Building your business and blog from scratch is hard. You need to figure out how to grow it and start to focus on things that work, but how can you do it when you just started your blog this month? You keep hearing things like “start your email list”, but you have no idea how to do it in an effective way, from scratch.
The email list is essential if you’re planning to sell digital products, info products to your audience and it’s a great way to communicate with them and really understand their needs. Today, I wanted to share my tested method, which helped me get 100 email subscribers in less than 30 days (it took me 25 days to be exact).
Let’s start with the basics.
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WHY DO YOU NEED AN EMAIL LIST IN THE FIRST PLACE?
1. You have a full control of your list
Getting followers and engaging with them on social media is an essential part of building your audience, but you can’t control Instagram or Facebook. They might delete your account and you’ll lose your peeps.
That’s why, driving traffic to your blog and building your email list is so important for your business – you have a full control over your website and your email list
2. Email subscribers might be your potential customers
As I’ve mentioned, if you’re planning to sell digital or info products you need an email list. Why? Let’s face it – sometimes we visit a blog once and never go back to it, you might check someone’s Twitter account from time to time or like to see pretty pictures on someone’s Instagram account, but you won’t buy or work with them.
When we get an email from someone we signed up to, it seems more personal, because your inbox is like your virtual home. When people subscribe to your email list, they’re showing interest in your business and your content, which means they’re more likely to be your potential customers once you have a product to sell.
3. You can get in touch with your audience whenever you want
Email is the easiest way to get in touch with your audience, announce your new product, share freebies and so much more. When you’d want to create an info product like e-course or e-book, you can easily send out a survey to your audience to better understand their needs and what they are struggling with. Your email list can help you create your future products or come up with ideas for them. Awesome right?
WHO SHOULDN’T CREATE AN EMAIL LIST?
If you don’t ever plan to sell products or services of any kind, then you probably don’t need an email list.
WHAT IS THE MOST EFFECTIVE WAY TO BUILD YOUR EMAIL LIST FROM SCRATCH IN THE NEXT 30 DAYS OR LESS?
FREE EMAIL COURSE
WHY FREE EMAIL COURSE?
- It’s easy to set up – I use MailChimp* for my course
- You only have to set it once – and you can have it as long as you want
- Everything is automated – lessons are automatically sent to your subscribers
- It’s convenient for your students – lessons are delivered to their inbox
- It’s free or affordable to create – $10 on MailChimp* up to 500 subscribers. UPDATE – now automation feature is FREE on MailChimp* for up to 2000 subscribers
- Your audience can know you better, your teaching style and methods
- It gives you the opportunity to share more even more valuable and exclusive information than on your blog posts
- Your subscribers get comfortable seeing your name in their inbox, so once you create a paid product is easier to sell it to someone who already knows you rather than a stranger
HOW TO PLAN OUT YOUR EMAIL COURSE?
1. Decide who do you want to teach
Knowing who your ideal audience is an essential part of creating a free course. Think of the one person who will resonate with your content, what problems your product will solve, what she struggling with.
2. Decide what do you want to teach
Brainstorm ideas! Think of your expertise and how this expertise can fill your audience’s needs. It’s hard to know that, especially if you’re new blogger so here’s how you can find out what products they need:
- Join Facebook groups where your ideal audience hangs out and observe the questions they ask or search for specific topic you have an expertise with i.e. I’ve searched for Pinterest and see what questions come up on regular basis and note them
- Ask your followers on social media – create twitter pool, ask direct questions on Instagram or Facebook or add a link to your survey within your profile. You can quickly create a survey with tools like Google Forms, SurveyMonkey or Typeform.
- Create a poll in the Facebook group – once you’re on a Facebook group and if it doesn’t break the rules, create a pool or ask specific questions in the group
3. Decide in what format are you going to teach
Are you going to create a text-based course? Or maybe a video-based course? Or both? Think of the ways to provide free value to your course, it can be:
- Video tutorial
- PDF guide
- Free design templates like blog post image
And so much more! You can get creative with that ;)
HOW TO SET UP EMAIL COURSE IN MAILCHIMP*?
1. Create a new list
2. Go to Automation
Here all the fun begins!
3. Choose Educate subscribers > Add Automation
4. Name your course and choose your list
Choose the list to which your course will be sent.
5. Add as many lessons as you want (by default there are welcome email and 2 lessons)
Create an email for each lesson, including a welcome email.
6. Click on Design email and Add email subject
You have to set it up for every lesson before you design it.
7. Design each email (lesson)
Now, add your course logo and content using a drag and drop feature, then click Save and Continue. You can always change the emails later (even if you already have subscribers, you can easily pause and edit your lessons and then resume them)
8. Once you design each email, make sure to set up triggers
Make sure to set up triggers for your lesson. It means that you have to choose the time gaps between each email. Your course needs to be sent out over a period of time. For my course, I set up the welcome email to be sent out immediately after someone sign up for it, then the lesson one is sent after an hour and the lesson 2 and other lessons are send 1 day after the previous lesson.
HOW TO PROMOTE YOUR EMAIL COURSE? THE METHODS I USED TO PROMOTE MY COURSE:
1. Write a blog post introducing your course
I wrote an entire blog post, when I share more info about the course, who is it for, how it works and so on. I highly encourage you to do it
2. Create several pinnable images and share them on Pinterest
Similar to the pinnable images, I’ve created square templates to share on other social media
4. Add link to your free course in your social media bios
Instead of just adding a link to my website in my bios, I’ve added a link to my course with a call to action “Sign up for FREE 6-day course Pinazing Results ! → mintswift.com/pinazing-results/”
5. Share it in Facebook groups (in promo threads or if someone struggle with something related to your course)
Don’t just share a link to your course! Give other group members a reason to check it out. Try to be helpful and answer to the questions related to your course.
6. Add info about your course below relevant or popular blog post
Create an image and short description which you can share your relevant or popular blog posts. If you don’t have hundreds of post on your blog, add it to every post.
7. Place opt-in form in several places on your website, I have on:
– Homepage (home slider/call to action buttons)
– Main blog page (above your blog posts)
– Cover page (full-width image with short description and call to action buttons)
– Below blog posts (create an image or call to action button to sign up for the course)
– Announcement bar (I recommend a plugin called DW PromoBar for that)
– Main navigation (I created a page called Courses)
I highly recommend you to create an email course. In my experience, it’s the most effective way to build your list from scratch and get your first 100 email subscribers. It’s a great way to share valuable information in exchange for an email address and more convenient and non-salesy way to introduce a paid products.