Email Campaign: How I Build My Email List From Scratch

Email list is more than just a list. In fact, it is the black book for nearly every successful marketer, blogger and companies alike.

Don’t worry if you have not started anything at all.

This article will explain to you important things about starting an email campaign … opps, I mean building a successful mailing list.

That’s why you’re here right? With so many email marketing guides out there, I want to make sure that the time spend on this article (expected to be 10 minutes or less), would provide you guidance which will prove useful not only today, but for the coming years.

Do you know what is email campaign and the importance of it?

There are several reasons why you should start building an email list right now. You may use the list to:

  • Grow your website traffic
  • Keep your readers informed on the latest posts and news
  • Increase the number of returned visitors
  • Boost your sales pitch and revenue earning (marketing)
  • Promote brand awareness
  • Get involved and get in touch with your loyal readers

There’s probably tons of other advantages that you can gain just by having an email list but you get the point. It doesn’t matter what industry you are in … you need a list.

Still not convinced? Let’s take a look below:

1. Ana Hoffman – Traffic Generation Cafe

Traffic Generation Cafe opt-in form
Traffic Generation Cafe opt-in form


2. CopyBlogger Media

CopyBlogger Media's opt-in form
CopyBlogger Media’s opt-in form


3. Brian Gardner

Brian Gardner's opt-in form
Brian Gardner’s opt-in form


4. WP Beginner

WPBeginner's opt-in form
WPBeginner’s opt-in form


5. Adrienne Smith

Adrienne Smith's opt-in form
Adrienne Smith’s opt-in form


6. Bren – My Girly Parts

Bren's opt-in form
Bren’s opt-in form


7. Annetta Powell

Annetta Powell's opt-in form
Annetta Powell’s opt-in form


8. Adam Connell – Blogging Wizard

Adam's opt-in form
Adam’s opt-in form

You see, it doesn’t matter what’s your intention is … either to boost traffic or doing affiliate marketing. You need a god damn email list! 🙂

Three Easy Ways To Build An Email List … My Way

I know there are probably many ways to do this but these are the three, very easy methods to grow your email list. Yes … you can start building your mailing list with just $1.

When I started this website, I was like you … you know, wanting to grow my traffic and get my visitors back for more. The only way is to build more loyal readers who trust and have faith in me.

Creating an email list from scratch is hard and no easy task. Hopefully by the time you finish implementing these three methods, you’ll be able to gain good and stable moment of subscription rate.

Hold on a second now. Do you know how an opt-in form works? Not? No frust! The below an example of my opt-in form. Just enter your email and try it out! Yes it is absolutely free and if you dislike it, just hit the unsubscribe!

Method #1: Choose your email marketing provider

I’m not talking about Gmail, Yahoo or Outlook guys. I’m talking of auto responders, scheduling email blasts and managing your subscribers list. Most importantly, a program or service which could help me build my successful email campaigns.

There are probably tons of email marketing providers out there to choose from; from freemium to more than just affordable subscriptions.

Basically, these features are a must in any email marketing provider:

  • Ability to create signup or opt-in forms
  • Easy to embedded in any form (HTML, codes etc)
  • Manageable subscriber lists
  • Auto responders
  • RSS subscriptions
  • Spam control

If you have yet to start creating any email list, then I would highly recommend you to start now using Aweber. Here’s why:

Try AWeber’s Autoresponders for $1


Method 2: Split testing your subscription forms (must … must have feature!)

This is important guys. Most of us are attracted to colours and the same concept goes to subscription forms. If placing just one form on the same spot will not increase your signup rate, then you should be doing more split testing.

So what is split testing actually?

Split testing is also know as A/B testing. Let’s say you in a course of one month, you created one signup form to be placed on your sidebar. And, you aren’t getting any signup at all! So, what’s wrong?

Could it be the colour, text or even the size? Fact is, we would probably not know the real reason behind this.


It doesn’t mean that you can’t do anything about it! You can perform tests and more experiment to determine which signup forms offer the best click through rate (CTR) and which isn’t.

If you have the thought that those are crazy, time consuming and it takes a lot of patience to do it, yes you are definitely right. Duh! Imagine how much time you got to spend on this split testing.

There is where Hybrid Connect comes in. Hybrid what?

Hybrid Connect is an advance mailing list building plugin for WordPress created by the famous Shane Melaugh. Well, it doesn’t matter if you don’t know how he is. What you need to know is the plugin is more than just plain awesome.

