Once you successfully set up a blog, you’d think now all you have to do is write amazing articles, and you would not be more wrong. In fact, you will soon realise that when it comes to blogging, promoting it well is as important as posting great content on it. It’s not like opening a restaurant on a busy street, where you just compete with other restaurants in the vicinity. This is the online world, where you have millions of websites and blogs from all over the globe to stand up to.
However, since your blog is still in its infancy, your promotion efforts can also be small to begin with. And email marketing is one of the first few baby steps that you should try taking, in order to get your blog on its own two feet. So, what is email marketing? It simply means promoting your blog through emails to get regular traffic on it. For this, you need to start building an e-mail subscription list as soon as possible. An email subscription list is a list of names and email addresses of people, who have permitted you to send them regular updates and promotions from your blog through email. But the question is: Why is it so important?
So, here are some reasons why you should start building an email list for your blog right away:
Email Is Where The Audience Is
Email is one of the most effective ways to reach customers/ audience because it is a tool that almost everybody uses personally and professionally on a daily basis. According to a study, around 20% of online users check their mails more than 5 times a day, 27.6% people check it 1 to 5 times in a day and a whopping 40.7% people open mails, at least once in a day. Thus, email subscription is still definitely, one of the best ways to build a regular audience for your blog.
The ROI for Email Marketing Is Higher
Even with the explosion of digital technology, studies show that e-mail marketing is still the king of marketing with a 3800% ROI. According to various marketing researches, email marketing generated $38 for every $1 spent. This is largely because the cost of email marketing (especially opt-in emails) is very minimal compared to other marketing tools. In fact, it can be free of cost in the initial stages, when the subscription list is quite small.
Email Is The Easiest Way To Get A Customer To Visit Your Blog Again
Say, if a person landed on your blog post via a social media post or search and s/he spent a fair amount of time reading it; then wouldn’t it be a waste to let them just exit from your blog and leave it on their memory or chance to get them back on your blog once again? It wouldn’t strike a reader to bookmark your blog or keep checking it again for updates. You have to tell them that if they enjoyed reading it and would like to be updated about it regularly, they just have to sign up for it. And if a person voluntarily signs up for your blog, without any incentives, you know you have earned a genuine and loyal visitor. Thus, it is one of the easiest ways to target readers, who are interested in what you have to offer.
Targeting Is Easier With Email
As mentioned, the reader signed up for your emails because they are interested in your products/ content. Thus, you already know what they like, making it easier for you to deliver them content, which is specifically suited to their needs and interests. With email marketing, you have the ability to control exactly who sees, which email, based on various factors like demographics, location etc.
Email Is Not Limiting
In case of email marketing, the only thing that stops you from reaching out to a reader is the reader himself, unlike Facebook, Twitter or Google, which have their own set of policies and rules about showing your blog to the public. An email list is your own property and it is not influenced by any other business decisions and policies.
Email Is More Personal
Emails are very direct, personal, and even casual. People read them in the privacy of their inbox not on a public platform like a social media page/ timeline. This makes them more comfortable to ask you questions and helps you build a more trustworthy and personal connection with your readers.
Email Helps With Brand Awareness
With every email sent, you expose your brand to your reader, and this helps you to stay on top of their mind. Thus, when they need what you have to offer, they will first turn to you. Also, since emails are personal, people feel more comfortable sharing them with others. Thus, it not only helps build a loyal reader base but also converts the readers into brand advocates, because when a reader shares your email with their friends and family, your blog gets more exposure, credibility, and in turn more sales when you launch a product or promote an affiliate product.
Even Social Media Platforms Use Emails
Although social media is taking over the marketing world, all social media platforms are also building email lists, because they know emails are still the most reliable way of reaching out to people. They ask for email ids for sign up, and even reach out to people via emails as you must have observed yourself. Also, not everyone is hooked to Facebook and Twitter; there are other platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, Vine, Snapchat etc. On the other hand, when it comes to emails, around 91% people check their inbox, daily. Thus, building an email subscription list is as important as promoting your blog via social media, if not more.
Now, since we have understood why it is important to build an email subscription list for a blog, here’s what you need to do to start building it:
To build this list, first and foremost you need to have a few good articles on your blog.
Next, you need to look for a good email marketing service. There are a number of such services like MailChimp, SendGrid, Amazon SES, ConstantContact, AWeber and more. The cost of these services is not very high. E.g. MailChimp and SendGrid charge nothing for sending 12,000 emails per month to 2,000 subscribers. And once your blog expands and your subscription list starts growing, you can get email services at just under 10USD per month.
These services, in general, provide you features and integrations that allow you to send marketing emails, automated messages, and targeted campaign emails to your readers. They also provide you detailed reports of how your emails are doing to help you keep improving with time. All you have to do is sign up with them, select a plan, decide on who will receive your emails and when. You don’t need to worry about the coding part of the email because these services give you readymade templates of emails with customisation options, sign up forms for your blog and social media pages, and a lot more. The benefits of using an email marketing service can make a whole different article.
Finally, you need a high converting opt-in form. An opt-in form is a sign up form that appears somewhere on your blog, in order to prompt the reader to subscribe to your blog and get regular updates about it via an email. You can get a built-in form provided by your blogging platform like WordPress, Blogger, Joomla, or you can embed a form in your blog with codes and instructions provided by your email marketing service.
You can also get more attractive opt-in forms like lightbox popups, floating header or footer bars, after-post forms etc. with the help of some softwares like OptinMonster, Leadpages, SumoMe, Thrive Leads, WebEngage etc.
So, get to work with your email list now, and keep an eye on this blog, because we will be writing more about forming and maintaining great email lists for your blog, in the near future. Or, you can even sign up for our newsletter to get timely updates, straight in your inbox! 😉