Why I’m (STILL) an Advocate For Single Opt-In

Are you REALLY sure?
In a blog post I wrote over 16 months ago, I argued that when it comes to collecting email addresses, single opt-in was THE answer.

While many folks agreed with my take, some did not.

In fact, one person was “disappointed that someone with [my] experience in the email world would take this side.” It turns out he was not in favor of what I wrote. It just so happens he owns Aweber. Oops.

While we had a nice discussion in the comments, my viewpoint has not changed. Not at all.

I still believe that – in most cases – employing a double opt-in process is a terrible idea.

Chad White, author of Email Marketing Rules: How to Wear a White Hat, Shoot Straight, and Win Hearts and Principal of Marketing Research at ExactTarget, recently published the Email Opt-In Audit Imperative Infographic:

Print

Read full blog post and see Infographic over on the ExactTarget blog

In this ExactTarget research study, they tested the homepage signup process of “more than 160 B2C brands, including retailers, restaurants, manufacturers, travel and hospitality, and nonprofits.” To be clear, this research was focused on the B2C space … though I’d argue it applies to B2B as well.

The stat that jumped out at me?

This one.

Opt-in breakdowns and delays were 81% more common among brands that used a confirmed opt-in process, where consumers confirm their subscription by clicking on a link in an email sent to them.

81%.

Need I say more?

What do you think now? Am I still crazy for dismissing double/confirmed opt-in? Honestly, I’d love to hear from those folks who are advocates for double/confirmed opt-in. Talk to me.

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. Give the latest episode a listen!


Email Marketing Made Simple

DID YOU KNOW…

I recently launched a new online course, Email Marketing Made Simple, that promises to help make you a better email marketer.

-Having trouble growing your email list?
-Not sure what a preheader is?
-Avoiding using the word “free” in your subject lines because someone told you it was a “rule.”
-Having trouble figuring out how to use social media and email marketing together?
-Not sure what you should be testing and how often?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions (or all 5!), I can help.

Learn More about Email Marketing Made Simple

 

The Secret To Growing Your Email Marketing List by 10x In A Single Day

On Friday last week, my inbox became filled with notifications like this one:

New Email Subscriber

I immediately thought I had a spam issue. After all, in a matter of 3 minutes, I had more email subscribers then I normally get in 3 weeks.

I tweeted this:

 
Jason Keath’s Social Fresh event was going on in Tampa that day, so I thought it could be related. Maybe someone mentioned my email newsletter in one of their talks?

As it turns out, it had nothing to do with Jason. Or Social Fresh. Or Tampa.

The reason my email list grew more than 10 times than a normal day had everything to do with Amy Porterfield.

DJ Waldow Facebook Post - Amy Porterfied

Yes, you read that correctly. Thanks to Amy Porterfield mentioning The Waldow Social Weekly (my Friday email newsletter) in her podcast, my list growth on Friday exploded.

As I said in the intro of The Work Talk Show episode with her earlier this month, Amy is truly one of the nicest (and smartest) humans on Planet Earth.

Don’t believe me? Sign up for her FREE webinar tomorrow night (Tuesday, April 23 2013) and find out for yourself. How to Create a Results-Focused, Easy to Implement Facebook Marketing Plan with Amy Porterfield. By the way, notice how Amy is using that webinar registration page to grow HER email marketing list? Smart.

What’s your secret for growing your email marketing list? Please share below.

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. Give the latest episode a listen!


Email Marketing Made Simple

DID YOU KNOW…

I recently launched a new online course, Email Marketing Made Simple, that promises to help make you a better email marketer.

-Having trouble growing your email list?
-Not sure what a preheader is?
-Avoiding using the word “free” in your subject lines because someone told you it was a “rule.”
-Having trouble figuring out how to use social media and email marketing together?
-Not sure what you should be testing and how often?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions (or all 5!), I can help.

Learn More about Email Marketing Made Simple

 

What Do These 6 Websites All Have In Common?

Quick. Don’t think. Just react.

(thanks to Vine, you only have 6 seconds)

What do these 6 websites all have in common?

Having trouble seeing this (Vine) video? View it here.

Leave you answer in the comment below.

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. Give the latest episode a listen!


Speaking of breaking “the rules” of email marketing, did you know that my buddy Jason Falls and I just wrote a book called The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win?

