You’ve probably heard someone recommend creating and keeping an email list for business marketing. But what’s the big deal? How do you create an email list, and how will an email list building help grow your bottom line?
Businesses pay for outbound marketing, a website, possibly social media management, and let’s not forget staff payroll. With all these expenses aimed at earning sales, you are already paying to reach your ideal audience. Your business can build an email list of prospects and buyers that are already interested in what your dealership is selling- without any extra cost. Email list building is easy and there are so many ways to do it!
To Start Building Your Email List… Just Ask
Starting an email list is much easier than you think, and overflows with benefits. Simply ask any prospect, lead and newly converted customer to provide their email address, name, and any other information you’d like to associate with your list. Then, designate a place to save and organize the information.
In Person Visitors
If you have a brick and mortar location, encourage everyone that enters your business to sign up for your mailing list. You’ve worked hard to bring visitors into your location. Now that they are there, allowing them to leave without asking for their email address is a waste of your marketing dollars. These visitors are your target audience because they are most likely interest in your products if they’ve already made the trip to your location. Utilize their patterns and trends to find like minded people in your target area for email list building.
So how do you ask in person visitors for their email address?
Educate or Give a Gift
Offering visitors information about the items or services you sell or specials coming up are both great low-pressure options for list building. Another is to offer contests or giveaways that require a sign up to enter. Businesses usually require first and last name, email address, and possibly even mailing address. These are the minimum items we recommend having in your database.
Buyers and Service Customers
Once a buyer has agreed to a purchase from or receive service with your dealership, the conversation to ask for their email address becomes even easier. Not only will you collect this for buying purposes, but you can also offer to send them reminders for service (if you have a service department), warranty inspections or recall notifications.
List building from current customers is great because these people are proven successful targets for your products. You can use these emails to target like people through social media audience building, helping you reach more quality leads. Since they have similarities, they are more likely to become interested in your social media posts than users Facebook randomly selects to see your ads.
Visitors That Don’t Buy
“What if they leave without buying,” you ask? We say… Then it definitely doesn’t hurt to ask! If a visitor comes to your dealership and leaves without giving your sales team serious consideration, asking for their email address may be a last-ditch effort to keep contact with the lead. Offer them educational content for their buying process, special in-email only offers, even giveaways available through email only. If they don’t contribute to your sales numbers this month, let them contribute to your list building.
Website Visitors Help With List Building
We’ve said in previous posts that your prospects spend most of their buying journey on their own, and it’s mostly spent online. As the saying goes… if you can’t beat them, join them! Just like in the door traffic, you’ve already spent big bucks getting digital traffic. Utilize those visitors to your list building benefit and create an email list.
Pop-up or Slide In On Your Website
Placing timed pop up’s or slide ins on the pages of your website with in-store contests or giveaways is a great option. You can also advertise special offers that require an email sign up, such as discounts on purchase, trade in bonus, or service appointments. This provides an enticing reason to subscribe to your email list. It also makes sign up easy for your website visitors, contributing to your list building.
A Little Humor Goes a Long Way
Have you visited a website recently that asked you to sign up for their email list or has a pop up with an offer and a Yes/No question? Did you notice anything specific about the “opt out” button? It’s becoming common practice to help consumers lighten the mood, even when they decline your offer, like 15% off a service or to join their email list. Lightening the mood for someone to decline your invite or request for sign up is a positive way to approach their polite “no thank you”, while making a potential buyer laugh a little. Who doesn’t enjoy an unexpected chuckle!
Promote Your Blog or Newsletter
If you’ve jumped on the blogging or newsletter trend to help your reputation management, you can promote to your web visitors this way! Offer information and educational content that benefits them through an email sign up. Downloadable PDF’s, video blogs and special internet-only coupons/offers are all options. Offer these to blog or newsletter sign up’s when they give their email address. For more best blogging practices, click here!
Utilize Your Email Signature for List Building
Promote your blog or newsletter in the email signature of all outgoing dealership email communications. Simply place a hyperlink to the sign-up page in the signature of all emails. Ideally, this would be in an eye-catching image that tells email recipients what they’re clicking the image for. Most sites now offer features that add these new email addresses directly to your designated list. List building has been made even easier for your staff with tech advances like these!
An important part of this is follow through. Offering users to sign up for a blog or newsletter isn’t beneficial if they never receive what they signed up for. We’ll provide more details about this in our next blog, so stay tuned!
Using CTA’s in Your Email List Building
By now, you’re probably already using CTA’s, or call-to-action, in your digital marketing. CTA’s should speak directly to the action you want from your audience while clearly stating what’s in it for them. After all, your audience isn’t going to click or sign up if there isn’t something of value to be gained. They also won’t click or sign up for your email list if you haven’t gotten their attention. This is where the humor comes in to help with email list building. Creating a positive way for users to decline your offer to join your mailing list will lighten the tone of your request.
Digital Marketing and Your Email List
Digital marketing has so many diverse options for form completion and email list building. Standalone landing pages are a creative and effective way to direct interested leads to providing their email address. Offering something such as a downloadable PDF or entry for a contest are often successful options. Since most dealerships are already utilizing social media, posts that entice users to sign up for your emails is a simple and effective list building strategy. With a few additional organic posts geared towards building your email list, you can really grow your list. But there are ways to bump it up a notch without seeming like you’re begging for that email.
Landing Pages With Contact Forms
Building a single landing page is a relatively simple and creative tool. It can be used to market a specific event, information, or message to your audience. With help from your digital marketing staff or agency, a design idea and text can be added to a single page, along with a contact form for visitors to complete. This can ask for as much or as little information as you’d like from page visitors. First name, last name, and email address are perfect for list building.
Organic Social Media Posts
When making organic social media posts, focus on topics that your target audience will want more information about. This does two things. First, it creates interest. Second, it gives them a reason to click further. Offering additional downloadable PDF’s with educational content or a downloadable coupon are two great options that require users to enter their email address. You can offer these through a landing page, like we’ve mentioned in above. These pages can be simple, with short text and direct messages to your viewers. Be sure to showcase the benefits of receiving your download or newsletter!
Free giveaways can also be utilized for list building from organic posts on social media. It easily entices users to click, engaging with your organic content. This is helpful for your social media rankings also, making it a win-win for your dealership!
Paid Advertising on Social Media
Your dealership may not want list building to be the goal when paying for ads on social media. However, you can still utilize the ads to ask for email addresses. Popular paid ad topics are specific units for sale, general dealer wide sales, or general dealership advertisements. Create a landing page as the link for your social media paid ads with a short contact form for buyers to complete. Adding an opt in for your newsletter, mailing list, or blog is a widely used strategy, and it works!
Email List Building 101 Takeaways
Whatever you do to gather email addresses, make sure it’s fun and easy! Ask in person visitors for their name and email address when they come to see a unit. Use pop-ups on your website or blog that offer exclusive deals or giveaways. Advertise through digital marketing using landing pages and social media.
Make use of lead and current customer email addresses you’ve already worked hard to attract for building better quality audiences for your digital marketing. Never count out visitors that show up but don’t buy from you as an opportunity later. Attractive marketing, graphics, a little humor, and organic posts go a long way in building your email list, if done correctly.