Saturday, August 2, 2008

Why Are You Asking Me This?

Josh Nason knows why someone who clicks on your subscribe button—with every intention of joining your list—has a tendency to disappear a few seconds later. "It starts rather simply," he says. "You're setting up fields for your email signup form and instead of grabbing just the [basic]…information, your mind starts to wander." Pretty soon you're requesting everything from mobile numbers to IM addresses. "Sure, you don't make it required that all the fields are filled in," he notes, "but while they're there, why not offer it, right?"

Wrong. In fact, you're scaring them off by asking for too much information, or making it hard to find the salient fields. Instead, keep your sign-up page simple, and try other data-collection strategies:

Build trust by sending content-rich newsletters. Subscribers are more likely to volunteer information for an event like a contest when you've earned the right to ask.
Award prizes in a recommend-a-friend campaign. If they're willing to give you a friend's info, they might also trust you enough to give more data about themselves on a sign-up page.
Ask subscribers to participate in a quick survey. If you say it'll only take a minute and it actually does take only a minute, you also increase the level of trust.
But first things first: If a prospect has opted to give you their email address, says Nason, "you've ... achieved your goal. Stop right there."

The Po!nt: Don't get greedy. Be happy to accept a prospect's opt-in. Get more info over time—by making it worth their while to provide it.

Source: MarketingProfs. Click to read the article.

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