When I first started building my email list, I was a product manager for a classifieds website.
I wound up with less and less freedom in terms of decision-making due to the company being bought and changing focus. It was limiting because I loved being productive and getting more done with my energy.
That’s when I decided to build an email list around the topic of increasing your energy and productivity by improving your health.
Fast-forward 8 months and I had built an email list of 2,605 subscribers.
Since then I’ve launched my first product to help people get more energy in a healthy way and earned $1,548 in my first month!
How did you do it?
I got my first 100 subscribers by doing one thing: attending an event in my space and sharing my notes.
When I got started I attended a “movement camp” with my target audience in the the crowd. I wrote a ton of notes during the event and then put my thoughts in a blog post.
To get people to sign up, I created a simple form on my website and told everyone I could at the camp about my post. Not everyone signed up, but this got me my first 100 subscribers.
Now my list has 2,605 subscribers.
I went from 100 to 2,605 subscribers by focusing on two strategies: 1) giveaways, and 2) content upgrades.
Creating a giveaway that your target market will love is a great way to build list full of subscribers who enjoy your topic.
Here’s what I did to make my giveaway a success:
Step #1: Plan out the giveaway. I spent about 3 weeks prior to launching my giveaway, thinking through what I should post and do before I launched it, what actions I would take during the launch, and what my goal was.
I set the goal of getting 1,000 subscribers during the two weeks my giveaway was active.
Step #2: Choose your items. The value of my giveaway was around $400 US and included a FitBit Charge, the Getting Things Done Book, Action Tea (my first product), and other productivity goodies.
The goal was to get people who are interested in productivity through a healthy lifestyle.
My thought process was: healthier eating –> more energy –> higher productivity.
Here’s what my giveaway looked like:
IMPORTANT! Probably the most important part before getting started: Start a separate list in your email service provider and call it “Giveaway January 2016” (for example) and add your giveaway entries to that list. That way your main list stays clean and you can segment those people separately.
Step #3: Leverage social media and my network. I started by emailing my list and posting on certain threads on Reddit (called subreddits). This got me my first 50-200 emails entries for my giveaway.
I then posted in every Google+ community and Facebook group I could find that was related to health, movement, or productivity. I tried to make it non-spammy by asking questions and sharing my new year’s resolutions.
On the first day I earned my first 200 subscribers, and just two days in I was happy to hit my 1K goal, so I decided to keep pushing forward!
Step #4: Execute the plan. This means to keep re-tweeting people who are sharing, thanking those who’ve helped out, and starting conversations with your new subscribers.
Something I didn’t realize was how many spam entries my giveaway would receive. By the end of my giveaway I had 5,830 entries. Yay! But upon closer examination only 2,338 of those entries were legitimate emails and not spam.
I highly recommend using content upgrades as a way to grow to your email list.
My content upgrades help readers take action on my posts and become even more familiar with healthy tweaks to their lives that result in more energy and higher productivity.
In total, content upgrades have added 1,068 subscribers to my email list.
Here’s a screenshot of my LeadPages dashboard showing all of my content upgrades and their performances so far:
Here are a few of my favorite posts with content upgrades:
I asked my initial subscribers what problems they were having because I wanted to create a product to help them.
After publishing a post about coffee, I discovered that many of my subscribers disliked coffee and some of its side effects.
That’s when my first product was born: Action Tea.
I spent 4 weeks trying to find the perfect blend of naturally-sourced quality ingredients that would provide energy and no jitters, but still be affordable.
I launched it to my growing list of 419 subscribers and was featured on Product Hunt.
The first month I did $1,526 in sales!
I’m still focused on Action Tea and we regularly see about $450 a month in sales.
What has building an email list changed in your life and allowed you to do?
In my previous jobs creativity was always stifled by someone “above.”
Now that I have an email list I don’t worry about gatekeepers or an approval process, because I’m in charge with the help of my subscribers.
What’s next for you?
My course just launched into beta with 25 students, and I’ve partnered with the some of the best marketers in the world in various niches.
I’m excited to see where this project goes–we’re just getting real traction in the marketplace.
Moving forward means 3 things:
Health & Productivity
When you have an email list you avoid the gatekeepers and become the decision maker. In your life and in your business there’s no greater feeling.