10 Offline ways to build your permission-based list

Developing a cost-effective email list poses a challenge for all email marketers. Because email addresses change at a rate of 30 percent or more on most lists, marketers must be imaginative in their approach to expand their list.

Here are some often overlooked offline ways to build your list:
1. Use Direct Mail and Catalogs – Encourage email subscriptions on all print ads.
2. Direct Employees to Include Messages and Links in Email Signature Lines – Add “Subscribe to the Company X Email Newsletter” to employee email signatures.
3. Direct Call Center and Sales Employees to Obtain Permission and Capture Email Addresses Over the Phone
– Instruct call center and sales staff to ask customers and prospects if they’d like to receive newsletters or promotional email.
4. Send Post Cards to Customers Encouraging Them to Subscribe to Email – If you have postal contact information for customers but not email addresses, send a post card with opt-in sign-up offer and URL.
5. Hand Out Sign-Up Forms at Public Speaking Engagements and Seminars – Promote your newsletter in presentations and handouts.
6. Include Opt-in Line on Credit Card Receipts – Not an obvious method, but may be quite effective.
7. Add Opt-in Message to Warranty and Product Registration Cards.
8. Add Sign-Up Message to Invoices.
9. Display Opt-in Forms at the Cash Register – An approach used by restaurants and retailers to advertise weekday discounts, catering services etc.
10. Include Opt-in Forms in Product Shipping Boxes – Advertise email promotions on packing slips and direct mail cards with links to your site. Many retailers and catalogers also include promotional offers from non-competing companies.

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