Ultimate Email Marketing Part 3 – How To Get Email Subscribers

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In the previous part of my email marketing series I showed you…

How to setup an engaging email autoresponder.

This time round we are going to add the finishing touches to our opt-in sequence to squeeze even more value out of our efforts while looking at how to get email subscribers!

Extracting More Value From Email Subscribers

In the first part of the series we learnt about the user journey every new subscriber goes through.

It looks something like this-

  • Enter name/email address
  • Taken to the confirmation page
  • Confirm their email address
  • Taken to the thank you page

At the moment we are just using the default confirmation & thank you pages that Aweber provides. But we can create our own that will allow us to get even more value out of our new email subscribers.

We are going to play on the simple methodology that once a user takes action, they will take action again – if you ask them to.

For example in the user journey above once they are on the thank you page we could ask them to follow us on a social network, buy a product or share our site.

The vast majority of people that subscribe will take the action you ask them to take on the thank you page – so make sure you are taking advantage of that.

This is what my thank you page looks like right now-

new email subscribers thank you page

As you can see it is very simple and the only thing they can do on that page is the action I want them to take, which is to circle me on Google+ at the moment. There are no other distractions!

Creating Your Own Pages

The first thing you need to do is create 2 pages on your site. The first one will be our custom confirmation page and the second one will be our custom thank you page.

If your Wordpress theme supports it ideally you will use a full width template that removes any sidebars/distractions. Not every theme has that so don’t worry if yours doesn’t.

Confirmation Page

This is what my custom confirmation page looks like. Note the template section in the bottom right corner where I have selected my full width template.

how to increase email subscribers with a custom thank you page

As you can see the page gets straight to the point telling people what they need to do to confirm their email address.

This is what the published page looks like-

final confirmation page

Once you have set yours up publish it and make a note of the URL.

Thank You Page

The thank you page is where the real magic happens and is the last page people will see in your opt in user journey after filling out an email signup form.

This is the page where we are going to ask the user to take action and continue their journey.

You can pretty much do what you want on this page, as long as its asking them to do something else that adds value to your site in some way.

If you run an e-commerce store for example you might ask people to share the page to unlock a discount code for example.

edit your email signup form thank you page

On this blog I just ask people to follow me on a social network which is Google+ at the moment but I do change it occasionally.

Once you have the thank you page ready, publish it & make a note of the URL.

Quick Tip: If you publish your confirm/thank you pages & want to stop them showing up on your blog use this plugin & select Hide everywhere pages are listed when editing the page.

Adding Them To Aweber

With the hard part out of the way all we need to do now is plug the URL’s of our confirm/thank you pages into Aweber (see my full Aweber review).

It only takes a minute to do!

Setting Up The Confirmation Page

The first thing we need to do is edit the form we created in Aweber with the URL of our confirmation page.

To do that just go to Sign up forms, find the form you created in part 1 of the series & on edit.

Edit Aweber email optin form

On this page you can see the option to change your thank you page but do not get confused here, this is where we setup the confirmation page. Not the thank you page.

If you click on the drop down you’ll get a few options, choose Custom Page.

Change your custom thank you page

Then you can just paste in the URL of your custom confirmation page.

Make sure it is the confirmation page URL you have entered and NOT the thank you page asking the user to take action.

Update your confirmation URL

Once you have done that save the form! That is the custom confirmation page setup & working!

If when you added the form to your website you used the raw HTML option Aweber provides, you will need to update that code on your site.

If you used the official plugin or Javascript code though you don’t need to change anything.

Setting Up The Thank You Page

Last but not least is adding the custom thank you page to our Aweber setup.

Just go to List options > list settings > confirmed opt in then scroll down to section 2 & 3.

Thank you page fully setup

Make sure option 2 is enabled!

Then all you need to do is paste the URL of your thank you page into section 3, labelled success page like I have in the screenshot above.

Once you have done that save the changes and you are done!

You have now setup your custom confirmation & thank you pages – feel free to give the improved process a try by subscribing to your own email list.

How To Increase Email Subscribers

Now you have an engaging auto responder running along with your custom pages above, all you need to focus on is how to get email subscribers.

There are lots of different ways to do that but I’m going to show you a few simple tricks you can integrate today!

All Paths Lead To Optin

The first thing you should do is make sure you have placed opt in forms in key areas of your site.

In the first part of the series I showed you that I have optin forms placed-

  • 2x in the sidebar
  • At the end of posts
  • Inline with content

Make sure your site is setup in a similar way – remember the main goal of your site should be to get people to subscribe.

If you take a look at my about me page for example you will see the entire page is setup with one goal in mind.

