Ask everyone that comes to your place of business for their email address. Put a sign-up sheet at your register or reception desk. Ask callers on the phone. If you’re a webbased operation, send a follow-up after an order asking if they’d like to continue to hear from you. Have your employees and staff ask too. Don’t be shy! Studies have shown that over half of people will provide their email addresses if asked.
Ask people you meet in professional settings. There’s a lot of networking going on at trade shows, conferences, seminars, and industry events—tell your new contacts about your email newsletter and ask them to subscribe, too!
Many email marketing programs, like Constant Contact, have special features to make it easy for users to sign people up. There are also easy-to-use buttons and widgets to help you capture people’s interest in you. Put them on your website, Facebook page, blog, LinkedIn profile and in your outgoing emails. They’re easy to use. People just click on the link or button to access your sign-up page. Their email goes automatically into your contact database. Couldn’t be easier!
Don’t forget about social media. People love to share information. Use a Social Share bar so your subscribers can forward your newsletter, put it on Facebook, or Tweet it—and make it easy for their friends to join your list!
Cross-promote yourself with a related business or organization. Got a good relationship with a business that’s complementary to yours (such as florists and chocolate stores; theaters and neighborhood bistros). Promote each other in your respective newsletters by being “guest contributors” and writing a newsletter article for their audience, either one time or on an ongoing basis. You’ll also benefit by the perceived endorsement from the other business, making their subscribers more willing to join your list.
Use incentives to get new signups. Offer a monthly prize drawing or freebie like a guide, discount, or giveaway to entice people to leave their email address. If you have employees, run a contest (with a great motivating prize, of course!) to see who gets the most new names in a certain period of time.
Promote your email newsletter in all your printed collateral. Put a simple message on your business cards, brochures, advertisements, sales kits, and direct mail letters.
Some ideas include:
“Sign up for our email newsletter for insider information and discounts at .”
“Get our monthly newsletters with tips on how to get more business.”
“Receive our weekly email newsletter for exclusive coupons.”
“Let’s stay in touch often. Sign up for our email newsletter.”