120 Ways To Grow Your Leads and Email Lists In 2017

The money is in the list. You have heard this 1000 times before, but often it just seems overwhelming with all of the get lists quick offers that you get in your email box week in and week out. All of them promise you loads of new leads with little or no effort. Unfortunately, most of that stuff is hype.

There are some ways that with work you can build a list in 2017 that will allow you to start monetizing your online efforts though. I wanted to mention 120 of them here to consider. This is rather long, so my recommendation would be to bookmark it and come back from time to time.

Note one other thing. These days it is not just about email information when we speak of ‘leads’ because that is not the name of the game today. With the explosion of internet use, smartphones, apps, social platforms, and the more online society we have, the scopr of leads has grown immensely.

You have more options now to reach your potential customers than ever before. That is why this list will encompass online, offline, smartphone, old methods, new methods, and trial methods of expanding your reach to potential customers.

I will update the list as more options appear, and it could very well be that in subsequesnt visits you will see some new method that you may think would work that you did not  think about during prior visits. You can also see what else is new here with our store and other online business efforts, some of which may be of interest to you!

So let’s get started…

One Hundred Twenty effective ways to grow your email list…

Here we go, again this is a long list, but I am sure there may be more than a few that would work for you, and certainly some that you are using right now…

1. Offer potential leads a free eBook. 

Tried and true, but too often used, make it a good one or it will get ignored these days…

2. Offer to send leads a free Newsletter. 

This is another one that has been around for years, but these days it makes sense only if you have something that is exciting and people will open that mail to read the content. Think through what it is you have to offer and make it good…

3. Add a ‘Sign-up’ Button to your Facebook page.

This is a good way of getting leads and following up with leads, since these days so many people are using the social platforms, to include Facebook…Building a following on Facebook is a great way to continue engagement from social media.

4. Plan and host a special event.

Depending in the kind of business you are into, a real live event can be a great way to gather sign-ups you can later follow up with. 

5. Research, write, and offer a Whitepaper.

Back to online methods, writing a more in-depth study or as some call it, a Whitepaper, can work. Today information is freely available on the internet, as yours will be, but people also want others to do the work for them…

6. Add a ‘Sign-Up’ button to your signature.

Make use of that signature line. Add an email list sign-up button to your signature line is a great way to capture more opt-ins.

7. Get your current leads to share your webpage with their friends.

This is an easy one and it can work. Your leads may know other interested people that could use what you have…

8. Use email lists to get leads.

A caution with this is that you should only use email addresses that you have permission to use. There are such lists out there, but you want to make sure to avoid complaints that you are spamming, and be aware that this method can increase your bounce rates, unsubscribes, and generally will not work as well as other methods. Be careful with this one, use with caution.

9. Experiment with methods.

Try different methods from this list or others that you find across the internet and see which is most effective for your target audience.

10. Eliminate wasting time on methods that do not work.

This will save you time and effort because there are too many people telling you how to increase your leads, and plain and simple, many do not work. Stop wasting time on these and focus more on the ways that ARE working.

11. Segment your lists and add to these sub groups of leads through targeting.

To increase the effectiveness of your lists, segment them to create sub groups of leads that are highly targeted to what it is that you are pushing. This again will save time and keep you focused on meeting the needs of the leads, and help you get more such targeted leads. 

12. Offer true value to your potential leads.

As mentioned, there is so much traffic out there these days, and unless your content really stands out you face your message getting lost in the cacaphony of content people se on a daily basis. Just doing this will help a lot when seeking more leads.

13. Use automation to leverage your efforts.

Let’s face it – we all have too much to do these days as we grow our online business, and the only way to get more done is to hire more people, use tools to do more with the same time we have, or combine the two to get even more accomplished. Just more production of potential material that will attract leads will help in the long run.

14. Look at your forms where you ask for leads information.

Are you asking for too much information? I have seen opt-in forms that ask for address, mobile phone, and more in some cases (like payment information). Asking for all this is off-putting for many potential leads, and you may be losing out on potential leads. Stick with the minimum information that you need! 

