5 things you must know to build a successful email list

In today’s episode of the podcast I talk about email list building. As you know, I love email marketing! I give you my 5 steps to getting started if you don’t have an email list already and some do’s and don’ts.




  • Your email list is one of the best assets you can have.
  • You need to understand who you want on your list – quality over quantity.
  • Create your perfect customer avatar so you know exactly who you want on your email list.
  • What problem do they have that you can solve with your product or service? Understand the transformation that your clients/customers want!
  • You need to give people a reason to join your list – a lead magnet, discount or value such as inspiration and advice.
  • Keep it simple! It needs to be quick wins and steps. Don’t make it too complicated!
  • When choosing your email system – take time to understand the tech process and don’t spend too much time weighing up the different systems.
  • More is more – you need to share about your lead magnet a lot! Don’t worry about sharing it too much.
  • Focus on the fact you are helping people and they will want your lead magnet.
  • You need to start emailing your list on DAY ONE!
  • You can choose the frequency of your emails.
  • Don’t build a list and then not email them.
  • Add value – see email as another form of communication. It is another way you can support and add value to your audience.
  • Don’t just email when you have something to sell!




Start emailing your list from day one! Don’t just build your list then not email them.




  • My 5 steps to starting your email list




Email Marketing 101: Tips and Tricks podcast episode


Build My List Self-Study Course




Hello, and welcome to this week's episode of the podcast. How is your week going? If you're listening on Monday, it's just started, but you could be listening any day of the week, couldn't you? So I hope you're having a good week, even if it has just started, uh, I'm feeling very positive this week. I've been listening to a really good book talking about mindset and some kind of woo woo things and about energy and, um, yeah, I've been doing a bit of work, so I'm feeling really, really excited and ready.

And happy for a new week. So today we're going to be looking at list building stuff. Now I know we talked about it a lot in the past, but I cannot stress how important this stuff is. Over this email and email? What am I saying? Over this podcast and some emails and some socials. We're just going to be focusing on a little bit, because I think it's one of those things that even if you've started an email list, you need reminding, like I need reminding, everyone needs reminding to constantly be building their list.

Because honestly, it's one of the best assets that you're ever going to have. Now, if you've heard me talk about list building before then you will know that I have five steps that I teach and these five steps are, Who do you want on your email list? Give them a reason to join your list. What tech do you need? And How to set them up?

Um, and so, How to get them signed up. Sorry. And what do you want to email them? So what I'm going to do is I'm going to take each one of these sections and I'm kind of going to tell you the main do's and don'ts for these five sections. So let's start with step one. Who do you want on your list? The really important thing here is you need to understand who you want on your list, because this is where quality over quantity is very, very important.

It's key. I would much rather have an email list of 500 people who love me than five thousands who were really not keen. So understanding who you want on your list is really important. Now, obviously one of the ways that you can do this is making sure you've done your perfect customer avatar, that you've looked at, who it is you want exactly.

And the thing that you need to remember here is what you're trying to understand when you're doing your perfect customer avatar is you're trying to understand what problem do they have that you solve. So it always sounds really dramatic when you talk about problems and solving and things, and it's not really at all.

It's just about the fact of they have something that your product or service helps them with. So for instance, with me and my membership, the problems that my customers have that my audience have is they might be overwhelmed with all the stuff out there. They might want a simple and straightforward guide, which they can follow.

They might want some personalized advice. They might need accountability. They might want an amazing communities. A lots of different things that might be problems in their world that my club can help them fix. So what is it that you can do for your customers? What problem do you help them fix? So for instance, if your, and I usually use the idea of like a personal trainer, when I come to list building, if you're a personal trainer, what's the problem that they help? Now, they might help you get in shape and lose weight.

But you might not, that might not be the problem that you see. The problem might be is that you can't fit in your jeans. Or the problem might be is that you get out of breath going up the stairs. So you kind of really need to understand what their problem is so that you can identify it. So the first main do here is need to understand the transformation that they want.

What is the problem that they have and what do they want instead? So understanding their transformation is so very important, because then we can start to look at how we can help them. The don't is don't try and attract anyone and everyone. Now I have, I've been in marketing a very long time, and I have worked many, many, many, many businesses in different industries, loads of different industries.

The ones that are the worst, that the ones that go, “Yeah, anybody could be a customer.” And it's like, yeah, I know anybody could be a customer, but that doesn't make it very helpful. So what I would suggest you do when you're looking at this stage is you think about who is the most likely. So for instance, I often talk about the fact that I'm a mum and I'm running my business because lots of my audience members are also mums.

