9 Reliable Ways to Grow Your E-mail Marketing Database

There comes a time when your trusty e-mail list no longer delivers like it used to and stops growing. You’re getting lots of bounce-backs, not seeing the results you expect, or simply want to add more leads into your marketing database. This is all part of the natural process of database decay—sounds scary, right? Fortunately, there are some things you can do to freshen up your list and bring it back to life. Let’s jump right in!

1. Ask people to opt-in on your website or blog.
Place a “subscribe” button on each page as a call-to-action asking people to join your list. Tell them they’ll be alerted to new content, a newsletter, special offers, etc. Many of your loyal customers and interested prospects will be happy to share their e-mail address if you promise to send them the information they think they’ll find valuable or interesting.

2. Create gated content.
Similarly, if a website user is interested in downloading specific content such as a white paper, webinar transcript, or research report—or they’d like to access a special offer or discount—place it behind a form. Ask the visitor to provide their e-mail, and voila! They can now access the content or offer.

3. Re-engage “old” e-mails.
Send an e-mail out to your current database and ask contacts to re-opt-in, while giving them the option to opt-out. Or, you can promise to remove them from the list if they don’t reply. Either way, include a special offer in this e-mail to entice them to stay on board.

4. Promote a contest.
You can create a contest specifically to generate e-mail addresses. Maybe this is a free giveaway—and all an entrant needs to do is provide their e-mail address and they’re “in.” Then, follow up with your new contacts with the results of the contest and give then the opportunity to opt-in to receive more great offers from you.

5. “Refer-a-friend.”
At the bottom of every e-mail, particularly e-newsletters and promotional messages, include a “share with a friend” link as well as a “subscribe” list. This will get your messages in front of a new audience of people who just might become customers.

6. Leverage social media.
Use your social media channels to promote all of the content, offers, and contests that ask for a person’s e-mail address. Not only is this a great way to get your great messages in front of customers and prospects (and their connections, via social sharing!), but you’ll build your e-mail list in the process.

7. Collect e-mail addresses offline.
Make it easy for in-store customers to sign up for your e-mail list by placing a clipboard or sign-up form up at the register. Take the same approach if your company participates in any industry events like conventions, trade-shows, or fundraisers. Finally, your sales or customer service reps can ask callers if they’d like to be added to the company’s e-mail list to receive special offers.

8. Rent a list.
Renting an e-mail list from a reputable list vendor is a great way to build-up your database with targeted prospects. Make sure the list contains accurate, verifiable addresses and negotiate a refund if the list is less than 90% deliverable. “Good” e-mail addresses sent alongside “bad” e-mail addresses can be blocked or sent to SPAM folders.

9. Work with an e-mail append service
You can send your postal mailing lists to vendors who use special software to match contacts against e-mail databases. Match rates tend to be 30-40% so you could end up with a substantial number of new e-mail addresses for a good portion of your list!

Contact us for more ideas about growing your e-mail marketing database.