Sales & Marketing

How to Build an Email List from Scratch

How to Build an Email List from Scratch
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Email lists are a valuable tool for businesses and individuals alike. They can be used to stay in touch with customers, share important news and information, and build relationships. Email lists are also an excellent way to generate leads and drive sales. To get the most out of an email list, it is important to carefully consider its purpose and design. What type of content will be shared? How often will the list be used? Who is the target audience? Once these questions have been answered, it is time to start building the list.

The best way to do this is by offering something of value in exchange for an email address. This could be a discount, a free trial, or access to exclusive content. Whatever the offer, it should be something that appeals to the target audience and motivates them to sign up. With a well-designed email list, businesses can enjoy a powerful marketing tool that helps to build relationships and drive sales.

Building an email list can be extremely low and frustrating. People nowadays are much more protective of their emails than they used to be and for a good reason. Malicious spam is not something anyone wants to deal with. So, we’re ready to help with our guide on how to build a quality email list from scratch!

1. Attach Value to Your Newsletters

To build a quality email list from scratch, you have to get people to sign up for your newsletter. Of course, in order to actually get people to sign up, you need to offer something valuable enough for them to do it. One way to do this is to offer discounts or vouchers.

But, the simplest way to achieve this is to offer premium content. You can have exclusive guides and advice texts tailored to your business. For example, a moving company could offer advice on packing, with a list of the best and cheapest local packing services attached.

This does also mean you would have to periodically publish new exclusive content. However, this is well worth the effort since it comes with a decent draw, and you can even publish the ‘expired’ premium content on your blog.

2. Appeal to Them through Good Content

Do not think, however, that premium content is all you need. To get people onto your site and interested in your newsletter, you need to draw their attention through blog posts and other content. This will never be a waste of resources, either.

Content marketing drives sales quite effectively, which means that you will not only be trying to build a quality email list from scratch but also generate and even convert leads. This should lead to decent growth of your customer base all on its own.

See Also: 5 Best Email Automation Tools (Free Included)

3. Integrate Timed and Exit Popups

Timed and exit pop-ups are somewhat of a last opportunity to get someone to sign up for your newsletter or convert. Timed popups are a bit more reliable since if the prospective customer is seeing them, then they must have hung around your site for the pop-up to trigger.

This typically indicates some level of interest, which your popup’s call to action should capitalize on. An exit popup appears when a visitor moves their cursor outside of the tab they were viewing, typically in order to close it.

This does, however, mean that they can be frustrating if the person did not mean to do it. So, make sure they are sufficiently interesting in order to offset this.

4. Make It Easy to Sign Up

It may come off as rude, but people tend to lean into their laziness more than their curiosity or interest. This means that if you make it difficult to find the option to sign up for your mailing services, or if the signup process itself is convoluted, you may lose a chance to add a person to your email list. You need to make absolutely sure that the entire process is streamlined from start to end. Embedding the signup option into every page, though in an unobtrusive way, maybe a good idea.

5. Organize Occasional Web Events

To make the idea of being on your email list more appealing, you should also organize occasional web events. If you are worried about coming up with good ideas, don’t be. You can look for inspiration on how to run your site and organize events, which should simplify things a lot. What matters is that they are worth participating in and that the easiest, or even only, way to learn about them is through email. This way, you can build a quality email list from scratch a lot more easily!

You May Like: How Do You Write a Good Outreach Email?

6. Leverage Social Media to Build Interest

The next thing you should do is lean into social media. After all, you cannot rely only on your site to grow your email list. Social media also has a very important aspect to it: it is easy to chat with customers. This means you can properly engage with them and win some goodwill and positive brand recognition while working on your email list. Of course, social media presence is also one of the components of successful email marketing campaigns used to run an impactful campaign. So, it’s even more useful for a business!

7. Work on Your Call to Action

We mentioned a call to action before. It’s the part of your ad, popup, or other promotional material which invites a potential customer to convert or sign up for your email list. Making an effective call to action is an art of its own.

Some businesses prefer to use joking and almost sarcastic calls to action. At the same time, others use well-laid-out and logical reasons why the customer should pick them. Yet others prefer a to-the-point approach while plainly laying out their appeal. In the end, it comes down to what sort of site you run and who your target audience is.

What’s important is to properly match your call to action to them so they are more likely to respond! The only way to do this is to do market and audience research, as well as test several calls to action and gauge reactions.

8. Avoid Missteps

An important part of how to build a quality email list from scratch is knowing what practices to avoid. For example, not using CRM software for small businesses is not recommended. It helps a ton and makes sure your email list is well-compiled and utilized.

Other examples include using too many pop-ups, pushy calls to action, asking for extremely personal info in your sign-up forms, and more. In the end, it comes down to this: if it has the potential to make your prospective customers uncomfortable, don’t use it!

Related: 20 MailChimp Alternatives (According to Email Marketing Experts)


Now that you understand how to build a quality email list from scratch, you can put your knowledge to use! Know, however, that this process will still take some time. And likely a lot of adjustments before it really becomes efficient!

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