Giles Thomas

Build Your Email List with These Growth Hacks

By: Giles Thomas | June 4, 2015 | 
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Email List

By Giles Thomas

Building an email list is hard.

You’ve probably read a hundred blog posts on how to use pop-ups or creating lead magnets to help you gain more email addresses.

You’ve likely tried gated content or an email begging people to subscribe.

And yet, your email list suffers.

Never fear! There are some little-known growth hacks that will help you build your email list quickly and efficiently.

Hack Twitter Lead Generation Cards

You may already get social traffic and visitors from Twitter and some of it may even convert and help to grow your email list.

But did you know you can collect emails from your audience within Twitter?

What if you could take some of the microtransactions—the retweets, tweets, or mentions—that happen in your Twitter stream and turn them into email addresses?

With the Twitter Lead Generation Card you can…and it’s free!

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The idea is to create a landing page within your Twitter conversations. You can see an example of this above.

Your followers have to simply click “subscribe” and voila! You now have it in your new Twitter email list.

This email list can be downloaded from Twitter and imported into an email provider software, such as Mailchimp or Infusionsoft.

Now, rather than offer them updates or something generic, you can align the content you send them that aligns with the conversation you’ve had on Twitter.

It’s really that simple. Just take an existing free resource you have, preferably with a landing page (you’ll see why later) and offer this instead.

Your offer is than more targeted to their interests and the context of the interaction.

Set Up Your First Card

Step 1: Head over to Twitter and click on your profile dropdown, then click ’Twitter Ads’.

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Step 2: Now click on ‘Help?’ in the top right, then on the next page click on the ‘Card’ tab.

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Step 3: This is your card archive, probably now it is empty, so click on “Create Lead Generation card.”

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Step 4: Now fill out the form as below.

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If you have a relevant free resource (such as a landing page with a PDF download) put the link in the ‘Card Details (Fallback) URL.’

In the ‘Destination URL settings (optional)’ put the link to the thank you or confirmation page on your site where you offer the resource to be downloaded from.

Now Start Tweeting Your Offer

Now you’r all ready to begin to build your email list.

Step 5: Go back to your card manager page and find a unique URL like this under the title of the card: https://cards.twitter.com/cards/18ce53w0kxs/8sl7.

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Include this in your tweet to make sure the Lead Generation Card can be seen.

Now find someone you’ve engaged with recently or someone who shares a lot of your content (Spider is an easy resource to use to help you find these people).

Step 6: Thank them and include the card URL that encourages them to get the free bonus content.

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If the person clicks the call-to-action, their email address is now added to your email list.

Step 7: You can download your new Twitter email list in the Twitter card manager.

Leverage a Shoulder Niche

A shoulder niche is an industry that is different from yours but shares some common target customers.

For example, my niche is conversion optimization, but a shoulder niche might be UX design or blogging.

This is because the people targeted in those niches may also have interest in mine.

Blogging folks also want to increase their conversion rate and UX designers want their clients or projects to have good conversion rates.

The easiest way to find your shoulder niche is to look into the people that sign up to your email list.

Steps to Do Just That

Step 1: Look at 50 emails on your list and check out their websites. This can be found in the last part of their email address, e.g. joe@thewebsiteaddess.com. You are looking for patterns, are their some unexpected recurring niches you didn’t know were on your list?

For example, from he past 50 email addresses I have on my email list, seven of the companies are design or IT services agencies. This tells me other agencies are interested in learning about conversion optimization.; perhaps to sell better services to their clients.

A shoulder niche is born.

Now it’s time to reach out to some top blogs in that space for guest posting and link building opportunities.

These are untapped markets where you can find new emails and leads for your business.

Step 2: Use Buzzsumo to find top content and top blogs in specific niches or around certain topics.

Go to the website and enter in your new niche keyword and look which content is the most popular. This is the content with the most shares at the top of the list.

Step 3: Before you send an email, type the name of the blog into Google and see if they have a ‘write for us’ or ‘guest post’ page with instructions on how to apply.

These are the queries to use: ‘nameofblog.com: write for us’ or ‘nameofblog.com: guest post’

Step 4: If they do not have specific instructions, write a targeted and individual guest post inquiry email.

Email List Conclusion

Email list building takes time and you need to make sure the email addresses you collect are targeted and relevant to your product or service.

Don’t always rely on traditional ways to build your email list. Try Twitter lead gen cards or build a shoulder niche.

These two growth hacks will have significant effect on your email list building activities.

image credit: Search Engine Journal

About Giles Thomas


Giles Thomas writes about conversion rate optimization at Acquireconvert.com. He is also the founder of UX design agency WholeDesignStudios.com.