Basically, Hybrid Connect is about customization, improve your call to action ‘projects’ and ensuring that you are maximizing every possible chance to build email list. What?

Hybrid Connect is not like any other WordPress plugin when it comes to building email list. It does more than just that!

Here’s what it looks like on my admin panel:

Hybrid Connect is an advance email mailing list plugin for WordPress
Hybrid Connect allows me to build specific opt-in forms for different pages and post.

And this is what Hybrid Connect can do for you.

You can choose from:

  • Shortcode – Place any opt-in form anywhere in your content
  • Widget – Add any opt-in form to the sidebar or any other widget area
  • Light boxes – Create pop up opt-in form features
  • Slide in boxes – Allow forms to slide in from the bottom, side or top of the page or post
  • Squeeze pages – Create high-converting squeeze pages for sales boost
  • Comment list building – Option to opt-in with one click, when they leave a comment

If you want to know what Hybrid Connect is all about, this site explains it all.

I’m not saying that Hybrid Connect is the best out there. But for me, it works absolutely well and I see no reason why it won’t work for you … plus I love their support team who is always willing to help out.

Lesson learned? Always test and try out different forms to improve your sign up rates. Heard about “don’t put all your eggs in one basket?”

Method #3: Maximizing your click through rate (CTR) of your opt-in forms

You may use Hybrid Connect and a dozen more email list building software but you won’t be going anywhere if you are not getting any clicks.

To get your readers signing up for either a product sale or a simple newsletter, you got to make your opt-in form visible. Yes, make your call-to-action as attractive as possible. Here are some spots which works perfectly well to increase your CTR:

  • Featured area (before content)
  • Sidebar area (top or bottom most)
  • After content area (some call it after post)
  • Footer area
  • Floating or pop up opt-in form

Personally, if you want to increase your sign up rate, you should place your opt-in form on the top most of the article … place it right before the title area. I call it, featured widget.

Placing featured call to action widget could easily grow email list
This is one of my featured opt-in call to action.


When I first started my website, I had only a few signups per week. If you ask me, that isn’t making the cut. Not even close! After placing a featured opt-in form for just one week, my CTR increase by 15% on average. Yes, imagine for every 100 visitors I get, I would get about 15 signups. Since I’m using Aweber, I know they are absolutely legit and that’s great!

Now this is my sign up graph or stats.

My sign up stats increased drastically right after I place an opt-in form on my featured area

As you can see above, I wasn’t getting any healthy sign up rate. I would get probably 2 a day at most and sometime zero. With a call to action widget placed on the most visible part of the website, everything changes. I would let the stats above speak for itself.

From featured area to sidebar. Yes! You need to place at least one sidebar opt-in form on your sidebar if you want to grow your email list. When it comes to opt-in on side bar, you got to make it precise and short because you have very limited space to work with. So keep that in mind!

Basically, after post and footer opt-in forms are pretty normal and I wouldn’t into detail on that. However, I want to shift your attention now to the importance of having a pop up opt-in form.

Fact: You can increase your email list with pop up opt-in forms but …

Now, tell me this. Does the above question makes you wonder?

I hate pop up and I bet most of you do. So, making pop up opt-in form is tough especially when you do not want to drive your readers away.

A few things to consider are:

  • How often does the pop up will appear?
  • What type of pop up opt-in form to use? Complex or simple?
  • Does your readers get to view the pop up every time they head to a new page?

As I said above, pop up is very annoying and therefore, handle with care. My pop up will show be visible after my reader is on that page for a specific time and I love going simple but eye catching opt-in forms. And to add a little bit of twist, I set cookie where the same reader will only see the pop up once every 7 days.

Again, what works for me might not work for you. So, do some testing first before anything else.

If you are still having doubts whether you should start an email list or not, you definitely need to spend 5 minutes watching these slides.

Back to you

I was lucky to speak to some bloggers last week and I realized some of them have yet to start building email list for their blogs and websites. I started pretty late but I’m sure, it is never too late for anything.

Do you see the advantages when it comes to building a strong relationship with your readers?

All in all, email list is very important especially when you are thinking of increasing your traffic and getting your loyal readers coming back for more. Not to forget, having an email list is also a great way to communicate with your followers.

You need to do this right now:

  1. If you like this article, subscribe to my free and once-a-week newsletter (below)
  2. Tell me what you think on building an email list
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