List Building Elevator Operator

List Management

List Management - Going Up!

List Building Elevator Operator"Ground floor for Lady's and kids summer wear!, Going Up - First floor for Men's summer and sports wear!, Going up"

This is what the elevator operator would say when you got into the elevator in a department store to go up to the levels with the fancy stuff. They would tell you what was on each floor so you knew when to get out.

"So what has this to do with list building!"

I hear you say, well when you are gathering subscribers you are trying to get them to the top floor even if you have to let them get out every now and then to browse on another floor. You have to entice them back in to the elevator with the allure of something even better on the next floor. But unlike the elevator in a department store you can't tell them on the ground floor what is on each floor all the way to the top.

When it comes to your elevator operator, they would be saying something like

"Ground floor for non-runners!, Going Up - First floor for free loaders and lets have a look anyway!, Going up"

When you get a subscriber on to your list elevator your ultimate goal is to get them to the top floor, because this is where the money is. In a department store all the fancy expensive things or on the top floor and with your list elevator the top floor is where you keep the high ticket items. The top floor is where you become the expert in your field.

This is where you need to structure your list building so you get the most out of it. You are going to start with small ticket items, you may even start with free items if only to get them in and close the door. You need to let them work their way up the floors - you are not going to give a subscriber a free report and then on the download page try to sell them a $5,000 mentorship!! - by the way if you do and it works could you send me the Email address!

There needs to be let off points where they can wait a bit and study what you have provided, they need time to build up trust in what you are offering and this starts with you. From the very start be honest with them and talk in your email like you would talk if they were standing beside you.

It may be hard to believe but in getting a subscriber from picking up a free report - getting in the elevator, to buying a mentorship - walking out into the fancy goods on the top floor, will take many lists! and by many I mean you could be into double figures, so you better be good at list maintenance!

What is List Maintenance?

List Management - Show them the doorList Maintenance is ensuring that you only pay for what is paying you. Most auto-responders offer a free or low rate option for your first 500 or 1000 subscribers, so you will want to make full use of these, and you do this by controlling who stays and who goes. This is where list management comes in, if you have a list of subscribers who have picked up the free report you offered when they didn't buy your product you need to control who stays on the list:

  • If they go on to buy the product through one of the links in your email campaign you move them on to the first buyers list and off this list.
  • If they go through your whole email sequence and still don't buy your product, then you need to dump them off the list so as to make way for a new prospect.

These are the only options you should consider for this list. By moving them for the list you are doing at least one of 3 things.

  1. Reward the buyers - they get the chance to get the products to advance their business.
  2. Get rid of the dead ends.
  3. Open it up to new prospects.

If you have a list which is still within the confines of free to low cost numbers you are going to watch the goings on more than people who have surplus slots available within their current membership. If you are getting near the crossing over to paid subscription you need to take some action, you can either:

  • Send out a broadcast to your list to see if you can get some buyers to move on. - for those that don't know a broadcast is an email you send out that goes to all your subscribers at once, unlike with email sequencing where subscribers get emails based on how long they are on the list.
  • Strip out the dead wood to get the numbers back - but don't cull the list there may still be possibilities there.

Always do the broadcast before doing any culling, you may just offer something that flicks a switch in some of your non buying subscribers and convert them into buyers. Failing that you will have to cull! The sequence you need to follow is:

Final broadcast - Make sure you have a "Once in a Life Time" offer and insure you have several links in the broadcast, people can get distracted reading you message and if they have to search for your Call to Action they will be gone!

If the time wasters still don't click then it's time to cull the list. Culling your list doesn't mean a mass delete. You need to go through the list for the people that were first on the list, lists are different from industry where last in is first out with your list it's first on first off. The reason for this is simple - these are the people that have gotten everything that you have to offer and have given nothing back.

So now you can go and check out your lists, and if they are not bringing any rewards it is time to get your list management going and make space for potential paying subscribers.

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  • March 28, 2015

    Hi Brian,

    This is good advice to keep your list small enough to avoid tripping the next price increase from your autoresponder service.

    However, if you can afford it, you might also want to move your “dead-end” subscribers over to another service altogether, where you operate a “re-engagement list.” So, if your main list is on Aweber, you might, for instance, move the dead-enders to a list on Mail Chimp. The dead-end list will get mostly sales-oriented messages. If they eventually buy something, they have chosen to re-engage with you. At that point, you can move them back to Aweber where you give your good quality stuff, with far fewer sales pitches.

    The reason you want the dead-enders off you good list is so they won’t weight down your open and click-through rates, which will hurt your deliverability.

    If you don’t want the hassle of running two services, or are on a very tight budget, then you’re certainly better to cull the dead-enders and be done with them, than to have them sitting on your list doing nothing.

    You’ve given good guidelines for doing that.

    Thanks for the interesting article.


    • March 29, 2015

      Thanks Donna as you say working 2 lists helps clear the dead wood. If you are using JVZoo for your products and getresponse for your autoresponder they will work together and transfer any buyers to your chosen list. Then you can delete them off the dead enders list.

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