Yup. It’s true.

In the book, we talk about growing your email list as well as breaking “the rules” of email marketing. Break the rules and grab your copy today, right now. Here –> AVAILABLE NOW!

Reminder: There is no such thing as “best practices” when it comes to email marketing. Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

Using Google+ (and Video) to Grow Your Email List

Every so often, I dip into Google+ to see what I’m missing.

Last week, I stumbled upon this post from Chris Brogan:

Brogan G+

See the Google+ post here.

As an email marketing guy, I … well … LOVED it. Using Google+ to encourage people to sign up for your email newsletter? Awesome. Adding a short (42 second) video explaining why you should sign up, setting expectations, including a personal request, and even asking others to share? Cool. Putting a link – http://hbway.com/nl – to sign up for the email newsletter in the G+ update AND in the screenshot of the video? Brilliant.

But … Did It Work?

As I write this, Brogan’s G+ post has 57 “+1s”, 52 comments, and 15 shares. Not too shabby.

However, the more important question is: How did this post help grow Brogan’s email list?

Here is what Chris tweeted to me:

If I’m doing my math correctly, that means Chris had a 4.4x bump in his average daily email subscribers – most of that likely tied to the Google+ post and video. Now that’s pretty amazing.

But … I’m Not Chris Brogan!

True. And neither am I.

In fact, nobody – other than Chris Brogan – is Chris Brogan. The same can be said about President Obama or Derek from Greatist. Heck, nobody other than my dentist from Salt Lake City is … my dentist from Salt Lake City. The point is that we are all individuals and have to test to see what works best for OUR audience.

Maybe you will not get 263 new email subscribers after posting a video on Google+. Maybe you will not raise $690 million from emails. Maybe 82% of your email list will not come through a popover.

As Chris Penn wrote recently, industry standards are a waste of timeI agree, for the most part (read my comment). My version of that is: Best practices are those that are best for your audience. Instead of comparing yourself to your industry (or Chris Brogan or President Obama or Derek from Greatist), set your own standards.

*As it turns out, Chris Brogan’s Sunday email is pretty awesome. I’ve read (nearly) every single one.*

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. Give the latest episode a listen!


Speaking of breaking “the rules” of email marketing, did you know that my buddy Jason Falls and I just wrote a book called The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win?

Yup. It’s true.

In the book, we talk about growing your email list as well as breaking “the rules” of email marketing. Break the rules and grab your copy today, right now. Here –> AVAILABLE NOW!

Reminder: There is no such thing as “best practices” when it comes to email marketing. Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

Subscribe to The Waldow Social Weekly and Get a Discount on Email Marketing Made Simple

Grow Your Email List

In my ever-growing quest to practice what I preach, this post will apply a few things Jason and I talk about in The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing (our book) as well as Email Marketing Made Simple (my new, online course).

As we say often, one of the “secrets” to email marketing is growing your list. If you don’t have an email list to send to, nothing else really matters!

When it comes to growing your email list, a few things are really important:

  1. Ensure that your opt-in form is obvious (can you find it on Waldow Social?)
  2. Provide an incentive for folks to subscribe (see this blog post!)

So, starting today – right now, this very moment, NOW – if you subscribe to The Waldow Social Weekly, as a bonus, you’ll get a discount on Email Marketing Made Simple.

Not a bad deal, huh?

So, what are you waiting for? Subscribe now!

*Note: After opting in, you’ll receive a welcome email which includes the promo code for the Email Marketing Made Simple discount.

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. Give the latest episode a listen! This week’s guest is Jason Falls – my friend, colleague, and co-author.


Wait. A 3rd mention of Jason Falls in the SAME blog post? Ha. Well, in case you somehow missed the news, we just wrote a book called The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win?

Yup. It’s true.

In the book, we talk about growing your email list as well as breaking “the rules” of email marketing. Break the rules and grab your copy today, right now. Here –> AVAILABLE NOW!

Reminder: There is no such thing as “best practices” when it comes to email marketing. Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

82% of Greatist’s List Growth Comes From Its Popup

Greatist Daily Email PopupAlmost without fail, when I give my Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing talk and mention using a popup to collect email addresses, there is a collective groan throughout the crowd.

Let’s face it, many (most?) people hate popups.

