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Tips to Grow Your Email List the Right Way

Guest Author
July 2, 2019
Min Read

It’s no secret that every marketer wants to grow a large business email list. With a return on investment (ROI) of $44 for every $1 spent, it’s no wonder email marketing is seeing such a boom. 

However, growing your email list at the expense of its quality isn’t the best strategy you could adopt. Having a large number of subscribers doesn’t guarantee you a higher ROI, unless those subscribers are genuine, and your emails are compelling enough to increase your conversions. So, how do you build an email list the right way? 

Today, I’d like to share a few tips to grow your email list without wasting time or losing quality. 

Tip #1: Use an email verifier to maintain data quality

Wanting more subscribers on your email list is understandable. The more people in your community, the greater the opportunity to boost sales. But don’t chase numbers at all costs. Instead of larger, focus on better. An email verifier can help you build a robust and responsive email list. 

Have you ever seen a social media account with a large following, but only a few likes or comments per post? These fake, purchased followers who don’t engage with or benefit from the content can’t help the company move forward. The same applies to your email list: it’s preferable to have fewer subscribers who are genuinely interested in your content than masses of subscribers who disregard every email you send. 

Learn More: Why an Engaged Email List is Better Than a Large Email List

How does an email verifier work?

Email verifiers weed out fake, useless email addresses that don’t add any value to your list. Maintaining a list with these emails can actually  hurt your business by tarnishing your sender reputation. Internet Service Providers (ISPs) pay close attention to your reputation when they decide whether or not to deliver your emails. As a result, poor email marketing practices—such as messy email lists—will affect your deliverability. 

If your recent reports show a high bounce rate, spam complaints, and low open rates, consider using an email verifier. You’ll notice the benefits very soon: 

  • You’ll stop worrying about your bounce rate.
  • Your sender reputation will improve.
  • Your emails will end up in your recipients inbox more often. 

How can you use an email verifier?

It’s fairly easy to find an email verifier online, and the email list cleaning process is quick and easy. Simply upload your list to the platform, and let the system start pruning the email list for you. You can download your results and see how many of your leads were actually invalid, catch-all, temporary, abuse, or other types of risky emails. 

If you want to add a layer of defense against unwanted signups, you can install an email verification API on your forms. This little piece of software verifies emails in real time and rejects the ones that would jeopardize your sender reputation. 

Read Next: If you’re interested in learning more about this topic, check out Formstack CEO Chris Byers’ discussion with StartUpNation on email verification impacts campaign deliverability and performance.

Tip #2: Use email scoring to know the value of your leads

If you’ve already used an email verifier, you are on the right path to building a better, more effective email list. But if you want to be one step ahead of your competitors, make email scoring part of your strategy. This is a more sophisticated tactic that gives you in-depth insight on the quality of your leads. 

How does email scoring work?

Once you’ve pruned your list and  know the email addresses you’ve gathered are valid and safe to use, you’ll want to gain a better understanding of their value for your organization. How active are those users? How much engagement can you expect from them? 

Take some of the valid email addresses in your list. Although they seem to be legitimate, you may notice their owners never click on your emails, so your Email Service Provider (ESP) puts them in the “unengaged contacts” category. Of course, you can deploy a re-engagement campaign to improve their interactions, but this type of approach rarely provides a great ROI. 

This is where an email scoring service like ZeroBounce comes in handy. It will scan and analyze  each email address on your list, then provide a quality score for each email address. This helps you categorize your contacts and craft targeted campaigns to boost your conversions. Emails with a low quality score may not be worth keeping in your database. Consider eliminating the lower scored emails from your distribution list to continue improving on email engagement metrics. 

How can you use an email scoring system?

There are several companies out there that offer lead scoring services. Ideally, you would find a 2-in-1 solution–a service that offers both email verification and email scoring. The process is often the same as running your list through an email verifier: you upload your file on the platform and download your results. The reports should be clear and provide an accurate quality score for each address. 

Tip #3: Say “yes” to the double opt-in method

If you think it’s annoying to ask your new subscribers to confirm they want to be on your list, you’re not alone. But people who opt-in to receive your emails understand this is a common email marketing practice and won’t mind clicking that confirmation link. 

The double opt-in subscription method doesn’t guarantee you a perfect email list. Bots can click those confirmation links and spoil your database. Spam traps and abuse emails can still join your community. The safest measure of protection is email verification, but making the double opt-in a standard is a great way to keep many unwanted sign-ups at bay.

How can you implement the double opt-in?

Your ESP should have a double opt-in option on their platform, and activating it shouldn’t take more than a minute. Once it’s on, you’ll rest assured that fewer bots will be able to bypass your signup forms and ruin your list quality. 

Bonus: Final tips to gain more email subscribers

Now that we’ve covered the more technical aspects of growing a healthy email list, I’d like to leave you with a few more tips to gain subscribers:

  • Don’t compromise on content. If you frequently share quality content, word will spread and people will feel enticed to join your tribe.
  • Email your list regularly. Consistent contact helps establish a stronger relationship with your audience and builds an active, responsive community.
  • Make good use of social media. Use your social media channels to invite people to connect with you on email.
  • Run a promotion. A really sweet deal always gets people to subscribe.
  • Create a content offer. A free e-book, cheat sheet, or infographic will result in steady, healthy growth and can be shared by your sales team at conferences and events

About the Author

Corina Leslie PR & Marketing Manager for email verifier ZeroBounce

A former journalist, Corina Leslie is the PR & Marketing Manager for email verifier ZeroBounce. She is passionate about communication and helping others email successfully. You can find her on the ZeroBounce blog, where she shares her best tips on digital marketing, copywriting, PR, and everything in between.

Discover more marketing best practices and lead generation tips here.

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