Offline events like trade shows are highly anticipated growth opportunities for professionals in your industry. Demo your latest product at an appropriate conference and collect signups in-person. Once you're back at the office, import these signups into your contact database. Be sure to send these contacts a welcome email that confirms their opt-in to your list. (See #8 in this blog post for tips on sending welcome emails.)
Just like with website copy, you can create a number of variants for your popup, contact form or contest banner, and then test each individual part, like the color of the call-to-action button, text or image, and then see which combination is producing the best results. This way, you can create the most effective forms that will convert many visitors into leads. You can easily set up Optimizely on your website by adding a piece of code to it.
Providing alternatives like these is an effective way to grow a nice big list of subscribers that are targeted to you and what you have to offer them. They are more likely to also be responsive to your website content through the comments section. This captive audience is worth gold to you, so treat it well. When you market to them, they are more than likely to receive it well.
Contests and freebies are great tools to gather emails from your audience. Who doesn’t like something for free, right? Think of giveaways, sweepstakes, anything you can give to your audience in exchange for their email address. Just like in a landing page example below, it can be anything from ebooks, whitepapers, to actual products or services you can give for free. Combined with Social Media, it’s one of the fastest and easiest ways to grow your email list.