Social networking is personal, but it moves quickly to be deep. Blogging is better because content sticks around. But email is the holy grail of personalized marketing.
So here’s the rule: Never build a website without building an email list!
Why is email so important? It’s the most highly relational of all the potential platforms for marketing. Receiving an email requires giving it attention and interacting with it some way. You can ignore Twitter and Facebook. Most people won’t ignore email.
That’s also why we need to be careful with email – with how we sell through email, in particular. It’s why we need to be generous and relational and helpful, before selling.
This usually starts with offering a “lead magnet.” That is, a piece of free content that’s bigger and better than a blog post but not as big as a book. It could be an ebook, a video course, or access to a private community.
Here’s how this works…
- You produce awesome content.
- People come to read it.
- They’re offered your lead magnet.
- They sign up for your list.
- You begin a marketing relationship with them.
There are plenty of optin plugins out there that help to place the sign-up form on your website. I’ve tried all of the major optin plugins on the market, including OptinMonster, PopUpDomination, and SumoMe.
After using multiple solutions on many different sites and now, having built one of the largest known email lists in an entire niche plus a personal list of well over 4,000, I’ve settled in on using one single email optin plugin on all of the sites I manage.
Bloom offers six ways to add optin forms to your website:
- Pop-ups (not nearly as evil as they used to be). You can determine when, how often, and how the popup appears. Make it go away for ten days or thirty days or however many days you’d like. Make it pop up after the user scrolls a bit, or clicks something, or starts to leave your site. And it’s pretty!
- Fly-ins. The kind that fly in from the bottom of the screen after the user scrolls a bit.
- In-line. These show up in the middle of posts.
- Below content. These can show up after posts and usually instead of inline forms.
- In widgets. These are easy to implement from the WordPress widgets interface and add to a sidebar or footer.
- Locked content. Requires the user to opt in to see the remainder of the content, usually a free downloadable resource (see one in action here).
The pre-designed templates are nice! They’re very easy to customize with no knowledge of code. And, they integrate with sixteen different email providers including MailChimp, my personal favorite.
Yes, you can do A/B split testing.
Yes, you can see conversion analytics in the dashboard.
And yes, the optins responsive and retina-ready.
And here’s the coolest thing of all. When you join Elegant Themes as a developer, for $89 per year or $249 once for life, you get access to Bloom, to Monarch (a beautiful social media sharing plugin), several other plugins, and 88 awesome WordPress themes including Divi!
Joining gets you everything!
I use Bloom on this site, on my personal blog, on pastors.com, and on about a dozen other sites. Slowly, I’ve changed every site I manage over to Bloom. I’m sold on it!
Affiliate disclosure: I am an ElegantThemes affiliate. While this doesn’t affect your price at all, it means that if you made a purchase through a link on this page, I would earn a small commission. I’m a paying user, and I believe in this product!