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How to Build an E-Mailing List

Tue, 22/01/2013 - 15:00

One of the most efficient ways of creating a customer base and connecting with them is by creating an e-mailing list. However, it is getting tougher and tougher to do this with the new mail filters, SPAM laws and the general consensus that signing up for an e-mailing list on a website will guarantee an immediate deluge of unwanted emails.

First, let’s start with how to build your list.

Before you begin, you will need to start by creating a privacy policy. You can find a free privacy policy generator here: www.freeprivacypolicy.com/.

This website will help you with creating an awesome policy that will enable your business to function efficiently, and to build sound customer confidence.

When you are finished creating your policy, you will need to post links on your website that are easily visible to your customers. It is also a good idea to include a link to this policy on the page where you’ll be collecting your customer’s data.

Your second step will probably be figuring out how you are going to collect the customer’s information. There are numerous ‘mailing list managers’ available. You can decide between remotely hosted mailing lists – which will handle all of the finer details for you, including setting-up, saving information and distribution of the actual emails. Prior to selecting a company to manage your list - you will want to ensure that they don’t sell customer data and that they have a respectable reputation.

Your second option is to install software on your website that will manage list building and management. These types of programs usually include a web-based control panel (web interface), which makes it incredibly easy to send messages to your clients and to conserve their information.

If you are planning on having a large mailing list, be sure that you and your software have the proficiency of handling it. Always try to plan ahead to avoid humiliating data loss. If you plan on managing the list manually, back-up your data often.

You will also need to check with your web-hosting service to see if they need clients to “double opt-in” to your e-mailing list. This essentially means that the client will need to reply (confirm) to an email before they are added to your mailing list. This guarantees that clients will not be incorporated to lists that they have no desire to be on. Additionally - it will help you to stand apart from those nasty spammers.

Now that all of the technical stuff is out of the way, you can get to building your mailing list -YAAAY!

You will need to ensure that clients can find your mailing list; therefore you will need to post noticeable links on your website. It helps to offer a free gift, or free information as an incentive for clients to sign up. Be creative – and think what YOU would like before YOU sign-up for anything.

Numerous websites now have ‘pop-up’ windows to promote sign-ups. This actually does increase your client base substantially. But keep in mind that there is nothing more irritating than an unrelenting pop-up. It is best practice to have the pop-up appear only once during a client’s visit.

Now that you have got your client mailing list up and running, how do you keep them captivated and more importantly, how do you keep them coming back? A simple way to accomplish this is to offer a free e-zine (electronic magazine) to your e-mailing list. This will keep them informed on relevant issues and increase trust in your business. Folks obviously feel more confident about ordering items/products from businesses they are familiar with. You can send out your e-zine (or newsletter ) monthly, weekly or daily. Just ensure your clients know how often the e-zine will be sent out ahead of time, as they might see it as spam if you don’t.

Adequate planning and efficient list management software will ensure your success in creating your own e-mailing list. Follow the abovementioned steps and you’ll be sure to have a comprehensive mailing list in no-time. Good luck!

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