Best Practices for Building & Nurturing Successful Email Lists

A huge part of finding prospective clients in today’s age is digital marketing. You have to get creative and meet them where they are — online! A key component of digital marketing is creating a valuable list of prospects’ emails that you can reach out to through a comprehensive digital campaign. Jake Dorow is a marketing automation manager and has plenty of experience running successful email campaigns. Here’s what he has to say about building a valuable email list with the goal of growing your client base.

What are the essential steps to building a successful email list? 

Building a solid email list is critical because it’s usually the first step toward starting a strong relationship with that prospect. Emails are convenient and potentially profitable for any business. If done correctly, email marketing can be a big money-maker for many businesses.

Email lists can come from many different marketing campaigns. You can build a CTA (call to action) for each blog or landing page to subscribe to your email marketing database, surveys and pop-up windows asking a visitor to a website to subscribe, pitch email newsletters on social media and/or email signatures, create new lead generation offers, or create bonus content!

For email marketing to be convenient and profitable, you’ll need clean lists and data in your CRM database for constant communications. According to Statista, there were almost 4 billion global email users as of 2019 and that number is set to grow to 4.48 billion by 2024.1 That’s a lot of possible prospects out there to add to an email list, but adding the right data is important to make sure they fit your business model.

That’s where segmenting and targeting becomes most valuable. The right audience is critical for any business as you can reach out to large groups with just a single click of the mouse, which can be pretty intimidating, I must admit, especially since you can’t get back that email once sent. Make sure to build lists and segment them to target specific people for specific campaigns. Spend some time strategizing how you want to structure your marketing campaigns. Once you have done that, it can open up a lot of marketing ideas to target people of your specific lists with content directed right toward them for better responses and engagement!

What is the biggest challenge you face when building an email list? 

There are plenty of ways to build lists incorrectly. You can buy email lists that have unverified, expired, and unsegmented prospects. Email lists with unknowns can decrease deliverability or affect your business reputation, or even worse, your email server can suspect you of sending out spam and can begin blacklisting its IP or domain. Trust me, you don’t want to go down that path!

There are also other challenges to building email lists, such as keeping your subscribers engaged. It’s always a challenge to keep everyone interested in what content you are sending out, and will stay with you if they find value in what you are providing. Sending newsletters, updates, offers, etc. is a challenge to keep the high-quality leads interested.

What would you say are the best practices for nurturing an email list once created? 

Once your lists are built to your satisfaction, building an automated email campaign is the next essential part in your marketing campaigns. Infusionsoft, Marketo, Hubspot, Mailchimp and many others have automation that can assist you in sending emails automatically on certain days to “warm” potential prospects.  

Automation can save you a lot of time and effort! An email drip campaign can be thought of as a series of emails and texts that are created to work together with proper messaging to warm up a prospect toward a final conversion or goal you want achieved. It’s referred to as a “drip” campaign because the messaging provides ongoing value to your email lists. Your subscribers are slowly “dripped” key information leading to that goal, with updates, product notifications, handouts, CTAs to make an appointment, special offers, driving traffic to a landing page, etc. These are all ideas to have during a campaign to touch your prospect.

These drip campaigns are set up before the actual campaign begins and are fully automated throughout the timeframe you set from start to finish. An email may be sent immediately when someone signs up, and then you can build a 30-day educational series where that prospect receives an email every week with new updates or information you want to provide. It’s about delivering the proper information automatically to your subscriber to push them further down your sales funnel to eventually convert.

We spoke earlier about how segmentation and drip campaigns can be a great example of how important this is. Accurate segmentation can lead to better conversions or revenue with drip campaigns. Pinpointing the correct people in a list to match the content that you are creating in the automated drip series can help build trust with an audience.

Do you have any other tips for someone looking to create a successful email campaign? 

You ever bake a cake or something so delicate that it will not taste right if not done properly? That’s what I think of when it comes to building a successful email campaign. You have to make sure all your ingredients are correct and have the right measurements to see a successful campaign. Email lists are important, and automation is the frosting on the top, but I have not mentioned one key ingredient yet: TESTING! You must test your emails, test your automation campaigns, test to see if emails are delivering, and make sure all your links are correct. Clean your lists every 30 days to manage your database, and always look for the next best idea.

Email on Acid is a great platform to check spam possibilities and to see what your emails will look like on different devices and servers. Test to make sure all integrations are connected and messaging is correct.

I was once taught “you have to take the roast out of the oven.” Being a perfectionist can lead to missed opportunities and can be a huge waste of time and energy. Focus on constant improvement and innovation. Overanalyzing can kill an idea and make you miss an opportunity. I look at email marketing the same way. Automation can be really complex, but continue to analyze and look for ways to innovate so you can continue to adapt and connect with your subscribers.

  1. https://www.statista.com/statistics/255080/number-of-e-mail-users-worldwide/

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