3 Steps to Build your Email List

automation blog building your funnel business strategy business strategy tips business systems email marketing time saving strategy Oct 31, 2020

I talk a lot about email marketing with my one-on-one clients and in my course, but I haven't done any blogs on it, except I do share quite a bit that it is the number one way I was able to scale to five-figure businesses, which now makes a six-figure income while working full time. So hands down, it would be the first thing I would focus on. If I could go back and do it again.

First,  I wanted to just give you a quick fact to noodle on around email marketing and why it's so important. If you use email marketing right now, every new subscriber is an extra $1 per month in income. So let's think about that.

  • If you have 200 subscribers, let's say, which is not like a crazy number to get to, that's an extra $200 a month. That's a great income to have as a side hustle. If you have 2000 subscribers, that's about $2,000 a month, and I have to say the math works. So when I read this fact, I was like, huh, that's interesting. And is totally true. So it truly reflects what your income could be based on how many subscribers you have.

I really wanted to share three easy tips that you can use to start your email list. And I'm going to take the complication out because I think when people think of starting an email list, they get all uptight about funnels, tools, and backend systems and all the complicated sort of techie stuff, which by the way, it's not that complicated. As in, it's not hard. You're going to have a new freebie to give to your clients on Monday.  Right now it is, October 29th, and Instagram just launched or mentioned or rolled out that they are not using hashtags between now and the election for various reasons. So while this is not a huge deal in the short term, it is a very relevant reminder that you do not own any of your social media content. They can change it, they can take it away at any time.

If you are more a podcast person - Grab my podcast on this here!

The algorithm changes all the time and you always have to stay on top of what's going on. And I would be lying if I said that I didn't focus a lot, a lot of time on social media, but I really liked to diversify where I'm focusing my efforts. So the hashtag issue, as an example, is not really an issue because I know that I have my email list and my Pinterest strategy and my podcast strategy to rely on, to find and attract and nurture clients in a lot of different ways.

I know when you first get started, this is very overwhelming. And you're like, how the heck do I focus on all the things at one time? And if you listened to my podcast, you know, that I tell you to only focus on one thing at a time, but I'm going to break my rule.  And I'm going to tell you that you should focus on one social media platform that you're really good at, and really you really liked to use but then also build your email list in the background and in parallel, so that you do have something to fall back on and you don't have to rely on social media for all the things.

1. So step number one is kind of a myth, but you do not need a website to start. In fact, you really don't need anything to start, except you need to choose a provider. An email provider. That's going to allow you to create a system where when somebody downloads, whatever you're offering, you're going to be able to contact them. 

Now, do you not get analysis paralysis around this. Because I know a lot of you ask me questions all the time of which one should I use. There are two that I recommend.

  • First of all, I use Convert Kit. I'm obsessed with it. It's very easy. It is not pretty. So that means that I have to put my own graphics in it, but I like that it has a strategy for me long-term so that means when I'm making seven figures and I have millions of subscribers, I can still use Convert Kit. I think some of the other providers like MailChimp as an example, might not have that capability. And so I know that choosing Convert Kit is going to help me long-term.
  • The other email provider that I personally have not used, but I have seen in use. And I have seen how you set it up on the backend is Flow Desk which is brand new. It's actually a woman-owned company, which I love and it's much more, I don't want to say user-friendly cause I think Convert Kit is user friendly, but this is much more graphically friendly, which means they have like delivered templates and things like that, that you can use. So those would be the two that I would recommend.
  • As a bonus, I have a link for you to try Conver Kit for free if you would like to use it. 

You can literally do this step in 30 seconds while you're reading this and have step one knocked out the seconds.

2. The second step then is to choose a freebie or what they call a lead magnet. And let's put it really simply a freebie should get your ideal client a super quick win. It should be jam-packed with value. There are a couple of different ways that you can do this.

  • You want to ask your current client what they like and what helps some of the most, like what are the questions that people are asking you to solve and then to test it out.
  • If you have an idea, give it to somebody to try it out or give it to a current client to see if it's helpful for them.
  • And it makes sense. Or if you're in a group coaching program ask somebody to use it and see if it works, makes sense.

The key piece of this is you really, really want to make sure that you test it out first so that when new clients or new potential clients receive it, they are just blown away by the value.

That is your mission with this lead magnet. Now let's go back to step one super quick. I mentioned that you don't need a website. So when you have your platform set up, so you picked your provider. A lot of them have free lead pages that you can use that act as a temporary website.

  • So if you use Convert Kit, as an example, you can use of their lead page templates, you can then connect your freebie that you created to it. And literally, you can do this in like 30 seconds.

It is not hard, but back to creating the lead magnet, the question I always get... Holly, why do you give all this stuff away for free?

And I will say my number one mission is my in my business is to provide as much value as possible. So for me, giving away content that is going to help you one learn who I am and how I teach and help you build your business is something that I'm going to do all the time, but you don't want to worry about giving too much away because honestly there's so much that you can teach. If you give away something that is so amazing, they're going to want to come back for more. And so I say, don't worry about giving it away, give them value.

