• Advice

10 reasons every freelancer needs to build an email list

You’ve likely heard a lot about email marketing, but maybe as a freelancer the concept sounds a little “big business” – you just need a handful of clients, so why build an email list?

But building an engaged email list has many benefits including new client acquisition.

So let’s break down ten top reasons why you need to build an email list (and then I’ll show you how to get started).

1. ROI of email marketing

Some people believe email marketing is SPAM or that it’s OLD SCHOOL.

But they’d be wrong. Here’s why

The reason email marketing works is simple:

  • There are 4.3 billion email accounts that send 196 billion emails every day.
  • Of which 91% of check their email daily.
  • 80.5% read their email on mobile devices.
  • It’s a channel that you own (not Mark Zuckerberg).

And importantly - email marketing provides the best ROI of any digital marketing channel.

According the Direct Marketing Association. Email marketing has an average ROI of $38 for every $1 spent.

So it’s clear email marketing isn’t dead and it isn’t out of date.

2. Build trust with your subscribers

John Jantsch, the author of Duct Tape Marketing, describes marketing as “getting people who have a specific need or problem to know like and trust you.”

Once you’ve got your audience to know and like you through ads, referrals and website. You continue to build trust through content. Using email marketing to introduce valuable new content to your subscribers at regular intervals.

3. Educate your subscribers

You can educate your audience on who you are and why you do what you do. You can educate new subscribers on your products and services. You can even educate subscribers on the benefits and business value you provide.

Automation is one the BEST features of email marketing.

Instead of sending a single welcome or thank you email when someone opts into your list. You over deliver by sending a series of educational emails. That introduces your new subscriber to new content related to the topic they opted in to receive.

4. To send tailored communication to specific segments

One of the most powerful features of email marketing is your ability to send tailored communication to a specific segment of your email list.

Targeted emails receive 62% more clicks than non-segmented email lists. - Hubspot


You can segment your database based on demographic information such as industry, job title, or gender. You can even segment based on behavior and interests, based on pages they’ve viewed, or geographic information down to country, county and post code.

5. To send client specific content

Just because you’ve converted a lead into a client, doesn’t mean your job is done.

Most businesses spend their money and time on gaining new clients, rather than serving their existing clients. Which can often leave their clients feeling left out or unappreciated.

What’s crazy about this is, that it costs for more to attract a new client than it does keep an existing one.

Use email workflows to follow up with clients after they commissioned you.

Let me explain.

For every new client you get. You send a series of emails to extend a warm welcome to new clients. Provide relevant information. Introduce them to new contacts and provide any information on next steps.

You can also create client specific content. And introduce them to special discounts on new products and services​

6. Because email is more important than social media

Ok we kind of said this already, but we’re halfway through and I figured you might have forgot.

If you are still not convinced how important email marketing is, here’s a quote from Amy Porterfield, Facebook marketing expert.

“The energy of your business is directly tied to the strength of your email list.”

And one from Mike Stelzner founder Social Media Examiner.

“Email is the most important channel for you to cultivate in your business.”

7. It's your most valuable asset

Seriously, businesses have been bought and sold, solely on the strength of their email list.

So you don’t want to sell your business. I get it. Neither do I.

But, you may want to create information products such as eBooks or online courses to supplement your freelance work. The success of those products will depend on the size and relationship you have with your email list.

8. Promote your products, services, offers and events

This goes along the same vein as the previous.

If you build a strong relationship with your email list and contacts what better way to promote your products and services then through your email list.

9. To get valuable feedback from your audience

One of the first things I do when someone opts-in to my list is ask each subscriber if they’d like me to answer a question they have, in a new blog post, tutorial or article.

And to hit 'reply' and say "Hey Steve, I just signed up!" and let me know, what’s your biggest challenge when it comes to online marketing?

This does two things.

  • It allows me to build a direct connection and relationship with my new subscriber. I personally reply to EVERY email.

  • I get valuable information from my audience I can use to create new content or new programs.

10. Become an authority

This one has been beaten to death. But there is still some truth in it.

If the content you send is valuable and you’re not constantly promoting your biz. You’ll win the heart and minds of your audience. And when you do that the job of selling will become much easier.

Like any form of content marketing. It works because you’re demonstrating your expertise. As opposed to just telling people you’re an expert.

Tune in here tomorrow to learn how to how to start building your list!

Stephen Mayall Stephen Mayall is a freelance marketing consultant, coach, part-time cyclist and doting dad. I help creatives, designers and freelancers generate leads, create opportunities and win clients.

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