Growing your email list when you’ve been focused on 1:1 work and relying on referrals can be a little… awkward.
Maybe the people on your list signed up back when you were doing something totally different to what you’re doing now.
Or perhaps you haven’t really emailed your list in a while, so now it feels a bit uncomfortable to send them an email out of the blue.
Whatever the case, you know it’s time to grow your list so that you can maximize your impact with your new online course.
A Quick Note Before We Get Started
Whether you sent an email to your list this week, or it’s been a minute since you last sent out a newsletter, I want you to know that there is absolutely zero shaming happening here.
Let’s completely forget what you “should have done” to build your list up until this point.
What’s important right now is making the best decision with what’s in front of you TODAY.
So regardless of your email list size right now, let’s focus on growing your list in a purposeful and intentional way so that the end result is building a community of people that are perfect for the end offer– your course.
Why Growing Your Email List Is Important to Sell Your Course
In Clients to Courses®, I focus exclusively on launching and selling your online course organically, without paid ads.
And one of the key tools to sell your course successfully? Email marketing.
Email marketing is one of the most successful ways to convert leads into sales.
The ROI (return on investment) for email marketing? $36 in return for every $1 spent.
Although social media is great and you can certainly make sales through those platforms, it’s always best to direct your social media followers into your email list.
Think of the last course you purchased.
Did you buy the course from someone whom you follow on social media exclusively, or did you make that purchase from an email (or string of emails)?
I’m almost certain it was the latter.
This is because:
- Emails are the fastest way to reach your audience (and more of them!)
- People expect marketing emails in their inbox (and likely come to social media more for entertainment!)
- You’ve created targeted, valuable content for your subscribers that has built a solid connection (and trust)
So let’s keep building that list to get you ready to sell out your course!
The One Thing You Need in Order to Grow Your List
Before getting into the different ways you can grow your list, there is one thing you have to have ready before welcoming new people into your email world: a sales funnel.
Before you start boo-ing me off the stage (please hold the tomatoes!), let me explain.
Your sales funnel is the journey that your subscriber will take, from the moment they sign up to your email list to the moment they purchase your course.
I’ve written this blog post to walk you through how to build your sales funnel from start to finish, but here’s the abridged version.
- An opt-in that addresses the problem that your ideal client is looking to solve (essentially, this opt-in will sell your course for you!)
- A landing page that converts
- The nurture/welcome email sequence you’ll send new subscribers once they sign up (need an email service provider? We love ConvertKit!)
- A sales page (or sales driver!) for the offer you’ll be selling them
Once this is set up, then you can start bringing people into your list!
And don’t forget, this isn’t the final communication you have with your new subscribers! They need weekly communication (or bi-weekly at minimum!) from you in order to continue the relationship.
Otherwise, it’s like an amazing first date and then ghosting on them.
Don’t ghost on them!
How to Grow Your Email List: 5 Simple Ways
Now that your lead magnet is ready and your funnel is set, it’s time to build (or keep building) your email list!
1. Maximize your existing free content
Maybe you create consistent content for your podcast. Or you love to write blogs for your website.
If you’re creating any form of free, long-form content, then maximize each piece of content by promoting your opt-in.
Oftentimes, we forget to actually promote our opt-in and go straight into promoting our course.
While there is nothing wrong with promoting your main offer in your free content (we do it all the time with Clients to Courses®!), what happens if people don’t buy?
By promoting your opt-in, they don’t have to make the decision to purchase from you just yet.
Instead, you can continue to build know, like, and trust by delivering an additional free resource to your subscribers that they will 100% want to sign up for.
So if you create:
- Podcasts: Record 4 variations of promo audio about your opt-in that can alternate at the end of each episode
- Videos (like YouTube): Mention the opt-in at the end of your video, along with a text bar video that let’s people know where to access the opt-in
- Blogs: Add a promo image in the blog and/or link it within your text (like we’re doing right here with our FREE Ultimate Course Funnel Template 😏)
2. Use a pop-up and/or banner on your website
Pop-ups get a bad rap, but they increase sign-ups by 50%.
The truth is, pop ups are very convenient for your website users, if used wisely.
Instead of having to search for a way to sign up, or having to click a link to sign up, a pop up gives website users the opportunity to sign up for your lead magnet without having to leave the page.
You can also use a website banner (like we have at the very top ^^, see?)
The banner is permanently displayed at the very top of every page on your website.
And when users scroll down when they’re reading a blog post, they can still see the banner.
3. Create social media specifically around your opt-in.
Oftentimes, creators only craft content around their offer.
But as I mentioned earlier, email marketing is the key place to drive conversions.
So while creating content around your offer is a good strategy, it’s also good to include content that promotes your opt-in!
Your opt-in is an easier “yes” from your social media followers, because it’s free.
And also, your lead magnet is undoubtedly another piece of incredible content that deserves the promo!
4. Leverage Pinterest
If you have blog or Youtube content, Pinterest can be an excellent platform to promote your opt-in organically.
You can create pins that lead directly to your opt-in’s landing page…
OR you can create pins for your free content (from point 1) and have those lead to your opt-in (via a pop-up and a CTA!).
5. Leverage Collaborations
This is one of my favorites!
Whenever I guest on a podcast, I always promote one of my opt-ins.
It’s an easier “yes” from listeners, but it also provides a way for me to connect with a brand new audience with even more valuable content.
I do share where they can find me on social media, but having them sign up for my email list is the bigger win!
You can do this when you guest teach in someone’s community or even guest blog on someone’s website as well!
Growing Your List: FREE Email Checklist
And just like I said you should in point 1… here’s my CTA for you 😂
The Ultimate Course Funnel checklist will show you the exact emails needed for a powerful funnel that will help you grow your email list (and your sales!) – on autopilot.
Yes, this is the same formula both myself and my clients are using to continue to accelerate our incomes, while working less and living more.