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Grow Your Email List Without Turning To The Dark Side

(This post originally appeared on

In today’s online marketplace, it is far too easy to purchase a list to artificially jumpstart an email program. It is also nearsighted as the fallout is not worth the harm to your reputation. So the big issue for today’s marketers is how to grow a list without the temptations of list purchasing/renting.

Here are some ideas:

Using a Refer-A-Friend link in your emails is a great way to add subscribers.

Offering a discount for referring friends can really boost your numbers.  Be careful not to allow users to upload their complete address book, as this can be troublesome – something I alluded to in a previous post.

darth-vader-faceRun ads in other email newsletters of a similar, non-competing business.

If your subscriber base is similar in size, do cross promos. Make sure that the other newsletter has the ability to track clicks on your ad.

Your website should be one of your largest contributors to your list.

Make sure your email signup is highly visible and does not look like an afterthought haphazardly placed on your site.

A pop up to prompt subscriptions is a great idea if done correctly and not done in an obnoxious way that will chase people from your site.

Asking once with an easy way to close the pop-up is OK. Asking with each page click is a quick way to lose a customer. Always capture an email address during a checkout of a purchase or a download of a whitepaper or app. Ask for the email address early in the form fill out process as list abandonment emails have a great success rate.

Don’t forget that your brand could get looked at on social media outlets almost as much as your website.

Make sure that your have a push to your email sign-up on all social media applications.

Remember that if you make money from people coming to your website, your email newsletter is one of the most valuable ways to get them back to your site. The two should work hand in hand, branded the same and offering the same great value.

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Whois: Stephen Wheeler

Stephen Wheeler is a employee at Oracle Dyn Global Business Unit, a pioneer in managed DNS and a leader in cloud-based infrastructure that connects users with digital content and experiences across a global internet.