Build an Email Database from Scratch – Fast!

Building an email database from scratch fast requires ideas beyond “create, gate and promote content”. So after you decide how you are segmenting your soon-to-be giant database (customer types, influencers, media, etc.), then you’re ready to get started.

Run a Contest

People love free! They love to win. Create a contest giving away something your target audience wants and then promote it. Yes, you’ll have to pay for advertising, and a service like KingSumo, but it will be far cheaper and deliver better results than a piece of gated content ever could.

Build it faster: add referral links to encourage entrants to improve their chances of winning by sharing with peers.

Be a Tool

Or let your website be. Create an online tool, or quiz that requires people to give up their email address in order to get the results. Promoted well, you’ll find this, and the contest, to be your quickest database-building strategies.

Build it faster: write a guest post on a well-visited blog about the value of knowing the information your tool provides and link to the tool in the post.

Show Up

Depending on your budget, an industry tradeshow might be one thing that will get you hundreds of leads in a few days. And many offer small businesses special discounts and demo opportunities.

Build it faster: give away prizes or do a drawing.

Partner Up

No one said you had to build your email database from scratch all by yourself. Instead, look for partners who will participate in lead-sharing activities like a webinar where you both present and then share the leads. The more partners, the broader the reach.

Build it faster: partner on an email campaign instead, after you’ve started gaining some traction so you have a growing database to offer your partner.

Make a Snowball

When someone forks over their email address, don’t just applaud and call the job done. Instead, ask them to forward the article, share the results of their quiz or send webinar information to a friend or peer. Let the converted do some converting for you.

There is no magic bullet, the truth is, to get traction quickly, you’ll want to do all of these things and more. Then, you’ll need to be sure you have a good, preferably automated way to engage your new and growing database, or all your effort will be wasted. A database has no value if it doesn’t help your business.

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