“Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises” - Demosthenes
To win big, you have to start out small, as Demosthenes suggests. Small opportunities will often lead you to great successes. The process of creating a list leads to the potential for greater success and wealth, regardless of the business you are in. In this section we’ll talk about some simple tools you can use to build your list. Let’s look at each method independently.
Sometimes it is best to rely on simple tools and small opportunities when you are just starting out in the industry. You will have much time to grow your business and expand your customer base if you follow the simple steps outlined in this guide. So let’s begin first by talking about subscriber leads.
One easy way to build your list is by collecting subscriber leads. This is one of the best ways to expand your business. There are many ways to acquire leads, but the best way to collect leads is to gather them automatically, through email or by your website through various forms. In the next few sections of this book, we will go into greater detail about the ways you can grow your subscriber list and maintain your list over time.
You will find as you run your business that your subscriber leads prove vital to your businesses success and ability to grow and expand over time.
Like subscriber leads, opt-in leads are a good tool for building your business. Opt-in leads are leads you get when you invite someone to enter their information into your database. When they do this, they are granting you permission to contact them in the future about new products or updates to your site.
For example, when you create your website, you can set it up so each person that visits has the choice to sign up for a newsletter or some other type of routine e-mailing. By signing up, visitors are “opting in” to your list. Setting your site up this way allows you to gain visitor’s email addresses. While you can never force someone to do what you want them to, this approach often works if you encourage people to sign up by describing all the benefits your site offers. You can then reap the benefits of gaining important subscriber leads.
Another way to produce automatic subscriber leads is by conducting surveys on your website. This is a simple way to increase the number of subscribers to your list. You can place survey ads on your website so they pop up when a customer checks out.
How do you get someone to fill out a survey? It is not as hard as you think. For starters, some people enjoy filling out surveys. For those that don’t you can employ some simple tactics to encourage them to offer their information to you. For example, tell your customers what benefits they will reap from filling out your survey. Don’t assume your customer’s know what benefits they will gain by filling out a survey. You have to tell them. Maybe they will gain access to your website, which contains thousands of free articles on the topic they are researching.
Maybe you will enter them into a contest to win a free gift. Giveaways are a great way to encourage people to sign up for just about anything.
It’s funny how quickly people are willing to give up their personal information, including their name, address and email for a gift. We’ll talk more about gifts later in this guide.
Make sure you offer them an irresistible reason to fill out your survey. Tell customers how they will profit by signing up. This is a very easy and successful tool marketers use to produce new leads. Most times visitors are willing to offer their email address for a survey.
Let’s talk now about the next simple tool you can use to build your subscriber list.
One way you can collect leads for your subscriber list is by affiliating. Affiliating means joining in or offering an affiliate program. When you take part in an affiliate program you immediately realize the benefits of getting leads that an affiliate will create and then forward to you.
For this process to work you need an opt-in program and an auto responder programmer. We will devote an entire section to auto responders later in this guide. Using these programs you can gather information and instantly send out confirmation emails to new subscribers on your list. Don’t worry about having people fill in their address fields or phone number. Most people are hesitant to provide this information, but very willing to provide their email address. There is much less pressure involved when you are collecting email addresses instead of personal information.
Top Two Ways To Profit From Your List
Once you start growing your opt-in list, you’ll want to ensure it is profitable. There are many ways to go about doing this. You want to make sure all your hard work is for a good cause, so you have to find ways to profit from your list. There are literally dozens of different methods you can employ to achieve results, but two seem to work better than all others.
The top two ways to profit from your list are also the easiest, so let’s look at them:
1.Build trust and loyalty among your customers. Your customers will not buy from you unless you are able to prove your worthiness. So, you have to spend notable time working to build their trust. You can do this many ways. You can join forums that talk about the products or service industry you have an interest in, and look for experts in your field to offer their advice and recommendations to your subscriber list.
Also, make sure your website is clear and offers your visitors relevant and important information they will find helpful during their journey. If you are practicing affiliate marketing, and even if you are not, make sure you tested or tried any products you plan to sell so you can provide your subscribers honest reviews of them. This is the #1-way to build trust, and trust always leads to higher profit margins.
You should also build a user-friendly website, one that has a navigation bar placed in a prominent location. Make sure you provide your customers with a contact us page and always respond to customer or visitor inquiries within 48 hours if this is possible. The sooner you get back with your visitors, the better reputation you will build.
When responding to customer’s that contact you through your website, make sure that you remind them to sign up for your free newsletter if they haven’t already, which will contain more information on the subject they are looking for. Don’t automatically assume they want to be subscribed to your newsletter just because they asked a question on the topic. Tell them what your newsletter offers, and how they can subscribe.
