23 Ways to Increase Email Marketing Opt-Ins

23 Ways to Increase Email Marketing Opt-Ins

23 Ways to Increase Email Marketing Opt-Ins

May 24, 2024

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23 Ways to Increase Email Marketing Opt-Ins

One of the most crucial components of successful email marketing in e-commerce has nothing to do with content, CTAs, or timing. It has everything to do with email opt-ins, better known as subscriptions.

Email campaigns succeed or flop largely based on the quality of your recipient list, which can be more challenging to obtain and maintain than you might think. Consumers often change their email address or service provider, create an account solely for form fill-outs, or opt out of communications completely. To continually increase the quantity, quality, and revenue potential of your subscribers, you need a consistent, easy way to gain opt-ins from your target market.

The rumors are true: Buying lists is old-school and just won’t cut it anymore. There are too many potential consequences with purchased lists, ranging from diminished trust in your brand to legal issues for violating data privacy and compliance regulations. But with a more organic email opt-in process, you can build your brand’s reputation, avoid privacy issues, and generate ROI. 

This guide showcases 23 ways to skip buying lists and instead grow your email marketing opt-ins to improve conversion. These methods leverage communication channels already at your disposal, such as social media, your company website, and more. By deploying the right tactics, you’ll reduce email list churn and unlock more earning potential from your email emails.

Foundational techniques to grow your email opt-in list

Like WhatsApp and SMS, direct email marketing messages may only be sent to consumers who’ve previously opted into receiving them. This process involves either an explicit opt-in, typically via a form asking for specific information, or implicit consent, where an email address may be submitted for another business purpose that automatically opts the user into receiving marketing promotional material.

The secret to growing a quality email subscriber list is to make sure your target audience understands how valuable your email content is. Let them know your business uses this channel to build lasting relationships instead of clogging them with irrelevant, disruptive notifications. Distractions eventually get categorized as spam, and spam folders don’t make purchases. Real people do.

To make receiving your emails feel like a treat, not a burden, we recommend leveraging the existing communication channels you have with your prospects and customers to invite them to subscribe to your emails. One of the quickest ways to accomplish this is through organic social media. Unlike expensive paid options, these platforms are widely used and won’t cost you anything to get started.

Generate opt-ins through organic social media channels

As of October 2023, 4.95 billion internet users worldwide frequent social media platforms. That’s over 61% of the global population. These numbers should help you come to a clear conclusion— if you’re not taking advantage of social media channels to grow your email subscriber list, you’re leaving a large portion of your audience out of the conversation.

The section features a platform-by-platform breakdown of our top social media strategies.

Grow email subscribers through your Facebook Business Page

Though its popularity may have ebbed in recent years, Facebook can still be a powerful tool to add quality email subscribers to your lists. With over three billion active monthly users, there’s still ample opportunity to reach a substantial audience. 

Some recommendations for driving more email signups with Facebook include:

1. Use profile cover photos as email promotion

Make an immediate impact by placing a compelling call-to-action (CTA) right on your Facebook page’s cover photo that encourages users to subscribe to your email list. Ensure the copy portion of your CTA gets to the point and lets viewers know what they’re signing up for. Adding a QR code is also a nice touch.

2. Implement CTAs on business pages 

Your cover photo shouldn’t be the only place where you display a CTA for potential email subscribers. Add a button in the main navigation of your company’s page and insert links further down in the About section that directs followers to opt into emails. Be sure to get creative with your CTA text to entice people to want more of your content. 

3. Showcase email newsletter snippets 

Generate interest and intrigue around your brand’s email content by sharing teasers or highlights from your email newsletters as Facebook posts. These snippets serve as catered previews of your followers' expectations and help pique curiosity.

4. Promote gated content that requires email access 

Beyond teasers of email content, you can also offer exclusive content downloads or links gated behind email registration forms. Aside from boosting email opt-ins, this tried-and-true marketing tactic can also work wonders for positioning your brand as an authority within your e-commerce niche.

