Email List (Elist)

Purpose – Building your Elist

Importance – these are the email addresses you send your emails to.

Strive to have a list with a minimum of 250 addresses.

Table of Contents

  • Growing Your List

  • Five steps to grow your Elist

    • Develop opt-in offers that are relevant to the prospect’s problem or desire

    • Use a service to develop effective online opt-in forms

    • Starting points to drive visitors to your opt-in form.

    • Show your offer to visitors of your website

    • Improve the results of your online opt-in forms.

  • Recommendations for you


Growing Your List

In the results of a survey, Marketers believe the three best tactics to grow your Elist are through:

  • Social Media Advertising

  • Content Marketing

  • Search Engine Optimization

Reference – Ascend2’s 2017 “Email List Growth Trends Survey Summary Report”

Five steps to grow your Elist

1. Develop opt-in offers that are relevant to the prospect’s problem or desire.

Newsletters, discounts, helpful info, demo, free trial, free tangible item.\

Use Social Media marketing tools to extend the offer.

2. Use a service to develop effective online opt-in forms. Templates available from:

OptinMonster – http://optinmonster.com

Sumo – https://sumo.com Also offers a social media sharing button.

Unbounce – https://inbounce.com

Leadpages – leadpages.net

Instapage – https://instapage.com

MailMunch – mailmunch.co

Thrive Themes – https://thrivethemes.com


  • Go to each website and review the prices and features you need.

  • You will want to capture leads from your monthly traffic.

  • Does the opt-in form tool integrate with email marketing tools (ESP)?

Some suggested items to accomplish in creating your opt-in form:

  • Provide an answer to the question – “What’s in it for Me?” (WIIFM)

  • Identify the benefits your audience would receive from submitting the form.

    • Preferably emotional benefits.

  • Explain the offer.

    • People want to feel that the benefits they will receive are more than the value of their email address they’re giving you

  • What happens next? Set the expectations.

    • Email helpful information weekly or monthly?

      • Looking for solutions for your pain point.

      • And to meet your desires.

    • Promotion messages sent occasionally.

  • Add proof that what you will sending them will be relevant, helpful information.

    • Add statements – “We won’t spam…” or “Share their address”

    • If you have room, add a testimonial.

    • Include a powerful call to action

      • Make it clear on how to complete and submit the opt-in form.

      • An obvious button with a unique color and a message on it.

        • Not just submit.

        • Something appropriate like “Get my ebook now”

Opt-in form integrated with design

    • Doesn’t have to include every one of the above elements.

    • Can be simple – just the email address, or first name and address.

    • Simpler has a better response.

  • What’s written beyond the form?

    • Take them to a page on your website?

    • A Thank You note sent immediately to them?

    • If it is an item to be sent, send it.

    • A recent weekly newsletter

3. Starting points to drive visitors to your opt-in form.

    • Lead magnets – ebooks, white paper, checklists, worksheets, templates, tools, helpful info.

      • Content for your target audience to solve a problem or satisfy a desire.

      • Promotional offer.

      • Free demo.

    • Content from a third-party.

      • Content published on other websites

      • A guest blog post

    • Other 3rd party content sites – join the conversation. Include a link to an opt-in form for more information.

      • Online forums

      • Facebook groups

      • LinkedIn groups

      • Popular question and answer sites like Quora.com.

      • Don’t self-promote. Just answer questions.

      • The prospect is the top priority. In fact, it’s the only priority.

    • Social media

      • Post helpful information on your account.

      • Add a link to your opt-in form or your Lead Magnet for more information.

        • Have an opt-in form on your lead magnet.

      • Could offer sneak peaks to your lead magnets and images, charts, videos, info graphs.

      • Get involved with LiinkedIn.

      • Host a contest on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

        • For set-up, use a tool such as ShortStack (shortstack.com), Woobox (https://woobox.com), or Wishpond (www.wishpond.com).

        • Have the people provide an email address to enter the contest.

        • Prize is of equal or more than their value for the email address.

    • Advertising

      • Advertise a lead magnet through advertising on Facebook.

      • Use Retargeting with Google AdWords and Facebook ads.

    • Build your email marketing list offline.

      • Sign-up forms at your physical location

      • Conferences

      • Trade shows.

      • Have your URL on your business card or brochure.

4. Show your offer to visitors of your website

Have website placements of the opt-in form and the different types of forms.


Add a text widget in WordPress.

Or through your Email Service Provider (ESP), copy some code and paste it in your website.

People visiting your site expect to see a subscription form in the sidebar.

So add one.

Add the subscription form to all the Pages in your website that ha a sidebar.

Can you add a checklist for an activity such as Email Marketing?

Don’t make it promotional. Just informational.


Can be obtrusive

Use them strategically and sparingly. That’s the key to make them work for you.

You want to enhance the user experience on you website, not obstruct it.

Suggestion is to time the pop-up at a 5 second delay before opening up.

Trigger the pop-up to only appear on the first visit of a person.

Inline – opt-in forms come up in the body of a web page.

In some cases, it will be challenging to place the opt-in form in the spot where you want it.

Placement will depend on your website and coding ability.

Can display the form on your ecommerce checkout page or after a blog post.

The after blog post display is effective when offering a lead magnet that is blog post relevant.

This is what they call a” Content Upgrade.” You’re offering additional information with a request for an email address.


With the Lighthouse overlay for an opt-in showing on the screen, content is in the background but is faded out. A person can see the content.

The Lighthouse overlay is not as obtrusive.

