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10 1/2 Free Ways to Grow E-mail List

10 1/2 Free Ways to Grow E-mail List

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Published by vikramrajan
You don't need to spam! Grow your own e-mail newsletter contact list with those you know... here are 10 1/2 free ways to do so! More tips at ViksMarketingBlog.com
You don't need to spam! Grow your own e-mail newsletter contact list with those you know... here are 10 1/2 free ways to do so! More tips at ViksMarketingBlog.com

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Published by: vikramrajan on Jul 09, 2007
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I regularly help professionals produce well-designed, thoughtful, and action-provoking newsletters. Here’s how my e-newsletter goes to thousands of entrepreneurs and professionals. CONTENT TIPS: Keep your e-mails informative, not just an advertisement. Answer: “What’s in it for them? How can I educate them?” Less is more: E-mail newsletter articles should be less than 300 words, or have a “more” link (to your website). REMEMBER: ANY unsolicited e-mail to strangers is considered junk mail, or “spam.” You won’t need to spam if you take advantage of all these ways: 1. Customers: past, present, and future Stop regretting the past: Send former customers a postcard inviting them to subscribe. And now, start asking for their e-mail addresses. Be sure to add your potential future customers... 2. Prospects: past & present Remember all the people who said “no” or “not for now”? Keep ‘em in your loop; they should be updated and reminded continually. If you don’t have their e-mail address, re-connect with them. Or send them a personal letter (or postcard) about your newsletter. Position yourself as an expert by sending prospects your newsletter. 3. New contacts, professional & social Be sure to grab business cards at parties, professional and social. Notice whether they have an e-mail address on it. If not, ask: “Is there a good way to keep in contact by e-mail?” 3½: Website opt-in box: Direct & “Viral” Make sure your website has an easy way to grab your visitor’s e-mail address; the form box can be labeled as ‘E-mail Updates’ or ‘Free Newsletter.’ (Be sure to remind them that you won’t sell or share their e-mail address.) Offer your e-newsletter in all your communication collaterals. Your e-mails should have an easy (and encouraging) “Send-to-a-Friend” forward button (a.k.a. “viral marketing”). Passively invite and remind through your e-mail signature. 4. Co-workers: past & present Add all your colleagues from your current position, and friends from your former positions. Ask them to forward your e-mail to those who’d find your information relevant. Don’t have their e-mail addresses? Call them up to re-ignite the relationship, or send them a postcard about your newsletter. 5. Service providers & solicitors: professional & personal Add your vendors, suppliers, and those who prospect you to your e-mail list. Also, don’t forget about your family’s doctors and other personal service providers. They won’t say no to their customer! 6. Cooperative, reciprocal, and swap sends

Offer to send your colleagues e-newsletters to your list, or to include their tidbits (ahem, feel free to include mine). And then ask if they would reciprocate. Swapping lists may constitute spamming – you can ask your friend to write a brief foreword endorsing you (make it simple for them to opt-out). 7. Networking, professional, trade, civic, charity, and social groups: member lists The worst way to use chambers is to just grab business cards or add their member directory to yours. But it’s a quick way to grow your e-mail list. “Dear fellow member,” while ineffective, at least shows you’re not a blatant spammer. If you send an e-newsletter, be sure to add an un-subscribe or opt-out link. Coupled with a business relationship, adding their addresses to your list is a great way to cultivate business. 8. Blogs & website forums Again, stealing addresses – or sending members unsolicited e-mails - is technically spam. But through networks like LinkedIn, Craigslist, MySpace, etc., you can privately ask if they’d like to receive your newsletter. You can also publicly notify special interest forums about your free newsletter. Again, the more informative your “e-Value Proposition” is, the better the response will be. 9. Inadvertent CC e-mail addresses This is a controversial one: I cringe when people forget to blind carbon copy (BCC) my e-mail address. It gets blasted to strangers. But, a friend of a friend... should be my friend, on my list. When you get emails publicly displaying other people’s addresses, don’t simply add them to your newsletter list (this would still be spam). You should introduce yourself to them, and ask if they’d like to receive your newsletter. Make sure the introduction is personal, private, or at least BCC the other e-mail addresses! 10. Neighbors, family, friends, & alumni: personal and professional First of all, don’t forget your professional neighbors: the businesses in the next suite, office, store, and around your block. Hopefully, e-mail solicitation isn’t the only reason you want to get to know your neighbors. But this ulterior motive can help you develop relationships with those you’re around everyday. Likewise, your e-newsletter can be the impetus to reacquaint yourself with old friends from school. And of course, add your family and friends to your list; go ahead and “spam ‘em!” And be sure to add me to your e-mail list: Vik@CoGrow.com! Hope to be informed. © 2006 Vikram Rajan is the Personal Brand MAESTRO of CoGrow Systems, Inc. He is a faculty member of the Fashion Institute of Technology. Vik helps experts market themselves in order to earn more free time. For more insights, e-mail Vik@CoGrow.com or call 516.642.4100.

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