It is evident that the most successful bloggers and online business owners are list building experts. And, after building that list, they treat it as their prized possession.
The methodology of marketing points its finger directly at the list. Show me any blogger’s list, and I will tell you if that blogger is successful.
So, how is your list? At what level would you call your list building expertise? Are you a:
- Rookie List Builder
- Intermediate List Builder
or do you think you have attained the prized designation of being a Master List Builder?
No matter what you consider your level to be, there is always something new that can be learned. The master list builders have realized that building strong email lists cannot be a periodic action, it must be a habit. In this post, we will explore 5 habits of list building experts.
Habit #1: List Building Is Serious Business
For any online business or blogger, building a list needs to be the most important aspect. While there are other important aspects to blogging, the one that needs to be taken the most seriously is building the email list.
When we examine these experts, there is a common denominator – they take list building seriously, unlike low-level bloggers who are leaving a lot of money set on the table.
Those who take list building seriously are always trying new list building methods, and keeping track of their outcomes from these methods.
How serious do you take your list? Many list building experts set a goal of a certain amount of daily or weekly subscribers. They commit to reaching that goal, and if they do, they raise the goal for the next round. If they fall below the goal, they try new methods.
Followed directly behind building that list, is taking care of it, so that retention rates stay low. As long as you stay focused on both, success is directly in your path.
“I have literally built a multimillion dollar business on the strength of my email list. Ninety percent of my income comes from it. Even today, my email list is still my number one business priority—and asset.” – Michael Hyatt
So do I hear someone saying that social media profiles are more important than list building?
The fact is that your social media profile is actually just one of many tools to build your email list. By all means, use it, but it should not be your one and only list building means.
People take their emails much more seriously than they do social media. Just consider the fact that many people will give their Facebook, Linkedin or Google + link to anyone, but if you ask for their email, they are not as generous.
“Email is the most important channel to cultivate.” – Michael Stelzner
To be blunt, if you haven’t realized the truth in what Michael said above, you are making a serious mistake.
Habit #2 List Building Experts Adapt To New List Building Strategies Easily
As new strategies come out, they will quickly “latch on” to these new ideas.
Still using their regular list building campaigns, they will adopt the new strategies by testing them in various areas. Once they discover that they work, these master list builders will adapt to using the new strategies, and make any needed changes to attain results.
One of the newest list building strategies that is being adopted is SumoMe’s Welcome Mat. Some even call it an Optin Feature Box, but with a small difference that it doesn’t slide-in from the top like Welcome Mat, however it’s also fixed below the header.
Bloggers have been leaping to use this new technique, as it creates a warm welcome screen for your website visitors. Just consider these welcome mats:
Andrew Lock and his kitten over at HelpMyBusiness.com who has an excellent Welcome Mat.
Matthew Woodward keeps his Welcome Mat simple, but it is highly effective.
Another new phenomena that has bloggers building their lists to massive sizes is content upgrades. List building experts like Kim Roach, Brian Dean over at Backlinko and Gael Breton at Authority Hacker are all talking about, and using Content Upgrades.
Habit #3 List Building Experts Subscribe To Psych 101
There are many psychological tricks used by email marketers that can actually make their visitors feel dumb, guilty or even evil if they do not subscribe. Some of the ingenious tricks they have pulled include:
- Using the Qualaroo survey system to grab subscribers. They just create a poll that says something like “I see you like our blog. Would you like to sign up to receive more in your email?” They set up simple answers like sure, I’m already in and not today. You can then have them enter their email right through the same system.
- The masters optimize their confirmation page to reiterate the benefits of signing up, put a strong call to action even using a countdown timer and they grab the visitor by the hand and walk them through the steps to confirm.
- They make the “you’re an idiot if you don’t subscribe” dynamic. No thanks, I want to stay poor, or I don’t need to be healthy. Do you see the point?
- They use testimonials in social media. This is classic psychology, because humans want to keep up with others. If Julie is doing it, Jane will too.
- They use persuasive wording. Instead of free newsletter, the master list builder may use featured download. Other list building psychology words they use are exclusive, limited, advanced, special, secrets and access.
- They use crazy, colorful and unique call to action buttons.
These are just a few of the psychological tricks that are played on blog and website visitors. Just think back to those psych classes you had, and you can always come up with an idea.
Habit #4 List Building Experts Build Lists Everywhere and Anywhere
This habit takes us back to habit #1; link building must be taken seriously!
The best list building bloggers do not leave any stones unturned. Every page on their website offers visitors the opportunity to subscribe. Their Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and all other social sites have opportunities to subscribe.
They even carry business cards with the link to subscribe to their blog and newsletter.
Your email list is everything, and must be the priority everywhere and anywhere.
Noah Kagan at OkDork is one of those master list builders I am talking about.
And, Brian Harris over at VideoFruit shows us all he covers every angle in gaining subscribers.
Social Triggers’ expert, Derek Halpern, encourages his video watchers to subscribe every time he makes and uploads a video.
This is why these people are list building experts; they understand that the list is the most important aspect of their profession.
Habit #5 List Building Experts Track and Measure Results
You may be using multiple list building strategies, but you need to know what is working and what isn’t. The only way to do this is by tracking the results.
These experts consistently test, and track results. They use plug-in tracking systems, and external measuring systems, with Google Analytics being the head of the class.
The experts track various numbers including:
- split-testing methods
- conversion rate
- button colors
- font types and sizes
- and much more
If you don’t have a Google Analytics account set up to track your list building experts, you are making a huge mistake.
Setting a Google Analytics account up is as easy as:
- Create a free Google Analytics account. If you have a Google Account, it is a simple one click action.
- To set up your Google Analytics, you just paste the HTML code in your website’s template, and in many cases, if you are using WordPress, just install the Google Analytics plugin that will allow Google Analytics to crawl your material.
- And by all means, set goals within your Google Analytics account. This is where rookie list builders err. Goals are important, because you have a figure to “go after.”
- Test the list building techniques. Use what is working and discard what doesn’t. It really is that simple.
To reiterate, list building experts have come to understand that building their list is their most important marketing method.
Building your list does take time, energy and patience. It is hard work, but it is evident that success does come to those list builders who develop the list building habits mentioned above.
Another important aspect of these list building pros is: they never stop learning. They have realized that list building is an ever-changing marketing matter, so they have to always be willing to change and adapt with it.
Do you consider yourself one of these list building experts? What other tips would you offer?
This article was written by Syed Naimath is Co-founder and Growth Hacker at Plugmatter, a WordPress plugin development startup passionate about creating products like Optin Feature Box, Document Importer and Pricing Table to help the WordPress community.