I personally don’t care for them. However, as Chris Penn reminded himself (and all of his readers) here of the cardinal rule of marketing: I am not my customer.

My version of that phrase goes like this: Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

But what if adding a popup or popover* to your website worked? What if you could attribute a significant portion of your overall list growth to a popup? Would you test it?

In our book – The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing - Jason and I give several examples of individuals and companies who are growing their email lists quite a bit through popovers. We talk about Chris Penn’s popover as well as the one from Funny or Die. Both of them report incredible results from their popovers.

The more websites I visit, the more popovers seem to be “popping up.” The latest example comes from the team at Greatist.

82% of Greatist’s List Growth Comes From Its Popup

Greatist may be my new favorite website on the Internet. According to its About page:

A greatist is someone who chooses better to improve their fitness, health, and happiness. Greatist.com is the trusted health & fitness source for the young, savvy, and social.

When I first discovered Greatist, I was reading a wonderful article when suddenly a popover appeared … asking me to subscribe to the Greatist Daily (see image at top of this post). Without hesitation, I entered my email address and hit the subscribe button. WHAT? Didn’t I just write above that I hate popups?

Yes.

So why did I opt-in? Why did I enter my email address? Simple. The Greatist content that I was reading was so wonderful that I wanted to get it delivered to my inbox daily. The WIIFM (what’s in it for me) was short, direct, and compelling. The opt-in form was simple (email address only).

I emailed Derek Flanzraich, the CEO and Founder of Greatist, to tell him how awesome their popover was. I also – of course – asked him if it was working for them. Here is what Derek shared with me:

Me: Did you always have the popup on your site? If not, what did your pre-popup list growth look like compared to once you installed the popup?

Derek: Originally, Greatist started without a popup… but I was ultimately convinced it was the most effective way to grow a list mostly because I learned we could profoundly customize it. Our popup appears only once to each IP address (a reader’s first visit) and only 90 seconds into a session. The idea is simple: not bother people, but offer them a way to keep up with Greatist if they like what they see enough to stick around for a bit. We’ve briefly considered having the popup appear only at the beginning of someone’s 2nd visit to the site. I’m typically not a huge fan of popups myself, but if done well and with a brand I want to hear more from, I’d love to see one. So just as with everything at Greatist, we want to share a value we believe is truly awesome (our original daily tips newsletter) to people who’d appreciate it! We had an email entry box at the top right of the site before and still do, but the minute we installed the popup, our growth began to accelerate big time.

Me: Are you using an off-the-shelf popup solution or is it home built? If off-the-shelf, what are you using?

Derek: We’re using a pretty customized popup solution from MailChimp.

Me: Who came up with the copy for the popup (I love it, by the way) and what prompted you do try something short, sweet, and light?

Derek: Think it must have been me! Though we’ve considered it, we haven’t changed it at all since we added the popup. Don’t rock the boat, right? The copy is super consistent with our brand: high-quality, but fun– professional, but friendly. We’re obsessed with building a health & wellness brand that people truly trust and love– and on our way!

Me: What percentage of your overall email list growth is due to the popup?

Derek: 82%. Wowza.

Me: Have you ever had any complaints about the popup?

Derek: Very, very few. The major complaint has been that the popup has a glitch that, when it pops up, some people (only on mobile) are dragged to the top of the site. If they were reading an article, they immediately lose their place and all hell breaks loose (I assume). We’re working to fix it! Otherwise, can’t think of a simple complaint because of just the popup in our over a year and a half history.

So … Should YOU Add a Popover To Your Site?

Yes.
No.
Maybe.

My advice is this: Test it. Try it for a few weeks to see if it works for your audience. In the spirit of practicing what I preach, I’ve been testing a popover on Waldow Social. Truth be told, it’s not been that effective for me. That’s why you need to test! Don’t discount it – or any list growth tactic – until you have tested it with your audience.

Are you currently using a popover to grow your email list? If so, how’s it working for you? If not, what’s preventing you from testing it?

*Note: I use the term popups and popovers interchangeably; however, they are not really the same. Mark Brownlow does a nice job of distinguishing between the two here. Basically, a popup is something that appears in a new window or tab where a popover appears as a box/form that lays over the current webpage. The Greatist example above is a popover.

