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Capturing Opt-In Subscribers

By Darcy McDonald
Posted Friday, August 6, 2004

Opt-in email has become highly popularized recently in response to the spam backlash generated by so-called "direct marketing" campaigns.

The idea is simple: if people give their permission for you to send them email, it cannot be considered spam. It takes time to build up base of opt-in subscribers, but every single name you add is one more person who can be contacted over and over again, so you can build a real relationship with them.

To help you out, I've compiled this lit of tips on how to capture and retain opt-in subscribers:

1. Run a good publication with real, interesting content. Don't just offer a "site newsletter" that hypes your own products and little else. People will read valuable information they can actually use, or compelling content that actually interests them.
They will not read blatant sales pitches.

2. You must automate everything! Messing around with manual additions and removals from your list can waste an incredible amount of time that is better spent elsewhere. If you don't have techies to setup your own opt-in subscriber management, consider outsourcing your list to somewhere like (,
or (

3. Establish a privacy policy and make sure every potential subscriber knows that you are a fanatic when it comes to protecting their privacy. For help with this, visit

4. Establish a mix of your own original content and high quality content from other authors. Web-Source runs a great mailing list where articles get submitted to potential publishers (see ( You can easily scoop up excellent articles for inclusion in your publication to spice things up. This helps put some real meat in your publication without taking too much of your own time.

5. Let them opt-out! Don't hide your unsubscribe info in hopes of retaining those who want to leave. It's horribly annoying and will cost you subscribers in the long run.

6. Offer them something for subscribing. In some ways it's a tired old ploy, but it still works like a charm. It could be a free sample of your services, a free article or tutorial, etc. Or failing all else, there are several free ebooks floating around that can be freely redistributed. Check out (

7. Make it super-easy to sign up. Don't present a large form asking for their age and shoe size. People hate filling out forms, and will not take the time to help you invade their privacy. The ultimate way to do this is with a small box on the front page of your site that simply describes your publication in a few sentences, and has a single text box asking for their address. For an example of this, see the front page of (

8. Confirm their addresses in some way. People make an enormous number of typos and this can fill your subscription list with dead addresses, wasting your time and your ISP's bandwidth. List managers like ListBot and Egroups will do this for you.

9. Show them a sample of your publication, and make sure it's the best issue you've ever produced. Compel them to subscribe. Make it so enticing that they cannot afford to pass up the opportunity. For more info on how to pitch this sort of thing, just visit ( and see if you can resist. I dare you!

Get Unlimited Access To Excellent New Search Engine Optimization & Submission Tools at (!

About the author:
Darcy MacDonald operates Babblebot, an excellent new site dedicated to search engine submission, ranking, and optimization services.

To find out how you can use the new doorway page generator to get a top ranking position in all the major search engines, visit ( today!


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