A well-maintained mailing list isn’t just for online businesses.
Bloggers and podcasters also benefit from mailing lists. Instead of expecting readers to visit sites for updates, bloggers can email subscribers, alerting them to recent posts. A good mailing list also helps bloggers occasionally promote affiliate links and special features.
Mailing Lists Are Not Spam
Oddly, many bloggers hesitate when confronted with the idea of mailing lists.
Many express the concern that using a mailing list constitutes spam activity.
This simply isn’t true. As long as you provide clear opt-in and opt-out options for subscribers, you’re not guilty of spamming anyone.
It’s up to the individual reader whether or not they join your mailing list.
Be Clear About Expectations
A mailing list opt-in page should clearly state exactly what the reader can expect from emails. If you plan on occasionally sending special offers to readers, you should make this clear.
You’ll also need to explain how you use personal information on the mailing list. Today’s readers are very leery of signing up for mailing lists without assurances their data won’t be sold to third-parties.
Customize Your Opt-In Forms
Clear expectations go hand-in-hand with customizing your opt-in forms. If at all possible, give your readers choices when they sign up. They may want to receive blog updates but opt out of special offers. If so, give them opportunity to do so. You benefit from increased traffic to your site in either case. You also present yourself as someone who values and respects reader opinions and preferences.
Whether you’re a personal blogger or provide NY SEO services, you can encourage site visitors to opt into mailing lists with free gifts. Free e-books or access to areas of the website reserved for mailing list subscribers are often offered.
If websites make one mistake with free gifts, it’s this: more isn’t necessarily better. I’m sure you’ve seen websites offer an avalanche of free gifts such as e-books, PDF white papers and podcasts. Some sites offer five or six free gifts just for opting into a mailing list.
Readers see aggressively large free offers on websites all the time. Unfortunately, such offers are typical of disreputable or scam-based sites. As a result, websites offering too much for free are considered suspect.
Quality also plays a role. Many of the “free gifts” offered are, quite frankly, of terrible quality. Instead of offering a wide-range of sub par gifts, focus on one or two gifts of high quality with relevance to your site. Offer visitors a chance to preview the gifts, so they know you provide something of value when they opt in to your mailing list.
Ask Subscribers To Include You In Contacts
Signing people up for mailing lists is only half the battle. Once signed up, you need to ensure they don’t dismiss your email as spam. Ask readers to add your email to their Contacts list, to improve the chance they’ll read your messages.