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Tom Clairmont

Helping you pivot through your small business journey.

The Email List-Essential Building Block #4- Laying a Strong Foundation to Your Business

What is an email list?

An email list is a special list of names and email addresses of people who gave you permission to send them updates and promotions from your business.

Many expert marketers say their biggest mistake was not building an email list when they first started out.

Why build an email list?

Email marketing on average sees huge return on investment (ROI) for businesses in the USA.

Because email subscribers joined your email list from your website and verified their identity by clicking on a link (double-optin), they are very interested in what you have to offer. This is why they’re more likely to convert into paying customers.

Usually an email list gets 10 times higher conversions than social media campaigns.

And it makes sense if you think about the reasons that make email an incredibly powerful communication channel:

1. Email is Personal

It gives you access to someone’s inbox. It’s very direct and personal.

2. Email has a very specific purpose

To get updates from you, a user fills out a form to signup for your email list and confirm their email address. Someone doing this much work is obviously interested in hearing from you and what you have to say, and they’ll be much more receptive to your message.

3. Email is Targeted

As I said before, the user has already shown interest in your product or content. Since you already know what they like, you can send them offers that you already know they’ll want to see and get better results. 

4. You Own Your Email List

Look, with all the followers you have on social media, you do not own Facebook, Twitter, or Google. Your social media campaigns and SEO efforts can go to waste when these platforms change their policies. On the other hand, you own your email list, and it isn’t influenced by decisions of the social media giants.

5. Email is One-on-One

People read email in the privacy of their own inbox, on their timing and it’s not a public comment or on display for the world to see. They can ask you questions directly in private with confidence. This helps build trust and connection.

6. More People Use Email Several Times a Day

You may have heard that Facebook has 1.4 billion and Twitter has 100 million daily active users. What you have may not have heard, is the number of people using Email every day.

Every internet user has at least one email account. Recent research conducted found out that there 3.8 billion active email accounts. That’s half the population of Earth.

This is precisely why every smart business in the world has an email list.

Big name brands learned this lesson a long time ago, and that’s why they spend thousands of dollars on social media campaigns to get people to sign up for their email lists.

They understand that email marketing is the best long-term investment with a much higher return because people will continue to get their message at a very low cost for a longer period of time.

So, after all this, is this really necessary?

Well, if you want a successful business with higher profits, then yes. It is. 

What do you do when you get an email list? 

Once you build your email list inside email marketing software (I use you can send bulk email notifications to everybody on your topic of the day… whatever that is… your blog updates, online store, content that you think will help them etc..

By now, you know why building an email list is so important, and why ignoring it can be a HUGE mistake. So let’s take a look at what you need to start building your email list.

3 Things You Need to Build an Email List:

1. A website or blog.

2. An email marketing service.

3. High-converting opt-in forms

All three of these are fairly easy to set up, and none of them require programming or design skills. For this episode, I’ll only be covering numbers 2 and 3. 

Benefits of a Growing Email List

Now there’s a lot of benefits to having and growing your email list and it mostly involves the ability to sell your stuff. 

You can send private mass emails to your subscribers. Through the email marketing program you’re using, you’d just type up one email and the program will insert their specific name into the email to make it more personal and less generic. 

You can see subscriber activity and group your subscribers based on actions they take.

You can run A/B split tests to see which email subject line, content, and offers work best with your subscribers. Try one method or approach in your email campaign and see the results compared to trying a slightly different method. 

With reporting tools, you can see which country you have the most subscribers from. You can adjust your time zone preferences, and send emails at the right time.

Last, but definitely the most important, you can see the email addresses of all your subscribers.

Once you have signed up with an email marketing service, the next step is to add opt-in forms to your website to allow your users to subscribe. I mentioned this before in a prior episode about using a Lead Magnet to increase your email subscribers opt in rate.

Did you know that more than 70% of visitors abandoning your website will never return? 

That’s why you need to convert every website visitor into an email subscriber before they leave, so you can send them relevant messages to bring them back.

An average internet user spends just a few seconds looking at a website. This gives you very little time to engage them. If your email sign up forms are not noticeable, then users will leave without ever subscribing to your website.

The biggest mistake that we see beginners make is not strategically placing high-converting opt-in forms. This is why I added a plugin called OptIn Monster to my website. It has a ton of very helpful features to help convert website visitors into email list subscribers. 

Content Upgrades are the highest converting opt-in forms. It’s a technique where you offer bonus content at the end of your popular blog posts. 

Creating content for the list

So now that you have an email list, what do you do  with it? Time to create content. Time to reach your audience with relevant email content to meet them where they’re at and fill a void somehow. 

Knowing your target audience will help you connect with your email audience. Knowing their pain points and how you can resolve their problems will help to give you validation and move them through that ‘Know/Like/Trust/Try/Buy’ process I talked about in the last episode about products and services. 

Great content though should be done by a professional copywriter, ultimately if you want to have a high conversion rate. 

Ray Edwards is a very well known professional copywriter, ( and he uses what he calls, the P.A.S.T.O.R. method as a guide to coming up with content. 

Problem or Pain- understanding the problem you’re trying to solve and the pain that it causes them

Amplify the consequences of them not solving their problem 

Story- tell a story in your content of how the problem can be solved

Transformation- tell them how their lives will be transformed with your product or service

Offer- now is the time to describe exactly what you offer

Response- give the reader exact details on how they can get your product or service. You need them to respond and purchase. 


It doesn’t matter what kind of online business you have, what kind of website you have, or what industry you are in.

If you have a website, and you want to turn your visitors into returning customers, then you need to get them in your email list.

Friends, stay encouraged, follow your dreams and don’t give up!

For more tips and tools to help you on your small business journey, just go to the Resources page. There, you’ll find some FREE, helpful downloads that will help give you clarity and a strategy as you plan your new small business launch. 

If you’d like some help in determining your path to self employment, I’d be glad to assist. Send a little information through the quick contact form at the Contact page. 

“Knowledge isn't power until it's applied.”

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