Building an organic email list is critical for your online marketing efforts. Not only is reading emails the number one activity on smart phones, but email marketing has been shown to be the strongest communications channel for converting leads.
Collecting email addresses legitimately is pivotal in making the most of your online marketing. By building an email list organically instead of buying or renting, you'll keep your sender score high and protect yourself from getting blacklisted, both of which help in your email delivery. Reputable email marketing vendors will not let you use purchased lists so you may as well hold on to your money. Also, people are more likely to convert into clients if you've obtained their email addresses with their consent. People on a purchased list aren't familiar with your name and are more likely to file a spam report.
Here are some ways to build a list of email contacts organically without buying or renting a list.
Drawings and Contests
Invite your insurance website visitors, your social media fans, or people who come in your office to participate in a drawing or photo contest. In the eligibility requirements, state they must provide an email address. This is serves more than one end in your online marketing strategy. A drawing is a great reason for your clients to connect with you on social media. It's a way to assert your agency's personality, open a dialogue with people in your community, and, of course, build your email list. For drawings, make sure the prize is worth people participating and providing their email addresses.
Photo contests can be fun and are easy to participate in. Have your clients post a themed picture on one of your Facebook Page, for example, pet photos, seasonal outdoor photos, classic cars, etc., and privately submit their email address. Then, the picture that gets the most likes wins. Always make sure to post a picture of you awarding the prize to the winner.
White papers are a form of content marketing that shows off your expertise and value proposition to visitors to your insurance agency website. By posting white papers on your website, you're giving people another reason to not only come to your site but to give you their email addresses in exchange for a free report. You can optimize the forms so once they've entered their information the article is emailed to them. This will prevent invalid email addresses from being used.
Add a form to your insurance agency website where clients and prospects can sign up to receive your newsletters. You can also use your personal email signature to encourage people to subscribe to your newsletter. You can set up the newsletter sign up page so they can review your archived emails newsletters. These types of landing pages have been found to be more effective than just a basic sign up form. Showing off your value from the start gives those considering subscribing to your newsletter a better idea of what they can expect to see from you.
The Most Important Way to Get Emails
Ask. Every chance you or your staff gets to speak with a prospect or client is a chance to ask for an email address. It's costing you money every time someone leaves your office or hangs up the phone without giving you his or her email address. Try direct questions that lead the person into offering the email address. Do not use yes or no questions like 'Do you have an email address?' as that will likely end with a no. Try questions like:
- 'Some carriers offer a discount for having an email address on file. Which email address would you like us to use?'
- 'What email address do you use for your Facebook login so we can stay connected?'
- 'Which email address would you like your policy information sent to?'
You can hire temporary help to go through your client list and contact them for email addresses if you want to speed up the process.
It's time to get started collecting email addresses! What have you found works for your agency in growing your email list?