15. Be more specific on what you are offering.

In some cases by adding in exactly what they will get over time will help convince the wavering prospects to provide their contact information. Just asking so you can feed them more emails is not going to win over a lot of people these days, they already get tons of mails feeding them stuff they do not open.

16. Show testimonials on your opt-in page.

People look for social proof these days like never before. Just as with purchases for products or purchases having some people testify as to the value of what you are offering will make the prospect feel more comfortable and ready to provide their information.

17. Brag a little about your offer.

If you have some tremendous numbers in regards to subscribers or likes or similar, let potential leads know. As long as you are factual and do not go overboard, this can offer further social proof that prospects look for.

18. Make the offer exclusive.

Make sure that you are making the potential lead feel special. What they get by providing their information is something that others will not get. ONLY by signing up for your list will they get that information no one else has. 

19. Check the value of what you offer.

Before deciding what you should offer, do some good research on what the target audience is looking for. There may be something special that no one else is providing that you can offer that will make your offer irresistable.

20. Look for leads you may already have. 

This is a good way to grow your leads with contact information you already have. Any kind of transactional communications you may have had are potential leads, ones that are open or closed. These people may be your future customers as well!

21. Add sign up links to your pages.

Adding a link or a widget to ask for subscribers is a way that is not too intrusive and it can lead to people signing up after they have looked at content that is of interest to them.

22. Add a forward to friends option in your emails.

Simply putting this in your mail or other content pages and posts can get you leads that you are not even aware exist. People that are interested will share with others if they think the value is there when doing so.

23. Use your main website as a base.

When you add content to that main page, make sure that you market your effort using the many platforma out there such as Twitter, Facebook, Blogger.com, Instagram, Google+, etc.  Include a sign up form with the shares.

24. Create a special page for sign ups.

Surprisingly, too many people still do not do this. A form is one thing, but when they click on your call to action buttonm having a nice page explaining what they are goingto receive and using that page for all the places you share the call to action with can help a bunch in getting people to commit.

25. Make your home page as if it were a capture form.

As you look at the home page of your website, treat it as if it were an opt-in page and have the design reflect this. Alternatively you could have some pop up form that appears after a short period of time, but be careful, many people do not like these (but they DO work)!

26. Make the Opt-In like a native ad.

You have likely seen this in the online sites like Huffington Post, where sponsored content appears in the feed along with the other content. These work well, and you can do the same with your webpages. 

27. Use tools to see where your website visitors are spending their time on your pages.

There are many tools that are commonly called heat maps, and they track what the site visitor is doing on the page. You can then redesign the page to plave your opt-in forms where they are spending their time.

28. Play with placement of your opt-in forms on ALL pages to include your 404 pages.

Try different locations to see which are working the best. Use tracking pixels to detect what is working, and over time you will get more leads for your work. 

29. Require contact information from commenters.

This is a simple name and email address generally, and maybe a website. This is common these days, and it helps you also with sorting the spam from real people. The contact informaton can be used to then start interactions with these leads.

30. Offer opt-in to the site visitors ‘liking’ your content. 

You can give those you are willing to like or share your page (i.e. Facebook or Twitter) the option to sign in. Using action based tools, a pop-up can appear when they take their actionto see if they also may want to subscribe to your list for further information.

31. Add opt-in links for other similar websites, have them do the same for you.

Cross selling has always worked well, as long as there is some link between the sharing parties. It can help both parties to such an agreement.

32. Add opt-in forms to forum sites.

When permitted, and not being too pushy, add your links and forms to forum or group sites. The targeted people you are looking for visit such sites for a reason, and they may be interested in what you have to offer too. 

33. Use solo ads on other related popular websites.

If there are websites that have a lot of traffic, getting your option to subscribe may help get you more leads. Make sure that the offer you have matches the content on the page in regards to niche and etc.

34. Provide something of higher value.

Instead of an eBook or a white paper that in my mind is just overused, offer a tool or a software that potential leads can really use. It will have a much higher perceived value and get you the lead over that competitor.

