10 Ways to Grow Your Email Lists

Fact: Your email database deteriorates by 25% every year. This could be due to unsubscriptions, bounces, dead addresses and other reasons.

Result: Email list growth needs to be a regular and consistent activity.

Every business wants a list or wants to grow their lists. But the question is what are you willing to give to have, keep and grow an email list. The answer goes much beyond money. People will want to be on your list if they get something they like. It can’t simply be promotions all the time. Even daily deal or coupon websites have to think out-of-the-box to keep their subscribers interested and responsive. Potential subscribers need a reason to subscribe. Your content needs to be educative and rewarding.

So, how do you go about getting to these potential subscribers in the first place? I’m going to list out these multiple ways to reach out to your potentially new subscriber base.

1. Use your existing list. Your existing communication to your list can play a big role in fetching new subscribers. Needless to say, good content gets forwarded and that means your existing newsletter can drive more people to your website than those on your list.

2. Include a sign-up link in your newsletter. Its for people who are not on your list. Good content does get forwarded. Get your online word-of-mouth to work for you.

3. Email your business contacts, with one of your newsletters and encourage them to sign-up to receive more.

4. Let others re-print your content in their newsletters or on their website, with due credit and links to your website.

5. Include a way to sign-up for regular content within your transactional mails.

6. Host an event – webinar or seminar or a conference. Better yet, sponsor such events so you get participant data and encourage them to sign-up for your content.

7. Rent Lists. I’ve written about the right way to rent lists in my article How to get good email databases.

8. Partner with other list owners for a kind-for-kind handshake.

9. Use Google adwords to market your content and attract potential subscribers. This is keyword targeted advertising, so your resulting audience will be quite relevant.

10. Go for traditional advertising. Its expensive but it gets the eyeballs. I’ve even seen ads by BBC and Moneycontrol on TV inviting viewers to subscribe to their newsletters.

Lastly, please don’t send your emails to consumer lists that have been purchased or harvested. It amounts to sending spam and there’s no two-ways about it. It is absolutely the wrong thing to do. Such activities will end-up hurting your brand a lot more than the benefit you receive. I’ve come across companies whose home-grown lists have reduced through unsubscriptions after they engaged in spam activity on bought data.

Until the next post, happy mailing!

Naresh Bhagtani heads Niche Software Solutions which has created the email marketing product Juvlon. Naresh Bhagtani is also the chief product architect of Juvlon. He consults on various aspects of email marketing including campaign return of investment, email delivery, metrics, infrastructure, list acquisition and management.