No matter what kind of business you run, reaching out to customers via email is an essential strategy for success. You do not have to run an online business or operate an Internet store to need a solid email list. Plenty of offline businesses, from brick-and-mortar retails establishments to hotels, can benefit from a robust email list.
Once you have developed a powerful email list, you can use it to send special offers to long-time customers, welcome one-time travelers back to your hotel and introduce current customers to your new products and services.
As with everything in the world of marketing, there is a right way and a wrong way to collect email addresses. Here are some golden rules you should follow when soliciting email addresses from your customers.
- Use Trade Shows to Drive Success
If you attend trade shows as part of your business, you will find a rich source of email addresses within those walls. One of the most effective ways to gather email addresses and build your marketing list. The best way to collect those email addresses is by running a contest using an offline survey app the w. The offline app allows customers to complete the survey whether or not they have Internet access at the time.
- Build Advance Word for Festival Appearances
Running a contest and giving away prizes is always a great way to gather email addresses at festivals and trade shows, but you will have more success if you get the word out ahead of time. Use your blog to advertise your attendance at the event. Post about it on your Facebook page. Live tweet as you pack for the event and set up your booth. Building excitement and anticipation will drive more people to your booth – and your contest.
- Use Your Print Materials Wisely
Even in an online world, businesses use plenty of printed materials. From manuals and product descriptions to pamphlets and trade show handouts, your printed materials are powerful tools for building your email list. Make sure each piece of printed material includes your website and sign-up information for your online newsletter and other extras.
- Promote Your Business with Merchandise
If you plan to attend a festival or trade show, you will need lots of goodies to give your customers. From keychains and water bottles to pens and magnets, these giveaway items are the perfect way to advertise your email list. Just add a signup solicitation to each piece of merchandise you order and invite booth visitors to sign up via their smartphones.
- Build Your Email List with In-Store Promotions
If you run a retail store, reward your customers with an in-store event. Set up a refreshment station with food, drinks and giveaways, and include a bowl or box where visitors can sign up for prizes, share their comments and provide their email addresses. Including an email address filed on the entry form is a great way to unobtrusively collect email addresses at in-store events.
- Use Your Tablet to Collect Email Addresses
Bring your tablet with you when talking to prospects. Instead of asking them to write their email address on a business card, just enter it directly into your tablet. You can use a special app or just type it into your existing spreadsheet.
- Promote Your Extras on the Phone
If you get a lot of calls, record a message that includes an invitation to sign up for your newsletter and other online extras. Give the sign-up address and stress the advantages of becoming a subscriber.
You do not have to resort to trickery or spend a lot of money to build a solid email list. When approached the right way and offered something of value, most people will be happy to provide their email addresses. From giveaways and contests at trade shows to free food events at retail stores, there are plenty of event-based ways to collect the email addresses you need.