I have even them placed underneath videos and any key area of interest.

So spend time going through your site placing opt in forms where they will get the most attention.

Creating The Inline Optin Form

I get a lot of questions asking me how I add the inline optin form to my posts so I’m going to share the code with you. It looks like this-

Want more great tutorials like this? Just enter your email and click “Sign Me Up!”

Basically it is just a chunk of custom HTML code that I paste into post/pages wherever I want it to appear.

You can download the inline optin code below:

Once you have downloaded that just follow the usage instructions to set it up and add it into all of your existing posts!

Comment Redirect

Staying true ensuring all paths lead to opt in – I also try to encourage anyone that leaves a comment on the blog to subscribe.

Don’t forget when someone takes action once (leaves a comment) they will take action again (subscribe) if you ask them to!

So when someone comments on the blog for the first time they get redirected to this page-

how to get email subscribers with a comment redirect

As you can see it is simple, straight to the point and uses the inline optin code.

If you want to do the same thing on your blog just create a page like mine then use the comment redirect plugin.

Attention Grabbing Popups

One of the other quick wins to get more email subscribers is to add some attention grabbing popups to your site.

There are lots of different types of popup you can use-

  • Lightbox – A huge opt in popup appears over the top of your site triggered after a set time or when someone is about to leave your site
  • Footer bar – An opt in bar that sticks to the bottom of the users browser when they scroll up/down
  • Slide in – An opt in box that slides up from the bottom right corner

You have probably seen these kind of opt in popups in use across the web. I use the lightbox popup on this blog-

email optin form popup

There are lots of different plugins to add attention grabbing popups to your site but personally I use OptinMonster (see my full Optinmonster review to learn why).

It comes with lots of different types of popups, lots of templates that are easy to customise and you can split test them to see which design works best.


There are a bunch of other advanced features like page level targeting, analytics, split testing & more to play with!

OptinMonster also makes it easy to add sidebar opt in widgets and adding forms at the end of your posts if you are struggling with that.

Bribe To Subscribe!

One of the oldest tricks in the book to get more new email subscribers is to offer people a bribe to sign up. Some people calls these lead/subscriber magnets but I just call it bribe to subscribe!

In essence you offer something for free in exchange for a persons email address. This might be an eBook, video, product, coupon code or something else.

The most common bribe offered in the internet marketing niche is usually in the form of an eBook. I’m sure you have seen people doing it!

I don’t use the bribe to subscribe method directly on my blog because I want my email list to be full of people who are genuinely interested in hearing what I have to say rather than bribing them into hearing what I have to say.

That is just my personal opinion though and there is no doubt that I would have a lot more subscribers than I do now if I did offer a bribe to subscribe!

However it is generally a good idea to offer something to new subscribers. Spend time creating an superb eBook that delivers value & creates a great 1st impression.

This will create a great relationship with your new email subscribers from day 1!

I target people on Facebook with an advert to download an eBook-

how to get email subscribers for your blog with Facebook ads

Which takes them to the bribe to subscribe page I created with LeadPages

leadpages template 1

When someone fills out their email address & signs up they are taken to a page to download the report, click on a hosting affiliate link & like my page on Facebook.

That process works really well for me and is a great way to reach new subscribers.

So don’t be afraid to offer a bribe to subscribe!

Sending Bulk Email

So now you have setup an email list, created an engaging autoresponder sequence & sprinkled it all with a few tricks to get more subscribers.

The only thing you need to know to master the basics of email marketing is how to send out a bulk email to all of your subscribers.

This is what Aweber calls a a broadcast email – an email that gets sent to all of your email subscribers.

Typically I send broadcast emails when I publish a new blog post or have an important announcement.

For example when I publish this post I will send a broadcast email to let all my email subscribers know about the new post.

Sending Your First Broadcast

Creating your broadcast email is easy! Just go to Messages > Broadcasts then click on the big green Create A Broadcast button.

Create a new email broadcast

Then you can just use the text editor to compose your email! Don’t forget about the personalisation fields you learnt about in part 2.

I have just written the email that I’m going to send out after I publish this post-

Write your broadcast email

When you have written your email ALWAYS click on the black Test button to send yourself a copy.

Trust me it is better to test the email and make sure everything is ok now rather than sending it out to thousands of people and then spotting your mistake.

Once you are happy with it click save and move onto the scheduler settings.

email scheduler

If you want the broadcast email to go out on a specific day or time then you can do that here. It will automatically send out at the right time based on each subscribers time zone.

But if you want to send the email right now just click on the big green Save Message button.

