On top of your blogging and your social media, something else you’ll need is a squeeze page where you can build your list. This is a highly important tool because it is what you’re going to use to convert your cold leads into warm leads – and email subscribers are the best types of warm leads because they are giving you a direct line of communication that isn’t reliant on a third party like Facebook.
Some more reasons to strongly consider email marketing over other methods:
- E-mail marketing has a ROI of 4,300%
- 91% of consumers will check their e-mail AT LEAST once a day…
- Surveyed companies rate e-mail marketing as more profitable than: PPC advertising, content marketing, affiliate marketing, display advertising, mobile ads, social media marketing or direct marketing…
- 66% of US consumers above the age of 15 say they have made purchases as the direct result of an e-mail campaign…
- 1/3rd of consumers say they open e-mails based on the heading alone!
Moreover, giving their email and inviting you to contact them is a much bigger step and suggests a particularly engaged reader. This is someone who is very likely to read what you have to say and to be persuaded by the content that you subsequently send them.
Your squeeze page is a single page that you are going to dedicate purely to generating subscribers. This is like a sales page in that it has a singular purpose and will use persuasive text and design to encourage people to fulfil that purpose. The only difference is that you’re trying to get people to part with their personal email rather than with their cash – which theoretically should make it easier!
So how do you build a list using a squeeze page?
The first thing to think about here is the design and in that regard things are kept pretty simple. The only design guideline for a squeeze page is to try and keep things simple in order to minimize the number of distractions on the page. Your aim is to try and avoid people clicking away from the page and to keep them reading your copy – which means you want to minimize adverts for other things, as well as menu items etc. that will make them click away. Otherwise though, you can treat this like any other static page on your blog.
Make sure that you place your ‘subscribe now’ button somewhere prominent and easy to read and try to put it near what is known as the ‘terminal point’ for that page – this is the last point the visitors will see – normally the bottom right hand corner of the page.
For your ‘sign up’ button, you need to use an autoresponder, which will help you to create the form and design it to match the colorscheme of your website. Make sure that your buttons stand out by using contrasting colors but also that they match the scheme of the site and don’t look out of place.
Your autoresponder is also going to be what will help you to manage your leads and we’ll look at this in more detail in the chapter on lead management.
Another tip when trying to get people to sign up for your mailing list is to use incentives. Incentives are generally freebies that people will hopefully want badly enough in order to agree to part with their details. Very often, this will mean that you give away some kind of ‘free report’ that provides information about your niche and that the visitors can only get by signing up. They’ll then hopefully join your mailing list in exchange for getting that free PDF and should feel as though they’ve gotten a good deal.
When doing this though, you also need to be careful. The problem with giving away free incentives is that you can end up with people signing up for your mailing list just to get the report and who aren’t really interested in your messages. This is a mistake because you now have a list that is much less targeted and much less ‘warm’ that you initially thought.
A lot of people will give away ebooks as their incentives but this is making a big mistake. Not only does an ebook incentive encourage too many people who are just hunting for freebies but it is also something that a lot of people won’t actually read or use. That in turn means that a lot of your visitors will end up owning copies of ebooks that they have never gotten around to reading and this is now going to make them less likely to spend money on another ebook from you for obvious reasons!
What’s more, is that giving away an ebook for free communicates that your ebooks aren’t worth paying for – this is especially destructive if your business model is going to at any point involve selling ebooks!
For these reasons, giving away a free report is actually a better strategy than giving away an ebook – especially if you can provide real value in a short number of words!
But what is even better than that?
Making your emails/newsletter into the incentive themselves. This means that you should make sure that your emails are going to provide value by offering extra information., extra content and more entertainment. Likewise, you should talk about your subscribers as VIPs and make them feel like they are exclusive members of your brand and have privileged access to things that other people don’t (you should also refer to them throughout the rest of your content so that people are continuously reminded that your mailing list exists and that it’s the best way to get your very best content).
And finally, perhaps surprisingly in light of everything we’ve said thus far, you can also turn special offers and discounts into your incentive. If you tell your visitors that they can get access to the very best deals and money off by subscribing to your list, then you are essentially attracting qualified leads. In other words, if they’re signing up because they want to get money off your products, that suggests they must be interested in said products. That makes them qualified leads and highly targeted for you to subsequently market to.
An Example of the Copy
There are lots of ways you can do this but one of the best examples can be found on Tim Ferriss’ 4 Hour Workweek blog. He has created a very simple squeeze page titled ‘7 Reasons to Subscribe’. He hits all the points we just touched upon perfectly and also throws in a little humor for good measure:
7 Reasons to Subscribe
- You never have to check the site for updates again, and you get the latest and greatest first.
- It’s totally free.
- 1,000,000+ monthly readers means something–the content works. And using e-mail or RSS saves you wasted visits. More results in less time.
- Exclusive content and competitions–from cutting-edge gadgets to round-the-world tickets–are often limited to subscribers only. If you want the rarest opportunities, subscribing is the way to go.
- Your info will never be shared with anyone. I hate spammers as much as you do. Scout’s honor.
- Subscribing is worth testing for a few days just to experience it. Decide you prefer visiting? Just unsubscribe with one click and you’re back at the campfire.
- Subscribers are smart and hot.