Email Marketing: 8 Ways To Grow Your List

Email Marketing: How To Grow Your List by SocialMouths When you blog for business, one of the most important aspects is to grow your email list, if not the most important one…

Remember all those people saying that you should not pay attention at how many Twitter followers you have? Well, when it comes to your email subscribers you will want to count and focus on its grow because this is going to become the heart of your online business. This list is the start of what we call “Email Marketing“.

In this post we’ll review some of the methods you can use in order to increase that number of subscribers rather than focusing on the reasons why you need to grow your list. We’ll leave that for another post.

So here we go…

Sidebar Opt-in Box

The Opt-in Box on the sidebar is probably the most basic form of subscribing and while I suggest you follow some conventional practices so that people recognizes what it is, I also encourage you to be creative in order to make it stand out.

When I talk about conventional practices I mean things we already know from studying online user behavior, for example having it on the right, at the top of the sidebar and of course above the fold if increasing the number of email subscriptions is a priority.

Here is an example from IlluminatedMind:

IlluminatedMind opt-in box on the sidebar


In other words, a simple pop-up box that shows when the reader visits your site. This one is kind of controversial since it has been considered something that annoys the reader but lately, while some of the more recognizable people online are starting to use it, it seems to be getting a positive reaction. It dramatically increases your subscriptions and in exchange, bloggers are dropping tons of value. Kind of like a win-win…

In this image we see Lewis Howes promoting his LinkedIn Master Strategies which by the way, you should get…

Lewis Howes Linkedin Master Strategies Opt-in Box

In-Post Box

The In-Post is a box located usually at the end of the post, while I have never used it on SocialMouths I have seen it perform very good on other blogs. I think the reason is that some of the regulars (people that visit your blog on a regular basis) might not be paying attention to elements on the sidebar since they go directly to the content. It’s kind of the “Related Posts” widget that encourages more pageviews on your blog, in this case it is a reminder to opt-in.

Here is a great example from In-Post email signup box

Free Product

This is obviously very important because the value and quality expected on products nowadays is higher than ever, not only for premium products but also for free ones too. In other words, when you are ready to give away a product in exchange for your reader’s email address, make sure that product is about the same quality of something you could sell.

Jon Morrow, Associate Editor of CopyBlogger does this perfectly at GuestBlogging through an awesome series of videos. The user ends up feeling like he/she just got a lot of value in return.

Jon Morrow's

Opt-in Box On Your Facebook Page

Think outside your blog, opt-in points of entry don’t necessarily have to live inside your blog. If you have seen this and your head is spinning trying to figure out how to do it, it is probably just a simple FBML snippet and a Facebook app developed by the email provider. You have the option to place it on your left sidebar or as an additional tab (as shown on the following image). You should look into it since it’s a great way to leverage from all that traffic you’re getting on your Fb Page.

Here are the MailChimp instructions on how to install their Facebook App on your page, I’m sure other companies have something similar: Adding A Newsletter Subscribe Form To Your Facebook Fanpage

MailChimp Facebook Signup Box

Free Webinars

Webinars are huge right now because they are a way to really blow up your email list in just a few days, of course this is not as easy as it sounds. A successful webinar requires of a lot of promotion and preparation but if it’s done correctly it has great rewards.

In this case, I recommend you observe how some of the most experienced people do it before you jump into it. The obvious place to go is HubSpot because they run tons of webinars, you have probably seen them or even attended a few of them but I also want you to put attention to some of the personal brands online doing this successfully.

HubSpot Upcoming Webinars Page


We have all seen the contests on Twitter, most of them with the objective to get massive visibility and increase following. Next time you run a contest on Twitter, Facebook or whatever platform you are using for this, instead of asking for a follow or a retweet, ask for an email address.

Now, you should also consider if the prize of the contest is worth and email address or just a retweet. I just mentioned above that the bar has been raised when it comes to quality and value. If you’re giving away a copy of a book…

Landing Pages

Also huge to help you build that email list like there’s no tomorrow are landing pages. Nothing new here but still very effective. If you are launching a new free product, consider creating a landing page as part of your strategy, it’s not an either/or situation, you can run a sidebar box, a lightbox and a landing page at the same time.

Today, landing pages are easier to create and manage. You can simply dedicate a specific page on your blog or you can use a service like unbounce if you’re ready to kick it up a notch…

Magnetic Webinars Landing Page

It’s Your Turn Now…

So what do you think? have you used other methods or have good ideas on how to effectively grow your email list? share with the rest of us in the comments section.

Also let me know if you’re interested in learning more about Email Marketing and what aspects of it would you like to know.

Happy emailing!

Image Credit: Dry Icons

  • Rebecca

    This is a wonderful round up. Thanks so much for all the tips. I'm definitely going to try a few out.

  • No, thank YOU Rebecca for stopping by and for your kind words. Good luck testing these options and feel free to ask questions if you need to…


  • Very interesting article. I find the pop-up box quite annoying but I know that convert very well.

    Free products in return for subscribing to the lists are like candies to kids…love them.

    The Facebook version isn’t popular but should be with the huge quantity of FB users and increasing constantly.

    Have a great week,


  • Thanks for the comment Gera. Since you're acknowledging both pros and cons of having a lightbox, would you consider running one on your blog?

    Have a good night!

