A large blog subscriber list is what most people are after when they begin blogging. I can tell you right now it's what I'm looking for. Yes, blogging is used to drive website traffic but ideally you turn that traffic into a loyal following. Doing this is tough though. I've stumbled across some great content in the past but without an obvious and clear way to sign up, people often ignore the call.
I'll let you into a little secret. If I'm searching the web for the latest interesting blog posts and I come across a site that looks inviting and signing up is very easy, my name goes strait on the list. Sometimes before I've even read any content! Do you know why? Because if every element of the site is pointing me toward becoming part of something, it's hard to resist the pull.
If you want to triple your subscriber list in the next 30 days, you have to implement these must have elements. Not one or two, but all. Complete each element and put together the subscriber puzzle.
Good landing pages are one of the most important factors when it comes to gaining subscribers. Visitors to your website can come and go, but if there isn't something shouting at them to sign up it's just not going to happen for you. Put it this way, if you had just read something that was fairly interesting but had never heard of the site or the author before, would you openly go looking for somewhere to sign up, I don't think so.
So what's the key to a great landing page? Well there are a few. One of the most important factors is how central they are to your page. If you have a little box tucked away in the corner of your website with poor font and bad images, no one is going to want to sign up. The most basic of principles is making your landing page clean, effective and to the point. Here is a previous landing page of mine that was very successful…
As you can see, we've got a hook, something to catch the readers attention early on "Here's what I'm going to show you" Followed by a short but concise explanation about the blog, a simple email and name box followed by a button.
Don't use the word "sign up" on your button, In general people don't like this. The word "sign up" makes people think they are going to be bombarded with spam mail or they will be making a big commitment to you. Instead keep it lite. "I'm in" for example.
If you run a blog or website that is all about you as brand, I find giving your landing page a face drastically increases sign up rates. A basic image usually does the trick.
Make social sharing easy
For the people who do visit your blog, you want them to give you as much exposure as possible. Imagine it like a stone being thrown into a pond, each ripple represents another share, like, pin and retweet in our metaphor. Again, just like our landing page dilemma, people don't usually want to go hunting for a way to get the result they want. They really want to click a button and have the article shared on their preferred social media platform.
This might not actually involve someone putting their name and email into your sign up form but the more your articles are shared the more chance you have of catching someone who is open to signing up.
Offer something free
It's an old school trick but it still has the same affect. From a human point of view, we love free stuff. I'm the same I just can't help myself… and if it looks like something I'm interested in, it's pretty much a dead cert I'm going to stick my email address in.
One of the most popular free gifts comes in the form of an E-book. For example, if you run a cooking blog your free gift could be "The 10 best meals ready in under 20 minutes". Now this E-book doesn't need to be any longer than one of your blog posts, but repackaging it in book format will massively increase your success rate. You can have this displayed as a classic landing page or placed on the sidebar of your website. If your getting creative, set a pop up to appear after a few seconds.
So this is all about getting in front of the reader. If by some miracle they have managed to ignore the pull of you brilliant landing page, you then throw a huge curve ball in the form of a pop up. A good angle is to shorten up and slightly change the wording on your original landing page. Making it short, snappy and to the point. As you can see the pop up on my blog has a direct approach and a "to the point" message .
Linking back to the "offer something free" section of this article. This is a great place to push sign up's for your E-book.
Spend a little
If you've got a little extra lying around, this could be the way to go. Everyone is on social media these days and with the effectiveness of algorithms used by sites like Facebook and Twitter, it's getting easier to get your content in front of people who want to read it.
How much to invest is up to you, as little as a £1 per day has been effective for me. You don't have to invest a fortune to get people sharing and talking about your articles. Don't blow your whole budget in one swoop though. Invest small amounts each time, monitoring your success rate with certain keywords and demographics. After a short amount of time, you should have your target audience narrowed down, reducing your loses and increasing your return on invest.
People like people
Being the face of your blog is a highly effective weapon in the race to bag subscribers. Don't get me wrong, there are some fantastic resources out there that don't put a face to their blog. But people want to listen to other people not a faceless entity, and if you manage to come across as likeable, you've got a good chance of increasing your subscriber rate.
The round up
Gaining subscribers is tough, unfortunately it seems like every man and his dog is blogging these days. Which is great by the way because there is always something interesting to read, but people like their set blogs and bloggers, prizing them away can be difficult.
It's a challenge, there's no doubt, but with a few simple tricks and armed with some savvy blogging knowledge there is no reason why you can't see your blog subscriber list triple and even quadruple in a month.