When I first started building my email list, I was the vice president of marketing at a large healthcare organization.
My grandfather died from diabetes and heart disease in 2000, and this was a wake-up call for me because no one was aware of his conditions until it was too late. It became my goal to help people think of their health proactively by cutting through the clutter of daily life and engaging them to make lifestyle changes.
This inspired me to help people find health and exercise-related information, and that’s when I decided to build an email list around the topic of health and wellness.
Fast-forward five months and I’d built an email list of 3,016 subscribers.
Now I’m working on my first product, set to launch in August 2016.
How did you do it?
I got my first 100 subscribers by doing 1 thing. I reached out friends on social platforms like Facebook and Twitter and asked them to join my list.
This outreach brought my list to 250 subscribers.
Here’s a screenshot where I asking my friends and family to join my list:
Currently my list is at 3,016 subscribers.
I went from 250 to 3,016 email subscribers by doing two things: 1) giveaways, and 2) using Instagram.
If you’re looking for fast list growth with people who love your topic, then I recommend hosting a giveaway.
To date I’ve done 4 giveaways. Here are the results and what I’ve learned so far:
Giveaway #1: After attracting my initial 250 subs I did a giveaway with a book bundle that cost me $40. This brought in exactly 58 subscribers. The number was relatively low because I wasn’t familiar yet with everything that goes into making a giveaway successful. My giveaway did not relate to my target audience. Looking back, I was focusing on being busy versus being productive.
Here’s a screenshot of my results:
Giveaway #2: I attempted another giveaway, this time a kettle bell. Because the kettle bell costs more, I thought it would land more subs. I was wrong on this one.
Here’s what results looked like:
Giveaway #3: My first breakthrough giveaway was for a mobile phone charger a friend of mine had put together through Kickstarter. I was able to leverage my giveaway to his audience and other groups, but I didn’t do a good enough job of explaining the product and how it related to health and wellness. The founder of the company provided two chargers for a retail value of over $300. I supplemented his sponsorship by promoting the heck out of the product.
I worked my tail off doing Instagram paid ads and giveaway site promo ads and hyping it on my social networks. The end result was a large jump of 692! The work to get to almost 700 was more than I anticipated because I was still lacking strategy.
Here’s a screenshot of my results:
Giveaway #4: I used everything I learned from the previous three giveaways and approached this one much more strategically. After digging deep into who my audience was, by running surveys and checking analytics, I found that 65% of my audience was made up of women between the ages of 35 and 50 years old.
I found that they were looking for recipes to prepare healthy meals, so I created a list of kitchen gadgets that I own and use and decided to give away ones that I felt my audience would love. I chose a programmable pressure cooker and an immersion blender and I bundled them for a value of $150. I also added in my upcoming course, Intentional University, with a value of $1100 based on 13 weeks of content that will be included, which brought the value to $1250. I knew this number to be significant enough to warrant attention.
Here’s what this giveaway looked like:
Instead of promoting this giveaway through ads, I went totally organic by informing my email list, my friend’s email list and my social networks. I spent a few hours using Twitter Search and letting health influencers know I was giving away the Instant Pot in particular. I lost count of the social shares I saw, but the viral buzz attracted over 1,000 opt-ins, bringing my total over the 2,400-contestant-mark for the first time!
Here’s the breakdown on results:
Here’s an example of how I reached out to health influencers on Twitter:
I began to leverage Instagram and saw fast growth from using it every day.
From February 2016 through July 2016 I grew my Instagram account from 0 to 13,000 followers.
I posted pictures and quotes while including a message for followers to opt in to my list in exchange for a lead magnet. That strategy worked better than using my blog as a platform to grow my email list.
In total, Instagram has added 254 subscribers to my list.
In August 2016 I’ll be launching Intentional University as my first product. Since my audience is looking for proven ways to take control of their health that’s exactly what I plan to give them.
Here’s a shot of our launch page as of July 2016:
What’s unique about our course is the purpose-filled curriculum for those who are 30 and above and want to regain their health. We don’t promise overnight results. Quite the opposite. But we know that results come as an outcome of small wins achieved daily.
Our curriculum will provide at least 5 lessons each week, dripped out so that students can FOCUS on the content and put it into action versus gobble up the content and not take the time to act.
I’m excited to report back on the results!
What has building an email list changed in your life and allowed you to do?
Before my list, I was focused on tracking page views and traffic, but I realized that those numbers don’t measure your ultimate goal of building a business and helping your target audience.
Now that I have over 3,000 subscribers on my list, I have more confidence to try other avenues, and particularly more confidence in building my online course and reaching out to a larger group of people.
What’s next for you?
Moving forward means focusing on 3 things:
Wife + 6 Kids + 1 Dog
Health & Wealthness
V.P. Of Marketing
Releasing A Product Soon!
A year after I quit my corporate gig, I took several courses so that I could learn how to start my own online business. But there was always something in the back of my head telling me I lacked. When I came across Videofruit’s courses and their knowledge base, I breathed a sigh of relief. I felt like my missing piece was found. Practicing Videofruit’s action-oriented advice, my email list has surged from nothing to 3000 in seven months and I have the confidence to push forward towards the next phases and reach my ultimate goal - an online business that affords me the platform to help people regardless of where I am.