List building creates your asset. Business is about relationships. Your business relationships are represented by your list.
In fact, list building is your most important business responsibility. Don’t rush to delegate or outsource this task that’s on the critical path to your success. Keep your hand in.
Create your list with care. Make time to invite all your existing customers! Consider what will attract a fresh stream of new visitors who are interested in your main topic who will grow to like, respect and trust you.
Your visitors will get to know your business. As in the real you, warts, farts, giggles, expertise in your main topic, and all. Your progress as you grow will be visible and gain respect.
Your visitors who have a challenge need help! A percentage of your visitors who believe you can help them solve their most pressing problems convert to subscribers. That’s your objective: attracting people who recognize your ability to offer a solution to their needs and capturing their contact information.
You faced challenges. You found solutions. You’ve done so in the area you’re helping people now. That’s something you share in common with your subscribers.
When your business has something in common with a visitor, you’ll be able to relate to each other. You can help each other grow. Yes, you can grow from each subscriber because helping people get what they need helps you grow as a leader.
Feedback, constructive criticism, even off-the-wall comments help you to build community. Community leads to contribution over time. Recognized contribution leads to a stronger community.
As each subscriber with something in common joins your list, you grow your list into your community. You interact, you help. You get to know your subscribers on your list one subscriber at a time. That’s where relationships arise.
Jump starting a community can take time. You start out with a community of you. Your conversation-opening blog growing into a community requires a visitor who becomes a subscriber, and someone courageous who gives your first comment.
Your business starts with a community: you! List building for traffic starts now as a community of one. You start somewhere, such as right hear in writing blog posts – and let audio and video follow!
Do you want to learn to write, record audios and videos as you build your list around your main topic? You’ll find help here for that too. That’s about putting your benefits and yourself in.
Step one is choosing your main topic. Then you’ve got to let go of at least a little bit of the fear of doing something new. Your fear becomes excitement in bits and pieces!
You stretch your comfort zone. Pay attention to your feelings. Take action!
Be yourself. Let “You!” out into the world. That’s how people visit, subscribe — and unsubscribe!
Unsubscribing is as important as subscribing when you’re building a list. Being yourself means you’re sharing who you are. That’s kind of where relationships are born that fit you and what you are doing to help the world.
Relationships grow from appreciation of your insights. For some people, that means you agreeing with what they already thought of. For others, appreciation may stem from your style combined with your useful and informative delivery of help, regardless of whether they agree with you or not.
Relationships online are similar to relationships “in the real world”. Many of the people in our lives are quite different from us. At least, when you’re open-minded, you attract a life for yourself that includes a wide variety of people!
Figuring out who is safe to keep in your life and your business is a trial-and-error sifting process. That’s going to be true in your list building too! You’ll be unsubscribing people from your list, just as people are unsubscribing from your list.
When someone on your list turns to you for help, respond! That request for help may be in your area of expertise — or not! Either way, be open, confirm your understanding, and act as your best self.
Listen to your subscribers by paying attention to details! Check in to make sure you understand what help is needed. As in kind of repeat back to your subscriber in other words to check that your understanding is correct.
Why be so careful? Because words in an email exchange or on a comment form lack context! You don’t get to hear tone of voice, you miss out on the chance to smile an acknowledgement that “you matter!” or nod that “I’m here and listening!” at all.
You’ll make mistakes. We all do! Yet by establishing a habit of confirming your understanding, you diffuse the barrier a lack of context creates.
If you’re willing and able to help? Say so. Offer different ways, including by exchanging email.
If it’s not something you can help with or want to help with? Be yourself, responsibly, just as you would offline. Be upfront, clear, and honest in a gentle way.
Do your best to reply immediately. The intent is to give a solution that will get your subscriber one step closer to solving their problem. That may be a sentence or a paragraph of advice freely given because you understand and can direct subscriber around a bump.
If you have your own service or product that gives a full solution? You can share a link to somewhere you personally explain how and why that’s a solution to this exact situation and how your clients benefit. And consider giving a copy or a partial copy right then and there.
Why? Well, if you’re referring to your own product, you’ve probably written a blog post about it already, haven’t you? Give a link to the one best-fit blog post of yours that fits their exact need.
What if you don’t have a blog post that fits? Congratulations! You’ve been handed an opportunity!
Your subscriber just helped you. You’ve been given a real-life example. You received a gift for your blog.
Give a solution for that exact problem with a link to your own product as a blog post. I say congratulations because that is the very best way to talk to, “the whole world!” You’ll be able to put this one person in your mind and write exactly what will benefit them most.
How does that relate to your list building for your main topic? Like a custom fit pair of the best shoes! Your one subscriber who asked for help is not the only person in the world approaching your solution with that set of circumstances.
Say, “Thank you!” You might even want to give your subscriber who prompted your post a thank you gift from among your information products. Not just to be kind — you’ll also encourage future interactions.
Write your post! Put a link to your post in your email to your subscriber saying, “thank you!” and give at least a valuable excerpt from the product you link to in your blog post. Specifically giving the next, “next step” so your subscriber gets another step closer in what they need to do.
Then listen! Maybe you’ll get an opportunity to walk through an entire new path to your solution. Your now-building community sees your steps and ignites your imagination. A whole series of blog posts may pop right out, maybe even a different approach that yields new products as well as new ways of coaching and mentoring that you decide to offer.
You’re an expert! I mean, you knew the answer. You helped with your knowing the answer and your being, “You!”
When you don’t have a clue say so! Be yourself, responsibly, just as you would offline. But that’s different from just not having helped.
Your existing life experience includes solutions to problems. You might not feel comfortable sharing that experience. I’m not suggesting you pretend or fake it, I’m simply saying when you have solutions and sharing them is outside your comfort zone that you leap that chasm.
Dare to share your expertise. Dare to share solutions to problems about your main topic in your list building activity. Step out of your comfort zone: grow yourself and grow your business.
UPDATE: Here’s what I’m doing now: http://slowselfimprovementguide.com/2017/01/13/how-do-you-become-successful-in-starting-a-business/
And where you can learn more… http://slowselfimprovementguide.com/listbuildingfortraffic/