Turn video views into email subscriptions via YouTube 

Nearly 43% of the planet’s population watches a YouTube video every month, making it the second-largest search engine in the world. Here’s what you need to do to leverage this indispensable marketing channel to grow your email subscriber list:

5. Enhance video engagement with email sign-ups

Encourage viewers to subscribe to your email list by including compelling CTAs within your videos. They can be part of the video itself or inserted after the fact using the info cards feature. Don’t forget to mention the benefits of subscribing as you direct viewers to opt in.

6. Promote emails in video descriptions

YouTube’s video description section provides prime CTA real estate, encouraging readers to sign up for your emails. This tactic is helpful because even viewers who may not subscribe right away can return to the video and access the landing page or form link when they’re ready to convert.

Gain email traction through your Instagram account

As popular as Instagram is, it hasn’t reached its peak yet. By 2025, an estimated 1.44 billion people will access the platform monthly. Consider the following tactics to increase email opt-ins using Instagram:

7. Put a CTA in your bio section

Instagram bios have limited character counts, so maximize engagement opportunities by using the limited space to create a compelling CTA to opt-in to your emails. You could also add the opportunity to subscribe to your emails to a list of other options using a tool like Bitly’s link-in-bio or Linktree.

8. Unlock the potential of the swipe-up feature

If you can access the swipe-up feature in Instagram Stories (as of this writing, it’s only available to accounts with 10,000+ followers or verified accounts), capture inbound interest by linking to your email opt-in page or form here, too.

9. Integrate an email button on business profiles

An Instagram business profile can list more buttons at the top of its page than a personal account can. There are different options to choose from, but for email, cut out any navigational clutter and link directly to your email opt-in form. The more seamless the process, the better your users’ experience.

Build vital interest within business communities via LinkedIn

Of its nearly 900 million active users, more than 16% log in and check LinkedIn daily. It’s more than simply a networking platform for marketers—it can be an extremely valuable (and often untapped) resource to grow a quality email subscriber list. Here are some strategies to consider:

10. Promote your email newsletters frequently

To stand out in a crowded newsfeed, it’s crucial to be consistent when sharing links or content that encourages people to register for your emails. Generate awareness and positive word-of-mouth by demonstrating the value of your emails by posting snippets, invitations to subscribe, and even positive reviews from customers or readers.

11. Keep conversations going by sharing signup links 

After having meaningful conversations with someone on LinkedIn, take the opportunity to share relevant links that can further entice potential subscribers to visit your landing page or sign up for your emails. Whether these follow-ups occur in comments sections or direct message threads, they can help convert interested professionals into opted-in leads.

12. Post gated offers and engage in group discussions

Like Facebook, use LinkedIn to offer exclusive content to users in exchange for their email addresses. E-books, webinars, industry reports, whatever your audience will find interesting. You should also actively share this content in relevant group discussions, and use it as a vehicle to attract subscribers.

Convert e-commerce website traffic to opt-ins 

Your brand’s website is arguably the most important piece of digital marketing collateral you have. Because of this, you need to build it and use it as a springboard for consumer relationships. It’s up to you to give them a way to continue the conversation with you, on their terms, after they visit your website.

One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is to promote the benefits of signing up for your marketing emails. The proven web strategies below will help you gain more subscribers without taking up a lot of resources or bandwidth.

13. Serve up dynamic, personalized pop-up content

Website pop-ups may sound archaic and intrusive, but high-performing ones convert web visitors at an eye-popping 9.28%. Most website builders allow you to trigger pop-ups based on user behavior, such as the page they visit, time spent on a page, and exit intent. If you offer an enticing incentive, like a “thanks for visiting” discount code, you’ll be surprised how many people will happily offer up their email to continue the conversation.

14. Offer high-value gated content assets

Like on social media platforms, gated content is also a viable web strategy. As an added bonus, it’s often easier to house and share meatier content assets on your site, like longer videos or guides. The same goes for customizing the offering based on different data points, like geographic region or entrance page. Don’t be shy about leaning into exclusivity to convert visitors into email subscribers.

