By Wendy Hurwitz Published October 18, 2016
One of the most frequently asked questions of LEAP, and among the greatest opportunities for newsmedia companies, is how to effectively and responsibly grow your email list. Once dismissed by marketers enamored with whatever was the latest digital panacea, email has now firmly established itself among consumers as the preferred method of receiving brand communications and summary-form content.
But capturing email is also important because it is the single most reliable identifier of a digital consumer. When successfully linked to a physical address, email transforms a customer relationship into a strategic data asset that makes omni-channel marketing communications a reality for you.
This month, Wendy Hurwitz, Chief Strategy Officer at LEAP, shares five tips for growing your email list.
Five Tips for Email (Newsletter) List Growth:
1. Ask – Make email collection a priority for all online and offline channels. Starting with your website, make sure the opt-in is prominent and not buried in a footer or site map. Consider adding a “sign up” option in or near your navigation bar that links to your newsletter sign-up page. Then look at your social media channels. On Facebook, make sure you are using the call-to-action buttons. The “sign up” option allows social users to easily find your newsletter registration page. At offline events like concerts, races and festivals, consider on-location giveaways to collect emails and drive foot traffic.
2. Ask Again – A passive collection box won’t catch the eye of all web visitors. Think about content adjacencies that make sense. For example, the next time you run a breaking news alert across the front of your home page, add a simple text link at the bottom of the article page, “Don’t miss any breaking news! Sign up for breaking news alerts here.” Add a newsletter opt-in to your telemarketing scripts for appropriate call types. It is a great reason to confirm a customer email address and offer a no-cost, valuable benefit to the caller.
3. Use Email as the Lookup Option in Your Call Center – Many call centers use telephone number to look up customer records. Asking customers for an email address will increase the percent of records with an email address and give your team an easy way to drive newsletter growth. Over time, it will help drive marketing costs down by allowing you to reach more customers via email.
4. Evergreen Content – Much like a B2B company might offer a whitepaper download as an incentive to provide contact information, media companies have content that can be repurposed much the same way. There is a good chance you have a travel, best of, or restaurant guide that has legs beyond its original publication date. Consider offering a PDF download in exchange for a newsletter sign up.
5. Sweepstakes – The prizes don’t need to be expensive, but you need enough to make people feel like they have a chance of winning. Using social media and web ads, drive visitors to a landing page that collects email address and offers a newsletter opt in. You can pre-check the newsletter box (not allowed in Canada) or require it as a condition of entry if you prefer. Just make sure your rules are clear on what is required to enter.
About Wendy Hurwitz
Wendy is a highly-regarded media executive with responsibility for creative development, campaign design and execution, marketing automation processes and business strategy consulting for LEAP's client community. Prior to joining LEAP, Wendy served as Vice President of Audience at Sightline Media Group.
She is a Certified eMarketer (CeM) and author of the book, "An Executives Guide to Managing Email."