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The 6 best methods to build strong contact lists

In a previous post we talked about how to build good quality contacts. Building an extensive profile is one thing. Getting people to sign-up for your newsletter is a completely different story...

There are hundreds of ways to add people to your mailing list, one more effective than the other. We put together the 6 must-do tactics to generate the highest number of subscriptions. Read the entire article, and find a rewarding bonus tip waiting for you!

1. Put high value content after a sign-up form
First of all, we don’t mean: literally put all your content behind a sign-up form. But sometimes you have a great piece of content on your hands — a whitepaper, a study, an eye-popping infograph, …  — which is very relevant and valuable to your target audience. Often brands are afraid to ask for data in exchange for content. So what is the golden rule whether or not to add a download form for it? Very simple: if your content is truly unique, interesting and relevant to your audience – do it! If you have a shred of doubt, publish it freely. If you know it’s great, don’t hesitate to ask for data.
2. Ask at checkout (online and offline)
Too often we see brands miss this important momentum. If your client makes a purchase online, make it a priority to ask them to opt in during the check out process. Some brands already play it smart, by giving their customers another 5% discount when they opt in for a newsletter program on the shopping cart page. Same goes for brick and mortar shops: ask your customers to sign up at the counter in exchange for a small incentive.
3. Offer sign-up incentives
As stated above, giving customers a discount if they sign up works like a charm. Just check out the websites of brands like Zalando. If you sign up, you get an extra shopping budget of €10. But it doesn’t necessarily have to be a discount. An exclusive deal or a surprise gift will do the trick too.

4. Promote your email sign-up on your website
Obvious, you say? It is indeed. Still, brands often focus on great design for their new website, but forget the function. The sign-up box is neatly designed, somewhere at the bottom of the page in a footer. Your sign-up deserves a more prominent spot. Make it pop out of the page, without annoying your visitor.
5. Build opt-in campaigns
In Belgium, it’s illegal to make sign-up compulsory for people who participate in your competition. Contestants have to be able to enter competition without a purchase or opt-in. What you can do however, is give them a second chance to play the competition if they opt in. A recent opt-in campaign we did showed that 52% of the contestants opted in to get a second chance in the competition. In comparison, if you build a regular campaign with a sign-up button, you will get about 4 to 7% subscribe rates on average.
6. Contribute guest posts with links to your sign-up
A lot of (specialized) media are asking for guest posts. For them it’s an easy way to publish fresh content. For you as a writer, it’s a great chance to reach a new audience. Write new articles, get them published and add a link back to your sign-up page.


Implement (one of) these 6 methods and lay the foundations of a solid base to build good lists upon.

Posted on
Jun 11, 2015