People today are pressed for time more than ever before. Whether they are opting into your email list by filling out a physical piece of marketing material or going online, they are in a hurry. Do them a favor and make it as easy as possible to join your list and receive your opt-in gift.

In most cases a full name (first name works too) and email is all you really need from your subscribers. This minimalist email list-building strategy continues to outperform multiple information requirements time and again, year after year.

You only need to think about your own experiences to understand why.

When was the last time you opted into an email list? Maybe you were at your local grocer and sampled a delicious chocolate treat. The person handing out those free samples informed you that you could receive a complimentary bag of those treats delivered to your mailbox. All you had to do was fill out a contact form.

You were so excited at the prospect of sumptuous, mouthwatering chocolate delivered free right to your door that you happily agreed to sign up. Then, to your dismay, you were handed a 20 question form you had to fill out before you received your chocolate opt-in bait.

What did you do?

Most probably, you simply said that you would think about it, and left without filling out the form. Your prospects are no different from you. They have neither the time nor the inclination to hand over a bunch of seemingly unnecessary personal information in return for whatever freebie you are offering. This is the case for many reasons, the least troublesome of which is identity theft.

You see or hear about someone’s life being destroyed by identity theft all the time. That is why you are so protective of your personal information. Aside from that, a lot of information is simply unnecessary. If you promise a free video series in return for someone’s contact information, what do you really need from them? You don’t even need a name, just an email address will do.

Just make sure you are collecting enough relevant information for your particular situation or offer. If you give out free car insurance rates online, you are definitely going to need more information than if you are just delivering a free list of top 10 resources relevant to your market or niche.

Marketers sometimes think of their list as just a list. This is a marketing mistake, because that list is not a thing. It is comprised of people just like you, individuals with needs, desires and problems.

One of the problems most people have is a lack of time. Help your prospects out in that regard by requiring as little information as possible when you ask someone to subscribe to your email list. You minimize your prospect’s time-investment, and don’t infringe upon their right to privacy either. Both of those moves improve your relationship from the start.

Having trouble planning your email follow-up sequence? Click here for your free email follow-up planner.

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