Key to Building a Subscriber List: Trust!

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Trust earned begets loyalty

Let me begin by saying that there are many elements of a home-based business that are specific to that business type in the same way that there are those elements of a Web-based business that are specific to that business type; but there is a set of elements shared by both business types in today’s business landscape and many of those common elements have been discussed in many of the posts of this site. One such element is trust.

While the rest of the world have developed many barriers and protections to keep their email accounts spam-free, there are also those who subscribe to emails that promote their products, services and websites because this particular group of subscribers want to know more about what these sites are offering that may be beneficial for them. They subscribe because they wish to be kept informed about marketplace aspects that interest them as well as new trends and developments in the field they’ve chosen.

Most businesses would be fortunate to have this type of subscriber as representative of their customer base; but attracting and cultivating such subscribers would require the business to demonstrate the one basic element needed to do so. That element is trust. However, it is a known fact – offline as well as online – that before consumers will entrust a business with their time, information and money they must first know and like that business. Only then will consumers trust the business, after which they will reward it with their loyalty.

Enhanced security steps

This is evidenced by the fact that many internet users have gone to great lengths to protect their email accounts from spam mail, supported by the steps taken by some free-mail internet providers and internet service providers (ISPs) to offer spam protection while others incorporated the added step of screening the incoming emails of their users. These considerate and well meaning steps taken by the free-mail providers and ISPs have led businesses and email marketers to adopt guidelines set forth by the CAN-SPAM Act and require anyone wanting emailed information to authorize such emails by providing their name and email address via an “opt-in” (subscriber) Web form.

An opt-in or subscriber email list therefore consists of members who have agreed to receive email sent by the business or email marketer which might contain promotional material such as newsletters, catalogs and marketing media which should be permitted through by ISPs (although some are still held up). When intended recipients are able to read and view email sent by the business it is considered a successful transfer of information; but it starts with securing the trust of internet users not previously known to the business, and vice-versa.

Credibility begets trust

The entire process of getting consumers to know, like and trust you and your business is no doubt a huge accomplishment and, in the realm of Web marketing, major achievement; but it is worth every minute spent in doing so. That having been said the following paragraphs provide a few suggestions as well as some steps a business – both Web-based and home-based – can take to gain the trust of potential list members.

Although described above as a process it does not mean that getting the trust of website visitors should not be too difficult a task, especially if you have a legitimate business; because part of getting your customers’ trust is undoubtedly based upon your expertise, and people tend to rely on professionals who know what they are talking about. So demonstrating credible knowledge, trends and industry norms about the business you chose is a good first step in getting consumers to pay attention to your business; and if you are not yet in an established business, a display of such know-how and industry savvy could go a long way toward that objective.

Put another way, show your prospective subscribers and customers that you know what you are talking about by provide them with helpful hints and guidelines that pertain to what you are promoting and/or selling. Talk about how to install a roof if you’re into hardware products, or provide articles on insurance settlements if you’re a settlement lawyer. You don’t have to be a big corporation to make use of an subscriber list. If your customers see you as someone who knows what s/he is doing and saying, they will trust you quicker than otherwise.

Trust builds reputation

Be true to your customers in the sense that if you want to hype your products/services it enhances your credibility to provide guarantees, because the more satisfied your customers are the more of a probability that they will recommend you to others; and those recommendations and referrals would help to build your reputation in the marketplace since it is a known fact that most people tend to trust someone they know and when that someone recommends you there is a greater probability that you’ll be more of an acceptable choice. Some of these recommended folks will go to your site just to check it for themselves and others will go to make a purchase.

Another tip in getting a customer to trust you quickly is to provide them an escape out of any agreement or contract they signed with you. This shows them that you are not there to trap them into something they really don’t want. A good example of how to do this is by providing a link at the bottom of each email you send that would enable them to unsubscribe anytime they want. In addition you can modify your web form by providing information on how to unsubscribe from the list. Guarantee them that they can let go of the service whenever they want to, thereby removing any reason for them to be wary (leery?) about signing up in the first place.