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. Give the latest episode – with SETH GODIN! – a listen!


Speaking of breaking “the rules” of email marketing, did you know that my buddy Jason Falls and I just wrote a book called The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win?

Yup. It’s true.

In the book, we talk about growing your email list as well as breaking “the rules” of email marketing. Break the rules and grab your copy today, right now. Here –> AVAILABLE NOW!

Reminder: There is no such thing as “best practices” when it comes to email marketing. Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

How I Grew My Email List 20% in 20 Days

The Secret to Email Marketing: List Growth!

That’s the title of the first section of The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing. That’s right. Jason and I dedicated an entire section of the book to email list growth. After all, if you don’t have a list of email addresses to send to … nothing else really matters.

Over the past few weeks I’ve made a concerted effort to practice much of what we preach in that section. Simply put: I’ve been pushing hard to grow my email list.

All of these efforts have led to my email list growing by 20% over the past 20 days!

As you can see by the pretty chart above, other than the February-April lull, my email list growth has been pretty steady. All of the sudden, the numbers began shooting up in October.

While this should not come as much of a surprise, in order to grow my email list, I’ve implemented many of the tactics we talk about in The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing. Specifically:

1. Make the opt-in process obvious and easy. Ask website vistors to subscribe. Since re-launching my new website earlier this month, I decided to give the email opt-in form prominent placement. As you can see below, it now sits in the top right of the header on every single page of my website.

Note: Here is how it looks on the homepage.

Thanks in part to this change, my second most-visited page over the past 3 weeks is my email opt-in page.

2. Provide incentive (WIIFM – What’s In It For Me?). When you click on the email banner, you land on the email opt-in page. On this page, I set clear expectations around the content  - both in text as well as the preview link to a past email. I also include several testimonials from current email subscribers. In the next iteration of this landing page, I’ll be providing direct incentive for folks to opt-in (see comments below about the popup).

3. Using technology (QR Codes). I use this QR code on the back of my business card as well as in many presentations I give (see slides 2 and 112). The QR code points to … you guessed it! My email opt-in landing page. I recently included this QR code in a MarketingProfs Pro Seminar – over a dozen new opt-ins as a result. While not a ton, it’s better than nothing.

Try it now. Not working? You can opt-in here

4. Use social media. I’ve been plugging my email opt-in on Twitter, with tweets such as these …

I also have been promoting it on my personal Facebook page.

One thing I’ve been watching closely are my key metrics – opens, click-to-opens, and unsubscribes. Over the past 10+ months, these metrics have remained steady:

  • Open Rate: 38% average with a high of 53% and a low of 28%
  • Click-to-Open Rate: 29%  average with a high of 44% and a low of 15%
  • Unsubscribes: a handful every month

My List Growth Goal for November: 50%

That’s right. You heard it here first. While I’m thrilled that I was able to grow my email list by 20% in the past 20 days, my goal for the month of November is to grow my email list by 50%!

Now, the question is … HOW?

First, I’ll continue to do everything that I’ve mentioned above. However, in addition, I’ll be implementing the following three tactics:

1. Using a popup (also known as BREAKING THE RULES!): Everyone hates popups. I know. I know. I know. So do I. So does Chris Penn. But as Chris recently found out, when he removed the popup, his list growth fell off the cliff.

In the book, Jason and I provide several examples of popups that have been quite effective in growing people’s email lists. So, I’m going to test it. Chel Wolverton is in the process of designing my new popup. Remember: Best practices are those that are best for your audience. Stay tuned.

2. Providing incentive: While I think The Waldow Social Weekly email kicks ass and the content stands on it’s own, I’m going to test providing some incentive. As of now, that incentive looks like a new eBook I published. Again, stay tuned.

3. This blog post: I’m hopeful that this blog post – all about how I’m growing my email list – will help to grow my email list. Makes sense, right?

So again, my goal for November is to grow my email list by 50%! While I realize that sounds awfully aggressive, I’ve always been of the “go big or go home” mindset.

You can help me reach that goal by opting in now to my email list. <–See what I did there?

 

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social

P.S. Have you heard the news? Nick Westergaard and I have started a weekly podcast called The Work Talk Show, where we interview crazy-smart folks about how work gets done. This week’s guest is Ann Handley! Listen to what she has to say about working in virtual teams.