When you do that you will see this-

send now

Just press the green Send Now button to instantly send it to all of your email subscribers!

It is as easy as that!

Wrapping It Up

So there you have it, now you know how to increase email subscribers and get more value out of them with a custom thank you page.

If you have followed all 3 parts of the series…

 You now know everything you need to know to be an effective email marketer!
It is important you have an email marketing strategy in place from the first day you launch your site – email subscribers are the life and soul of any business online.

What You Have Learnt

Here is a quick recap of what you have learnt-

That wraps up the getting started with email marketing series – if you have any questions just ask in the comments below!

What Are Your Thoughts?

28 Responses

  1. Hello Matt,Veryinspiring series of posts. I can say that until now I hav unertimate the power of email marketing. I will try what yu have suggeste even if my blog has not so many visitors.One quick question:When you sen a neswletter to all of your subscribers (If I remember well from one of your income reports you have more than 60.000) what ae your open rates and click through rates?Keep upthe goo work m8

    1. Glad you enjoyed it :)It really varies depending on what im sending out as the list is more responsive to some things than others

  2. Hi Matt, Thanks for the insights. I liked the personal touch in the Thank you page right after the signup. Anyhow, I use Mailchimp for now (till i get more subscribers) and wondered why you prefer to create the Confirmation & Thank you pages on your own website. I mean you can easily use the same text on a page hosted with Aweber. I’d like to know your reason. Also, my own blog has different voices (owner, editor, authors) so would it be better to task people to follow the blog page (G+, FB etc) or my own?

    1. I like to have control of the user experience and adding those personal touches as you’ve already observed 🙂

  3. really love your article …… you just share the information that i need to learn & grow in SEO today …… Just awesome !!!

  4. Hi Matthew, This is an interesting tutorial. Each of the steps to be followed when creating an effective email marketing campaign is clear. The use of the right tool like Aweber and the creation of an engaging content is readily revealing! Personally, I have learned new email marketing tactics. I have downloaded in PDF format and bookmarked for future reference! I upvoted this post in kingged where it was shared for online marketers and bloggers.http://kingged.com/started-email-marketing-part-3-subscribers/

  5. Nice and informative article on Email Marketing. Your all provided information gives a lot of knowledge about email marketing. I also prefer this method and your articles are helping me for understanding the Email marketing in a detail. Thanks for sharing this great article.

  6. Hey Mat, Great share. I am using GetResponse as my newsletter. Anyway, this makes totally sense as most of the people uses Aweber. Look forward for the next part of the series.

  7. Great tutorial Matt. In my opinion, email is losing its importance day by day and social is taking place pretty fast. Also, is there a good alternative for Leadpages?

    1. When I push my new posts to social media it picks up a handful of visitors, when I send an email I have 150 people active on the site instantly.I disagree :PThere isn’t really a leadpages alternative except for finding HTML templates/editing them manually and integrating your own split testing solution.

  8. Hey, Matt. Okay, so colour strokes and a bit more personal with the picture. I’ll have to run some tests then and see which type of colour mix and picture + wording work best. xD Cool, thanks for the feedback.

  9. You are always doing Great job in your posts Matt, great part with great resources, Thanks Matt for your efforts :).

  10. Hey Matthew,These all parts are great. I learn lots of things in these three parts. Email subscribers rock.I will implement these tips on my blog Matthew. Thank you for sharing these valuable insights and tips with us buddy… 🙂

  11. The long awaited final piece is finally here! The bribing always works, people will always subscribe easier if they are offered a free course or pdf. Or a sequence tutorial/post. I forgot to ask you something, Matt: I want to make an optin form for my blog, I have some drawing talent I could put to good use. What optin do you think would be most efficient and visually appealing: a) coloured text, with bullets and a catchy phrase? b) a video with me talking?c) a picture with me and an audio in the background?d) a hand drawing opt in? I’m not sure how to make an audience in IM, Data Analysis and Entrepreneurship show more interest and use the optin. I’d love to hear your opinion on a, b, c or d when you have the time. Rox

    1. Hey Rox,I would say the combination of a picture of you with bullets/phrase would work well – in terms of colour it should stand out from the rest of your page rather than blending in!

  12. Another great valuable article on Email marketing.Somehow Aweber changes the links to “aweber.xxxxxx.com” like their own tracking link when you choose the track this link option.Not sure if it is just my problem but sometimes I see that instead of the original link.

    1. Yeah it does that if you leave it ticked.What you can do instead is create a html email and wrap the href code around the naked URL so the naked URL stays the same, but what it links to gets replaced with the aweber.xxx code

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