35. Offer some free video training.

These days people access the internet using their mobile smartphones more than they do on their desktops or their laptops. They also look at videos more on such devices. Tap into that by offering them something that they will be able to use on those devices and from anywhere.

36. Create engaging, original, and entertaining content.

At the end of your unique and valuable content, add in your opt-in form so they can get access to more such content from you. They will be more apt to sign up after reading this kind of content. 

37. Promise more upon subscription.

Post that interesting and original content as above, but leave out some crucial and key further informatin they can only get when opting in for your lead list.

38. Try a viral competition that people will want to be a part of.

If the offer is valuable enough to people looking for what you are running the contest for, and they have to share to qualify, you will get massive sign ups and action takers.

39. On exit pop ups.

As people move their cursor off your page, a pop up asking for their contact information (along with a good lead magnet) can help get more leads. 

40. Add confirmation information as a widget on your site.

You can show what they get after signing up with you and make it visible in an area that is hard to miss. This can be done tastefully and people will be attracted and perhaps decide to take the plunge and provide their name and email address to you.

41. Use a Scroll Box on your pages.

This is a box or a pop up that appears when people start scrolling through your page. These are very effective and look sharp. You can make them any size you want using some of the tools out there, and they can be unobtrusive yet effective.

42. Create a poll.

This is also one that I have heard about for years, but guess what? They can work even today. Ask what people are looking for and get their feedback. In returnm you may offer something of value (and get their contact information).

43. Add a live chat widget to your website.

This is something that works rather well, and if the chat is Facebook based, you can capture their email and name and further market your products and services to them using Facebook.

44. Ad opt-in links to YouTube promotional videos.

This is easily done these days with the many video editing tools that are out there and in use. This will allow your potential lead to tacke action right from the video. You want tomake it easy for the potential subscriber in all cases to sign up.

45. Use pins on Pinterest that will lead to your opt-in page.

This will help as they have shown an interest by viewing and perhaps pinning your image or further study or for sharing with others. 

46. On your personal profiles on the different platforms, add in an opt-in form.

This can make it easy for them to start following you so you can then feed them your promotions and content.

47. Add opt-ins to anyone commenting on your business or brand on the social networks.

Do this in a way that is not too spammy or pushy, but it can lead to more suubscribers for you from people that happen to come across such posts.

48. Use LinkedIn.

This is an excellent platform to let other professionals know who you are and what you offer, and if you add in opt-in forms you can get leads from this platform that are of high value.

49. Use Instagram.

This platorm is gaining in popularity and many of the big brands are using it regularly and have a strong presence. You can do the same, look into tactics to get seen and add in opt-in forms as appropriate.

50. Tap into Rafflecopter.

This is a service that runs contests on Facebook. Tap into this power to get seen, grow your name and brand, and of course capture the contact information from interested people.

51. Social Platform Contests.

You can run many kinds of contests, get people to participate, then have other people vote on the best submissions, with a prize going to the winner. Of course they will have to provide their contact information, or you may be able to capture that using some of the available tools out there.

52. Use Messenger (by Facebook).

There are tools these days that allow you to get the messenger app information from anyone commenting to your social posts. Then you can directly message them using that app. 

53. Run paid Facebook ads touting your website or blog content.

You can promote a post or a website, or go for conversions or other such thing using Facebook ads, and if you learn to use the service effectively, you can grow your lists immensely in a short period of time. 

54. Use Woobox.

This site sets up quizzes related to brands and interested people share results on the social networks, and you can gather contact information from this.   

55. Use Binkd.

This is yet another tool that you can tap into to grow your leads lists. It gathers addresses from those sharing your content about your brand in exchange for their entering a contest drawing for a prize.

56. Add opt-in forms to your thank you pages.

Certainly this is a good time to present what you are offering to a potential lead, as they have purchased something from you. They have just opened their wallets and have shown interest. This is the perfect place to provide that opt-in.

