When we first started building our email list, I (Cole) was/still am a marketing manager for a brand called Clothe Ohio which sells Ohio themed apparel and works with local charities to give back to the community. Ben was/still is a well-known photographer.
Ben wanted to start an education site to teach other photographers how to grow their businesses — but didn’t have the skillset or time to learn how to setup and run a successful blog. I had the vision and skills to help make his website a reality and knew what creating a successful blog looked like.
I have one of the best jobs in the world. I love the people I work and my company is extremely generous towards me, but I wanted something to call my own. I wanted a second revenue source, and I also wanted validation that I could build something successful from nothing.
That’s when we decided to build an email list around photography marketing – helping photographers grow their business.
So far, we sold an ebook and made $17,536.25. Then we hosted a workshop and made $19,200!
Fast-forward 21 months and we’d built a list of 7,206 subscribers.
How did you do it?
We got our first 100 subscribers by doing one thing. We offered a free 7 day course lead magnet in Facebook.
Ben posted our free 7 day course lead magnet in Facebook groups he was apart of as well as his photography business and Instagram pages.
That got us up to 244 within a few days.
Currently our list is at 7,206.
We went from 244 to 7,206 by doing 4 things: 1) Offering our 7 day email course, 2) Webinars and 3) Content Upgrades
7 day email course
The first thing you see when you go to our site is an offering for our free course.
When you click on that, it brings you to an opt-in page to receive the free course.
The free 7 day email course lead magnet has been the biggest driver of growth. We’ve had over 6,000 photographers sign up for it.
We’ve partnered with different companies in the photography industry to do webinars.
We host webinars for these companies and their subscribers on how to market their photography business. This has been great! We’ve gotten our name out there and have been able to help folks on these webinars in big ways.
Our last webinar gained us 63 subscribers.
We offer a TON of content upgrades on blog posts.
We created a few PDFs based on frequently asked questions by photographers or pain points. We then offered those in exchange for an email address on a few of our blog posts.
Here is an example of that!
We have gotten 300-500 subscribers from our content upgrades. This strategy has worked so well for us.
What has building an email list changed in your life and allowed you to do?
For me (Cole) building an email list and blog from nothing to over 7,000 subscribers has boosted my confidence in what I’m capable of on my own.
For Ben, it’s been even more valuable as having an email list / platform has allowed him to connect and work with industry leaders in the photography niche. It’s also been personally fulfilling for Ben as he is changing the lives of his subscribers by helping them to earn more in their businesses and achieve their professional goals.
What’s next for you?
I’m spending all of my time focused on three things:
Cole - single. Ben + Wife + Daughter + Twins on the way
Cole - Marketing Manager, Ben - Photographer
Videofruit has been an amazing resource. Their list building tactics have allowed me to grow my blog faster, the launch recap post gave me the inspiration to add a downsell to my product launch (which increased revenue by 22%) and the Santa Claus formula helped me close my first 3 paying clients for my previous side business. This website and the free information Videofruit provides changed my life.