However, the visitor is forced to work with the opt-in form.

You can have two buttons with the overlay.

One is positive. Accepting the opt-in.

The other is negative. “No, I don’t want those money-saving tips.”

Adding that negative button with a psychological message can increase participation significantly.

Full screen welcome mat, exit gate, interstitial

Opt-in form covers the full screen.

Visitor has to scroll past your form to view the web page content.

Considered to be extremely intrusive.

But can be an extremely successful option if your goal is to grow your elist rapidly.

Suggestion is to A/B split its performance with other options.

Option can work as:

A welcome mat – greets visitors when they arrive on your site.

An exit gate – pops up when the visitor goes to leave your site – “Leaving So Soon?”

As interstitial – when visitor navigates between pages on your site.

You set the rules on how the option operates.

Floating header or footer bar.

Floating header – opt-in form pops up at the top of the screen when the visitor’s mouse is in that area.

Footer bar – opt-in form appears at the bottom of the screen when the visitor’s mouse is in that area.

Opt-in form is considered to be not too intrusive.

But it should be convenient for the visitor to access.

Also can be set to show when the visitor is scrolling.

It’s sticky – will stay at one spot on the screen.


Opt-in form slides in usually from the right when the visitor scrolls to an activation point on the web page.

Can start the slide when the most relevant information for the visitor is displayed on the screen.

A big plus for this option is that it can be very effective with highly targeted subscribers.

You determine when and where the slide-in occurs.

Particularly valuable for content upgrade offers, discounts, or an incentive.

Mobile pop-ups

Will display in front of your web page content.

Warning (a big warning) – search engines (Google) do not like anything blocking web page content.

And that includes pop-up forms, floating headers, footer bars, a slide-in, and full screen forms.

Instead, your options are to use inline forms or in-text calls to action.

Don’t risk using pop-ups on mobile devices.

Landing pages

A web page designed to motivate a visitor to take an action leading to a conversion.

In this case, it sports an opt-in form to gain an email address from a visitor.

Landing page templates for ideas – WordPress compatible

Leadpages: leadpages.net/templates

Instapage: https://instapage.com/landing-page-templates

Unbounce:: https://unbounce.com/landing-page-templates

OptimizePress: https://marketplace.optimizepress.com

A landing page can be long to include videos, testimonials, and images. Take a look at the templates offered.

Or can be short and simple yet be effective.

Performance data shows a long landing page is more effective for higher-value conversions.

For conversions that are a challenge, consider the following tips to boost conversions:

Have a headline with a strong benefit flavor.

Subtitles descriptive of the content that follows.

All the subtitles grouped together should tell a story.\

Visitor-grabbing images and color.

Replace long paragraphs of copy with bulleted lists.

Actual user’s testimonials.

Answer the question, “What’s in it for me?” (WIIFM)

Talk about a solution from a visitor’s pain point perspective or to satisfy a want.

An opt-in form that’s easily assessable – locate it in multiple places for long copy.

Has relevant information about you.

Have information on what happens next after submitting the opt-in form and what the subscriber will get.

5. Improve the results of your online opt-in forms.

It’s common that opt-in forms might not deliver instant results.

Not to worry.

Some people are stragglers. Allow for that.

Try changing your offer – include the change in an A/B split test.

Also try to increase your marketing efforts in general.

Here are several tactics to try on improving opt-in form performance.

Have the opt-in form appear in multiple, different page locations on your web site.

Vary the type of offer at the multiple locations to encourage opt-in form subscribing.

Again, A/B split test the different offers.

Don’t assume people will find your opt-in form. Have a variety of ways on making it noticeable.

Form options you can try – welcome mat, sidebar, slide-in, exit-intent, inline.

Guide visitors to your opt-in form with a call to action.

You may not be able to include an opt-in form in some areas of your website.

That’s where a call to action to guide the visitor to the opt-in form becomes useful.

Be bold. Ask your subscribers to share your newsletter or lead magnet along with your opt-in form with their contacts.

Ask on your “Thank You” page

The shopping cart page.

Abandoned shopping cart campaigns.

Options to offer

The offer may be too much for the subscriber’s need.\

Adjust the content in the offer.

Example: daily newsletter is too much. Switch to weekly and adjust the content in the newsletter.

Find out what type of message the subscriber wants to see.


Informational newsletter with or without promotional content.

Weight loss coach – exercise or diet, maybe recipes.

Offer tailor-made lead magnet options to a segmented audience.

Example – subscriber may want an ebook on Email Marketing rather than Facebook Marketing.

A/B split test your opt-in forms content and appearance.

Find out if your Email Service Provider (ESP) runs split tests.

Ideas for split testing


Images – with or without



Videos – with or without


Size or color of the “submit” button

Message on “submit” button


Placement on your website

Timing when form is displayed

Orientation (portrait or landscape)

Position of elements such as the “submit” button

You may want to run the test again to confirm the results.

Actually, you should.

Recommendations for you

Check these steps before you start building your email list (elist).

  • Perform the actions in the five steps listed above.

  • Develop offers that are relevant to solving an audience’s problem or satisfying their desire.

  • Create simple, easy to use opt-in forms

  • Develop a marketing funnel designed to drive visitors to your opt-in forms.

  • Have an effective way to show your offers to visitors.

  • Have a plan to monitor performance to improve your results.

Before you start the process.

  • Review your website and make sure it looks great and enticing.

Questions? Do you need help with Elists?

Call Paul at 585 703-0646.

Or email psheiler@centurylink.net