57. Add opt-in forms to hard receipts.

This is more for offline businesses, but the same principal holds true. Provide a % off on their next purchase, or perhaps offer a one time special for their contact information.

58. Put a collection jar at the checkout counter.

This one has been around for ages. You know why? It works! 

59. Place opt-in flyers or table tents strategically to get people to provie their contact information.

This is one that will work as 57 does. I exchange for their contact information, they get a percentage off or some other incentive.

60. Offer a Free Phone App.

This is a great one for these days of smartphone use. People want convenience, and if they can simply tap on your app and get the service you may offer, they are more likely to shop with you over a competitor.

61. Use push notifications.

You can use the push notification feature from these apps to get direct messages to the people using that app. Such notifications are viewed by 8o to 90 % of people getting them, as opposed to 10-20 % of open rates that emails are getting these days. This means you do not have to fight with other email senders to get your content and offer viewed. Powerful.

62. Advanced push notifications.

This is taking push notifications one step further. You can use advance push notifications to set up marketing campaigns that will send our a message at a certain time or date. Very useful and allows you to provide a service to your leads, who will likely let others know…

63. Beacon push notifications.

This is yet another innovation where people within a described area will automatically get a notification on their smarphones. They enter that area, they get a message. Cool, huh?

64. Use QR codes for easy opt-in capability.

These QR codes can be added to some of the more traditional marketing materials and will allow the viewer to quickly and painlessly be subscribed to what you are promoting.

65. Ask callers to opt in.

Simple yet effective. If you do not ask, you will not get (likely).

66. Use a sandwich board to request opt ins.

This applies more to offline business maybe, but it can be effective to this day. I remember seeing such adverts years ago as a kid, and I am sure it has been going on for many years before that. Why? Again, it works.

67. Ask for email addresses as people enter into agreements or contracts with you.

This is a good way to get real contact information, and minimally a business card would be the target for this one.

68. Add your contact information to giveaways.

We have hand held fans that we give away to all of our customers. They do not have to ask, we send as a freebie for all orders. It is a useful thing that will be seen again and again over a long period of time. It gets us more business and more leads.

69. Add your contact information to packing and shpppingbags.

As with the giveaways, this can be a way to get more leads and business, you just never know where these will end up and with who.

70. Run an in-store event.

These have been around forever as well, and again they work. Gather lead information as part of the event.

71. Offer money or discount for referrals.

As with online affiliate programs, these type of offers can help get people to share with others your products or services. You win, they win, and the new customers win!

72. Use affiliate programs.

As with above, you can establish an affiliate program and have others do the selling for you, You get the sale and contact information, they get a commission from their lead lists thay buy what you are selling.

73. Run promotions on the major online sites that offer discounts.

Many such sites out there, they can help you get new customers and contacts for your business. 

74. Use direct mail.

Remember the old days when your real mail box was overflowing with junk mail? Well the reason was that was so is that it worked. Guess what? It still does. Overlooked in these days of electrons, instant messages and online ads, direct mail is still around. People are still using this method too. So should you perhaps.

75. Add opt-in invites to your invoices when shipping out products. 

Another way to get your opportunity in front of more people, this is a quick way to generate who know how much in new business and contacts.

76. Use that smartphone.

This versatile and vital tool that we all use these days has yet one more use: to gather email and contact information, The phones can talk to one another, and instantly share contact information with great efficiency.

77. Add some opt-in offer on your business card.

There is a lot of space on the back of the business card you are using, why not take advantage of that and add in some great offer for prospective leads?

78. Create a sign up form for events and promotions.

This is kind of gong back to the days before smartphones, but there is still a place for them when building your business.

79. Use hostesses at events.

This is one that I have used more than a few times with success. Their job is to get the word out about your business and brand, and also they can gather contact information. It works well, by the way.

80. Use SMS.

This is one that I have seen used rather sparingly, but on occasion it still is around. With the costs varying from place to place depending on your mobile service provider and country, it may be economical or not. It does work.

