When growing a responsive list, remember that gaining traffic is not the only goal. Attracting highly targeted people who want and need what you’re offering is the goal. Therefore, you need to develop a list-growing strategy that uses tactics that focus on the goal of Building and Growing a Responsive List.
The following tactics will ensure that when someone joins your list, they do want the information you’re providing. And they will likely turn into a paying customer if you’ve matched your freebie opt-in offers to the right audience. So, let’s build that traffic.
Create a User-Friendly Site
First and foremost, everything begins and ends with your website. If your website doesn’t look great and work fast or doesn’t work on all devices, you are likely missing out on numerous opportunities to connect with potential customers. Here are some tips for making your website user-friendly.
- Develop a Responsive Website – A responsive template is simple to use, but if you add images, always double-check to make sure they resize and are positioned correctly on the screen. You can check by using com, as well as your mobile device.
- Brand Your Website – You don’t want your audience to be confused when they visit your website. Keep your branding the same throughout all your online real estate, from social media to your website, and everything in between. You can do this by using logos, consistent fonts, colors, etc., to develop your branding so that everything matches.
- Make it Easy to Contact You – You don’t want someone to have to dig around your website to find a way to contact you. Visitors should be able to contact you easily when needed. Make it simple by placing your contact info at the top or bottom of your site, as well as in the sidebar (if you have one).
- Create Simple Navigation – The rule of thumb with navigation is “less is more”. Plan your navigation to help create the right setup. Use labels on the navigation links that adequately identify what they’ll find there. Make sure your primary navigation stands out. This menu is usually at the top of every page of your website. Always link the logo to the home page so no one gets lost.
- Ensure it Loads Fast – A slow-loading site is a traffic killer. In most cases, if your site takes longer than 2-3 seconds to load people will leave. Consider using a content delivery network (CDN), such as Cloudflare or Azure. To ensure efficiency, use the right image formats and sizes, fewer plugins, compression, the right web host, and more.
When you create the website, it’s important to consider your audience because that’s who’s going to use it most. Are they tech-skilled or tech-challenged? What colors do they like? What do they expect when they come to your site? Making their wants and needs a top priority helps to ensure you build a user-friendly website that people want to visit.
Know Your Audience & Your Competition
It’s hard to create products, services, or content for your target market if you don’t know what they want and need. So, before you start building or changing your site, get to know your target audience and your competition. It’s hard to compete if you don’t know what your competition is doing. Here are some tips for getting to know your audience and competition:
- Develop Customer Personas – This involves creating a profile of your ideal customer. In the profile, include personality traits, education, family life, career, income, and other details needed to develop content, products, and services. Then even find an image that matches how your imagined customer might look.
- Monitor Social Comments – Whether a comment is on a blog or social media, finding comments from your audience can help you learn more about them. On social media, engagement within groups is usually more trustworthy because members tend to ask honest, straightforward, questions.
- Conduct a Survey – Surveys provide valuable insights and data that can help you understand your audience’s preferences, needs, behaviors, and opinions. This data helps you segment your audience and tailor your content or products accordingly. Surveys can gather information about your audience’s age, gender, location, education level, occupation, and other demographic details. Also, learning about your competitor’s audience can help you if you have the same or a similar target market.
- Engage Often – The more you engage with your audience the better. Keep your email open to replies, invite and answer questions, as they come. The more open you are the more open they will be. This is especially true if they feel you listen and appreciate their input.
Your audience can teach you a lot about your business. You may think you know something, but even if you are in the same demographic as your audience, what you experience is subjective. That’s why you need to look at the data, pay attention to what your competition is doing, and keep your ear to the ground regarding your entire industry to stay on top of what’s coming next.
Use Paid Advertising
One way to get more traffic for your opt-ins is to use paid ads. Don’t worry, most paid advertisements are budget-friendly, automated, and provide very fast results. Once you get an acceptable ROI in your testing phase, you can better predict your list growth.
There are many types of paid ads available. Website ads, Google AdWords, social media ads, newsletter ads, sponsored email broadcasts, directory listings, sponsored reviews, sponsored articles, press releases, and retargeted ads. Note: Make sure you have had sales organically before you start running paid ads.
Here are some tips to ensure your ads are effective:
- Follow the Rules – Anywhere you place your ads, there will be rules, terms of service, and tips to ensure that your ad gets the best results. Read through that information carefully. It will be specific to that platform.
- Use Stand-Out Graphics – Ad graphics need to attract your audience to the advertisement. Again, make sure you understand the specs and rules. For example, Facebook doesn’t like it if your image has too many words on the image and instead wants you to focus the wording in the text area of the ad. However, the rules vary depending on where you advertise. No matter where you place your ad, the graphic should be high quality, legally usable for an advertisement, and, as much as possible— laser-targeted.
- Develop Compelling Ad Copy – Creating ad copy is a different skill than writing content for a blog. It requires you to know your audience. In addition, you should know what words get your audience’s attention and motivate them.
