If you’ve been paying attention to any online marketing experts or business gurus, you’ve likely heard them say “you need to have an email list!” Email lists are a powerful way to stay connected with your community, build trust amongst your readers, and to strengthen your reputation as a leader within your industry.
Maybe you’ve been put off by the amount of work you think it will take to grow your email list. Hearing the words “auto-responders”, “nurture sequences”, “lead magnets”, and “segmented lists” may send you running for the hills. Or maybe you’ve been intimidated by the numbers these business experts throw around; hearing about email lists of 10,000 subscribers might make you feel as though there’s no point if you don’t even know 500 people.
But don’t let the perceived amount of work or the pressure to grow a massive list put you off. The technological side can easily be figured out through Google, and you’re much better off having a list of 200 people who are eager to open your emails than you are having a list of 1,000 people who send them to the trash without even opening.
So if you’re ready to give this email list thing a shot, keep reading for five simple but effective ways to grow your email list.
Tip #1: Give People a Reason to Sign Up
I come across so many websites with pop-ups that say “Subscribe to my newsletter to stay up to date on all my announcements!” But is that really an enticing reason for somebody who doesn’t know you to give you their email address? What kind of announcements will you be sharing? New offers? Promotions? A new baby in your family? As much as your raving fans may want to know everything about your life, a stranger stumbling upon your website for the first time probably doesn’t care about your business updates. There’s nothing in it for them, as far as they can see.
Tell people what they will get by subscribing to your email list, and then be sure to deliver it! Will they get exclusive content they won’t find on any of your social media channels? Will they get a bonus monthly workout or your new favourite recipe? Or maybe you’ll curate some great fitness blog posts you found throughout the week, saving them time and giving them access to information they may not have otherwise found.
Take your Personal Training Business digital.
Start your free 30-day trial of Trainerize.
Tip #2: Make it Easy for People to Sign Up
People can’t sign up for your email list if you don’t provide them any opportunities to do so. Put a subscription box in the sidebar and footer on your website, and at the end of all your blog posts. Don’t forget to tell them why they should sign up! Link a landing page (a simple page that doesn’t have much info beyond an enticing offer to sign up for your email list and a spot to do so) on all of your social media profiles.
You could even experiment with pop-ups. Pop-ups have gotten a bad reputation over the years, but they are still proving to be a popular way to grow an email list. Many email marketing software providers make it easy to create pop-up boxes that won’t annoy your website visitors. Just make sure you have a way of optimizing them for mobile devices and ensuring that visitors who have already exited out won’t be prompted to sign up again.
Tip #3: Consider Creating a Lead Magnet
A lead magnet (also known as an opt-in or freebie) is a way to entice a person to subscribe to your email list outside the great content you’ll send to them on a regular basis.
You could create a 5-day workout guide with a few recipes and lifestyle tips, and let people know the only way they can access this is by subscribing to your email list. Or you could compile some of your best blog posts into an easy-to-read guide that will solve a problem your potential subscribers have.
There has been some questioning over the effectiveness of lead magnets as of late. In the early days of online marketing, people were eager to give out their email addresses at the promise of free information all the time. Nowadays, people have become more wary as they’ve come to learn that they’re often shuttled into promotional sequences after the initial freebie is given.
However, lead magnets are still an excellent way to build your email list and to give potential clients a taste of your personality and fitness expertise. Keep it easy to read, and don’t overthink it or spend weeks upon weeks creating it. Simple but effective is the name of the game.
Up your Fitness Business game.
Start your free 30-day trial of Trainerize.
Tip #4: Collect Emails Offline
Do you ever host any workshops or public speaking gigs in your local community? If so, these are prime opportunities to build your email list! Whereas somebody who just found your website might not be keen to give you their precious email address, somebody who listened to you talk for 30-60 minutes and got to connect with you in person will be much more likely to share their information with you.
Print off a document or set up a tablet to collect names and emails digitally, and at the end of your talk you can let participants know they can stay connected with you by giving you their information. You could simply let them know the kind of great content they can expect to receive from you on a regular basis, or you could take it a step further and create a lead magnet that’s relevant to the talk you just gave. Remember to make it valuable; bonus tips or information on how to implement what they’ve learned are great ideas.
Tip #5: Get Creative with How You Collect Emails Online
If you’re looking to grow your list as quickly as possible, look at all of the places where you interact with your community. Do you run a Facebook community? If so, did you know you can ask people three questions when they submit a request to join? This is a great opportunity to ask if they’d like to stay connected/receive XYZ information/download ABC lead magnet, and if so, to leave their email in the answer box.
If you have an online booking system, you can ask registrants if they’d like to stay connected via email with a simple checkbox. It’s important to make this optional; there are regulations in place that ensure people are not being forced to subscribe to email lists, and if you’re caught violating those regulations there can be big repercussions!
Do you sell digital products? On the checkout page you can ask purchasers if they’d like to receive even more great, free content from you through email.
Make a list of all of your touch points with potential clients, and then find ways to leverage those connections to build your email list!
So there you have it: five simple, fool-proof strategies for building your email list! If you implement these tactics and reevaluate them on a regular basis to see which are your highest converting and which need a little tweaking, you’ll be well on your way to building an engaged email community of fitness and nutrition clients who look forward to opening your emails.