With so much focus placed on how many likers, followers and connections we have on social media, it can be easy to lose sight of the most important number – your subscribers. 

As business owners we often spend so much time, money and effort building our databases on someone else’s platform, but what about our own? If you could no longer access your social media accounts or blogs, would you have a way of staying in touch with at least some of your likers, followers, readers and connections? 

It can be a scary thought can’t it? To make sure you are building your list while leveraging social media and blogging, here are three tips to turn your likers, followers, readers and connections into subscribers.

1. Create a killer opt-in

In order for a potential customer to give you their contact details willingly, you need to give them value and incentive. It could be a checklist, cheat sheet, fact sheet, list of resources, strategy session, ideas, a gift certificate, newsletter or a whole host of other ideas.

The key is that you need to make it relevant, desirable and where possible shareable, so there is no doubt in your potential customers mind that they (and others they know) must give over their details to get it. To do this you need to be generous. You need to give enough away so it is easy for them to see the value, yet still enough mystery that they need to buy from you. 

A good opt-in, depending on your product, service and industry of course, should inspire your potential customer, challenge the way they think or do something, solve a problem or at least start to solve a problem and/or appeal to their ambition or desire to reach their goal. Emotional engagement is key for high performing opt-in.

If it is a newsletter that you are using as an opt in, instead of saying the usual “sign up for our e-news” say what someone will receive from reading your e-news. Will there be tips, hints, ideas, and deals? Look closely at what value it provides, what will your reader be able to do or know as a result of your information? 

Also try teaming it with a great offer “Sign up for our e-news and get a $5/$10/$50/$100 (depending on what you sell) voucher to use with your next purchase” or “Sign up for our e-news and receive the [x] game-changing tips/hints/questions to ask/habits to achieve [x]”.

2. Capture details with competitions

We all love the chance to win something, particularly if it is something really relevant, desirable, luxurious or expensive (even if it is perceived value) so use a competition as a way to grow your list. Again, look closely at what your potential customers may want or need to make their life or business easier, more enjoyable, fulfilling or profitable. 

While the prize doesn’t need to be directly linked to your business, keep in mind that the more general the prize the more general the people will be who enter it. You don’t just want to grow your database for the sake of growing it, you want to attract targeted, interested people, so take your time when thinking of a prize.

3. Be an information tease

We are really lucky to have tools like blogs and social media at our disposal, so why not put them to good use by doing a little information teaser campaign. 

Once you have identified information you think your audience will really value (think golden nuggets of great wisdom, serious money saving or making tips, a step-by-step process or formula, or anything else you can think of that really gives your audience the opportunity to “peek behind the curtain” of your knowledge), do up one or a series of blog posts or status updates incorporating them. 

Ideally you want there to be at least 5-10 tips/steps/pearls of wisdom in order to get the most impact. But here’s the catch, you only release half – and not the best half, into the public domain the rest you have under lock and key available only to those who join your mailing list. 

Keep in mind though that this only works when the information is relevant, valuable and when done sparingly, when used all the time this tactic can lose its impact. So time it well, after a social media advertising campaign for instance, in order to turn those likers and followers into subscribers.

Do you have any tips for building your mailing list?

Amanda

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