BWMagic’s Internet Marketing News
List Building – Is It Still Relevant On Today’s Web?
Years ago, when I first started in online marketing, all the rage was
something called “list building”. I immediately jumped on this subject
and started gathering every list building technique one could possibly
imagine. It very quickly became one of my most favorite areas of Internet
marketing to explore; so much so, that when I reached my first goal of
getting 1000 subscribers, I was so pleased with myself, I even wrote an
ebook on list building.
But that was then, this is now.
Since that time, online marketing and even the web itself, has changed
tremendously. And we are not talking about small changes or minor
adjustments here – the web has fundamentally changed from the core up.
People simply use the web in a different way than they used it 10 years ago.
It has become so much more of a user-friendly place, so much so, that
marketing on this friendlier web has become a whole new ballgame.
The question remains: is list building still relevant on today’s web?
The answer is still a solid “YES”, but the “WAY” lists are built have
almost changed completely. Not too long ago, traditional list building
meant you slapped some sign-ups forms (provided by your webhost or an
autoresponder service) onto your web pages and you were in business.
Subscribers who signed up to your list or newsletter, would receive
follow-up emails from you or your site.
Anyone could do it since it was so straightforward and so simple,
almost to the point of being idiot-proof. However, the underlying
key to building a successful list was gaining loyalty and forming a
lasting relationship with your subscriber. Successful online marketers
and list builders will tell you, this was really the hardest part.
Communicating effectively with your subscribers over a long period of
time is extremely difficult to do and does require gaining some skills,
especially in the copy writing area.
So what has changed the list building process?
In a couple of words, three to be precise: social networking sites.
These social networking programs and sites have completely changed how
lists are built on the web. Actually, these social network sites such
as FaceBook, MySpace, Twitter, YouTube… have made list building as
easy as taking your next breath. List building is integrated into these
programs so seamlessly, many users are unaware they are actually building
Simply by using these social networking sites any webmaster or marketer
can build a list of contacts or subscribers. Call them friends, fans or
followers – they are your subscribers and you can easily reach them with
your next posting, tweet or video. There are countless teenagers on many
of these social networks who have subscribers that number in the 100’s of
thousands, even in the millions. And the rate at which they build their
list of subscribers, would put many a seasoned marketer to shame.
There are several reasons why this new way of list building is much more
effective than traditional list building methods. First, building your
list of contacts is fully integrated into these network programs, often
it is the main goal or purpose of the program. Seeing how many followers
you can get on Twitter has become a world-wide sport – just go ask Ashton Kutcher!
However, from a marketing perspective, using these programs elimenates
one of the major drawbacks of marketing on the web – spam. Actually,
contacting your list by email is becoming troublesome, even with double
opt-in, many of your emails never get through to your legit subscribers
because they are blocked by spam-filters and Internet service providers.
Using these social programs is a way of contacting your subscribers without
the whole issue of spam being considered at all.
Perhaps, an even more important reason to use these social media sites to
build your list, has to do with the tricky problem of establishing relationships
with your subscribers. These sites make it much more easier to build that
long-lasting relationship with your contacts. In the case of YouTube, it can
simply mean making a video and talking directly to your subscribers.
Communication is direct and immediate. In most cases, there’s no need to
acquire additional skills or techniques. Besides, in most of these social
network sites, the communication is often more effective because it’s just
not one-way, your subscribers can easily communicate back with you.
Same goes for Twitter, which has become the list building tool of choice
for many webmasters and online marketers. Twitter is an excellent medium
for building your list. It can be used effectively to get your message out
to thousands of like-minded followers and have that message spread rapidly
around the web. Marketers are now taking advantage of such a system to market
online, but be aware abusing this program will get you banned especially if
you just use it to send spam. Like any type of marketing on the web, you
shouldn’t have any problems if you keep all your communications/interactions
real and human.
Another element of these programs which can’t be denied, they are all free.
Anyone can use these social network sites to quickly build their list or lists
without having to worry about paying for it. Actually, in the case of YouTube,
you can become a partner and earn revenue from Google Adsense while building
There’s also no denying these social network sites have changed not only list
building, but how we use the web. These programs have a “pooling” effect on
all web activity, gathering like-minded individuals into or around certain
“pools” on the Internet. These concentrated pools of people can be formed
around a certain topic or even around a certain person. These are excellent
areas in which to carry out your list-building activities and your online
marketing efforts since they provide very targeted prospects. Ones you can
easily contact and communicate with by using these social networking sites.
While the old traditional email list should not be forgotten, list building,
as we know it, has been changed forever by the introduction of these social
networking programs. And as these network sites become more and more popular,
they will play an even greater role in all your list building efforts. A role
that can’t be ignored or dismissed, especially if you want your list building
to be truly effective.
If you need more help with building your list – try this link:
Helping You Succeed Online Since 2002!