The Smart Blogger’s Not-So-Secret Weapon: Grow Your Mailing List
We’ve all seen the for-profit blogs that get a ton of traffic, have oodles of comments on every post and they never seem to have any shortage of advertisers. How do they do it? With very few exceptions, I bet there is one thing they all have something in common. They use email to promote their new posts and market to their readers.
If you aren’t working to grow your mailing list, you are simply throwing away a huge chunk of your traffic that will visit once and never come back again.
Bloggers need email for a multitude of reasons, here are a few:
– By getting an opt-in, you can now keep in touch with your visitors, instead of having them come, read some stuff and leave forever.
– RSS is not enough because most people do not use RSS feeds and even those that do, may not check it as regularly as they do check email.
– Email is commercial by nature. People expect to receive special offers and promotions by email.
– From various studies and tests, email boast very high conversions and is one of the most cost effective ways to get your message out there.
With this in mind, if you aren’t actively growing your list, now is the time to start. Things you need to start doing include:
– Create a valuable incentive for signing up for your mailing list. It needs be more than your newsletter is free. Offer them a report, a handy checklist, access to videos, an information product or anything that is relevant and valuable to your target subscriber.
– Add your opt-in box and compelling offer to the side bar of your website. Include an image that represents the incentive, so it’s eye-catching and your readers won’t miss it.
– Include an invitation to sign up for your list in the footer of all your posts. Put the opt-in code right in the footer, so your readers can sign up right there, instead of having to click around.
– Mention your relevant free offers in the context of your posts. For example, if you’re writing a tutorial on French braiding and you have a free report on braiding techniques, mention it directly in your post.
– Continue to make more valuable content that you give away in return for an opt-in. Having a variety of incentives will help you reach more people and allow you to mention your mailing list more often.
Whether you have a lot of traffic or a little, building a mailing list allows you to maximize your blogging efforts. Don’t let the traffic you do have go to waste. Your subscribers will form a large part of your loyal following for years to come.
Until next week, this is Jessica signing out!