It may help to keep in mind that when you get the trust of your website visitors and potential customers and clients you must do everything within your power to keep that trust, because if you don’t cherish (place the highest value) on it, chances are you won’t have it for too long. For example, if you do anything with their email addresses like sell them or farm them out to others who should not have them, you will lose many members of your list as well as members of your customer base. The quickest way to degrade the quality of your subscriber list and collapse your customer base is to disappoint those who have recommended others to you. So keep the trust.

Proven Steps for Building a Subscriber List

Birth of the WMS model

According to Internet Growth Statistics provided on the Internet World Stats website, in December 1995 only 0.4 percent of the world’s population used the Internet; by December 2005 that percentage had risen to 15.7 percent (fueled in part by addition of the World Wide Web, circa 1997); and by June of this year (2017) the number stood at 51.7 percent of the world’s population using the Internet. So it is reasonable to state that there was a growth rate of Internet use which was indeed rapid.

That having been said, it is probably as reasonable to state that the growth rate of online marketing have surged just as rapidly as that of the Internet (Web), except that it did not cover the same period of time; but as more Web-based businesses were created and vied for a share of the eCommerce marketplace, the need to develop new marketing skills and information products became more evident and, as a result, an increased number of marketing strategies were being discovered and developed to cope with the changing face of business in the eCommerce world.

Needless to say, such growth could not have occurred without a demand for the services provided via the Web and the new business type it fostered. However, there was also demand for online marketing tips and strategies which resulted from the astronomical number of new businesses that were created on the Web and continue to be created, leading to the birth of a new Web-based business known as Web Marketing Strategies (WMS). Part of understanding this seb-set of Web Marketing is accepting the nature of business, the market it serves, and its motivating factor which is profit.

Staple of email marketing

So it follows that while there are companies engaged in WMS activities that are all too eager to help your Web-based business build a clientele for a fee, there are also a number of methods you can utilize to promote your website in a more cost effective – and in many cases – free way. One of these methods is Email Marketing (EM), also known as permission marketing, in which Web-based business owners (known as merchants) can actually engage by getting permission from site visitors to send them emails about their company and/or product offers. Those who grant such permission become subscribers to such emails and are considered members of a subscriber list maintained by the merchant.

The staple of email marketing is a subscriber list which, as stated above, requires permission from website visitors, supporters and past customers of a merchant or publisher (website owner) who are willing to subscribe to marketing materials, newsletters, catalogs and other promotional material via email; and the more marketing emails are sent by the merchant or marketer, the more chances s/he has of making sales and perhaps encouraging more future purchases. To do this s/he, the email sender, must build a list consisting of all those who wish to subscribe to the list.

From this list the merchant or email marketer will be able to designate certain members of the subscriber list as target customers for some product types and other members for different product types. This is considered a good list since these different sections of it will have already shown interest in different product offers the merchant has to show and sell. As list members have a preference for what they’ve seen on the merchant’s site, and have decided they want to see more, and maybe even purchase whatever product or service the merchant – through his/her website – offers they will have the opportunity to follow through on that preference.

Strategic patience

In view of the above many people may harbor the opinion that building a subscriber list takes a lot of hard work and a lot of time to build and collect names and addresses; and when approached in the wrong way this could indeed be true. However, if the correct steps are taken, the process takes a bit of patience and a few solid strategies that have been proven to be effective in building subscriber lists. Such a list-building process can be instrumental in a publisher’s ability to open his/her website and business to a whole new world of target marketing.

The central point here is that simply making the effort to build a subscriber list by utilizing strategies that have been proven effective can take your business to a new level which will often result in increased traffic and decent profit, if that’s your objective, and can ultimately do wonders for your business venture. keep in mind that there are many sources and articles which are accessible from the Web to anyone wanting who wish to build a subscriber list, even though they can sometimes be confusing because there are so many sources; and seldom do they all promote the same approach.

And while different groups of marketers, “gurus” and tutorialists have different approaches in building subscriber lists, be assured that there are certain fundamentals that must be adhered to when building your own list; and some of those fundamental steps are outlined in the following paragraphs.

Steps one & two

Step one – requires that you install a good, workable, legible web form on your website which can be located immediately following each of your articles and/or blog posts, or in the side bar of your website. While some may say that immediately placing a web form on a newly created website is too soon ask visitors to subscribe to a list, there is really no best or ideal time to ask a visitor to opt-in to your list. As long as your homepage provide a quick, good (first) impression and a website visitor finds something s/he likes, that might just be enough reason for signing up.

