Is your email list running dry?
Can you almost see the tumbleweed rolling through your inbox?
Are you a little bit bored of the same old lead magnets…checklists, swipe files, templates…?
If so, I’ve got the perfect solution…run an online email list building challenge.
To listen to the podcast episode, hit play below, or read on for a more detailed overview:
Challenge…what kind of challenge?
You’ve potentially heard of the kind of challenge that I’m talking about.
A really well known and successful challenge, in the online marketing space, is the challenge that the folks down at Simple Green Smoothies run.
When you land on their website the first action that they ask you to take is to join their ‘7 Day FREE Green Smoothie Program”.
I’ve heard the founders of Simple Green Smoothies on a couple of podcasts talking about how running challenges has enabled them to grow their community, their email list, and ultimately grow their business to become hugely successful. For example, check out this episode with Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income.
Challenges are so good because they are designed to get people to take action. If people do what they are being challenged to do, most likely they will see results – so it’s a win for the participant and for you.
As the person running the challenge, you get to help people AND get their email address - helping you to grow your all-important email list.
Online challenges can often spark a lot more discussion on social media, and a sense of community, than other kinds of lead magnets, like a PDF checklist.
Sounds good…but aren’t email list building challenges really time consuming to manage?
No…they don’t need to be. The beauty lies in automation and….you guessed it…repurposing!
Usually, challenges consist of a series of steps/actions guided by pre-written content and delivered to people via email. Each challenge has a specific end result. Whether that’s to double your followers on Facebook, launch a brand-new podcast in less than a week or try a different smoothie recipe every day – the end result MUST add value to your audience.
You can create your email list building challenge by repurposing your existing content?
That would save a lot of time, wouldn’t it?
Here’s how you can run an email list building challenge…
Step 1: Decide on the end goal of your challenge
The first step is to think about what people are going to achieve at the end of the challenge.
Top Tip: The more specific the end goal, the more likely it is that people will sign-up!
Participants join your challenge because they want the result that you promised them. So, consider what your ideal customer wants and then deliver it to them.
You can discover what your target consumers want by carrying out a survey on social media. A simple Facebook or Instagram poll will work fine. Or, you could send an email out to your current tribe.
The goal is to find out what your ideal clients need help with so that you can create an email list building challenge that provides the solution to their problem.
I suggest you ask your current followers/subscribers one fairly broad question…something like, “What’s the biggest challenge you face when <insert something relevant to you/your business>?”.
Once you’ve gotten enough feedback, you can analyse your survey results, spot a problem that you KNOW you have already created content on and voila – you have come up with your challenge idea.
Step 2: Map out the journey with your existing content
Once you’ve come up with the end goal for your challenge, you can start mapping out the journey that people will take to achieve that end result.
You know that you have already created content that can be used, so review that and make a list of all of the content that you know will provide people with the most value. This may be varied content from blog posts, podcast episodes and videos.
Now you need to map out the journey people could take if you were to guide them through your content to complete the challenge and achieve the desired end result.
Remember, the challenge will be delivered via email and each email will request the participant to complete a daily task.
Maybe they’ll watch a video and follow the advice from it on the first day of the challenge.
On the second day, they could read a blog post and follow the steps suggested, etc.
On the third day they are asked to listen to a podcast episode…etc.
Don’t be afraid to play around with the framework of the roadmap until you’re happy with it. Think about what actions you want participants to take each day and remember to make each step of the email list building challenge solution orientated.
The good news is that you don’t have to spend hours creating new content for the challenge because you already have the content.
Step 3: Deliver the challenge via email
Now that you have all of your content mapped out with the end goal in sight, it’s time to think about how you’re going to bring it all together and deliver it to your subscribers.
The challenge is delivered via email.
So, you need to construct a series of daily emails that will take people through the challenge. Each email takes them a step further towards achieving the end result.
Perhaps within the email itself, you add a little more oomph to the call to action, but you don’t need to create oodles of new content. Hooray!
If you wanted, you could create a series of pre-recorded instructional videos and send those out with your emails to add a little more personality into the mix.
Set up your email campaign/challenge using an email service provider. I mean…you could send out the emails manually but why do that when you can let an email service provider to do all the work for you?
Having an automated email service in place ensures that you can use the same email list building challenge again and again – so it just makes sense!
How to Market your Email List Building Challenge
Online challenges can work wonders for growing your email list, but how can you spread the word about your challenge to attract more participants?
Create a buzz surrounding your challenge on ALL of your social media channels. Encourage your followers to sign-up and mention it in any Facebook groups you’re in (if they allow it – check first with the group moderators!).
It’s worth taking the time to get in touch with your current email list to let them know about the launch of your challenge. They might be interested in joining the challenge, and if not, you can ask them to pass the information on to someone who would be interested in your challenge.
Paid advertising on social media is one of the fastest ways to grow your email list and invite more people to take part in your challenge. Run paid ads across your social channels and make sure you emphasize that all important end goal to capture people’s attention and make them want to sign-up.
When you have run the email list building challenge once or twice, and you have people who successfully completed it, get testimonials from them. Nothing beats social proof on social media! Run paid ads to your testimonials.
Running challenges can be great for growing your email list.
You may just be sitting on enough content to repurpose it into an email list building challenge. Take a look and see!
Automation and repurposing make running online challenges fairly simple and straight-forward…so what are you waiting for?!
If you give this a go, please do let me know in the comments below.