The open secret behind every successful launch is a robust list of email subscribers. Every Rockstar course creator knows this and joe blow knows this but they won’t talk much about it well…because it’s the secret sauce.
And so, the gurus go another day churning out content how you need to pin this and run that ad on Facebook. Create an entirely fake count down thing to create urgency.etc.
When they know the money is in the Email list. If the plan is to have success selling online courses so you can finally quit that job you hate and sip cocktails in Bali like all these annoying gurus, then you need to get started with building your email list.
So today I figured I would bring you up to speed on how to build a list of e-mail subscribers. Am talking to those who are starting from zero and want a list fast so they can launch that initial tiny course.
Since we are all friends here now am going to let you in on a big the secret (You are not going to hit that 10,20,30 or 50K launch without a list. Never.
Now that it’s all-out there let’s get you 1000 subscribers on your list this month so you can launch confidently.
First things first, you need to pick a niche. This might sound obvious and is often overlooked but the initial thing you need to set as a course creator or a blogger is to have a specific niche and stick to it.
You cant target dog lovers but also kind of product content for cat lovers and you suddenly can’t resist the temptation to rave about how cute that Hamster you just adopted is. Well, hamsters are cute I know but we need to focus here. If you love hamsters then that’s it.
That will ensure the quality of your list instead of having a bloated list filled with cat lovers, dog lovers and hamster die-hards. This will eventually make selling to your list easier when you launch your course because you are selling to a group who have shown interest in a specific thing.
Now to start collecting emails you will need a service to collect and send emails in mass and you can set it to send emails automatically and do other fun stuff (That’s for later) but now all you need to know is that you need a service. There are aloooot of providers in the market.
Personally, I love Convertkit, but when starting out I would recommend you start out with MailChimp since they give you free access of up to 2000 subscribers before you start paying.
This makes it a great no-obligation entry point to get your email list building started. Don’t overthink this you can always change your provider without losing your Email list as your needs grow, so just pick whatever and proceed.
With a niche and an email service now, the world is about to know where you are at with it. It’s time to create an offer, or a lead magnet or a content upgrade or a bribe (whatever your favourite guru calls it lately) but in a nutshell, it’s something of value that you are going to give your audience in exchange for their Email addresses. This is important and you really need to think it through and do detailed research around it.
In my case I documented the whole process I used to grow my email list by 1783 subscribers in slightly over a month and that’s what I give out free on my new website.
So, if you have specific learnings, Strategies or just something that has worked brilliantly for you and help you get results then you can opt to give that as a freebie to your audience in exchange for their email addresses. Also, the form of offer varies, could be a report in the form of a pdf, an eBook, a quick cheat sheet.
If you want to go all-in I advise you create a mini-course with topline details of whatever you wanna teach and offer it to your audience for free. They will respect you for all the work you have put in and reward you for it.
Another cool approach is to run giveaways through a service such as Kingsumo which has a viral sharing effect functionality and people who take you up on the giveaway are incentivised to share with their friends.
A friend of mine got amazing results with webinars. The thing is with the current webinar model most people are always programmed to receive a pitch at the end. The plan is to run no strings attached webinars just to give value to your audience by teaching them things you know and in return, you collect email addresses.
Ok am going on about the offer, its simple chose what you wanna offer, webinars, pdf downloads or giveaways and really give away something of value which surprises your audience. Nothing as annoying as downloading a freebie only to get a truckload of BS.
Keep it short sweet and value-packed.
A landing page is where the traffic will be directed. Those who click through get to view your offer. I will post a detailed blog on how to create landing pages for collecting leads.
Basically, there are three types of people who land on your page. The first lot will land and immediately claim the offer, another group will land and just when they are about to claim the offer their cat meows and they have to attend to that and forget about all the value you were about to drop on them (…and there are things you can do about that to get them to complete the process).
The third group will bounce off your landing page without doing anything for gods know what.
Why some people claim or bounce off your landing page is all your fault. If they bounce off without claiming your offer, it could be maybe the copy was not convincing enough, or the offer was not compelling enough (Hence why I said you take this seriously), or maybe they did not like the colour and among many things, it could be anything.
The cool thing is you can create multiple pages and test them at the same time against each other item after item till you end up with a well-optimised landing page which converts like crazy.
Cool folk call all this A/B testing a landing page (This is advanced level stuff though just wanted you to know such things exist, so whenever you are ready to figure it out and optimize the hell outta those landing pages).It’s like at the bar when the bartender tells you of the expensive stuff first and you there like “it’s good to know you have Château d’Yquem but just get me a beer please”
But seriously though, you need to figure this out sooner. Much sooner.
Once this is linked to your Email service and you have created autoresponders then you have a complete list building funnel and all you need to do is drive some traffic to that baby.
Once the whole system is set up you will need to have as many people as possible to come through and click on it. Again as I just indicated under landing pages there are tons of things at play here when people click on that link to your landing page, so let’s say for every 100 people that come on your site only two converts, you have to work then on driving more traffic to achieve your goals.
There are actually super easy and cool ways to get traffic fast to your landing page for free and by use of paid adverts. But at this point am sure you are starting out and not much budget for Facebook ads, so let’s make this about free traffic.
Quick wins will be with Pinterest, most people take Pinterest as a social fun thing but it’s not. Pinterest is actually a mega search engine and the audience have higher purchasing power compared to other platforms. Start pinning, create some boards and join groups and start driving crazy traffic.
Another way is to go on sites like Quora and search for people asking questions specific to your niche. Give them detailed answers and link them to some piece of content you produced along the same line. Do this more often and you will start seeing great results.
Most importantly join all the niche-specific Facebook groups and start engaging like crazy and occasionally link people back to pieces of content you have produced on the same that are relevant to the subject matter.
Finally, Blog baby Blog, you can either start a YouTube channel or just start a regular blog and follow the 90-day challenge. Produce a piece of content daily for 90 days. You will believe in free promotion Forever.
Pick the right niche and create as much content as possible around the niche
Don’t think too much about your email service provider when starting out building your email list
Do a lot of work on your offer and ensure that you provide as much value as possible. Wow your audience
Figure out early how to test your landing pages to ensure they are well optimised for conversion
Timothy Ochanji teaches Profitable Facebook Ads strategies & Online sales funnel tips to online entrepreneurs and bloggers who want to scale their info-product and econ businesses beyond imagination. He also shares occasional tips on the vegan lifestyle. His main aim is to help bloggers and other online entrepreneurs to find success with Facebook ads & online sales funnels so they can scale their businesses at will and make a difference.