Your email marketing campaigns are only as effective as your email lists. Your email list is the coveted list of subscribers who have opted in on being part of your wonderful world. However, this is not as simple as it looks. Even customers and clients who have known you for years may not easily be converted as subscribers. In fact, they may not even know you have an email list or that it’s of any value to be part of it. This is where email list building hacks come in. Building your epic email list is as much perseverance as it is strategy.

Of course, it’s a given that your email campaigns should have share-worthy content, and you can certainly encourage readers to share those campaigns. However, email list building strategies are about more than doing the obvious; it’s about thinking outside the box to create something of value.

#1 The Right Kind of Pop-up

The fact is, people are busy and their attention is divided just about any which way you can image. This is why if you create a pop up subscription form on your website, you’re meeting your subscriber half way. Make it easier for them and they will sign up. Social Media Examiner, for example, notes that about 70% of their nearly 200k subscribers are all sourced from email subscription pop-ups.

#2 Launch a Contest

Contests are great ways to get your audience excited about your email marketing campaign. Rules for entry can be as simple as being a subscriber and answering a question that either has a right answer or calls for a creative answer. If you do decide to run a contest, be sure to set clear terms. Determine whether you’re going to launch a monthly contest, a weekly contest or a one-time contest. Also, be sure to share your content notification on social media as well, which is where of your potential subscribers are. And of course, make a big deal of winners on social media.

#3 Create Segmentation Options

People are going to be interested in different things and it’s to your advantage to offer customization in your email campaigns. For example, I’m much more likely to opt in for an email subscription that gives me a few selections to choose from. In the context of a news website, I’ll opt in for weekly updates and features. This works to both parties’ advantage: I get what I want and the company has me opting in twice, ensuring that they’ll be able to create more opportunities for visibility and engagement.

The same goes for your business. Some subscribers are vendors and some clients – and neither really needs to (nor wants to) see email marketing campaigns directed at the other. If you’re an agency, then perhaps your clients only want to opt in for email newsletters that cater to their own interests rather. If you’re a publication that features 3 or 4 different subjects, then your subscribers are also more likely to opt in for one or two, versus all four. Having subscription segmentation also gives you an inside look at what your subscribers want to see. You might be surprised by the results.