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A robust email marketing list of qualified prospects is the cornerstone of success for any company that relies on repeat business and referrals, or has a long sales cycle that requires nurture and follow-up. Venturebeat.com refers to email as “the workhorse of digital marketing,” with email producing $38 in revenue for every $1 spent. However, these results cannot be obtained without first creating a list of qualified email prospects to target. Below are 5 steps to help you attain a high ROI by building your own customized list of qualified prospects.

1) Use your website and inbound marketing techniques to capture leads. Rather than paying to rent an email list of prospects who have never demonstrated interest in your products, you should focus your efforts on compiling an email list of prospects that have interacted with you or your company in the past. Examples of effective sources from which to capture leads include the following:

  • Trade shows: Do not forget to scan attendees’ badges when they visit your booth
  • Your website: Secure email addresses from prospects who visit your website
  • Inbound phone calls: Before completing a phone call, make sure to obtain the caller’s email address
  • People who visit your office: These are often the most serious prospects because they have expended the time and energy to see you in person

The key to this strategy to treat every website visitor, inbound caller, and trade show attendee like gold. Even if they are not ready to complete a purchase during their first interaction with your company, these individuals have expressed interest in your company and may purchase from you in the future. They are key additions to your customized email list.

2) Offer incentives to prospects for joining your email list. This step requires you to go beyond simply asking customers to sign up for your email address or newsletter. Get inside the minds of your prospects. What incentives can you offer them to join your email list? What can you give them for free that they’ll be willing to give you their email address for and that will make them more likely to buy from you? The incentive(s) you choose is called your lead magnet. Below are some specific ideas for lead magnets that you can use to convince people to join your email list:

  • A new client discount for subscribing to your list (for instance, 20% off their first order)
  • An insider’s pricing guide for your products and services
  • Entry to a drawing for a free gift package of your goods or services
  • A coupon book for your products

Unsure of what to use as a lead magnet? You can learn a lot about what makes prospects tick by including a very brief quiz or mini-survey on your website. Be sure to organize responses for use in future promotions.

3) Employ user-friendly technology to make it easy for clients to join your list. Once you have attracted a visitor to your company or site and have convinced them to join your email list, it is critical that prospects are able to join your list quickly and effortlessly. Below are some key strategies to use as you strive to make it easy for prospects to join your email campaign.  

  • Landing pages should be uncluttered and properly formatted.
  • Exit popups should be contain a persuasive message to regain the prospect’s attention
  • Design powerful online forms to maintain the interest of prospects
  • Ensure that your platform has a mobile-friendly design to accommodate the growing number of mobile device users
  • Enhance the user’s overall experience by using cost-effective tools such as Thriveleads, Instapage and Unbounce

The use of Thriveleads, Instapage and Unbounce is particularly important because they help people without technical knowledge quickly and easily create effective landing pages. By providing people with user-friendly templates, these tools enable people to easily customize a page by simply replacing text and images. The greatest advantage of Thriveleads, Instapage and Unbounce is their ability to increase conversions without requiring any technical expertise on behalf of the person using the program.

4) Develop an email marketing program to manage your email list and send offers. Once you have formulated your list of qualified prospects to email, you should use a proven email marketing program to properly maintain your list and distribute your offers. Examples of some effective programs include the following:

  • ConstantContact
  • Mailchimp
  • Ontraport (for more sophisticated programs)

These programs make it extremely easy for non-technical people to send professional looking emails to customers. This step is particularly effective if your organization has assigned a dedicated individual to oversee your email marketing program. A dedicated resource will help make sure that your list is well maintained.

5) Enlist the guidance of an industry expert. The best way to ensure that you build an effective list of qualified prospects is to seek the guidance of an email marketing consultant. The team of specialists with Plan2Profit have the expertise to help you develop a customized marketing optimization plan and can help you maximize conversions for your company. Contact us at Plan2Profit today to learn how we can assist you!