Honestly, you are throwing money away if you do not build an email list. You can be an affiliate marketer and never have to have an email list. But there are advantages to having one nevertheless.
Warning: you will not be doing yourself any favours if you try and build an email list using affiliate products alone. Doing so will involve you making people enter their address twice before they get their product. People are going to get upset at having to enter their email twice. Once for your email list and again for your affiliate program. You will be potentially turning away customers.
By far and away the best way of getting email addresses is to give away. Something that is either yours or you can claim as yours. Usually, some sort of ebook is what is offered.
Don’t be fooled by anyone trying to tell you that you can build an email list without giving away something. Everything I have ever read on how to do such a thing has turned out to be a con. People value their email addresses. You will pay the price if you try to devalue them.
There is one rule when it comes to building an Email List. Don’t give away junk. If what you are giving away is not of any value to you it is junk. Giving away junk will give you a bad reputation and that will reflect in your sales.
Your Own Ebook
If you have an ebook idea that you can give away yourself this is by far the best. As long as you make sure it is quality useful information and you don’t try and sell anything with it. You don’t need to. Because once you have their email address. You can send them a lot of stuff and eventually a sales offer.
Someone Else’s Ebook
If you are not up to writing your own book you can look for something that you like that is in the public domain or has Private Label Rights (just look up Private Label Rights (PLR) sites. Make sure that what you are looking at is free. Most PLR sites have subscriptions so not everything is free. Make sure you read the giveaway conditions before you use it. If you are allowed to give it away use your landing page that you can make via your ESP or that attaches to your ESP to collect emails
Why Build An Email List
Honestly, an email list is the only thing that you actually own. Google and Facebook can and will change their rules. Having your own email list will mean that you will always have someone to promote to. Because the list is yours.
But treat your email list with respect. Don’t forget they can always unsubscribe and then you may have lost them forever.
ESP (Email Service Provider)
Without going into long explanations building a list will mean you need an ESP. You can’t try and manage your email list yourself but after a couple of hundred, management starts to become unwieldy. If you are determined to try to manage your email list yourself, I recommend YAMM (Yet Another Email Merge). It is Free for 100 emails per 24 hours and you can compose your email in Google Gmail draft. You can send even more emails and get lots of other features at a very cheap price per year.
But the one thing that you can’t do without an ESP is send welcome emails automatically. That is when someone subscribes to your list they are automatically sent a welcome email. Automatic welcome emails are invaluable. They make people feel acknowledged and that they are in the right place. You can send welcome emails manually using YAMM but they will often be significantly delayed. Your potential customers may become uncomfortable waiting.
ESPs are full of very useful features that Mail Merge cannot hope to duplicate. Whilst Mail Merge still has its uses, why would you want to stick with it when you can get an ESP for free?
Mailchimp is the ESP I am most familiar with. It gives you a percentage of free emails that you can post to but there are a few others. Just look up “free email service provider”.
As with all these things, there is a significant learning curve. But there is plenty of documentation.
As I said, after you have signed up with your ESP just follow the instructions on how to set up a landing page. Then set up a welcome email.
Your only jobs then are to direct traffic to your landing page and convince your potential customers that they want your giveaway.
When someone uses your new landing page to sign up for your giveaway, if you have set it up correctly your new customer will be redirected to their document and will automatically be added to your list. Your customer will then be automatically set the welcome email you set up.
That is it. You are now on your way to building your own email list. You can communicate and market directly to your customers.
I say communicate and market be you want to spend time building a relationship with them. You will be much more successful marketing to those you have a relationship with and that will be the subject of my next post. Building a relationship with your customers.