For businesses of any size, using the internet to reach new customers is key to achieving continued success. The internet is essential for promoting business and ensuring customers come back repeatedly. The easiest way to reach these customers is through email. Starting the process can be daunting, and business owners may be wondering how to build an email list. It takes time, but once an effective list is built it can help increase business exponentially and drive new customers to shop.
One of the first steps in building a brand new email list is to start collecting email addresses from all current clients. This is done by adding email address collection as a natural step in the checkout process. If the business uses a cash register, the cashier should ask for the customer’s email address. Many points of sale computer systems have this feature built in and can help organize customer email addresses based on what the shopper bought, how frequently he or she shops, and other demographics. This information is valuable in determining when to send email blasts and special deals to ensure a return visit. It can also be used to reward frequent buyers with special incentives. This method is not only easy and methodical, but it is also free and takes almost no time at all.
Another way to build an email list is to collect information from potential customers via a giveaway or survey. A business owner may offer people the opportunity to sign up to win a free product by registering for the email list. Or, the company may offer a special deal to all those who sign up, for instance, a certain percentage of the customer’s first purchase. This can be done by placing sign-up sheets in a public, central location and then collecting the finished forms. It is important to give people an incentive to provide their email address. Once a potential customer has expressed initial interest, he or she is more likely to open and respond to subsequent emails from the company. While this method of collecting email addresses can take some time, it can be done at a relatively low cost and can produce hundreds or even thousands of new email leads. The key is to follow up with the first email quickly.
Finally, an email list can be built using a list-purchasing company. There are dozens of companies whose sole job is to collect data and build email lists based on different demographics. Examples include lists of women over 30, lists of couples who own homes, or lists of retirees. These lists are available almost immediately for an accurate price and can be narrowed down to fit the customer base of any given company. Once the initial list is built, it can be refined based on which customers return and respond to email blasts. Email lists are crucial to reaching out to both new customers and current customers, and once they are established, they are completely free to maintain.