7 Email List Building Strategies To Grow Your Business

And why if you don’t have one already, you should start building one out immediately!

Nov 23, 2021 - By Skirmantas Venckus


And why if you don’t have one already, you should start building one out immediately!

Customer acquisition continues to be among a business’s most significant challenges! To a great extent, Businesses know this and even acknowledge it; yet email lists and email list building continue to take a back seat in marketing campaigns.

While search engine platforms such as Google and Bing, and social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram have made it easier than ever to attract and acquire new customers, the fact remains that these are more effective for lead generation and they don’t come within touching distance of the true purchasing power that a powerfully engaged mail list wields for your business.

The best method for marketing your product, service, or business over the internet? The jury is still out on that.


Email marketing is right up there with the best though.

But, don’t just take our word for it.

Approximately 81% of SMBs still rely on email as their primary customer acquisition channel, and over 80% for retention.


49% of consumers would like to receive promotional emails from their favorite brands.

Dream of being that favorite brand? Let’s get you there!

What is an Email List?

An email list is a collection of individual email addresses (and sometimes supplementary information such as Name, Location, Gender, etc.) of prospects who permit you to send them information, updates, and sales communication about your business in the form of email marketing campaigns. 

By allowing you access to their personal inbox space, prospects have expressed a keen interest in hearing more from you about your business and what you can offer to make their life easier.

Email list building strategies are the methods we use to persuade and convince prospects to sign up or subscribe to our email communication. This is done by projecting and offering value that aims to educate or entertain the prospect.

Building email lists requires several software and SaaS tools, including:

  • Website pages (made using WordPress, Wix, Shopify, or similar)
  • Landing pages
  • Embedded or Dynamic Popups
  • Email marketing tools such as Sender.

Why Build an Email List?

For every $1 you put into your email campaigns, the returns are an outstanding $41.

Why these results are typical, email marketing remains among the most performing of marketing channels.

With over half the world’s population (close to 4.3 Billion) expected to use emails regularly by 2023, you cannot underestimate email marketing any longer.

Most significantly, not everyone who visits your website or landing page is ready to buy from you this instant. Email marketing helps nurture these prospects over a period to generate substantial revenue for your business.

Real Benefits of Email Lists

Email list building can help you achieve below crucial marketing objectives:

  • Powerful branding campaigns through storytelling and nurturing.
  • More clicks & website traffic.
  • Increase blog readership by using this as a cost-effective content distribution mechanism.
  • Direct sales and conversion campaigns.
  • Resilient “owned” media that is immune to social media algorithms and search engine penalties.
  • Stupid-simple performance tracking KPIs (Open rate, Click through rate).
  • Among the simplest and cheapest of marketing channels to operate.
  • The average cost per email subscriber is low, all the more so when you consider the mid to long term. 

An email list is built primarily to increase potential leads for your business. Eventually, that lazy prospect can be eventually converted into a loyal consumer with the right nurturing.

Email list building gives you loyal and targeted audiences eager to hear what you say and do what you ask!

7 Email List Building Strategies with Best Practices

Growing an email list is simple if you do it right. There’s always more than just one way to skin the cat. No best way. But following below best practices will help you stay on track.

  1. Always send communication is valuable to your subscribers. This is the golden rule of email marketing. You will always have your recipients’ attention if your emails are entertaining, informative, and valuable.
  2. Do not buy email lists.

    Email lists work on trust.

    If your subscribers are not aware of your business or product, or worst-case scenario, have not even signed up themselves, they will not help your business grow.

    On the contrary, they may unsubscribe or report your approach as spam, affecting your inbox deliverability to other genuine subscribers.

    Lastly and more importantly, you may be violating critical regulations relating to email communication such as GDPR and CAN-SPAM Act, and more. These could eventually result in hefty penalties to your business that can hurt you real bad.

    So, once and for all, never buy an email list; instead, keep reading to understand how to build one!
  3. Offer a lead magnet of high and immediate value.

    Your lead magnet should have life-changing value for the prospect. Ideally, something that they can use immediately, easily, and benefit from instantly. Else they won’t signup. Period.
  4. Clean your list regularly because your email list database decays!

    With more than 30% of subscribers changing their email every year, even genuine subscribers will be lost. Also, any inactive subscribers will refuse to open and engage with your email hurting your marketing efforts.

    From time to time, clean up your list and remove those who do not open or engage with your emails. Trust us; they were never helping your business anyways.

    Also, before even starting to think of sending that first welcome sequence, ensure that the email verification has taken place so you are only sending emails to valid and correct email addresses.
  5. Personalize your emails to the ‘T.’

    Emails with personalized subject lines generate 50% higher open rates.
    (Yes Lifecycle Marketing)

    The more personalized your communication is, the more connected your prospects are likely to feel with your brand.

    Also read: 7+ Email Personalization Practices with Real Examples
  6. Segment your prospects based both on their Buyer Persona as well as their behavior. This helps you personalize offers to those that are most likely to respond positively to them!

    Using segmented campaigns helped marketers gain up to a 760% increase in revenue (DMA).

    Example of segmentation: Prospects who engage more often with your email (opens, clicks, replies) should be segmented differently as compared to those who do not as much.

    Also read: Email List Segmentation: The Definitive Guide
  7. Always, always offer an option to your reader to opt-out. Make this process as simple as possible, so anyone interested in receiving further communication from your desk is not forced to.

Email lists are a goldmine, and it’s about time you applied your Midas touch to it!

Email List Building From Scratch

Sometimes called a subscribers list, email lists can be built using simple yet effective email list building strategies. And mind you, it’s never too late. You can start today and still make the most of email marketing.