- Ensure Ad Relevance – When you create an ad, consider your overall goals. The ad should be relevant to a freebie you promote, as well as to the goals you have after they sign up to your email list. Show them that you’re the right person to guide them by making the ad relevant.
- Set a Realistic Budget – When you run paid ads to push traffic toward your opt-ins, it’s important that you set a realistic budget. Start low while you test and improve the ad. When you receive the right ROI, increase your budget. If the ad is performing well, then technically it costs nothing because of your ROI.
- Choose Adequate Run Time – Don’t expect to run an advertisement for one day and get good results. Run the ad long enough to ensure that you have some data to analyze. Try running the ad using different targeting, or changing one small thing on each version, to find out which works best. Usually, you can get some idea of the results after about seven days.
- Analyze Data – Every few days look at the data. Try to assess what is working and what is not working. Throw out what is not working and do more of what is working. Eventually, you’ll hit the sweet spot, receiving enough ROI to increase your budget. However, keep an eye on the data, because eventually audience interest will drop off and you’ll need to create a different promotion.
- Refine Ads – When you see the results of the data, refine your ads, as needed. When refining, keep notes of what works with your audience. Then, next time you run an ad you won’t have to start from scratch regarding targeting and the type of ads that work.
Paid advertising works well for anyone willing to take the time to get to know their audience. This works great even for people who are just starting out and haven’t established a reputation yet. Always make sure that you understand who your audience is, what you’re promoting, and what your goals are before you start using paid ads. Also, work to understand the platform you’re using. It may take some time and experimentation, but it will work.
Make On-Page SEO a Top Priority
Your audience usually finds you via search engine result pages. So, another way to get more traffic to your opt-ins is to rank higher. (A search engine’s job is to provide its audience with a list of relevant, useful information, based on the words they used in the search.)
Here are a few SEO strategies and tips to help you rank higher on search results pages:
- Titles – Use keywords in the first three words of page URLs and titles. Try not to use more than 50 characters per title.
- Make Content Long Enough – Long content of 2000+ words isn’t a must. However, when it comes to getting more traffic, Google and other search engines tend to rank longer content (2,250 to 2,500 words) higher on the results pages. Snap reported that some readers prefer to read content that contains 700 to 1500 words. So, the takeaway here is to incorporate both types of content on your site. Depending on your goal, your “ideal” word count likely needs to be greater than in previous years.
Keep in mind that you are writing for your readers and they don’t count words. They want accurate, detailed information that answers their questions, and helps them fix their problems. Give them what they want/need and a little more.
- Include Meta Descriptions – These are necessary to ensure that your audience can find you. Include the keywords that help your audience find your content. Software like Yoast SEO, or AISEO will help optimize your content.
- Create “Alt Image Text” — Don’t just upload an image to your site without filling out the alt tag. Most platforms such as WordPress will have a place for that when you upload the image. This is helpful to both search engines and readers, in case the images don’t load. A side benefit is that it helps people with visual impairments to read your site more easily.
- Use Header Tags – Use H1, H2, and H3 header tags in your page maker for headings and subheadings to organize and make your content look better and make certain words stand out. In addition, it helps search engines determine what information is important. Make these tags logical giving the most important words H1 tags.
- Edit Well – Spelling and grammar do matter. If you spell things wrong, the search engines may not send traffic your way. And even if people find the content, they won’t trust you as much if you have these issues. You don’t have to be perfect, but you do need to use grammar that is appropriate for your audience. Using the free version of Grammarly is usually adequate.
Finally, be sure to add internal linking under the articles and blog posts with relevant content. This helps your audience find related information on or off your site. It also helps search engines to properly map your site and send traffic to you.
Leverage Referral Traffic
Referrals from trusted people and sites can generate a great deal of traffic to your website. To encourage this traffic, with the goal of growing your mailing list, you can provide links to the opt-in landing pages you create. These are especially helpful to your affiliates, customers, clients, and anyone who wants to mention you or your item as a good resource. You can also get referral traffic through social media, directories, guest postings, and more.
Regardless of how you get traffic to your opt-in offers, it’s important to be ready. Test your signup and delivery process several times. Enlist the help of others who use different devices, operating systems, browsers, etc. Don’t forget to set up an autoresponder follow-up series to help convert the subscribers into customers.
Get Ready for Traffic to Your Site
Now that you are more familiar with list-building strategies, you can begin to implement them in your growth plan. While you may be tempted to do everything as fast as possible, it’s important to tackle just one strategy at a time. You don’t want to overload yourself and get frustrated. Allow yourself time to learn and practice the associated skills before moving on to the next strategy.
Once you’re getting subscribers and building your list, you’ll want to have a regular schedule for sending them emails. Having an email planner is helpful for this. I’ve created an email marketing planner that all the tools necessary to organize the growth of your list, plus create, monetize and send profitable emails to your subscribers. To find out more, CLICK HERE.