and issues of a person can increase their chances of converting.
3.c Go for a friendly tone
If your email writing tone feels a bit too professional and formal, this may have a negative effect on the success of your email marketing campaigns since recipients may find this boring. That is why it is suggested to always go for a friendly or conversational tone.
A friendly tone feels more natural. This makes your email campaign not come out as too promotional. It makes your recipient feel like they’re talking to a friend rather than a business that wants to sell them a product.
4. Be worth subscribing to
You can’t expect to build an engaged email list if you have nothing interesting to offer for your market. It is your responsibility to give something that can entice your market and convince them that your email list is worth subscribing to.
The best route to take here would be highlighting how they can be in a better business position when they subscribe to your email list. This is when you should advertise the content you’re going to distribute to your list.
An example could be if your market is a group of cold callers, then you can mention that your email newsletter consists of the latest updates on predictive dialers and sales strategies out in the market today. This gives them the advantage of knowing the innovations in their niche that they can capitalize on.
Another one could be giving comprehensive reviews on repricing tools and cloud accounting services to help people with their eCommerce store and other processes like automating their Amazon FBA business. Providing such information allows businesses to know which industry-best tools they can use to stay competitive.
Every business will have its unique selling proposition to invite people to their email list. What’s important to remember is that you should be able to provide value to your market and give something that can put them in a better position than before they subscribed to your list.
5. Offer exclusive discounts and promos
Another way to build an engaged email list would be to offer discounts and promos exclusively for those in your email list. It’s a proven marketing strategy that has worked for years and is still effective even up to this day.
This particular strategy greatly works if your discounts and promos are too good to pass on. These offers are super enticing if you can create a deal that has a massive difference between clients who are part of the email list and those who are not.
6. Use embedded or pop-up sign up forms
The style of how you use your pop-up or sign-up form plays a significant role in whether a web visitor would like to join your email list. You’ve encountered a lot of styles during your years of browsing thousands of websites, but the most common styles can be categorized into two: embedded and pop-up forms.
Let’s start with embedded forms. These are the traditional ways of attaining email subscribers. Today, businesses still widely use it because of its efficiency in enticing people to join an email list. Most businesses place this on high visible pages of their websites. These pages are usually the home page and product page.
Web visitors also appreciate embedded sign-up forms because they are non-intrusive. They stay in one place and don’t ruin their website navigation. This type of form is just there to remind the web visitors that they have the option to subscribe to the email list if they find the business interesting.
An example would be how Aloa simply placed it on the footer section of their home page. They also briefly mentioned what people would get if they joined the email list.
A business that didn’t place its signup form in a typical spot would be VideoMaker. The website placed it on the middle of its home page so that as people scroll the different topics they discuss, like various cinematic shots, camera rigs, and guides, their visitors can choose to sign up if they want to learn more about its industry.
Another unique example would be from High Desert Pure. Not only are they utilizing an embedded style of the sign-up form, but they also let their market choose on what information or topic they would like to receive in their emails.
The other style would be the pop-up form. This is also widely used by various businesses since it has a lot of variations that come with it. Let’s first talk about the welcome pop-up. These pop-ups usually appear around the 5 to 15-second mark when visitors first land on the website.
The message on the pop-up should be engaging enough to make the web visitor read the whole message. If it has a weak call to action, the person will just dismiss the pop-up, making the business lose on a potential conversion.
Another style of pop-up form would be the exit-intent pop-ups. Conversion Sciences reported that exit-intent pop-ups could save 10 to 15 percent of lost visitors. The purpose of this particular pop-up is to convince the visitor to spend more time on the website or at least leave some details where the business can reach them or send them promotions, discounts, and other resources.
An example of this would be GroveHR’s exit pop-up. It captures the web visitor’s attention by stating, “You’re leaving? But before you go…” and then goes on to mention its employee onboarding kit.
Pop-up forms, especially the exit intent pop-ups, have also helped businesses lower their cart abandonment emails. Rather than closing the browser and forgetting about their carts, an exit pop-up form can act as a reminder of the items they’ve shown interest in.
7. Be willing to be different
Going the traditional route of building your email list can be boring and ineffective compared to out-of-the-box ideas. Being willing to be different can be a way to capture the attention of your market and entice them to join your email list.
An example of being different would be asking members of your email list to review your email campaigns and how it has helped them be in a better position. However, you can ask them for a video review to be entirely different from the other business.
Videos are more engaging and easier to understand compared to written reviews. Plus, prospects can see the emotions and voice tone delivered by the customer. It makes it more genuine and interesting.
You can use that content and share it on video-sharing platforms and other social media websites, which can also help with your SEO strategies.
8. Integrate opt-in fields on checkout pages
This is an opportunity to convert that’s overlooked by many businesses. Many of them fail to realize the fact that a person is on their checkout page means they are very interested in their business. This means that the checkout page is a perfect place to invite your customers to your email list for more promotions, discounts, and other valuable content.
When a customer is on a checkout page, it means that they have great interest in your business since they’re willing to spend money to try your products and services out. Allocating a small space on your checkout page is an excellent idea that potentially increases your email conversion and list.
9. Introduce gamification
Everybody loves games. Your market has been involved in games ever since they were kids and is still playing games as they become older and have jobs. Using this activity is one sure way to keep your email list engaged and interested.
Gamification in emails is the process of using interactive elements to give out your content to your email recipients. This is a much more engaging way of giving value compared to the traditional style of writing long texts.
This type of email uses quizzes, tests, spin to win, scratch and win, roulettes, and surveys for the recipients to claim their prize. It’s one way to stand out from the hundreds of emails they receive daily. When you present something as fresh as this, your brand or business will stick to them, which greatly helps your brand awareness.
Here are some examples from different businesses:
Adding gamification in your email marketing is a great way to build an engaged email list. Not only did your recipients experience something unique, but they also got to enjoy the prize and rewards by participating and opening your email.
Building an engaged email list can be done in several ways, but the tips above can differentiate you from the rest of your competition. The tips mentioned make you understand your market better, so you can structure email campaigns in a way that can grab their attention and be excited to receive your email.
Achieving an engaged email list is a feat that not most businesses can do. This can only mean that most email campaigns are mediocre and nothing is out of the norm. You can change that perception by slowly implementing the steps above.
Remember, creating an engaged email list isn’t a fast process. It takes time and effort from your end to slowly invite people that have interest in what you have to say. But once you’ve built a list that’s happy to read your message, it will be very satisfying and will make all the effort worth it.
Burkhard Berger is the founder of Novum™. You can follow him on his journey from 0 to 100,000 monthly visitors on novumhq.com. His articles include some of the best growth hacking strategies and digital scaling tactics that he has learned from his own successes and failures.