Email List Building Guide Using Top Social Media Channels

Updated on :June 12, 2024
By :Aaron Chichioco

It is not a stretch to say that anyone who has ever been online had at least one email address. According to Statista, there are over 3.7 billion email users in the world in 2017, a number that is expected to grow to 4.3 billion in five years. Email is also considered a powerful tool for influencing B2B audiences, as it ranks third on the scale. Only colleague recommendations and thought leaders are more influential than email in the eyes of B2B audiences. This means that you can reach at least half of the world’s population if you have a properly executed email marketing campaign. Yet, despite email marketing's incredible reach, some companies still doubt its efficacy.

How to Use Social Networks to Build Your Email List

Take a look at your own social media usage. You probably have Google and Facebook accounts and watch videos on YouTube. This means you are using three social networking sites, which gives marketers at least three avenues to reach you. Having three networks is already conservative, as many users use more than that. For this reason, social media has become part and parcel of marketing campaigns.

Most social media campaigns engage and convert followers to customers and get leads. Other campaigns focus on getting permission for future communication, gathering more information, or generating more buzz around the brand. Whatever your goals may be, it's best to integrate newsletter subscriptions into your social media campaigns. By doing so, you will be able to grow your mailing lists and tap people who are already interested in your brand. You should give your fans and followers an incentive when they sign up for your email list or ask for more information through email.

To make your email list more substantial, send a welcome message immediately after a subscriber signs up. This will give those who have no interest, a chance to unsubscribe immediately, while those who are left are actually interested in building a relationship with your brand. Seems like a recipe for success, right? Now that you have a deeper understanding of email marketing and how social media plays a role in it, it is time to strengthen your email list using your social media channels. 

Here’s how you can do it:

1. Run an email drip marketing campaign

An email drip marketing campaign sends out an automated series of emails to your subscribers based on their activity (or inactivity) on your site. It can be used for a variety of goals, such as upselling to customers, engaging customers, completing actions (such as when customers add an item to a cart and then leave), and welcoming customers through onboarding, among others.

Netflix effectively uses the email drip marketing method. When you sign up with Netflix, you will receive a welcome email message. Then you will get recommendations on what to watch based on your preferences. Often, the recommendations would be spot-on and you would be watching them.

The email drip method allows your business to foster a relationship with your clients. They will get to know your brand, and you, in turn, will know their preferences. By knowing your customers, you can provide better, more relevant content. Hence, your email list will continue to grow since fewer people will unsubscribe. After all, you have already established that you give them relevant content—why then should they opt out?

2. Upload your email list to social media sites

Another method to build your email list is to upload your existing email list on social media sites. You can upload your subscriber list to social networks in different ways. The right method depends on which site you are on. Simply follow the tutorials on how to upload your file, and you will be on your way to reaping the benefits of this technique.

You’d want to upload your email list for a number of reasons:

  • It will help you get to know your subscribers as they are no longer just part of an email list; you will actually see their faces and names.
  • Once you follow them, you will know what they want and need.
  • You will gain more followers (and more subscribers!) since you will be publishing more relevant content on social media.

3. Host a contest, raffle, sweepstakes, or game

While people usually get flooded with social media contests, the technique still works. People love free stuff, and what better way to win them over than a good contest? For you, it remains a good way to build your email list: you just ask for their email address, and your email list will grow.

One way to do this is by getting people to subscribe to qualify for the prize. For example, you can tell your subscribers to sign up for your newsletter if they want a chance at the prize. You can also create a landing page where your subscribers can enter their email addresses. You should make it clear that they will be entitled to your email campaigns once they submit their email address.

A classic case of this is the Canadian drugstore London Drugs that ran a month-long campaign through weekly targeted contests. Users have to like the brand’s Facebook contest page and submit their email address. The brand gave away gift cards of varying values, with the highest one in the $500 range. At the end of the campaign, it gained 600% increase in Facebook likes—from 5,377 to 34,146!

4. Put money on paid ad campaigns

Social media is a great platform to increase your email list. Your followers are already interested in your product. You can take it a notch higher by investing in paid ad campaigns.

Here’s how P.F. Chang’s did it: the brand ran the Farm to Wok™ Sweepstakes that gave subscribers a chance to win a trip to Napa Valley for two. It used simple images, straightforward content, several of Facebook’s paid ad options (such as video ads), and other formats. The 30-day campaign drove website traffic and resulted in three times higher click-through rate with conversions ad objective. To top it off, at least 63% of the entries came from the conversion-focused campaign. The best part? The brand got almost half a million signups during the campaign period!

5. Exchange premium content with email addresses

Another way to build your email list is to offer premium content to your social media followers and fans—which they can get only when they give you their emails. Premium content—such as white papers, eBooks, online courses, even articles—is a great way to further your reach since it is something that your audience can relate with.

HubSpot did it by talking briefly about the content of its eBook on Facebook and adding a link to the end of its status update. Users would then have to click the link, which took them to a landing page that required entering their name and email address. After doing so, the download for the eBook would begin automatically. This is a win-win approach for both you and your audience since you got their email addresses and added them to your email list, while they got the premium content in return.

6. Host a webinar—and share the link on social media

Webinars are the ultimate lure to grow your email list. If they are interested in the topic, people would sign up to join the free webinar. Capitalize on this fact on social media simply by sharing your webinar’s information on your pages. For example, you can post a clean image that shows your webinar’s topic. On the status bar, put “Free webinar—click here to register!” You can even do a countdown on your social media pages, so people will be reminded of when the webinar is happening, and they can sign up if they are interested.

BONUS TIP: Add CTAs to your social media pages!

As per the top social media marketing companies, your social media pages represent your brand. The images that you use, the tone and choice of words—everything has to be consistent. That’s why you should always add a call to action to your social media pages. Even Instagram has a small space to add your link—you can just write a witty line and then input your link. This way, your audience can quickly go to your website or signup page.

Ready to Go Social?

Harnessing the power of social media is always a great idea if you want to build your email list. Agree? Do you want other customized ideas on how to build an email list? All you have got to do is go through the rundown of top email marketing companies by GoodFirms, curated through vigorous research measuring their quality, ability, and reliability. And be assured of getting some out-of-the-box email marketing ideas by leveraging the social media connections from the best minds at work.

Aaron Chichioco
Aaron Chichioco

Aaron Chichioco is a Digital PR/Business Columnist. He has a vast experience in overseeing daily operations of several online businesses since 2011 and is currently employed with Grit PH

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