With the introduction of GDPR, many businesses took this as a sign to give up on email marketing altogether. Some wiped their databases clean and started from scratch whereas others, like us, emailed existing subscribers asking them to opt-in to receive further communications. As a result, many businesses saw the size of their audience decline and experienced lower levels of engagement from their email marketing efforts.
So, what can you do to build your database again?
In this blog, we explore some of the best methods to gain subscribers for your email marketing campaigns while remaining GDPR compliant - from social media and utilising your website, to blogging and content marketing.
One of the most effective ways to promote your email marketing database is by telling your existing followers about it on social media. Platforms such as MailChimp will enable you to create a link that can be shared on social media to encourage people to subscribe. Sharing this link regularly can help to increase the size of your email marketing audience. Don’t forget to also promote it through your Google My Business listing (if applicable) in addition to platforms such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.
Facebook users can also make use of its integration with MailChimp. This will allow you to create a new tab on your Facebook page featuring the sign-up form for your email marketing database. It’s a fantastic method to convert existing social media fans into email subscribers. Another way is to make use of the automated messaging feature on Facebook and Instagram. Include the link to your sign-up form within the automated response that users will receive when they send a direct message to your page or profile.
Another key place to promote your email sign-up form is on your website. Many sites feature a sign-up form in the footer area or may even promote it via a pop-up to really catch the attention of website visitors. Additionally, if you have a blog or news page on your website then it’s also worth promoting your sign-up form here. You could include a link to the form at the end of each article you share. If you’re new to email marketing or haven’t done any campaigns in a long time, then it may be worth writing an article to inform website visitors about your email marketing efforts and the benefits of subscribing.
Another popular way to gain new email marketing subscribers is by using content marketing. If you have downloadable content available on your website such as brochures, guides or other PDF documents, then it is worth adding functionality so users must submit their email address in exchange for downloading the content. You will of course, still need to give website visitors the option to opt-out of future communications after downloading the content, but you may be surprised by how many decide to opt-in!
Last but not least is a method that is often overlooked. Make sure to include a link to your email sign-up form in your company email signature and encourage other team members to do the same. You may decide to use a graphical format such as we’ve done, or you could just include a short piece of text and hyperlink. Either way, including this information within your email signature is worthwhile as customers, suppliers and those who you communicate with regularly may be very receptive to receiving newsletters and other email campaigns.
Don’t give up on email marketing just yet! Try the methods above to grow your email marketing database with relevant and interested subscribers from sources you’re probably already using - like your website or social media. Although you may have a smaller audience than before GDPR, you’re likely to find that the subscribers you do have are more responsive to your campaigns.