  • Darcy

    Francisco- Wow!
    Some of this is just a little over my head, you really lost me with the opt in box on your facebook page. I really like how you put it all down for us newbies to help us grow and learn to become better at what we are striving to do!
    Thank you so much for all the great tips! I actually stopped and impletmented some of them as I read!


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  • May be if the lightbox code allow to show one-time to the same reader when she/he returns or when you've already subscribed to it, via cookies or other method.



  • Dave

    Thanks, Francisco. Great stuff…

    You don't mention aWeber by name, but I have used them for my lists since the get-go. The tools they provide are really user-friendly. No programming skills necessary.



  • It's awesome that you included Jonathan Mead's box – he's doing a good job with it.

    I personally use an email list as well, but I'm in the process of switching from Aweber to Mailchimp because I don't like to have the pressure of offering (too) many things to my readers just in order to pay Aweber 😉

    I hate pop-boxes, they totally distract from your platform and violate the right of a reader to not be SPAMMED. It's sadly that so many peeps that I personally respect use that method now, because of that pop-up domination that's everywhere right now.

    I'm currently working on a new blog concept which incorporates some of these ideas in new meaningful way. It's a bit complicated, and that's why I have to ask some programmers to help me out.
    But thanx again for highlighting all the possibilities, Francisco ! Appreciate the effort 😉

  • Definitely, all great suggestion, Francisco.

    Here are a couple of things to add.

    Why is it that folks put their optin boxes on the right? Don't your eyes naturally drift to the left of the screen?

    Also, as far as Facebook is concerned: what works best is a welcome page that users are directed to by default when they check out your FB fan page for the first time.

    Take a look at this:

    It's done wonders for my conversion rates from Facebook.

    Great topic to discuss, Francisco.

    Ana Hoffman

  • Dude,

    I love how you're using current examples of what people are doing “right now” to build their list!

    Superb job!

  • These are really some cool ideas. I have never thought of most of them. Your site has helped me out on many different times. Thanks for keeping me up to date on what is good and bad.

  • Hello Jill, so happy to hear that, after all that's the point of the blog.

    Thank you!

  • These ideas are wonderful to build one’s list. I would also like to recommend a nice email marketing tool that can help companies build and manage the large contact list efficiently ——the Comm100 Newsletter.

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  • I love the value of this! Some really great ideas. Thanks! Give someone an AWESOME day! Casey

  • Great Post! I'm a student of blogging and email marketing and this post has provided me much value. As soon as I hit post on this comment I'm signing up for your updates!

  • Thank you Matt, I'm happy to see that I'm able to provide some value.

    Thanks for signing up!

  • I agree with you but from my personal experience, it bought 10000 Twitter followers from and they added them to my page in a little over 2 month. All the followers appeared to be real and some of them turned out to be great customers.

  • I think as long as you have something that people want and like you will always get email sign ups with a simple online form.

    Another very useful post though, keep 'em coming!

  • Great post I think five things are main.

    1. Write an ebook.

    2. Free downloads.

    3. Physical publications.

    4. Password-protected resource pages.

    5. Templates.

    i think these are important isn't it…

  • I like most of your helpful tips. I have done many of them. I do not agree with giving anything away for free because everyone know that you do not get anything for free. I do not lure my customer with false thoughts. I really like the way you have your page lined out. It is very appealing and I really like what you have to share. I do not feel like you are trying to shovel a bunch of bull.

  • Thank you very much Jane. It's nice to be acknowledged in those aspects, the truth is that I have chosen that approach, mainly on the use of advertising, affiliates or email opt-ins and I like to believe the reader appreciates that.

    I'll built my subscriptions on an organic way, knowing that this could mean “slow-motion mode” but hopefully a higher quality.

    Thanks again and have a great weekend.

  • I read the article with a great interest, as I want to introduce the benefits of e-mail list to a non profit organization. You laid down many useful points. I understand you you didn't want to promote any particular list provider, but I really missed links to additional resources, reviews, etc.

  • This does sound like alot of work. I guess that you really have to be commited to the whole ball of wax. I do not know if this is exactly for me. I am lazy I guess.

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  • Great post. I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but I too will check out the List Joe folks. Great to see your progress and success. Congrats and keep it rolling!!

  • I don’t know very much on how to build a mailing list,but I do know
    that you have a have away of making things very simple to learn that
    even a newbie can understand.


  • very helpful – thanks Francisco – I added my email signup to FB

  • Erik Kielisch

    Another fantastic post.  I keep several of your articles open on my browser for daily reference.  How do you have time to understand and apply all this?  

  • The reasons why you need to grow your list. We’ll leave that for another post.

  • Remember all those people saying that you should not pay attention at how many Twitter followers you have? 

  • Hugh Culver

    Thanks for this Francisco. You have some cool ideas I don’t normally see, like opt in on FB.
    Building your list is such an undervalued objective. I actually think that anyone who either is into on-line marketing or makes part of their revenue from speaking at events needs annual goals for this.
    Because I am a speaker I also include in my bag of tricks ways to capture contact names at events without asking for a list. I’ve found that a simple 1/2 sheet of paper with an offer is the best way. I also make sure to allow them to get the offer (registration to on-line seminars) without opting-in.

    Thanks again for your work.


  • Michael Bian

    Hey Francisco I found this article very helpful. Keep up the good work!

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