A good web form for opting into a subscriber list is not hard to come by, and asking your website visitor opt-in to your list is really not hard to do. Simply write a simple short statement inviting your visitors to see more and get updated information about the site and what it stands for. Then there should be an area where they could put in their names and e-mail addresses. This web form will automatically save and send you the data entered on the form; and as more people sign in, your list will grow accordingly and proportionately.

Step two – requires your site’s home page (or landing page if other than your home page), as mentioned in the first step, be as impressive as you can make it; and the articles, as well as the description of your website should be clear, well-written and free of any derogatory language or graphics. Depending on what your site is all about, you need to capture your website visitor’s interest while making your content useful and your site easy to navigate. Do not expect everyone to be tech savvy! Invest in having good programming on your site and make your graphics beautiful while making sure to not overload it.

Don’t waste your time making the homepage or landing page overly large megabyte-wise, since there is a strong possibility that all visitors to your website will not have dedicated T1 connections; so the faster your site gets loaded (a consequence of reduced number and size of the graphics placed on it), the better experience your visitors will have. Go for a look that borders between simplicity and sophisticated knowledge.

Steps three & four

Step three – requires that any products or services you offer via your site be of high quality, value and reliability which in turn will have the affect of satisfying any customer who makes a purchase, and can therefore result in very positive responses. Remember that a returning customer is more likely to bring in more business; and a satisfied customer will more likely recommend new customers that do business. Word of mouth and recommendations alone can rake in more and better business than an expensive ad. As your clientele roster grows, so too will your list; and with more members on the list even more people will get to know about what you have new to offer.

Step four – requires that you maintain a clean and private list while never losing the trust your customers who have entrusted to you their email addresses and other private information; and remember this rule if you don’t remember anything else you’ve read thus far: NEVER, NEVER, NEVER engage in unlawful activities by sending SPAM email to anyone! Bad news has a tendency of spreading fast, and such illegal activities will reach your subscriber list members quicker than you can compose a one-line email.

Be assured that many of your subscribers will most likely unsubscribe from your list as a result of such activity, or even accusations of doing so. Keep your reputation untarnished, because a good reputation will drive more traffic and subscribers to your site/business, as well as strengthen the loyalty of current customers.

Build Your Subscriber List Quick and Easy

Subscriber List: A thing of value

It would be quite understandable if you have looked at the title of this post and muttered to yourself something along the line of, this guy (meaning me, the writer) is crazy, there’s no such thing as “quick and easy” when building a subscriber list. You might express even more disbelief if you had started a subscriber list that did not work out as well as you had expected. So if this sounds familiar I’d ask that you don’t click away yet, and don’t give up on building your subscriber list yet either, because we may be able to help each other.

Of course, I’m assuming that a subscriber list is something you still value and would like to have; and if that is true then let me suggest that you make a fresh start by utilizing the suggestions outlined further down this page; but before we proceed it might be helpful to share some of our previous efforts to build an subscriber list, because it is important to recognize and separate methods that failed from those that work so we can avoid the former and utilize the latter.

If you’re like I was I discovered the subscriber list-building methods that really work, you probably have read countless articles and success stories of people creating small fortunes with subscriber lists and sought expert advice on how to create a subscriber list of your own. Then when you thought you knew everything there is to know about building subscriber lists and have followed their advice to the letter and still weren’t able to create a list you can make a profit with, you became upset and this led to disappointment and, ultimately surrender; and you stopped trying.

Proper research

Then you decided to invest your money in a different way by hiring professional email marketers, subscriber list builders and content writersarticle writers to help you out, but quickly realized that the expenses you incurred, when compared to the very small percentage of your subscribers who actually bought anything from you, it was clear that you were still in an unprofitable position; especially after seeing the statistics and sales figures yielded by campaigns you launched with the help of those so-called professionals.

So you asked yourself, what could have gone wrong? Why have others succeeded where you have failed? Could it have been that you committed the common mistake of launching email marketing campaigns without the proper research? Or that you chose a topic you thought to be quite popular but it turned out not to be the case? One lesson which is learned from proper research is that list subscribers do not buy a product or service instantly simply based on their subscriber status or because the email marketer (you or I) sent them offers.