When you build trust and loyalty, your customers are also more likely to refer your business to their friends and their family. Some web owners design a page after the order page that allows the customer to input the names and emails of two to three of their friends that might also be interested in your products. This is another simple way to build your list. Make sure you provide them an incentive for checking you out, in the way of a free report, book, checklist or newsletter subscription.
2.Fulfill your subscriber’s needs. Everyone has needs. The whole point of doing business on the web is to fulfill the needs of people surfing the Internet. If you want to make money selling a product or a service, you first have to find out how that product or service will fill your prospect’s needs. How will they benefit from the product or service you offer? Have other people benefited? If so, how and why? Providing your customers with this information will help you create a profitable opt-in list, one that will transform visitors into paying customers.
One of the simplest ways to tell your customers how you can fulfill their needs is by listing the ways you do this on your landing page, or on another prominent place on your website. Make sure you bullet each benefit and explain to the prospect exactly how you plan to serve them, and why your product or service is better than that of the competition.
The more content you provide, the more secure your customer will feel about their purchase. They are also more inclined to believe you are fulfilling a need they have.
Let us take a moment to look at the first bullet, trust. Many people fear that building trust among strangers will prove difficult. Realistically speaking, anyone can build trust easily. How do you build trust?
First, run a legitimate business that you know something about. Don’t try selling aromatherapy to someone just because it is a hot trend. You have to know what you are selling to sell it well. Next, if you want to encourage your customers to buy, offer them some form of guarantee. You can for example, offer them a 90-Day money-back guarantee on any products they use on your site, provided they use the products in the time frame appointed and have a legitimate reason for returning them.
Statistics show that even when customers do not feel satisfied with a product they will often not return it because they either (1) forget about it or (2) are too busy to mess with it. Nonetheless, when you build a guarantee into your sale, you put your customer’s mind at ease, and they consider their purchase less risky.
Lastly, provide your customer’s helpful hints and guidelines that will help them get the most benefit from your product. This shows your customer you have a vested interest in helping them succeed. This builds trust and loyalty, and converts subscribers to buyers. That is your goal to begin with.
Quick Tips For Creating A Great List
We covered a lot of information in this section about building and maintaining a high quality list of subscribers. Let’s review some of the most important steps you need to take to ensure you build a profitable list:
1.First, make sure you put up a good landing page. It should be well-designed and professional looking. If you don’t have any design skills then hire someone to do this for you.
2.Next, put a web form on your landing page and offer your customers the opportunity to opt-in to your mailing list. Give something away free to encourage them to opt in.
3.Make sure any freebies you give away are of the highest quality, because the subscribers on your list will judge the worthiness of your products and services based on the freebies they get.
4.Include a lot of professionally written content and interesting information for your visitors. Your customers will want to read interesting things and want to look for more than just a sales pitch.
Content sites are a great way to build trust and loyalty. You can build a content site jam-packed with articles and helpful information, then link to your sales page from your content site.
5.Make sure you keep your customer’s information private. If you tell your customer’s you will not share his or her personal information, then don’t share it with anyone. You will ruin your reputation, and word spreads fast on the Internet.
6.Take some time to try the product you offer yourself. Make sure it is something you consider worthy of buying. If you are selling a book you wrote, make sure it has mass appeal and will benefit the target audience you plan to market it to.
7.Provide top-notch customer service. This is THE number one way to stay ahead of the game. If your customers are happy and you resolve their questions and complaints immediately, then you will win their loyalty and trust.
8.Reward customers that refer others to you. This is a simple way to build trust and loyalty.
9.Respond to your customer’s complaints or inquiries immediately, with the goal in mind always being to satisfy your customer.
10.Remain truthful and honest in all you do. A customer will sniff out a scam faster than a dog will a bone. Don’t lie, don’t trick and don’t steal. Be honest and be who you are, and you will do well working on the Web and building your opt-in list.
Now you know everything there is to know about building a terrific list from the ground up.
There are many simple ways to build a list. You can build your list using subscriber leads, opt-in leads, survey leads and through affiliating. When building your list, you want to ensure your list is profitable. The best way to achieve this is by building trust and loyalty among your customers, and by fulfilling your customers needs. If you don’t know what your customers needs are, then step back, take a moment and ask. Find out. Survey. Do what you have to. Because if you don’t know what your customer needs, you won’t know how or what to sell to them.
Lastly, make sure you are always honest and sincere in all your business doings, and you will always make a good impression with customers.
In the next part we will talk more about mailing and subscriber lists.