Are you someone who likes to break rules? Are you one of those people who is a bit on the rebellious side? If so, the book that my buddy Jason Falls and I just wrote, The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win, is right up your alley!

In the book, we talk about growing your email list as well as breaking “the rules” of email marketing. Break the rules and grab your copy today, right now. Here –> AVAILABLE NOW!

Reminder: There is no such thing as “best practices” when it comes to email marketing. Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

Bathrooms, QR Codes, and Growing Your Email List

What does the door of a public restroom, a QR code, and email marketing all have in common?

(yes, that’s a serious question.)

Last week I was at Blowfish Sushi in San Francisco. Unrelated to this blog post, but this is BY FAR the best sushi place I’ve even been to in my life. Thanks to Tim Hayden for taking me there (2x!)

Anyway … One beer and four glasses of water later, I found myself making my way to the men’s room. I was just about to open the door when I saw this:

Holy cats … this is awesome.

Bathrooms, QR Codes, and Growing Your Email List

Rarely do I see a QR code / email list growth campaign executed as well as this one. There are 5 things that I absolutely love about this poster. From top to bottom:

  1. What’s In It For Me? One of my biggest pet peeves in email marketing – or any marketing for that matter – is when there is no value offered for me, the consumer. Messaging such as “Like us on Facebook!” or “Follow us on Twitter!” or “Sign up for our Email List!” without any mention of what I’m going to get in return is just … well … silly. The poster tells the WIIFM right away – “Enjoy a sake cocktail or dessert on us.” 
  2. What am I supposed to do? Too often I see marketers making a critical mistake by assuming people know what to do when they see a call to action – the QR code in this case. The messaging on the poster makes it pretty clear what action they want folks to take – “Just sign up for our e-mail list by scanning this code with your smart phone.” I’m not sure if this was intentional, but notice how they omit the acronym “QR”? My bet is most people don’t even know what “QR” stands for. Do you? No reason to take up valuable real estate with two letters that don’t  make sense to most of your audience.
  3. The QR Code: It’s large. It’s in the center of the poster. It’s clear. If you are going to ask people to pull out their smart phones and scan a QR code, be sure it’s large enough! Note: Unfortunately, because my flash went off when I snapped this picture, the QR code will not work. Sorry!
  4. The Promise: I normally am not a fan of messaging such as “we never spam,” but I think it works in this case. The addition of the “Don’t be shy” adds a bit of humor to the promise.
  5. What if you don’t have a smart phone (or know what a QR code is)? I’m still not sold on the fact that the average person (a) knows what a QR code is, (b) knows what to do when they see one, and/or (c) has a QR code scanner on their smart phone (if they do, they don’t know where it is). That’s why I love it when marketers add messaging that gives consumers options. In this case, they give people an option to go to their Twitter page and opt-in for their email list there. Try it. Go to the Blowfish Sushi Twitter page, then click on this link in their Twitter bio to subscribe to their email list. Pretty slick, huh?

BONUS: Did I mention this poster was on the men’s room door. Great location. Why? It’s the place that nearly everyone – well, at least all the males – will go at least once in the time they are at the restaurant!

I’d love to hear from the marketing folks at Blowfish Sushi SF. How effective has this poster been at growing their email list? What do the metrics look like – scans to clicks on URL to email opt-ins?

What do you think about this approach to grow your list? Do you have any list growth tactics you’ve successfully implemented? If so, leave a comment below – I’d love to feature you in an upcoming blog post!

DJ Waldow
Waldow Social


Speaking of growing your email marketing list, did you know that my buddy Jason Falls and I just wrote a book that has an entire section dedicated to growing your email list? In The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win, we also talk about a few ways to “break the rules” and still grow your list.

Break the rules and grab your copy today. AVAILABLE NOW!

Reminder: There is no such thing as “best practices” when it comes to email marketing. Best practices are those that are best for your audience.

3 Ways to Find and Engage New Email Subscribers with SMS [Webinar Materials]

Last week, my friend and colleague Justin Mastrangelo and I hosted a webinar, 3 Ways to Find and Engage New Email Subscribers with SMS.

In this less-then-30-minute webinar, we shared:

  1. Ways to use traditional media, events, and foot traffic to grow your email list through text messaging
  2. Tips on using a welcome email series to quickly engage new subscribers
  3. Strategies for using email and SMS together to maximize your campaign’s effectiveness

Webinar Materials – Yours … FREE!