More importantly, you don’t need dozens of ways to grow your email list. All you need is a few that work for your business and your subscribers that you can optimize over time.

Emai List Building for E-Commerce

Subscribers would usually opt-in to your e-commerce or online store’s email list for one of many reasons:

  • To receive product in-stock notifications
  • To get relevant and exciting seasonal offers
  • To gain access to any promised “lead magnets” or exclusive resources
  • To receive updates about new and exclusive product launches

Here are a couple of practical examples of e-commerce email list building in action.

Offering an Exclusive Discount Code to New Visitors

New visitors are often the least likely to buy on the first go. As a result, they are often the most difficult to convert into a purchase.

Woo them with a discount that will just compel them to take out their credit cards and go for the purchase. Ask for their email address in exchange. Simple.

Consider e-commerce giant Myntra’s offer to visitors IF they place their first order.


Mind you, discounts much like pricing, are a sensitive matter, and if overdone these can severely devalue their perception of your brand. So, a thin line to toe there.

Offer an Exclusive Seasonal Deal for List-Only Subscribers

E.g. Black Friday offers.

Black Fridays are not the busiest time of the year without reason. Did you know that the average male American spends close to $724.46 on Black Friday?

Go ahead and put out a paid post on social media inviting pre-opt-ins. Those opting in could be given an exclusive deal in the form of a discount coupon.

Email List Building For Real Estate

Real estate deals are often high-transaction and therefore come with a longer sales cycle.

All the more reason that you don’t just focus on the immediate win (the prospect’s contact number) but that you focus on staying in touch regularly using email. The adage “out of sight, out of mind” rings true in this case.

Some tips for real estate building:

  • Establish trust on your landing page or website. Keep it real and less-hyped.
  • Offer an exclusive incentive.

    E.g. a guide to investing in real estate or real estate pricing guide, a walk-through video of a particular neighborhood, or even a promise to notify them of future listings (for sale or purchase) in a particular set of zip codes, etc.

Example 3.

See below of how Robert Paul Properties directs prospects from a keyword-targeted google ad to their listings page. Just before you can browse the listings, a popup requests you to input your details so their team can help you better.


Doctors & Healthcare Sector

With over 91% of US adults checking their emails every day, something as crucial as the healthcare sector cannot afford to miss out. Not just from the opportunity cost point of view, but more importantly, from a responsibility point of view.

When it comes to healthcare marketing, how to get emails in a way that adds value?

  • Avoid hype at all costs. Healthcare marketing has to be done very responsibly, especially if it isquickly purported as coming from the doctor or physician’s desk.
  • Personalize. Personalize. Personalize. And when you are done, do some more.
  • Try to be as educative as possible. Do not “hard sell.” People appreciate being informed, advised, or inspired. Create a lasting relationship by providing value.
  • Maintain a mobile-responsive email design.

Example 4. Obtaining email addresses through an online appointment system.

Landing page:


Appointment booking section is displayed below the top fold of the page.


Another great example from the healthcare clinic landing page:


Upon clicking the “Request an Appointment” button, you get the Embedded form shown below.


Example 5. Health Newsletter Pop-up Signup Form

If your newsletter offers something of educative value, you will easily get loads of subscribers in what seems to be an information-hungry world!


To create a pop-up form you can use Sender forms feature, which has all features you need. Here is how it looks from inside:



The food business needs emails too.

Example 6. Consider the example below of a dine-in restaurant named Toro (based in Boston) that is happy to note down your email address and update you with offers and information moving forward.

The email subscription option could be better placed, in our opinion (it is all the way towards the bottom), we love this because but this is still way better than NOT being involved in email list building and email marketing at all in the first place!


B2B Email List Building

Business to Business or B2B email list building works the same way as it does for B2C. The fundamentals of email marketing and generation of leads remain the same.

Essentially you offer something of value in exchange for the permission to reach out to prospects inside their inbox. But here in the case of B2B mailing lists, the prospect has more weight.

They aren’t just another row in your contact lists or emails database but rather a key influencer or one of many decision-makers from a target business.

Example 7.

Consider the below example from neilpatel.com where a dynamic exit intent pop-up comes up when you try to exit the window.


What we love about this is that it clearly outlines the benefits and has a quiz-like step-by-step structure to it!

Also read: 25 B2B Lead Generation Strategies That Still Work

Using the Right Tool for Email List Building

We never thought we’d actually say this, but sometimes you are only nearly as good as your tools let you be.

Consider using a tool that:

Helps you capture an email address list using attractive and highly customizable embedded and dynamic popup forms.

Allows you to apply powerful segmentation based on subscribers behavior
Permits you to simply set up powerful automation sequences that nurture and eventually convert resistance into compulsive buying behavior

Well, overall, something that allows you to focus on business instead of worrying about how-tos and mechanisms at the tactical level. Sender can help you do all of the above and more within an easy-to-use interface! The free plan is as generous as it gets — 2500 subscribers whom you can send a total of 15,000 emails monthly at ZERO COST!

The Final Word on Email List Building

Email list building is a must for businesses of all sizes. However, email marketing works the same way for small businesses and massive ones. It is far from being saturated; as a matter of fact, most businesses are nowhere close to even getting started with it; forget doing it right!

Your email marketing campaign performance will depend largely upon both the size and the quality of your mailing lists. Ensure that you are adding interested subscribers to your list every day and also keeping them engaged by emailing them highly relevant communications.

Yes, “the money’s in the list” indeed! It’s not fast money, but it’s there for sure.

Also we recommend to read:

Article contributor – Santosh Balakrishnan

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