7 Simple Steps to Setting Up Your Blog’s Email Sign Up Form
Let’s look at the seven basic steps for setting up your blog’s email sign up form, and then I’ll break them down further for faster implementation. What you’re after is a way to capture emails of people who visit your blog, so you can connect with them via email.
- Step 1. Decide on a “Lead Magnet” or Free Gift you’ll give folks who sign up to your list and upload it to your blog.
- Step 2. Create a Page on Your Blog to Serve as Both a “Thank You for Signing Up” and “Download Your Free Gift” Page. (Not a Post, a Page that You’ll Not Include on Your Main Menu) Include the Access Link for the Free Gift.
- Step 3. Decide Which Autoresponder Service You’ll Use and Create an Account.
- Step 4. Search the WordPress Plug-ins Directory for the Free Plug-in That Serves Your Autoresponder, i.e., “Aweber Plug-in,” “GetResponse Plug-in,” “MailChimp Plug-in,” etc. Install & Activate Plug-in
- in a Side Widget of Your Blog.
- Step 5. Configure Your Autoresponder (AR) with a New List for “Signups from Blog,” or Similar and Create a Welcome Message for New Signups that Includes the Download Link to the Free Gift.
- Step 6. Return to Your WordPress Plug-in to Ensure it Delivers Visitors to the Page you Set up in Step 2.
- Step 7. Make Sure You Have Blog Stats in Place so You Can Track Number of Visitors Compared to Number of Sign-ups.
Step 1. – Decide on a Free Gift for Subscribers
You may have to test several items to find what yields best results. Typically, your gift shouldn’t be something longer than a 12-15 page report, something that can be easily consumed.
Make sure you identify or “brand” your free gift with your blog address or other address specific to your business. You may get visitors there too!
Secure Your Gift for Download
The fastest way to make this free gift available is to upload it to your blog’s media files. But this makes the file completely searchable online and subject to online pirates.
As an alternative, you may want to use a Dropbox or Amazon S3 account. Uploaded files aren’t found easily on those platforms.
Step 2. – Create a Download “Thank You” Page
This is the page you’ll set up to send your sign-ups to so they can download your free gift.
This page is also an opportunity to thank your new fans, tell them more about yourself, or send them to a related Facebook page or other social media property you want to share.
Step 3. – Create an Auto Responder Email Account
There are many services out there. Here are the pros and cons of the top few:
AWeber is one of the oldest autoresponder (AR) services. That counts for a lot as you’ll find they integrate seamlessly with a lot of products and services you’ll encounter in online marketing. AWeber recently became integrated with JVZoo, a popular affiliate marketing platform, specializing in info product launches.
GetResponse also integrates with JVZoo, If this appeals, get your JVZoo free account first, then set up GetResponse through the JVZoo affiliate dashboard. I understand there are less problems that way.
MailChimp is not known as friendly to affiliate marketers but they do have a free account to start out, up to 1500 sign-ups. And as all your e-mailings will be directly to sign-ups, they’ll be fine as a start. Another good thing about MailChimp is they have been prolific with their plug-ins and inetgrations with other programs.
Step 4. – Search for, Install, and Activate the AR Plug-in for Your Blog
Each of the Auto Responder (AR) programs listed above have WordPress plug-ins available to make it easy to get your sign-up form installed. Not all make it easy to include a thumbnail image of your free gift.
You’ll have to test to see what works with your blog theme and plug-in.
It may work best for you to NOT use a plug-in at all.
Look for the snippet of code your AR provides for your sign-up form. Copy and paste that into the standard “text” style widget. Then upload the thumbnail image in your media files and insert the image into your “thank you/download” page.
Now, select the full code for that image insert. It’ll begin with img src=http://…” Be sure to keep the beginning “<” and ending “>” tags.
Copy and paste that image insert code into the text widget, just above your sign up form code. That should cause the image of your free gift cover to appear above your sign-up form.
Have the image displaying and it should increase your sign-ups.
Step 5. Configure Your Autoresponder
This one is a difficult step to explain as every company has a slightly different way of setting up.
You’ll need the following two items in place:
1. a group or list that your blog sign-ups will flow into
2. (optional – and preferred) a welcome email message (or series of messages) that goes out automatically whenever someone signs up
Aweber has what they call a “Success” page where you list the link address for your “Thank You – Download” page.
Step 6. Revisit the Plug-in to Ensure The Group or List is Set
Now that your list or group is set up in your AR, go back and revisit the plug-in to make sure all the settings are what you expect. Test it with a personal email address you have.
If you’re not using a plug-in, go ahead and test to make sure your email is added to the appropriate group and that you are delivered to the correct page for downloading the free gift.
Step 7. Install Blog Stats
Many AR services have built-in stats that help compare how many visitors sign up and how many don’t.
Don’t miss this opportunity to find out how desirable your free offering is!
Congratulations on successfully setting up your gateway to beginner blog traffic!
Other posts of interest on this topic:
from Barbara Dowling
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