List Building Tools Part Two, Opt-ins

list building tools
by Michel // September 23 // 0 Comments

List Building Tools

In last weeks Tools of the Trade, we covered list building tools with the emphasis on autoresponder email services that help affiliate marketers. Today we continue to consider list building tools, part two, looking at opt-in page and form creation so visitors can sign-up to your list.

You may have noticed that once you signed-up with an email delivery service, they offer pre-made forms, formats, and newsletters to use for your email campaigns. All you have to do is tailor the look to fit your site.

However like most things, I find that the forms these services offer don’t fit my particular site. This means that I then need to customize the form or page to fit which is not always easy.

The solution is found by determining the site you have setup, mainly WordPress (if you use another format, not all is lost, you will just have to work a little harder to make it work for you).

You can either use a robust (premium) theme that has built-in forms and features to make your own pages and sidebar widgets; or you can go with a plugin (either free or premium) like ThriveLeads that allows you to build customized forms for your site.

Another option is using a third party service (along with a monthly service fee) like LeadPages. You can actually make your form or page on LeadPages, then setup a link on your site to that form or page.

The advantage is that this software offers users the ability to create landing pages online with ease, eliminating the hassle of an otherwise complicated process. The disadvantage is that it is pricey and requires that you pay an ongoing monthly fee (thumbs down)

The main purpose for using this tool is to capture leads (get visitors to sign-up to your list or newsletter). The more people who sign-up, the more prospects you will have to generate future sales.

But just having sign-up forms and pages is just part of the battle. You need to have several other elements to make it work for you.

First, you need to have a worthwhile offer (i.e. enticement) or Freebie for visitors to want to sign-up. But the offer is still not enough by itself, either.

Next, you need to have (or develop) good ad copy. That means more than; ‘Hey check out my free offer, sign-up today!’ It requires a little more effort and really you should develop several versions. That means split testing.

Split testing is where several versions of a page or form are rotated when visitors show up to look at your site. A simple method (A/B split test) is where you have two versions that show to your visitors, form (or page) A to all odd number count, and form B to all even number count visitors.

Within a short period of time (a week or so, depending upon your traffic), you can determine which form is getting most of the sign-ups. I suggest running at least 200 unique visitors to that form (or page) before deciding. Once that is done, you will want to focus on improving that design. WHAT?

As a marketer, your job isn’t over! Now you will want to continue to split test to see if you can continue to improve the conversion. Maybe two different colors of the same form. Or maybe even just changing the sign-up button. The point is you need to continue to discover what can be improved.

Another factor with lead generation is placement. Having a sign-up form in your sidebar is a good start, but far from being done! Most people have become blind to sidebar distractions and will miss seeing that form.

Other strategic places for sign-ups are at the top or bottom of your page(s) and article posts. Also placing forms at the end of an article along with just text links that take them to a squeeze page sign-up can work just as well.

Even pop-up offers work whether at the start, delayed, or show up when they go to leave all increase sign-up effectiveness. The main point is try them out wherever and whenever you can without overwhelming your visitor with it. Again, Don’t overwhelm your visitors with your sign-ups.

In today’s Tool of the Trade, we covered the use of sign-up forms and pages to build your list. You saw different ways to approach form creation to put on your site, as well as the importance of split testing your forms and pages. Lead capture is paramount to building your business. And of course, it is also important not to overdo it by overwhelming your visitors!

As always, I encourage you to be part of the conversation by leaving your comments or questions below. 🙂

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Michel has actively been online as an Internet and affiliate marketer since 2009. He has experience with many systems and programs that he has used throughout those years, finding some to be great and many not so good. He’s learned what works, and what doesn’t work and is willing to share it with you. And it is always changing!

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