81. Use Whats App.

This is another handy little app that has come about since the advent of the smartphone, and the app works well from what I have seen to gather leads information. More changes are coming to make it even more attractive for business use, I look forward to hearing about specifics.

82. Use local advertising

Look for local opportunities to get the word out on what you are selling. See what the local population is tuning into, and then place ads on that network. It may be a local TV station, a telephone book, an online directory, a newspaper, or perhaps a community center, or similar. Do a little research and get paid in higher numbers of leads for your business.

83. Participate in community activities.

Make sure that people are aware of your contact information when you participate in community events, anything such as a fundraiser, a festival, or a church event even.

84. Start a benefit program for subscribers for anniverseries, birthdays, and such.

This word will get around and you will get new faces to your offers and promotions. Making people feel special is what it is all about. Recognizing them on their own special days is a way to do that.

85. Pay your workers for leads.

Give them an opportunity to add to their regular income if they bring in new customers for your business. This costs little and adds many benefits beyond the new lead that you get or your organization.

86. Give discounts for customers providing leads.

This is another tool that works effectively in some cases. I have paid out small fortunes for new business in the past, but made far more in sales subsequently over years and years.

87. Use Flash Sales.

These are handy little special low cost sales that you run unannounced from time to time. The word gets out, people talk about the great deals they got, and over time you get a lot of new business and leads. 

88. Use Live Streaming.

Today things have certainly changed. Anyone can go on a live stream and make a telecast promoting their product or service. This goes way beyond an on-site seminar, a Webinar (which we will talk about in a minute) or even a training class you record and put on YouTube.

89. Plan and produce a webinar.

Still effective today, this is an excellent way to gather new leads and customers. The effectiveness has been mitigated somewhat by the easier tools available that do the same better and cheaper, but there is still a place for webinars.

90. Record and upload explainer or training videos on YouTube.

This is a great way to get new subscribers, more sales, and build your name, reputation and brand. Other places to consider placing such videos would be other social video sharing websites. These too will give you more exposure and leads.

91.  Participate in live events.

Seek public speaking opportunities that may arise to promote yourself, your brand, and sales to prospective leads. Very effective and can be a lot of fun.

92. Look at Foursquare.

This is a way to gather leads from people that may have mentioned you or your business or products on the platform.

93. Use Reddit.

This is another large platform online that has huge potential, but you must be careful in your approach. Definitely lots of opportunity to get new leads. Almost any subject is covered there, but spam is frowned upon. There are some threads (sub-reddits) that you can be a little more open with, but just watch it.

94. Use Quora.

Quora is a platform for people getting answers to questions they have, and for people who answer the questions to grow a tribe of followers. These can then be sold to over time. It is a side benefit that you have to work hard to make effective, but it can and has worked.  

95. Use Justuno.

This is a site that offers coupons or customers, and may be a way to get sales and more leads even if they just stop by your website or store.

96. Set up a membership site.

Provide a central site for a community of people that have a common interest. Cater to those interests on that site, and build your leads and sales.

97. Try BuiltWith.com

This is a place that can show you how others have built their leads lists. It will give you insight on methods you might consider for your own efforts.

98. Put together a long term marketing plan.

This helps so much because your daily, weekly, and monthly activities will be focused to met the targets that you set in your plan. You definitly will get more leads and sales using such a plan.

99. Use personalization techniques.

As much as possible, make your communication as personal as possible. There are tools these days that help a lot, i.e. geo-targeting, using first names, or even local information in your promotions. use them as possible.

100. Plan for Reputation Management.

This is important in these days of social proof. One hundred great job comments can be destroyed by one negative comment. Plan for seeking these negative comments out across the social platforms and address the concerns of the parties that are not happy. This will mean you will get leads that otherwise may have been turned away by such comments.

101. Use clear, concise, headlines and subject titles.

So important because you will lose many people unless you have effective subject lines for emails and sales page headlines. Practice this and take some copywriting courses.

102. Use some emails that inform, not sell.

No one wants to only get sales promotion after sales promotion, you should also add in informative mails that will help the lead you have, Your reputation will be raised, and subscribers are more likely to pass this on to other prospects that then become leads.

