John, Thank you for this comprehensive review of some of the most popular and well-used services. Over the last decade I have tried many and appreciate your perspective on each. I currently use GetResponse (as I’d not been as active and appreciate the price-value relationship for 1,000+ contacts. I know they’ve grown considerably and now offer many of the features of which you speak of other services you prefer. I would appreciate your updated 2018 review. THANK YOU!
I learned list building from the legendary marketer Frank Kern (you’re welcome Frank!). Frank prefers to write and queue only one initial welcome message and the rest he delivers live as a broadcast message. This does take more work but keeps your messages timely, relevant, and news-worthy. Ultimately it’s up to you on how to implement your list strategy.
When you use a software or vendor to send out the emails spend some time and customize the messages that go out with each email. Try to make the registration process easy and inform the users what is happening at each stage. For example once they enter their name and email the first time, let them know that they need to confirm their email address in order to finalize the registration.
In contrast, the European Union's "Privacy and Electronic Communications Directive" restricts websites' ability to use consumer data much more comprehensively. The EU limitations restrict targeting by online advertisers; researchers have estimated online advertising effectiveness decreases on average by around 65% in Europe relative to the rest of the world.:58
I so often forget that people can sign up to an email list in places other than an email capture form on my site. Depending on your email software, there is likely a landing page devoted to acquiring email signups. You can get the link and share it in a huge number of different places like email signatures, social media messages, and guest blog bios.
In both of these examples, it’s important to note that the lead form is simple and only asks for the necessary contact information, such as email and first name. The more contact information you ask for, the less likely your leads will be to fill out the form. You will need to work to build trust before you can gather the rest of their contact information. However, for the purposes of building your email list, you only need their email address. Work on getting any other information you need later after you’ve established a relationship with the customer.
Getting started shouldn't be daunting. Generally, you'll know right away whether you like a user interface (UI) or not, and most of the contenders we reviewed offer free trials so you can poke around before dropping any cash. Luckily, most of these services have modern-looking graphics and uncluttered layouts. These are not the complex business software UIs of yesterday. Be careful, though, as some free trials require a credit card. This means you need to be sure to cancel your trial before you're billed if you're not happy with the service.