Why aren’t you building your list?

I want to make my first post about what I believe is probably the most crucial factor for success online which applies across the board for any business and that is building a list – a legitimate list of people who have asked to be a subscriber.

Now there may be a few of you who are asking this very first question “what is a list?”. When we talk about a list we are talking about generating a list of people who have given us there email address, and perhaps other details such as their name and phone number, to get more information. List building may also be referred to as lead capture or lead or client database.

This may then lead to a second question which is “why have a list?”. Well having a list allows you to send updates to those people who geniunely want information from you and also to occasionally send promotional items to them.

Having a list allows you to also market any of your future products so it basically acts as a future revenue stream as well as providing a place for you to give information to your list to carry on building your market authority credentials.

What is really important when you have a list is providing value. It is important that you treat your list with respect with the messages you are sending out and that you are servicing your market.

I’ll cover more on what kind of things you could be sending your list another time as I want to keep this post about building your list in the first place.

Lead Capture

As much as the effectiveness of email is not what it was, it is still absolutely the most crucial contact mechanism. Nothing yet comes close, not even Facebook or Twitter, to compelling people to take some form of action. As of today as I write this email still has real power.

It’s perhaps should be most important metric for your business and that is how much did you increase your list this week or month?

Research has shown that it can take up to 7 or more contacts with a prospect before they’ll buy from you. This isn’t just email contacts, it can include phone conversations, meetings, SMS/Text messaging and so on.

It’s also important to have a list because not all visitors to your site are necessarily ready to “buy NOW”. Most are just researching and information gathering mode as they evaluate their options.

And once someone on your list becomes a client or buyer they should be switched over to a separate client list with a different sequence of messages. So in your business you should have both types of lists – a prospect list and a customer list.

Why? Because a person on your list of clients is more valuable that one on your list of prospects and just because they are now a client it doesn’t mean you need to stop marketing to them in the future. A person on  your client list is perhaps worth 10 times what that of one on your prospect list.

Small and medium sized businesses now have access to lead capture and follow-up automation solutions that were once previously only available to large companies with large budgets.

So how do you build a list?

Your website must have an opt-in form which allows for email address entry by visitors.

Of course you will need to give them a reason to opt-in and become a subscriber. This depends on your business and could be a coupon or free consultation, a report or a series of how to videos and so on.

It is also important to have multiple ways for people to subscribe apart from a web form. They could subscribe by texting their email address to a phone number, scanning a QR code on a flyer or on a poster on a wall or even on your car. You can add them to your list by scanning their business card when you meet them face to face. Also if you are do presentations to a room full of people, offer them something and them to text their email to a phone number which will add them to your list and automatically send them the gift you offered.

Make no mistake, if you take nothing else away from this post, once you start building a list for your business, you’ve taken a huge step toward growing your business and getting more clients.

If you want to know more about how list building can grow your business be sure to contact us so we can show you how it can help your business grow.