Why You Need an Email List If You Want to Sell Stuff Online

Have you ever experienced a tricky situation in a restaurant when you can’t decide what to eat?

I mean, it’s choices galore.

Do you go for the burger, the sea bass, the steak, arghhh too many choices.

Similarly, the most common question I get asked as an online marketer is:

“What channel is the best to attract potential customers?”

Is it SEO? Twitter? Facebook? PPC? Periscope?

Heck, webinars are important too right?

Luckily for you, I have the right answer.

But first, let me share this eye-opening story with you.

Who is This Guy?

Anytime I ask anyone if they know this guy, people say no.

sam-walton-book

It’s astonishing, bearing in mind this man was probably the richest person in the world at some point.

Anyway, this is Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart.

The funny thing is, even though few people recognise him, his story WILL change the way you do business online.

Should You Build On Rented Land?

Back in the 1960s, Sam built a very successful supermarket store.

Even though he had only been in business for a short time, it was clear to see, he was on his way to accomplishing big things.

But then disaster struck.

He made one HUGE mistake, which COST him his whole, entire business.

Not to drugs.

Not to crime.

Or remotely anything similar.

But poor decision making.

He didn’t renew his lease, meaning his landlord could takeover his business at any time.

And guess what?

His landlord did exactly that.

Sam lost his entire business because it was built on another person’s land.

The Message of the Story is Clear

If you ever build on rented land, someone, somewhere down the line could take it all away from you.

The funny thing is, this unfortunate scenario occurs online more times than you could imagine.

For example, back in 2011, everyone was saying you had to do SEO.

Then what happened?

Google released a new algorithm, and thousands of people LOST their first page rankings.

Then, in 2014, people were like, “you know what, you have to use Facebook to grow your business.”

Guess what happened next?

Big publishers like Upworthy and the Huffington Post revealed that their traffic had plunged.

So what’s the bottom line?

If you want to create a long and sustainable online business, don’t build on rented land.

Google and Facebook is rented land and believe it or not, your Google rankings or your Facebook page doesn’t belong to you. It belongs to them.

Like Sam Walton, building on rented land comes with a degree of uncertainty.

So if you want a dependable platform to grow your business on – start building an email list.

Why Email is the Perfect Channel

Many people ask, if Google and Facebook are risky, is email safe?

Well here’s the reality.

YES!

100%!

Your email list is your property.

If one day you decide you want to change email provider, you can simply export your list into excel and go somewhere else.

It’s just comforting to know the results you earn is yours to keep.

However, if your business is built entirely on Google or Facebook, ultimately, it’s an algorithm that controls whether your business prospers, or flutters.

Now the question is, how you can start building your email list today?

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One Tried and Trusted Technique to Grow Website Traffic

Look at this house for sale.

large-four-bedroom-house

It’s a beautiful four bedroom home located in Pennsylvania.

The issue is, this house would NOT sell.

Now, why do you think that was?

Well, of course, it’s that typical adage.

“If no one knows about the house, how can they buy it?”

Ultimately, the owners spent way too much time making the house look pretty, rather than telling people about it.

By the same token, when it comes to growing an email list, too many people focus their time making their site look great, without thinking about traffic.

You’ll see them tweak their design.

Change their font colour.

Place an email opt in form in their sidebar.

Then, 1 week later, you’ll hear them complain, “I STILL don’t have any subscribers.”

The bottom line is, before you consider where to position your sign-up form or any other design idea, think about how can you get traffic to your site.

The “Aspiring Singers” Formula

So what type of strategy can I give to you to start building your site traffic?

It’s the “Aspiring Singers” Formula.

Here’s the low-down on it.

When a singer wants to sell their album, what do they do?

Well, they tend to release their best music at locations where their customers hang out.

Places like the radio, television, festival events or clubs, etc.

Equally, if you want more targeted visitors, you should adopt a similar strategy.

First, find the websites where your audience like to visit.

Second, distribute your best material to the website’s blog.

And finally, when they read your content, invite them back to your website so they can sign up on your email list.

Once you get this process right, it’s a case of sinking into your armchair with one hand in a box of popcorn and watch your target audience rush to your website – like a bunch of women clambering into a 75% clear-out day at Gucci.

What Next?

Now that you know an email list is crucial to your business, and that you can leverage the “aspiring singers” formula to grow your list…

…you may ask, if people come to my site, how do you make sure people opt-in?

I mean just because people land on your site and see your sign-up form, it doesn’t automatically mean people will subscribe right?

Well, I’m glad you asked.

In my upcoming post – I’ll share one technique on how to do that.

But for now, if you enjoyed this article, leave a comment below and talk me through your thoughts.

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