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Beginner's Guide to Creating a Profitable Email List

5 min read
Nov 12, 2020

As a beginner, it can be difficult to know where to start when it comes to email marketing. The first thing on your checklist should always be creating an email list that’s profitable. You don’t want to build any old list that’s full of random email IDs and blindly start your campaigning process. Instead, when you are building your business’s email marketing lists, you should have a clearly defined idea of who your target audience is and therefore who you will need to add to these lists to benefit your marketing strategy and your brand. 

Just like when planning a wedding guest list, you should first spend time inviting all of your closest and most important contacts. In this case, you should define ‘closest’ as consumers who fit your target audience segments and have already shown an interest in your brand - in other words, your potential clients. Your second priority should be friends-of-friends. These are consumers who fit your target audience but have not yet interacted with your brand. You will need to find these contacts and speak to them either using inbound lead generation tactics or cold outreach. After all, the more you nurture your leads, the more revenue and sales you will receive to enhance your business growth. 

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Here are some areas to master if you want to build a profitable email list: 

Landing Pages

Landing pages are the first point of contact between your brand and a new lead. Building a secure website, that is SEO-optimised and mobile-first is crucial to hosting your lead-generation campaign landing pages. Content Mavericks has this guide on the best landing page builders if you opt to use one.

Each landing page you design should include alluring images, headlines, SEO keywords and a built-in sign-up form for users to input their email ID. High converting opt-in forms often give users extra value to persuade them to part with their details; discounts, and time-limited offers are attractive to new users.

Include relevant facts about your product or services, along with the right amount of persuasive copy - too much will overwhelm your page, so be wary. Add a CTA (call-to-action) that drives your leads to fill out your form.

Be aware that marketing is a two-way road; you are extracting someone’s personal email data so be sure to offer some value and security in return by displaying customer reviews or trust badges. 


Social Networks 

A cornerstone of building your email marketing lists are social network sites like LinkedIn, Crunchbase, Angellist, Xing, etc. Platforms like these are employment-based business pools meant for networking and connection with potential prospects. If you’re in the B2B market, LinkedIn can be an invaluable resource for you to generate potential prospects, partners, or customers to further the growth of your email list.

Connecting with prospects through your personal social profile gives your brand added social proof and authenticity; it lets leads know who you are and that you’re trustworthy. Geared towards building your business, publishing your brand’s insightful content and company highlights on a properly filled out and information-rich profile will give your brand the legitimacy needed for leads to respond to your emails.

Once you are connected with your prospects, it's time to approach them directly. Extract their email IDs, along with any contact information such as their company name or job title to deepen your connection. Some prospects may not be interested in your offer, but at the same time, if your business is not right for them, they may provide introductions to other potential clients valuable to your brand. 

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If you are an entrepreneur trying to grow your business quickly, getting help from automated tools can help you cut the hours spent manually building email lists. Automated tools like AeroLeads, can help you to extract the business’ email IDs and the contact information of prospects in bulk. With the inbuilt features, you can extract your entire LinkedIn search to a consolidated .CSV file wherein you can manage the leads’ data by uploading them to your CRM platforms. 

Automation does not mean that you give the entire responsibility of your list-building and email marketing to AI while you put your feet up. Strike a balance when it comes to implementing automation to ensure there is a human side to your messaging. Remember, no one likes to reply to an automated bot that only speaks in predetermined scripts. 

Email Scheduling 

Each client or potential prospect is important in their own unique way. As your email lists grow, your brand audience grows and you want to ensure each user has a consistently great experience. Scheduling email workflows that are triggered based on user actions, such as a new sign up, can ensure that every user receives the same treatment no matter when they enter your lists. This process is known as a Drip Campaign and can be super effective at keeping your users engaged throughout the buyer’s journey. 

Keep track of new customers and sign-ups by inviting them in with a ‘Welcome’ email, followed by a series of introductory emails across a defined time period to make them aware of your brand and products or services. 

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  3. Post-event email, e.g. Just Incase You Missed It...

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Offers & Discounts 

Turning a visitor into a potential client sometimes lies in the hands of your content; visitors are automatically interested when they see a piece of relevant content or something out of the ordinary. Sometimes the added freebies you can offer them is just the thing needed to push them over the line and into a conversion. 

Offering a free trial period can be a great way to whet their appetites, and during this time you can send updates about your brand and the service you provide. Giving a discount in exchange for a website visitor’s email ID may seem like bribing but an offer of this kind, especially when accompanied by a time-limited cut off point, works like a charm. 

Now that you’ve read up on some points to master, here are the Do’s & Don’ts that you should keep in mind when building a profitable email list:

  • Be patient; just like planting seeds in a garden, you won’t see flowers right away. Building an email list takes time and needs all the nurturing and care you can give it to yield the revenue you hope for. 
  • Do not just buy any old email list. There is no guarantee that an email list you purchase is authentic or that it will give the results or leads that you want. Plus, there’s no way to tell if these leads have explicitly consented to be on this list, so you could be in breach of GDPR, which has very serious consequences.
  • Make use of Email Finder and Verifier tools to verify the authenticity of potential leads and ensure that your emails don't end up in the junk folder. 
  • Take a multi-channel lead generation approach. Focusing on a single platform to generate leads is putting all your eggs in one basket. 
  • Use an exit-intent pop-up. It’s one very effective way to extract contact information from your website visitors. Give them a reason to fill out the form like adding a discount or access to exclusive content, such as a guide or e-book.
  • Host virtual and in-person events to sign-up potential clients and strengthen the relationship with your existing leads in order to turn them into loyal customers. 

Building a profitable email list is all about establishing a connection with potential customers; having them trust you enough to provide their personal data or reply to a cold outreach email. In this blog post, we have discussed a number of ways that you can organically grow your email list, now it’s up to you to implement these tactics and optimise your results. 


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