"Your email list is one if not THE most important asset your business has!" Have you heard this statement before? Or at least some variation of this exact sentiment when the topic of "list building" comes up? I'm going to take a wild guess and say yes...yes you have. Well, me too girl.
For the past few years, I've heard people in many different industries stress the importance of "building your list" and "giving value" your subscribers can't find anywhere else on your site. People that I respect & greatly admire like Amy Porterfield and Jeff Walker are some of the brightest thought leaders that come to mind when I think of how to build a value-packed (and profitable) email list.
So what's my problem? Why can't I get past this roadblock of inaction when it comes to building my own list? Especially my email list for Vista View Events, my wedding venue. I know it's important, I know my readers deserve insane value and I know it can help our bottom line. But even thought "I know" all of this, I've still been pretty hands-off when it comes to implementing a list building strategy.
Well friends, this is the year all of that changes. I've dedicated 2017 to serving my readers & subscribers at She Creates Business and at Vista View Events. I want to develop & curate thoughtful content that my readers love, that's actually useful and helps them solve a problem. The other day I was reading Youtility by Jay Baer (for the 3rd time) and this quote struck me:
"It's simply this, if you want to actually help your customers, stop trying to be amazing and just start being useful."
I think I paraphrased a little but you get the point. I want to be helpful & useful to my people. And from a business perspective, I want to do it efficiently and effectively. Have you been thinking about building your list in 2017 as well? If I know you (and I feel like I do a little) I'm sure you've been thinking about it. I'm sure you've also been asking yourself where the heck you're going to find the time to do another thing in your wedding biz never mind trying to do it "efficiently" and "effectively."
I think I can help with that a little. No doubt you've heard that one of the best ways to build your email list is by providing a value-packed email opt-in (aka lead magnet) or by using blog content upgrades like this one:
I've spent that last few weeks coming up with every opt-in/content upgrade I can think of for my wedding venue, Vista View Events. I carved out time to just think and be intentional with how I could help our couples and readers. The result? A list of over 50 Email Opt In/Content Upgrade Ideas for my wedding venue! Even better, I realized when I was done with the list that I essentially created a lot of blog posts topics too! Win-Win!
I have zero interest in keeping these opt-ins/content upgrades to myself. I'll be using these opt-in ideas along with the list building strategies I'm learning from Jenna Kutcher's free email challenge. She's also launching a course if you want to check that out.
Since you're reading this post or maybe you listen to She Creates Business, a Podcast for Wedding Pros it's likely you have your own wedding business. If you'd like to implement more valuable content for the couples and readers visiting your site, consider using a few or ALL of these ideas for your own blog/email list.
50+ Email Opt In/Content Upgrade Ideas
1.) Printable Wedding Planner
For the couple to plan their whole wedding from start to finish.
2.) Specific Vendor Planner
If you're a florist, photographer, planner, etc. you can gift a printable to help the couple plan for YOUR specific service.
3.) Wedding Planning Timeline
Checklist that shows a breakdown of the wedding planning timeline. (what the couple should do 8 months out, 6 months out, 2 months out, etc.)
4.) Vendor Resource List
Example: If you're a planner you could give away a list of your 20 favorite venues, 10 great photographers, etc.
5.) Wedding Vow Worksheet
Gift a worksheet where the couple can start to brainstorm their wedding vows.
6.) Wedding Planning Memory Journal
Similar to a wedding planner, this printable journal helps the couple write down special memories from their engagement & wedding planning journey.
7.) DIY Tutorial
Teach your readers how to do something. If you're a florist, you could teach how to DIY a centerpiece. If you're a photographer, teach them how to pose.
8.) Packing List for a Beach Honeymoon
Give a sample packing list a couple can use if they're headed to the beach for their honeymoon.
9.) Packing List for a Winter Honeymoon
Give a sample packing list a couple can use if they're headed to a snowy location for their honeymoon.
10.) Wedding Day Timeline
Give your couples a printable with a sample wedding day timeline to help with their planning process.
11.) Monthly Drawing
Offer a monthly drawing only for your email subscribers. Each month you'd randomly choose a subscriber from your list and giveaway something that is relevant to your biz.
Create an ebook around a topic you're knowledgeable about. (Example: you could create a mood board ebook to gift readers as inspiration for choosing their wedding colors and/or theme.)
13.) Top 10 Tips for Choosing Your....
This would be whatever you do in the wedding industry. (Example: choosing a florist, choosing a venue, choosing a photographer, etc). You could also do a whole series using this topic and give your best advice for each type of vendor.
14.) Wedding/Engagement Gift Tracker
Create a worksheet where your couples can keep track of the gifts they're receiving during their engagement for easy thank-you note writing after the wedding.
Create an infographic with helpful info for the couple (timelines, budget, percentages, etc.)
16.) Budget Calculator
Create an Xcel spreadsheet with a sample budget calculator
17.) Trend Report
Create a report with the year's best trends in dresses, flowers, decor, etc. You could incorporate the year's Pantone Color of the Year to make it timely.
18.) List of Planning Apps
Create a list of apps that couples can use to help plan their wedding.
Create a small, free video course that teaches your reader something valuable or that helps them solve a problem. Think of something your clients ask you CONSTANTLY. It is likely this question is a great topic for an e-course. As an example, on She Creates Business, I have a free course on using HARO for your wedding business.
20.) Audio Q & A with You
Record a simple audio Q & A with the Top 5 (or whatever number you like) questions you get from clients. Think super helpful, exclusive access.
21.) FAQ Printable
Much like the audio Q & A, but in a printable format. People like to consume content differently so this would be great for people who prefer reading over listening.
22.) Exclusive Podcast
This is for my fellow podcasters! Record an exclusive podcast that can only be accessed via opt-in. Again, think exclusive content.
23.) Free Webinar
Create a free webinar for your client. The webinar could help your client achieve a specific goal or it could be more of an overview of a topic you're an expert in.
24.) 15 Minute Intro Call with You
In today's digital world sometimes people would love to just get on the phone. Set aside 1 day per week when you take 4, 15-minute calls that potential clients can book with you and just be helpful to them. Answer questions about your service or really anything they need help with. 1 hour per week could change your whole business!
25.) Desktop Wallpaper
Create a free desktop wallpaper with a wedding theme. (Bonus points if you can figure out how to put their wedding date on it.)
26.) iPhone/iPad/Tablet Background
Same as the desktop wallpaper but for other devices. Make sure you research optimal sizes for each background so they look good.
27.) Facebook Group Access
If you have a private Facebook Group for your business (or you want to start one) make your email opt-in the exclusive invitation for the group.
28.) Love Quotes
Create some cute prints with love quotes that your subscriber can print & frame. (If you're a calligrapher you can use that on your prints!)
29.) Bridal Fashion Guide
Round up the year's best in bridal fashion including dresses, veils, shoes, hair pieces, etc.
30.) Interview Series with Other Wedding Pros
Put together an interview series with other pros in your same niche or pick vendors in other niches and have each of them answer 2-3 questions. Deliver it to your subscribers in an audio or text format.
30 Ideas!? That's a great start right?? Grab the remainder of the list below! As always, these are just ideas to get your brain working and to help you gain some clarity around the types of opt-ins and content upgrades you could offer. You'll like some of these ideas, you won't like others and THAT IS OK. Use the ones that best fit into your wedding biz and rework the others if you need to. I'm building my list right along with you, so let's do it!