15. Augment live chat or chatbot conversations with opt-in links

If your e-commerce website offers a live chat or automated chatbot functionality, it’s simple to engage with visitors and ask for email subscriptions as part of the conversations. When and how to make this request will vary based on your audience, but the important part is using the built-in rapport you’ve created to increase your opt-in chances.

Include proven, traditional opt-in tactics across channels

The tactics shared so far focus on a read-and-respond rhythm. However, some of the best consumer interactions don’t happen in comment sections or chat threads. To bolster your email subscriptions, it’s critical to take a 360-degree view of your communication channels and avoid forgetting the more traditional, but no less effective methods.

16. Keep the interest alive following an in-person event

Whether it's a self-hosted event or a well-trafficked industry conference, in-person events provide an excellent opportunity to collect email subscribers during or after face-to-face conversations. Create dedicated QR code signage or have sign-up tablets at your booth where attendees can provide their email addresses in exchange for exclusive offers or future updates.

17. Add extra incentives to your webinars

Virtual events, like webinars or hosted Q&A sessions, require attendees to provide their email. This built-in engagement factor means it’s easy to upsell an email subscription before or after the event. You also could communicate during webinar registration that attendees are automatically opting in to your future marketing sends by registering, but they can unsubscribe anytime they’d like to. This is an excellent way to boost brand authority and grow trust at the same time.

18. Place QR codes on all printed sales enablement tools

From brochures to book covers to billboards, QR code inclusion in marketing and advertising campaigns has risen 332%. It’s easy to see why, as it can provide viewers with instant access to your email subscription landing page or form via a scanned link, as well as a focused gateway to future interactions with your brand’s digital persona.

19. Collect customer emails at the point of sale

A common tactic you’ll see in a lot of brick-and-mortar storefronts is to collect email addresses during the checkout process. To increase conversions in this respect, exclusive discount codes, welcome benefits for loyalty programs, and other incentives are small gestures that make a big difference.

Turn email sends into subscriptions 

Finally, let’s look at arguably the most apparent conduit for increasing email opt-ins: existing email campaigns. Data shows that 83% of satisfied customers are willing to provide referrals, and 92% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know. To amplify these voices successfully, consider deploying any or all of the following tactics.

20. Encourage sharing and forwarding

Sometimes, all you have to do is ask. Whenever you design an email marketing campaign, include buttons or links that enable readers to quickly and seamlessly share the content with their networks. If you make sharing your email content easy for existing subscribers, you can extend your brand’s reach and attract new opt-ins without much effort.

21. Create and rally around your referral network

The most effective way to turn supporters into brand evangelists is to gamify the process and create a referral program. By offering increasingly valuable incentives, such as discounts or freebies, for hitting subscription referral milestones, you give existing readers a chance to turn their goodwill into a tangible reward, all while growing email opt-ins for your business. Morning Brew does this masterfully.

22. Re-engage old contacts with opt-in campaigns

Opt-in campaigns aren’t exclusively for new subscribers, either. Segmenting your email list and creating targeted opt-in campaigns to re-engage inactive subscribers over time, especially as your audience expands, is essential. Offer them a compelling reason to opt back in, such as a limited-time promotion, to maximize the quality of your email subscriber list.

23. Integrate opt-in links in employee email signatures

Last but not least, ensure everyone on your team has an opt-in link or visual CTA at the end of their signature that promotes email subscriptions. It’s a more subtle approach, but an easy-to-implement tactic that targets business networks that may be already engaging with your content in the first place.

What’s next for your email subscription strategy?

Email is just one piece of a successful and scalable opt-in campaign. Instead of managing opt-ins in siloed spaces and channels, you can aggregate your contacts and lists into one place.

MessageBird is an omnichannel platform built for marketers that engage audiences in the places they prefer. Design, execute, and scale your omnichannel opt-in campaign with the industry’s most trusted email sending and deliverability platform.

Learn more about Bird’s email marketing solutions and how they can help you realize your growth goals.

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Your new standard in Marketing, Payments & Sales. It's Bird

The right message -> to the right person -> at the right time.

By clicking "See Bird" you agree to Bird's Privacy Notice.