Building an Email List Blog Banner

We all know how important it is to get started with building an email list. And it’s even better if you start building an email list before you publish your first book.

But then again, many of us don’t make building an email list a priority.

Well, it’s understandable why many of us tend to put it aside.

For one, it takes time to get the system up and running.

And let’s not forget the technical know-how involved when it comes to starting an email list.

So, I get why many of us would rather be focusing on something else instead.

The good news is there’s a simple way to build an email list.

And the best part of all? You can get started by just using the free tools.

The usual way of building an email list

Before we begin, let’s take a look at what many authors do to build their email lists.

The best way to get people to join your email list is to offer something for free.

Will people sign up if you don’t offer anything in return?

Well, they do. But it’s even easier to get people to join your email list if you have something for them.

The free offer can be anything. But for fiction authors, offering a free book is the best option.

As for nonfiction authors, you can offer something else other than a free ebook. It can be anything as long as your readers will find it valuable. And it’s something that they can’t get anywhere else.

Once you get the free offer nailed down, you need to upload it on your website, create a dedicated page for people to download the free offer, and sign up for an email marketing platform.

There are tons of email marketing platforms to choose from. But if you’re wondering which one I’m using right now, it’s Mailchimp.

Do the required setup, write the email that your readers will receive when they join your email list, add the link to the download page and you’re pretty much done.

Of course, many authors don’t just stop there. They even add the autoresponder series into the mix to deepen their relationship with their new email subscribers.

What makes the autoresponder series powerful is that it can engage with your email subscribers automatically after your first email.

You can even make the autoresponder series to engage with your email subscriber for up to a year if you prefer.

Of course, you need to spend some time doing the initial work first. But once you get it all done, it will do everything for you.

That’s pretty cool, right?

But here’s the thing about the autoresponder series. This is the part that will take you the most time to get done.

And it’s the hardest thing to do too despite the emails don’t have to be that lengthy.

The simplest way to go about it

So, how can you go about it if the usual way to build an email list looks complex to you?

The answer to that question is to simply upload what you want to offer for free on a selling platform like Payhip.

If you’ve been reading my blog for quite some time, then you already know that I use Payhip to sell my books directly to readers.

But you can also use Payhip to offer something for free.

All you need to do is to add the free offer on your Payhip store like you normally would for your paid products and Payhip will handle the rest.

When your readers add the free offer to the cart, they will go through the same process as your paid products. The only difference is that they don’t have to enter any payment information.

But they will still need to enter their email address since Payhip needs it to send the file to their email address.

Just like your usual list-building, you still get your readers’ email addresses in the end.

Of course, you will still need to sign up with an email marketing platform. You need it to integrate with Payhip.

Once you integrate it with Payhip, it will add the email addresses to your designated list in your email marketing platform.

This is what Cas from Clutterbug did to build her email list. Rather than using the usual route to build an email list, she offers free printables on her Shopify store instead to build her email list.

Just to be clear that you can use any selling platform to do this. It doesn’t have to be Payhip specifically.

The reason why I recommend Payhip is that it has a free plan. And it’s what I personally use not just on The Efficient You but on my fiction author website as well.

If you’re curious about Payhip, you can read my experience with using Payhip to sell books directly to my readers right here.

The downside of this approach

Not going to lie that this approach is the simplest way to build an email list.

But the problem with this approach is that there’s no follow-up with your readers after they downloaded your free offer.

It’s because of this reason that the autoresponder series is a heaven-sent for many authors. It can help with keeping you in their mind for as long as the autoresponder series lasts.

Unless you’re actively communicating with your readers through email, they’re more likely to forget about you once they get your free offer.

If you’re someone who rarely communicates with your email subscribers unless you have a new book or product coming out, this approach will only make your email list-building effort dead on track.

So, who should use this approach then?

If you’re someone who communicates with your email subscribers regularly or you don’t have an author website, then this approach will work well for you.

Both approaches work as intended

If your goal is to build an email list, then there’s no doubt that both approaches work as intended despite their pros and cons.

The only thing that matters the most is to identify which approach will work best for your situation and run with it.

So, what are you waiting for?

Start building your email list now. As always, your future you will thank you for it.

P.S. Regardless of which approach you pick to build your email list, it’s important to let them know on social media that email is your preferred way to keep in touch with your readers.

And it’s even more so if you’re using Twitter. I’m sure that you already know how hard it is for people to see what you tweet considering how fast-paced Twitter is.

Yes, I get that it’s hard to convince people to join your email list, especially if they’re the sort of people who rarely check their email.

But if you’re wondering how you can let them know about joining your email list without sounding like a broken record, then you will find the tips that I share on my Twitter Marketing for Business guide to be useful.

You can get the guide right here on my Payhip store:

Twitter Marketing for Business Guide on Payhip

Don’t forget to use the coupon code THEEFFICIENTYOUBLOG to get 20% off on your purchase.

Love what The Efficient You has to offer?

If you find any of the guides or posts on this website useful, consider supporting me on Buy Me a Coffee. With a one-time minimum fee of $5, I can continue to provide more free resources for people like you who’d like to become full-time authors. You can also support this website monthly or annually if you feel generous. Any amounts count!