One of your first focuses should be building and nurturing your email list. You need to nurture your email list if you are serious about building your online business. Which you are serious because you are here. Why do you need to nurture your email list? First, we will go into what you need an email list for in the first place, then why you need to look after your list and finally how you can nurture your list.
Don’t be like me
Time for a wee story. I had a small email list on one of my old blogs. In fact, after running my blog for about 6 months I had a list with a grand total of 7 subscribers. I had great traffic, a healthy following on Pinterest and built a community where people would return to my blog each week. But I put very little effort into building an email list. Well, that is an understatement. I put no effort into it.
One day after taking a course about email list building I thought, ‘I’ll send my list an email and it’ll be great!’ Out of my measly 7 subscribers (one of which was my friend and the other was me so I could send test emails), half of them unsubscribed. From that one email.
After I stopped and thought about it I realised I had left it too late. These subscribers didn’t know who I was. They probably didn’t even remember signing up for my email list. I never sent any welcome emails. In fact, I sent no emails at all apart from the initial thanks for signing up message.
It was a wake-up call and I immediately set up a welcome series and regular emails after that and as a result, grew my email list, stayed on their radar and started building relationships with them.
Why you need an email list
- To build a relationship and trust with your readers
- So that you stay on their radar
- You need an email list if you are going to grow your blog or business
- Your readers will turn into customers
- Your email list is about the only thing you have control over
- It is the easiest way to stay in touch with your readers
- Emails are an efficient and cheap way to market your business
Build a relationship and with your readers
Emails are a personal way of communication. You can make it sounds as though you are just talking to that one reader, even if you have a list of thousands. Calling them by their first name, keeping in regular contact, sharing stories, behind the scenes, tips + tricks and updates can all help build a relationship of trust.
If your reader doesn’t trust you, they are less likely to buy anything from you. They won’t know who you are, why they should buy from and not someone else and why they should trust you to deliver what you have promised.
Stay on their radar
If you never send an email your email list will quickly forget who you are. If you are sending regular emails, your name will appear frequently in their inbox and they will come to recognise you. That email that I sent that half my list unsubscribed from? Yeah, they didn’t know who I was. Some of them had signed up to my email list months before I sent that email and hadn’t had any communication from me since then. I had completely fallen off their radar. I am not surprised now that I think about it that they unsubscribed.
In order to grow your blog or business, you need an email list
Your email list will become people that become excited about your new content, the new offers you put out and will support you if you build a genuine, trusting relationship with them. They will feel like they know you which in turn will help you convert readers into customers.
Your readers are more likely to turn into customers
People tend to buy off people they trust and know will deliver what they say they will. You wouldn’t buy something from a stranger in the street so you can’t expect a stranger online to buy from you no questions asked. Again, it comes back to that trust thing. If your subscribers trust you, they are more likely to buy from you. In order to build their trust, you need to build a relationship with them. An email list is a great way to build that trust.
Your email list is about the only thing you have control over
You don’t have control over your social media platforms. If Facebook decides to change the game (as they do often) you don’t have any control over that. The same goes for any social media platform. They are constantly evolving and changing and there is nothing we can do about that. What we can do is continue to build our email lists and nurture them.
It is the easiest way to stay in touch with your readers
Like, seriously easy. With the click of a few buttons and some typing, you can send a personal message to literally thousands of people. Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter have all changed their algorithms (and continue to do change them regularly) which makes it much harder to reach all of our followers at once. An email can be sent to your whole list just as easily as sending an email to one person.
Emails are an efficient and cheap way to market your business
Depending on how many subscribers you have on your email list and which provider you are using, sending emails is the cheapest way to reach lots of people all at once. Sending emails is cheaper than buying ads for social media platforms and much more likely to convert to customers. For example, how many times do you really click on that Facebook ad? In contrast, have you ever bought anything that was sold to you via email?
Why you need to nurture your email list
You need to nurture your email list if your aim is to make money from your online business or blog. Your email subscribers are more likely to become your customers than anyone else. They know you, they trust you, they know that you deliver what you promise and they want to support you. Someone clicking your ad doesn’t know all that. If you nurture your email list properly, they will know all this.
Top Rule of List Nurturing
Give more than you ask for.
Think of list nurturing as nurturing relationships with your friends. It should be guided by generosity and inclusion, and you should always be a good listener.
On practice, this means starting off your relationships with subscribers by being the giver. Give your subscribers generously: your time, your know-how and anything else on your giveaway list. Continue in this manner by making sure the majority of your communication is for their benefit. This approach will result in loyal readers, trustful customers, and enthusiastic advocates.
– Bold and Zesty
Ways to nurture your email list
- Sending regular emails
- Sharing personal stories that relate to your niche
- Provide value to your readers
- Offer them deals that aren’t available to anyone else
- Making them the first to hear new announcements
- Giving them exclusive content that isn’t available on your blog
- Segmenting your list so they are only getting information relevant to them
- Create a kick-ass welcome sequence
- Don’t send the same content in each email, build on previous emails
Sending regular emails
I would suggest having a set day or date that you send your emails out, this way your subscribers know exactly what to expect from you and when. The frequency is up to you but remember, you don’t want to saturate your readers’ inbox. But you also don’t want to send them tumbleweeds. A happy medium is what you want to aim for.
Sharing personal stories that relate to your niche
Don’t share anything you aren’t comfortable with, but sharing something personal (that is related to your niche) is a great way to build a relationship and that trust. Sharing stories humanise you and make you more relatable as a person. If you run a travel blog, you could share a time when just everything seemed to go wrong for you and what you did to fix it. If you blog about parenting, include a funny or (slightly) embarrassing story that others can relate to.
Provide value to your subscribers
While sharing personal stories is fabulous, you don’t want to only share stories. People like to get value. You are going to build that trust faster if you are offering valuable content regularly that helps your readers. It could be a ‘Top Tips’, ‘What I learned about..’, ‘How … helped me …’ or a ‘The … best …’ email, something that provides value to your subscribers.
Offer them deals that aren’t available to anyone else
Whether it be a flash sale, a freebie, some bonuses just for subscribers for a course you are promoting or something else. They will feel special and like it is worthwhile being on your list. If you do this, people are more likely to stay on your list because they will want to be privy to your deals.
Giving them content that is not available on your blog
Exclusive freebies, deals, tips and behind the scenes peeks will make them feel important and a part of something. No one likes the fear of missing out. Keep giving them exclusive content so they won’t want to unsubscribe in case they miss out on something.
Segmenting your list so they are only receiving the relevant information
If you have segments you can tailor the information that is sent out to your email list. For example, if someone brought one of your courses, you don’t want to keep sending them information about why they should buy it, they already have! Soon enough they will tire of those emails and unsubscribe.
Create a kick-ass welcome series
Keep them excited and keep them wanting more of your awesome content. Leave them wanting more. A welcome series lets your subscribers get to know you, what you are about and starts building the all-important relationship that turns subscribers into customers. Luckily for you, I have created a kick-ass email welcome series cheatsheet that you can grab fo’ free. Pretty choice huh?
Don’t send the same content in each email, build on previous emails
Your subscribers will only open a couple of emails if they realise that each email is going to be the same. If you build on each email then your subscribers will keep coming back for more. Plus, it is less personal if you are sending the same email each time. Even though you are sending your email to more than one person, you can make it feel like you are just sending it to that one subscriber with your wording and content.
Building an email list should be one of your first focuses after setting up your blog, installing your plugins and Google Analytics. Turning readers into subscribers and subscribers into customers is one of your main goals, in order to do that you need to nurture your email list.
So what are you waiting for? Go send an email,
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