We’ve posted the slides – all 56 of them – to Slideshare. See below.



If you’d like to watch the presentation AND hear what Justin and I had to say, you can view the webinar on YouTube. Due to length restrictions, we had to split them up into 3 parts:

Justin and I had a ton of fun doing this webinar. We hope you took away at least one thing that you plan implementing. If you did … and end up testing it, please share the results with us in the comments below. Also, if you would like either Justin or I to cover a specific email marketing and/or SMS related topic in a future webinar, please also share that in the comments below.

Cheers.
DJ Waldow

——

At the end of the webinar, there is a soft plug for the new book that I co-authored with Jason Falls. In the book, we talk about ways to grow your email list AND break some rules along the way. We even talk a bit about mobile marketing – some of the topics we covered in the webinar In The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win, we share with you all sorts of email marketing “best practices” individuals and companies are breaking each and every day … and still finding success.

PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY NOW!

How To Use SMS to Grow Your Email List

The following is a guest post from Justin Mastrangelo, the Founder of the JA.TXT text message marketing platform. As President of the parent company, JA Interactive, he has worked with businesses, nonprofits, and agencies to cost-effectively reach new audiences through digital marketing and technology. Justin launched the JA.TXT platform to give these same organizations an opportunity to start strategic mobile marketing campaigns using text messaging. Learn more about SMS marketing on the JA.TXT Blog.

———-

You know something you don’t hear very often in a radio spot? “Send us an email to be entered into a contest to win…”

Have you ever been to a rally where the speaker told everyone to send an email to get involved?

When you’re walking down the street you never see an outdoor advertisement that tells you to send an email to learn more about a product or service.

Why not? Because email isn’t a very good call-to-action in those scenarios.

If you’re focused on email marketing somewhere on your list of goals is probably “increase list size.” The trouble with that goal is there are only so many ways you can grow an email list, and many of those ways depend on web traffic or the dreadful clipboards and pens.

Is there a better way for offline efforts to grow an email list?

Yes, using text messaging. Text messaging is a great call-to-action because it’s simple, easy, and everyone has it on their phone (unlike email). It also helps that you don’t have to come up with a subject line or key-in a long address.

How Does It Work?

using text messaging to capture email address for opt-in marketingIn the scenario of the rally above, a speaker and the printed materials handed out at the event would direct attendees to send a text message to get involved. For example, “Text the word SUPPORT to 12345 to sign up and find out how you can help us!”

After doing this the user would receive an immediate text message back asking them to respond with their email address to join the list. After responding the user would then receive a final text message confirming receipt of the address. If additional information is needed, like a zip code, this can be requested with another text message.

Once the email address is received it can be saved in a database for download later or pushed directly into an email marketing platform so the user has the welcome email waiting for them when they get back to their inbox.

The 3 best opportunities where text messaging can grow an email list

1. Traditional media: Just like in the example above, text messaging is a much easier call-to-action for your TV, radio, print, or outdoor ad. Have your audience text-in to get a coupon for your product or register for an upcoming event via email.

2. Events: Lose the old-fashioned, tacky clipboards and make signing up easier for your attendees. Nobody likes to wait in line for a pen. Have the speaker direct attendees to sign up in seconds by texting-in. Pass out cards with the instructions while people are walking in or out of the event. Tie signing up to an on-the-spot giveaway and drive even more participation. Hint: Call the winner from the stage at the end of the event, everyone will love it.

3. Foot traffic: Give all those people walking through your door or waiting in line an easy way to join your email loyalty club. Have them text-in for an email discount good on their next visit.

I hope this gets you thinking about ways to use text messaging to grow your email list. I’m sure you can come up with some great ideas I haven’t covered here. If you feel like sharing, drop in a comment below. I’d love to hear what you come up with!

———-

Did you know … Jason Falls and I just wrote a new book about breaking the rules of email marketing! In the book, we have an entire section dedicated to growing your email list. In The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing: Grow Your List, Break the Rules, and Win, we share with you all sorts of email marketing “best practices” individuals and companies are breaking each and every day … and still finding success.

PRE-ORDER IT NOW! (please)