  • Another really easy way to do this is to pull out a piece of what you already do or what you've already created. So let's say that you created a course, it's got 10 modules in it. Maybe one of the modules you can pull out two of the things, and that is your lead magnet
  • Or if you're a service-based provider or in network marketing, maybe you give your clients a meal plan or some sort of checklist every month. Give that away as your lead magnet.

It's really easy and should not take a ton of time. Just to recap, you want to make sure that it's a super quick win and something that provides massive value. You also want to test it out and make sure that it's getting the results that you expect, and you don't want to spend a ton of time creating it.

For more ways to automate your business and my best practices to creating a lead magnet that converts guide - Grab your Side Hustle Starter Kit!

You should already have this content but if you don't, try Canva. I probably give this tip in every conversation that I have about lead magnets, but Canva, is an amazing tool. However, here's the bonus scoop....when you go into Canva and you go into their Pinterest section, they have done for you lead magnets, that are amazing. 

3. You made a super quick template and you're ready to go. So now when they download this amazing resource, you want to make sure that you create a nurture sequence that follows it. Now, this is where everyone starts to get panicky and they're like, I'm not ready for this. I don't know how to do all of these emails. I'm going to give you a couple of options.

  • An ideal nurture sequence should be four to five emails delivering the lead magnet. So the very first email should be like, yay, you're in or congrats or whatever you say. And then deliver the lead magnet. Typically the second email is then how to use it and providing extra value. And then the third through the fifth email is typically providing more value, giving an update on who you are, what your style is, what you do, and then potentially if you're ready, leading them into whatever is next in your product suite, that's sort of the ideal methodology. 

But if you are not ready for that, there are a couple of different options.

  • The first thing that you should do is always have that first email. So it should always when they download the template or whatever it should always be followed with, Hey, here's your download or whatever that is. 

You don't have to create this like a long sequence if you're not ready, but here's the tip. You do not want a dead end. So you do not want them to take the time to give them your email and then send them us and then get nothing from you. So if you're not ready for the four to five emails in that sort of ideal nurture sequence, here are a couple of things that you can do. One after the sort of here's your download. You can send them an email.

That's just like a, Hey, here's who I am. And here's how you can contact me. So maybe you point them to your Instagram or your Facebook group or whatever that looks like. At least then they know where they can find where you're giving updates. You can also follow up with a second email. That's just a piece of value. The third thing that you can do is just put yourself on a schedule where once a month you are checking in or providing something. And again, you can do very simple things, like give a life, update, provide another piece of value and just do it on a monthly basis.

The key here is, as you want to commit to a schedule, even if you don't have anything else to sell, you have so much information that you can add value. So get your template or your download out there, get your freemium ready to go.
And then at least commit to once a month, sending out an update.

Those are technically the three steps. So pick a provider create your template or your download, and then figure out what your new nurture sequence is going to look like.

But I wanted to give you guys a couple of bonus tips because I love bonuses.

  • One is you really want to make sure that you are looking at what you are reading. So I typically, when I go through my inbox if I see like, Oh, wow, that was a great email. Or I love that gift that they just used or, wow, that was a really amazing newsletter. I save it in this folder that literally is called amazing emails. And so when I sit down to create content or send out an email to my list, um, or my subscribers or my clients, and I need some inspiration, I will go back in and I will look at emails that I love.
  • The other thing that I would do. And I actually get this question quite a bit is, well, how frequently should you be emailing your list? And for me, I typically do a weekly update. And a couple of times in my DMS this week, people have been asking, well, is that too much? I don't want to bother them. And my feedback is, if you are providing value and you are literally teaching something, training something, sharing something, giving a life update, you are not bothering them because they gave you their email. That means they are interested in what you are doing.

  • And I will end with, please, please, please do not create a lead magnet and have a dead end. Like if you walk away with one thing, that is one thing you should not do. So the great thing about this is there are a million different ways that you can do it and it's not hard. And you're going to get instant results.

When you start building your email list and really find that one, you can do all of this and probably about, I don't know, let's say two hours on a weekend if you're working full time and then you can set it up.

So it runs in the background and that's what I say, systems saved me and they can save you too, because I'm literally growing my email list as we speak while I do this blog post. And when people are downloading things, all the bells and whistles and all the emails and follow-ups are all automated.  So I don't have to worry about it. And it makes sure that I can serve all of my clients at a much higher level without me having to be on social media all the time. 

For more ways to automate your business and my best practices to creating a lead magnet that converts guide - Grab your Side Hustle Starter Kit!








Are you bursting with ideas and wondering how the heck you are going to find time to make it happen?

Imagine your time management fairy god-mother coming in to wave her magic wand and show you a better way! And actually, see results. we combine productivity best practices, business strategy, and community support to help you get to the next level without burnout.


Holly Marie Haynes is a business strategy coach, podcaster, mom of twins, and founder of the Crush the Rush brand. She helps women create simple scaleable offers and systems to grow to multiple 6-figures.

Holly Marie Haynes is a business strategy coach, podcaster, mom of twins, and founder of the Crush the Rush brand. She helps women create simple scaleable offers and systems to grow to multiple 6-figures.

© 2022 Holly Marie Haynes, LLC |