An email list is a collected list of email addresses that are either given by customers when they make a purchase or by prospects that have filled out a form to receive your messages. Sometimes they fill out a form to get a free item also known as an opt-in. A free report, ecourse, or even an ebook are all examples of opt-in offers that can grab audience attention and motivate people to share their email addresses in exchange for the information. These email addresses are collected into a database and list management system, which allows you to easily send out messages to the people on your list, or specific ones that you choose.

Email lists and email marketing or sending messages to your list are an effective and powerful way to connect with your audience on a consistent basis. Study after study shows that email marketing is the most effective form of content marketing and that the ROI or return on investment can be significantly higher than any other type of content marketing. This post starts a two month commitment to talking about email marketing and how you can better use it to grow your business. We’ll start with some fundamentals and get into more advanced topics in the next few weeks. For now, let’s talk about the main reasons why an email list is an essential part of your online business success.

  1. Email Is a Professional Way to Contact Customers – Today, most consumers are accustomed to giving their email address to a business entity, or realize that when they make a purchase the business will have their email address. This is a common way to communicate and contact customers and is very accepted by most people.
  2. Email Software Offers Simple Automation – Autoresponders, aka email management systems, support you to automate  your email messages to your customers, leads and prospects. This means that messages that are educational, standard (like thank you messages) and more will be created once and sent to each person when appropriate, based on how you set up your autoresponder software. You can upload and schedule messages, segment your list, and attach files for easy download.
  3. Email Enables You to Add Consistent Value to Your Subscribers’ Lives – When you use email to contact people who have signed up to receive your messages, you are connected to them 24/7 in a unique  way. It’s safe to say that email is the closest thing that you’ll get to a one-on-one conversation with your prospects. It affords you the opportunity, if you plan for it, to add extreme value to your customers’ lives by sending them information that solves their problems.
  4. Email Marketing Increases Conversion Rates – There is no denying that email marketing is one of the most, if not the most, effective forms of marketing. You can reach hundreds, or thousands, of people and share good news, information, and offers with them. By using email to teach prospects about your business and offerings, you can increase conversions. It builds trust, credibility, and authority – three buying triggers.
  5. Email Marketing Creates Repeat Customers – Your best bet for increasing sales is always to keep your customers happy so that they become repeat customers. Repeat customers offer you the ability to increase your income exponentially. You simply need to use the customer list to tell them about other offerings they may be interested in and to keep them in the loop.
  6. Email Allows You to Get to Know Your Audience Better – Since email is so intimate, you can use the email to send out polls, to find out information about your audience. Some email software will let you know things about your audience simply based on the information they can get from the person’s email address and the files on record with Google and other email address providers.
  7. Email Allows You to Educate Your Audience – A really awesome feature of having an email address for leads, prospects or clients is that you can send them information that educates them about their problems and then introduces them to the solutions, without browbeating or having to make cold calls.

Having an email list means that you spend some time collecting email addresses from leads, prospects and customers. With a little promoting, that process can be automated as well. You can then use that information to send them information pertaining to their problems and offering solutions that you have created or that you have tried that others have created. Email marketing is a win-win for everyone involved.