I’ve learned that the first and most important step you can take in order to build a profitable subscriber list is to get your potential customers to know, like and trust you after which they are more likely to take a chance on your products; because let’s face it, just launching an subscriber list would not make you an expert and a believable seller. You have to put some acquaintance work into the process by publishing a number of articles on your chosen topic, presumeably the subject you know best and feel most passionate about.


If your chosen topic is not the one you know most about, then change it and write about the topic you know well, and make sure your overal website theme is based on the same topic so that your articles, blog posts and website theme conform to the same topic. This is known as consistency and it is the one element that helps to establish expertise and create trust between a website publisher and audience more than any other.

In addition to consistency of topic in your articles and website theme, it is certainly helpful to gain some knowledge about your website visitors; because knowing a little about their preferences, likes and dislikes will help you to create the kind of content that will more likely win them over. You can gain this insight by asking your visitors to complete a brief survey from time to time, or even at the end of each article or blog post you publish.

Similar information can be obtained through forums, in the sense that these sites allow you to provide expert advice as it pertains to the topic of your expertise. This is another instance in which the results will not come instantaneously, but rather in time as your participation is recognized as helpful, valuable and – in some cases – indispensable to other forum participants. The expert advice and opinions you provide at these forums should be as forthright and factual as those you provide in your blog posts and, as a result, forum members will follow you to your site and may end up being part of your customer base.

Highlighting value

At the point you feel that people trust you, you will then be able to start your own subscriber list which could consist of subscribers from various sources; and after that you can build a customer base from these same sources which could end up consisting of website visitors, forum participants, survey responders and even your own friends, who can usually be good customers once you let them know about your website. just email them a link to your site so that they will be able to see what your business is all about. It is important to understand that the money will only come in when consumers and subscribers know, like and trust you.

As for your product or service it is important to know and understand that most people looking to lay out their money to buy something is no different to you and I; they want a product or service that they believe will be a good exchange for their money. They are simply not going to buy something on your recommendation if they don’t know and trust you, but they also will not buy an item if it is not worth the money, so you need to find a product or service that people want and need.

You don’t have to be the product maker as long as you have researched and learned about it well and have determined that it is of high value. Invest your time, effort and money to learn what you can sell to the satisfaction of your customer and subscriber base, thereby keeping them happy and you in their good graces. Even if it is a product you don’t want (you don’t necessarily have to like it either), it may well be something your customers need, so do your research well and you would see the results can be very positive (and profitable). It often helps to provide your subscribers with promotional material that they could actually use and spread around, so a free ebook can get generate a lot of interest and positive results.

A profitable subscriber list

By now you’ve probably heard about the joint venture (JV) whereby subscriber list owners cross sell each other’s lists. This technique works only after you have built your own subscriber list; but it might be quite helpful to make friends with other subscriber list owners anyway. This can be most beneficial, especially if it is someone who has already launched a successful subscriber list and have the experience in this venture. Because – as they say – experience is still the best teacher. While there are many articles available on the Web for you to read and learn from, there is nothing like getting a first hand account from someone you trust, so if you’re going to pursue a joint venture it helps to know (and probably like) the other marketer as well.

Experienced subscriber list owners as joint venture partners will make sure you know what to do and what not to do since they also value their lists that they will be entrusting to you (your product and/or service) and therefore must make sure that you do nothing to tarnish their reputation with their subscribers. So while different situations occur for different people, the general concept can still be very helpful to you and them. There are many things to avoid and it is in the interest of your joint venture partners to tell you which ones are most critical.

Building a profitable subscriber list don’t just happen overnight. There is much preparation and effort involved in the process; and since a subscriber list should be built from scratch you will do well to diligently maintain the quality of your list as it grows; keep it organized, manageable and even if you have to get or hire help just make sure that your subscribers are happy and satisfied, and they will be willing to buy from you continuously.

Just for the record, “quick” as used in the title of thisd post is a relative term, so think of it in the context of a subscriber list that serves your purposes (profitable, well-maintained and consisting of list members who know, like and trust you, as opposed to continued failure and disappointing efforts which could go on forever. Hope this helps… Good luck!