Subscribers are the life blood of any successful content-driven website or blog. While traffic numbers are important, at the end of the day it’s your subscribers that pay the bills. This can be directly through charging for a subscription to your members area, or through selling / affiliate marketing to your newsletter list.
Here are 10 strategies you can use to start getting more subscribers straight away . . .
1. Make it easy to subscribe
Ok, so this is probably the most obvious point, but one that many people don’t pay enough attention to. Remember to make your subscription options prominent and easy to follow, paying attention to not just your homepage, but also every other page of your site. Be wary of overusing popup/pop-in subscribe boxes as these can very quickly annoy your visitors.
2. Create a dedicated sign up page
It’s worthwhile creating a page on your site that is dedicated to nothing more than adding subscribers. Once you have this set up, drive traffic to it from any source you deem relevant (AdWords, eBook link, email marketing, guest article link etc).
3. Think ‘niche’
To bring in repeat, loyal visitors to your site, I recommend you focus on a particular subject. The more specialized or niche the subject is, the better you’ll do.
If you’re just getting started, be sure to research whether there is a large enough audience in your chosen niche to make your site a worthwhile proposition. For more information, check out our SubHub article, 12 Guidelines for Choosing a Subject for Your Niche Website
4. Offer a bribe
By ‘bribe’, I’m not talking about anything unethical or illegal, but something of value that will entice your visitors to sign up.
Bribes can consist of a free eBook, a report, an online course or some free software. This strategy works best with email newsletter subscriptions, in conjunction with an autoresponder, where you can send out a series of emails.
5. Get ‘viral’
In addition to giving away a bribe on your own site, it’s also worth offering your eBook to other site owners or bloggers to give away (offer to do the same for them in return). By including a clickable link back to your site in your page footer and on the final page of your eBook, you’re greatly increasing your viral marketing potential.
6. Become a guest contributor
Contributing content to someone else’s site is a great strategy to gain exposure and build subscribers.
HOWEVER, make it clear that you require a short author biography at the end of your post, including a link back to your site. Also, be sure to offer your own original content and not something taken from another source!
7. Post in forums
It pays to be a helpful, active participant in forums that relate to your niche. People will quickly notice if you provide valuable information and are approachable. They will also be more inclined to visit your site or act on a promotional link.
8. Start a podcast
While this may take a little more effort, it’s worth considering starting a regular podcast, tied in with your site.
Once you’ve started recording your podcasts, submit them to iTunes and list them on the top podcasting directories. Be sure to mention your site in every episode, along with why it’s worth subscribing. It’s also well worth trying to get interviews with the key players or ‘authorities’ in your niche.
Podcasting is not only a great, additional form of promotion for your site – it’s also a way of creating bonus content for bribes, or for your site itself.
Hassling other bloggers and site owners for links rarely works anymore. The ‘big boys’ are inundated with this kind of requests.
Instead, find a way to help them or make their busy lives easier, either through offering guest posts, promoting them to your subscribers or making introductions to other ‘players’ who you already have a relationship with.
Remember, these are real people who will respond positively to a goodwill gesture, if you’re honest and genuine in how you approach them.
My final tip for adding subscribers is to find a blogger or site owner that publishes content that compliments your own (although doesn’t compete with it) and offer to promote them, in return for them doing the same for you. This could be in terms of a guest article relationship, site ads, free giveaways, newsletter promotion, etc.
If they have more traffic than you, or you more than them, come up with some kind of ratio deal, e.g. you get one ad on their site while they get two on yours.
Hopefully, the above tips have given you some new ideas for increasing your subscribers.
Remember though, if you’re not creating high quality, relevant, regular content, there is little that what I have outlined will do to help!