October 30, 2012

Get the Sign Up: Stand Out and Entice

by Kellie Boggs, Marketing Strategist

Organically growing your list is a critical element of any email marketing program.  One of the best ways to do so is to have a clear and compelling email sign-up.  Earlier on the Bronto Blog, Kristen Gregory talked about the importance of evaluating and optimizing " the first few touchpoints in the process: the sign-up location, form, subscription landing page and the welcome message."  By doing this exercise you are setting up your email program for true success.  Check out the examples below that hopefully will motivate you to evaluate your sign up process.

Stand out and Entice

The sign-up form should be obvious and visible on your website. Your subscribers should not have to dig to find it.  This is common-sense advice as you know, but you would be surprised at how finding the sign-up can be difficult, or in some cases impossible.  Here is a great way to evaluate (in less than 10 minutes) the placement of your sign-up.  I recommend you move the email sign-up to the top of your site.  Clearly, you can always test this against other locations, like the bottom; to be sure the placement is the best fit for you.  Additionally, I would make this area stand out visually by using graphics, colors, or animation to grab the users attention.  Feel free to play around with the font, try to bold, or increase the size, which should give your sign-up more of a visual punch and draws attention from the eye.

Below are some examples of sign-up prompts that grabbed my attention and I believe stand out.  Hopefully you are able to find them as quickly and easily as I did:

Koyal Wholesale - Check out the dedicated email sign-up in the top left of their site.  They used a different color to visually make it pop!  They also have another sign up form at the bottom of their site as well.

Koyal Wholesale Sign up Example

Samsonite - I immediately noticed their email sign-up as they are using a pop-up box to collect email.  This pop-up box took over the page offering $20 off your next order.  Now that’s grabbing attention!  They also have an email sign-up box at the bottom of the site as well and on multiple pages of their site.  This is a great idea because no matter where you look you will find a sign-up.

Samsonite Sign up and get $20 off

Express - Their email pop-up box definitely grabbed my attention within seconds of being on their site.  They used a bold pink color to make their form stand out and highlighted their incentive, being 15% off your next purchase.  They also do a good job of  briefly hightlighting what I will be receiving from them.

ThePaperMillStore.com - Has simple text at the very top of the page and uses "$5 off" in bold to highlight the incentive and a orange box to visually help the sign-up box stand out.  Overall a simple and effective form!

The PaperMill Store

Philosophy.com - They have a “free gift with email sign up link” right below their logo and once you click this link a email sign-up form drops down highlighting their incentive.

Philosophy Free Gift with Email Sign Up

Enable your sign-up to live on every page of your site

This is always a good idea because you want your sign-up to be be seen no matter where people enter your site, so don’t limit yourself to just the home page.  See "In The Next 10 Minutes: Improve Your List Growth Through Evaluation" for more ideas on where your sign-up should live.

Sell your Sign up!

Another key takeaway beyond being visible and easily located is to sell your sign-up!  Simple request requests like “sign up for email updates,” or "sign up for our newsletter,” doesn’t tell me much about what I am getting, why I should care and how I will be receiving mail.  I recommend a one sentence intro into the sign-up explaining what you will be sending and how often.  Consider doing a shortened version of your sign-up promotion, such as “Sign up for our exclusive monthly promotions and get an instant 10% off coupon!.”  You can also offer a more detailed explanation at the sign-up if you are asking for more than just email address.

Explain the benefits of signing up and set clear expectations

Make sure you mention frequency, explain what will be sent, link to an example newsletter or email, and consider offering an incentive (coupon/contest) with sign up.  By setting clear expectations you will have a better relationship with your subscribers, but remember you need to actually deliver on the promises that you set forth in the sign up.  Be on the lookout for the next part of the series that will discuss the sign up form itself, and what information to consider asking for.

Until next time please share with me any email sign up forms that you have seen that you believe stand out and are effective.  

Kellie Boggs
Marketing Strategist at Bronto

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Kellie Boggs, Marketing Strategist

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Comments

Submitted by Stuart Wooster (not verified) on

People often think that once you have a sign up form that they no longer have to do anything, but the fact is you have to push people towards signing up and as you rightly state... "Sell your Sign up!"

Submitted by Erin Schwartz (not verified) on

Great information - thanks! I agree with enabling the sign-up to live on multiple pages. You can never have too many opportunities to grow your list. I also liked the variety of examples. Each was successful in its own way.

Submitted by Kellie Boggs on

I am glad you found this post helpful! I tried to provide several different examples to get my point across, so I am glad you found this variety effective!

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