Bigger Isn't Better: How to Create an Effective Email Marketing List
Email is still one of the most valuable lead-generation tools available to marketers. Surprised? I don’t blame you. Email plays a major role in how I earn a living, and every time I delete a ton of messages without reading them, I question that fact.
But the data doesn’t lie.
Generative AI is rapidly infiltrating every aspect of our lives. The popularity of TikTok as a search engine is climbing. And email continues to deliver. So let’s talk about what an effective email marketing list could do for your lead-gen efforts, and how to build one.
What is an Email List?
An email list is exactly what you think it is — a collection of email addresses gathered and used for sending messages.
There is no minimum or maximum size for an email list (unless specified by your email platform), but there are reasons to care about their size, which we’ll get to in a bit.
(You probably already know what an email list is if you’re reading a post on how to build an effective one, but we don’t want to leave anyone behind.)
Pro Tip: Email lists don’t just have to be about email marketing! Maximize the value of your list by using it to launch targeted ad campaigns on platforms like LinkedIn. You can also use your email list to build a Lookalike list and expand your audience.
What Role Does Email Play in Lead Generation?
Given email’s relatively low cost of entry and high ROI, overlooking the role it can play in your lead-gen strategy is a serious mistake. One of the main reasons you need an effective email list is to generate leads (and then nurture them until they become customers, and eventually, your brand cheerleaders).
Won’t AI Make Email Marketing Irrelevant?
There are loads of stories out there about how AI is replacing almost every aspect of marketing, but frankly, it’s not there yet. I’m not saying there’s no place for artificial intelligence in your email marketing strategy — or even in building an email list. There totally is. But even if you automate almost every step of email lead generation, it’s still email lead generation.
How to Build a Lead-Gen Email List
There are several email marketing list-building strategies you can use — some better than others.
How Not to Acquire Email Addresses
Purchasing email lists is always a mistake. Instantly adding thousands of recipients to your lead-generation campaign may sound like a win, but the negatives here far outweigh the positives.
Why Bigger Isn’t Always Better
Increasing the number of people who receive your messages will increase the number of people who read them, right? Wrong.
A long lead-gen email contact list won’t necessarily translate into more customers or increased revenue — in fact, sometimes it will have the opposite effect. Email campaigns that are segmented and personalized for a small, targeted audience are significantly more successful than massive, indiscriminate blasts. Consider this: the larger your recipient list, the harder it is to craft an email that feels personal and relevant to the people receiving it. And the more you dilute your message to broaden your appeal, the less interesting it is — even to that small group who would’ve responded to a more targeted campaign.
How to Optimize Your Email List
Most of the strategies we discussed above will keep your email list growing indefinitely. But if bigger isn’t better, how do you keep your mailing lists at an optimal size?
Emails that bounce back undelivered, are marked as spam or deleted unread are all indicators of poor list hygiene. Set a regular schedule for list cleaning — removing dead or unresponsive emails. This improves your deliverability rates and reduces the likelihood that email service providers will treat your messages as spam.
It’s vital to remember that not everyone on your now-spotless email list is not the same. They have varying needs, budgets, and levels of decision-making power and are at different stages in the buyer journey. You’ll see vastly better results sending 10 targeted emails to 1,000 recipients each than sending the same email to all 10,000 people on your list. Email list segmentation can be based on demographics, recipient behaviours, or other factors to ensure prospects are getting the right message at the right time.
Need Help Building an Effective Email List?
Even if you’ve put email marketing strategy on the back burner lately, it’s never too late to start again! TPM has a team of email marketing experts ready to help you get your efforts back on track. Let us help you build and maintain an effective email list and craft email marketing campaigns that will drive leads and revenue for your business. Get in touch today!