Monday, July 14, 2008

7 Tips for Building a Quality E-News List

I found these tips from Constant Contact very helpful in terms of a refresher on building lists. Has anyone found any successful tips for this?


7 Tips for Building a Quality List

Now that we've covered why it's essential to have a quality list, let's look at 7 techniques for how to build one.

1. Ask permission - Remember that an effective email list is one composed of people who know and want to hear from your organization. Always make sure you have explicit permission to mail to your contacts. This is not only an industry best practice; it's also a very practical way to reduce your complaints and improve your deliverability. (A bigger list is not better if your recipients are ignoring your email and filing spam complaints.) If you haven't been asking permission, now is the time to start.

2. Confirm your online sign ups - To avoid problems with online sign-ups, such as typographical errors or attacks in which a malicious person or program inputs bogus addresses, it's a good idea to require confirmation before you add them to your list. This is usually done by having the sign-up trigger a confirmation email requiring the new list member to click on a link to confirm their subscription before they are added to your list.

3. Set expectations - Set clear expectations next to your sign-up box about what you will do with the address, including what kind of content you plan to send and how frequently you plan to send it.

4. Collect subscriber preferences - If it's feasible, give your subscribers some control over what content types they're interested in receiving and how often they'd like to hear from you. Many people unsubscribe from lists because they feel that the content isn't relevant or they are getting mailings too frequently.

5. Start communicating right away - To help people remember that they opted in to your list, it's a good idea to follow up promptly with a confirmation. Best practice is to respond with a welcome email that acknowledges that you've received their confirmed sign-up, introduces your organization, and reminds them of what content you'll be sending to them.

6. Be consistent with your "from" name and address - To be easily recognizable, use the same "from" name and email address in all your mailings and make sure it clearly identifies your organization. Avoid using a personal name or email address that people may not associate with your organization.

7. Ask to be added to their "Contact" list - This quick step can help to ensure delivery and will see to it that images and links are enabled in your future messages. It also sends a signal to the ISP that your mail is wanted.7 7

1 comment:

Frank said...

Carrie,

Nice job on your blog. Thanks for stopping by to mine earlier. Congrats on a new life in NoCal (I suspect that no such reference to Northern California exists but I live in North Carolina so forgive me).

I like your mix of personal and business stuff. Any information I can find on internet marketing experience of others is incredibly useful.

I will stop by again. Keep up the great work!

Frank