103. Stay grounded.

Believe me, humor and a bit of self-depracation can be a useful thing. It shows others that you are human, have compassion, are not just about your business or youself, and can be someone they want to associate with. This attitude will help you build more leads and faster.

104.  Make sure your marketing materials are top notch.

This is your chance to get in front of many people that you cannot see in person. Therefore, the old first impression adage holds true. Present yourself in the best manner possible through good copy, nice design, and crisp and congruent graphics and images. This will get you more leads for sure.

105. Watch successful competitors.

This is a key way to see what is working and what may work for you. Emulating what works and adding your own touch will allow you to differentiate yourself, but get more leads because you are in a way doing what you know is working.

106. Make your newsletter exciting.

If you can add pizzazz and excitement into your newsletters, leads are likely to share it with others who may then subscribe. It is worth the extra time to make yours stand out from the competition.

107. Only offer quality.

This is a big one. As your time in a marketing segment increases, people will get to know you or know of you. You want them to speak highly of you, because they in turn speak to other people. This alone can bring you many new leads, and quality ones at that.

108. Do your research.

This is one tip that you should apply to your entire business. Only if you know what the prospects are looking for can you then provide it. The same goes for products, services, customer support, etc. 

109. Create a personality.

Whether for a business or an individual, you want to establish a certain personality for yourself that is unique and positive. There will be new people entering the market segment regularly, after all we are on a global stage with the internet, and people grow up, they migrate from one thing to another, and they will want to follow you and become a subsciber if you nuture your own distinct personality.

110. Sign up for competitor’s lists and follow their campaigns.

This is a good way to refine what you are doing with your marketing efforts as you see things you like that others are doing.

111. Make sure you are mobile friendly, secure, and using speed.

This is a big one too. These days people have instant gratification expectations like never before, and if your pages and website are not up to date with the standards you will lose leads.

112. Learn how to write effective calls to action.

I have been to many pages that did not communicate clearly what action they wanted me to take. Guess what? I took no action, at least not in their favor (generally I click away).

113. Use more video.

I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to use as much video as practical to present your offers and promotions or even opt-in page. People simply love video.

114. Use split testing.

Always try different versions of a page or an ad. Track the responses and adjust what you need to to get the best results possible. Unless you are measuring what is happening, you will lose leads you should have had.

115. Test one thing at a time.

If you try to test more than one thing, you will not be able to determine what was causing the difference in the responses you get. Do it one at a time, and you will know…

116. Get feedback.

For every aspect of your business, ask for and use feedback. Do this constantly. This will allow you to improve things regularly, and of course this means more leads, people like success.

117. Filter your lists.

You do not want to waste efforts and time sending mails to people that are not interested in opening them, or perhaps who no longer use the mail. It makes sense to cull the lists you have regularly – it cuts down your cost for autoresonders as well.

118. Add unsubscribe buttons or link to your mails.

This is a decent thing to do and also in many areas is required by law. Although this may not gain you more leads, it will keep the negative Nancy types out and at bay.

119. Track current events and methods, implement if appropriate.

Things are chaning ever faster these days. If you and your business do not stay abreast of what is cutting edge in your niche, you are going to fall behind, and potential leads will go elsewhere. That is just the way it is.

120.  Spend your time wisely.

You will notice that there are many of your online business activities that have a direct affect on attracting and keeping leads and making sales. Now you have to go through this lengthy list to see what areas that may need work so that you can get more leads. Spend your time wisely! 


Bottom Line…

Now you have access to a pretty thorough look at how to build leads and email lists in 2017. Some things are new and just available this year, while others have been around for over a hundred years or more.

The list, while extensive, does not offer ALL the ways to get more leads available to you. It is a goos starting point however.

Basically it is apparent that much of what you do with online or offline business is all oriented to getting leads that you can then market your products and services to.

What do you think? Am I off base here or what have I left off this list that should be considered?

Have a great day…Remember, I believe in ALL of you!



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