5 Email Subscriber Acquisition Tactics, Part 2

In part one of this series, I gave you five online-specific tactics to optimize your email subscriber acquisition efforts. Here are a few more tips focused on helping you maximize offline and mobile opportunities:

Offline acquisition at trade shows and events

  • Someone placing their business card in a fishbowl doesn’t imply permission. Don’t assume such by your audience.
  • Use a laptop or kiosk if possible. Have it set up to track the acquisition source.
  • Sign-up forms must be compliant with CAN-SPAM regulations.
  • You must have clear permission to send commercial email messages. This can be accomplished by simply adding copy to forms such as: “By completing this form you can expect to receive special offers and news from us via email. You can request to be removed at any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link in any email.”
  • Use individual boxes for people to enter each letter and symbol in their email address. You can expect to lose about 10 percent to 20 percent of email addresses due to illegible handwriting and data entry errors.
  • Address fears about abuse of information up front by including a summary of your privacy policy. This reinforcement will encourage prospects to give you their information.
  • Highlight a couple benefits to further persuade people to sign up for your email program.
  • Post-acquisition: After each event, the data collected should be quickly entered into an Excel spreadsheet. When importing this information into your email service provider (ESP) tool, the date collected and source (i.e., name of event) must be noted.
  • A double opt-in customized welcome letter should be sent as soon as new subscribers are added to your system.

Offline acquisition for restaurants, brick-and-mortar retail locations

  • Educate employees on the value of email subscribers relative to sales numbers.
  • Promote value propositions such as coupons and special offers.
  • If possible, use kiosks or point-of-sale systems to streamline the acquisition process.
  • Use the same optimization techniques as covered in offline optimizations above.


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