You have no doubt heard the saying “The money’s in the list”. Well, it’s a cliche of the Internet marketing world, but it is true – there is probably nothing more fundamental to success for an online entrepreneur in the internet marketing space than having a large list of buyers. In fact I’d go so far as to say it’s absolutely vital for business owners and entrepreneurs today to have an active list of email subscribers. This could be a newsletter list, a buyer’s list or a general interest list that is related to your business in some way. Creating a list isn’t that difficult to do. All you need is a couple of basic tools and you are ready to go.
The main tool you will require is an Autoresponder service. There are several companies that offer this service, the most popular ones being Aweber, Get Response, iContact and Mail Chimp. I recommended that you go with a paid service or you may find that the company sends out promotions along with your emails which firstly doesn’t look professional, and can annoy your subscribers causing them to unsubscribe. More importantly, if you send out affiliate links with a free service, you may get your account closed down. You can get started with a service for a basic account for under $20 a month, and some even have low cost monthly trials.
In fact an autoresponder is all you need to start list building – assuming you already have a website or blog set up. Using a reliable and reputable service like Aweber will ensure that your emails get delivered and you have a single central portal that you can manage your emails from.
Once inside your account you will find that creating a list and an opt-in form is relatively easy. This will differ depending upon which service you chose, but the services mentioned above all have good quality training available …just follow their instructions and if you run into any difficulty use their help or support function.
Your next step is to place your form onto your website. Again this is easy to do if you have a wordpress site. You simply take the code and place it where you want it on your site, for example inside a text widget in your side bar, at the end of each of your blog posts, or in a squeeze page (or optin form). The idea is to make it easy for people to sign up, and the key to success as an online entrepreneur or business person is to provide value.
One option is to use a WordPress plugin that can simplify this process. I personally use and highly recommend a plugin called Thrive Leads, which is very powerful and flexible, but also quite easy for a newbie to master relatively quickly.
The most common method of enticing people to provide their email address is to give them something in return. This could a free book or report, access to a private video, a free coupon or possibly something like a free consultation.
This really covers the very basics of getting started with building a list. Getting an opt-in form on your website is a great start. From there, as you learn more about list building, you can improve your techniques. If you have a website and haven’t yet started to build your list, the sooner you get started the better.