Posted Wednesday, January 12, 2005
We all keep hearing how important it is to grow our "lists." Whether your list is an ezine, an online newsletter or a customer contact list it can create an income or generate additional traffic to your website.
The problem is that many web entrepreneurs don't have the slightest idea how to kick start their lists, let alone keep them growing steadily month after month.
It is possible to develop and grow a list even if you have NO website. Having a website will definitely help, but don't wait, get your list started right now and add your website later.
Why do you NEED a list? As freelancers and web entrepreneurs, we need a way to keep in contact with our existing and past customers ... and we need a way to keep putting our information and name out in front of potential customers. We have to keep reminding customers that we exist and we have fabulous services to offer.
A graphic artist friend maintains a small local list. He sends out an occasional newsletter that talks about the work he has recently completed ... he includes samples of the illustrations and graphics he has created for his clients. The clients he features love it because they get some exposure and free advertising! This newsletter serves to keep existing and old customer informed about the types of projects my friend does and it is a very non-pushy way of keeping his name in front of potential clients.
What my friend HASN'T done is expand his list and offer it to anyone who wishes to opt-in. He could potentially be building an international business with a very small additional effort.
How DO you build your list? There are literally DOZENS of ways! In this article I will show you how you can get started and literally add 1000+ new subscribers to your list a month.
First of all you must get your ezine or newsletter onto as many of the list announcement services and list directories as you can ...
-------------------------------- List Announcement Services --------------------------------
There are dozens of newsletter and ezine announcement lists and ezine directories. The trick is finding them, making your announcement and getting on the permanent lists.
Start by developing an information file about your ezine. You don't have to do this all at once ... just start with the basics and add to it as you go. (I use ClipMate (http://clipmate.proofpositive.info) to make the copy/paste job faster and easier).
Here's a list of the types of information you will be asked to provide:
>> The name of your ezine
>> A longer title (up to 100 characters) incorporating your most important keywords. Three versions of your ezine description.
>> A full description of up 250 characters, another of up to 150 characters, and one of just 100 characters. Use your most important keywords, adding more as space permits. >> A list of 10 to 15 keywords relevant to your publication. These are words and short phrases you want searchers to find your ezine under. Start with your most important keyword, and work your way down, with the least relevant word or phrase last. Separate each of the key terms with commas. >> The main URL of your Web site. >> The URL to your Ezine information/sign-up page. >> The URL to a sample issue (if you have one). >> The URL to ezine archives (if you have any). >> The e-mail address used to subscribe to your list. >> The e-mail address used to unsubscribe from your list. >> The approximate number of subscribers. >> Your full name Company/Organization name. >> A contact e-mail address that may be published online. >> A private contact e-mail address (not to be published).
Different directories will request different bits of information. Collect the information in your file as you go ... so you don't have to recreate it each time.
You may have guessed that this is a labor intensive project ... so the next step is to establish a daily or weekly schedule ... and then stick to it. If you did just two announcements a day you'll definitely kickstart, or give your subscriber base a BIG boost by the end of the month.
Go to (http://www.proofpositive.com/ezines/list.htm) for a list of directories and announcement services.
Once you have finished with the list of directory and announcement services I have provided, keep on going. Keep looking for new services and new directories. If you persistently take a few minutes each day to promote your list, it will grow exponentially over time!!
If you are willing to spend a few dollars to save LOADS of time ... keep reading.
------------------------------------------------- Automate Your Ezine or List Promotion Efforts -------------------------------------------------
Keeping track of the lists you've announced to, adding new lists and developing linking and article placement campaigns takes time and can be an organizational nightmare!
If you are proficient in Access you can develop and program your own tracking list .... OR you can check out the following program that has been developed specifically to help you with your list promotion efforts.
Ezine Announce give you instant access to over 1600 resources where you can promote and market your ezine - you could easily spend 12 months wandering around the Internet trying to find this information yourself.
This software includes ALL the list announcement services and directories and hundreds of ezines that are interested in getting information about your articles.
If you are SERIOUS about promoting and growing your list ... you'd be crazy to try it without this.
Check out the dozens of testimonials from some of the biggest list builders on the Internet ...
... then take it for a SPIN!!
And finally, you can build your list by tapping into a list building inferno ...
-------------------------------- Create a LIST Building Inferno! --------------------------------
If you have a website, one of the fastest, easiest and NO COST ways to build a list is to join a list building co-op. This program enables you to add thousands of 100% opt-in subscribers to your list with very little effort.
List Inferno is a new tool that could well be the easiest, cheapest and fastest way to build your list yet developed. You get good quality targeted 100% opt-in leads in exchange for your participation in the co-op. All you have to do is put a simple line of code on your webpages ... and you will start building your list almost immediately. I had new subscribers added to my list literally hours after joining the program. Anything that can give you free subscribers for virtually zero effort is worth a try - and this system can give you lots of those.
Bottom Line: This is probably the most effective list building system I have ever encountered. I have added MORE subscribers to my list using this method than any other fr^ee program I've tried ... and I think I've tried them all!
Building your list is an ongoing process. It will not happen overnight. It will grow over time IF you take the steps outlined above every day and every week!
2003 © Proof Positive Productions. All rights reserved.
About the Author
The author, Melanie Rockett, coaches writers and freelance professionals who are struggling to attract more clients and increase the revenues in their businesses. To sign up for her bi-weekly FREELANCE NEWS newsletter visit: (http://www.proofpositive.com)