Now is it to say that they're all mums? No, absolutely not. Is it that they're all, you know, identify as female? No, absolutely not. But if I'm going to try and look at who the majority of my customers are, I might think of them. So I don't want you to just think, well, it could be anyone. You need to think about a certain group to help you narrow it down a little bit.

So I've got this really nice example of Toria who is awesome. Basically, she did a build my list course with me. And she has a bricks and mortar place. She has a boutique shop. Now often when I do these courses or when I talk to her about list-building, they always say, yeah, but I'm a shop or yeah I sell a product there.

What would I do? But Toria just got it. Bang on perfect. So Toria has a, as a set of boutique shops, she sells women's clothing and she sells quite a range in sizes. So she does some plus size stuff. And she understands what the people coming into a shop want to feel when they try on these clothes and she understands the problems they have when they're looking for these clothes, but they want something to look good that they don't want it to fit wrong, that they, you know, they want to feel good.

So Toria put together an amazing download that was called top five ways to look and feel amazing in your clothes without having to lose weight. I just think she really hit the nail on the head in terms of her audience. And she put together this brilliant download and it gave them all different guides of like, you know, different things that you should wear if your particular size or have a particular shape body.

And it was really, really useful guide. And Toria put this out there. And within one week she had 49 people opt in to hit her list, which is amazing. And she got one sale off the back of it. So, so, so good because she understood who her customers were. So we cannot at all dismiss how important that is. Okay.

So the next thing is you need to give them a reason to join your list. And I joke all the time that basically no one wakes up one day going. I wonder if so-and-so has got an email list that I can just jump on and get sold to. No one wants that. So the thing that we want to do is we want to give them a, an incentive and that is a lead magnet.

So a lead magnet is an incentive that business owners offer to potential buyers in exchange for their email address. So exactly what I just talked about with Toria. She gave them a free guide to looking good in their clothes, um, without having to lose weight. As a as an exchange for their email address.

So she gets people who, who ended up being her perfect target market and they get some advice for free. And even though she has a bricks and mortar place, she still was able to do a lead magnet. So that's what a lead magnet is an essence. And you normally see them being advertised. You put them in social media posts, you then send them to some kind of landing page.

And on that landing page, there'll be an opt-in box where they opt in for whatever it is that you give them. And it can be things like a checklist or a download or a swipe file. A swipe file is things like, um, so in my build my list course, we have a swipe file of onboarding emails, all, and basically all the texts you use this whole process.

So it could be any of those kinds of things. But the key do here in this case around the lead magnet is keep it simple. Okay. Now I know they're not paying for it. That they are giving you their time and they might not know who you are, and they might not know whether you're worth that amount of time. It sounds really harsh, but it is kind of true.

So you need to keep it simple. You need to keep it short. Don't give them like a 50 page e-book, give them something very simple, like a checklist or a download of five things that they can do to whatever, whatever. And it needs to be quick wins and simple steps. Now we all want the magic wand, waving situation.

You know, I have people come to me on my 90 day program, hoping that I can tell them the one secret to successful launch and that will happen. We all know that's not the case. There isn't just this one secret that we're all hiding, that it's suddenly going to make you crazy amazing overnight. So, but we do want to give them a quick win.

So one thing that will be helpful or we'll move the needle for them in their problem. So for instance, um, it could be that if you've been struggling, how to come up with the onboarding emails, that if I give you like a template around it, then that's a quick win. So try and give them something that is a quick win that gives them something.

And it's simple and quick for them to digest and look at. So the don't with this one is don't make it complicated or try and impress them with your vast knowledge. So they said, although I said simple steps and I said, you know, give them a quick win. You don't want to try and sound too smart with this stuff, because what we often forget when we're creating something like a lead magnet or creating content for our audience is we forget.

They don't know what we know. They. Uh, you know, they know what they know and it's not to the same level. And I think sometimes, and I've been guilty of this in the past. You want to impress people. So you talk about the really clever stuff, but actually you're losing them because they don't know the basic things.

So start with the basic questions, start with the simple stuff, because you don't know that they know that. So like I said, don't try and impress them with your vast knowledge. So I've got a great example of this. So Emma from HER Hampshire joined me for the very first build my list course. And she said that she was put off building an email list for two years.

She knew it was gonna be an imperative part of a marketing strategy going forward, but didn't know where to start. So anyway, she came and joined me. And what was really interesting about Emma was she joined me during lockdown and her business was HER Hampshire. So basically it would tell people what was going on in the local area of Hampshire, where she lives.

And of course this was locked down, so nothing was going on. So you would have thought this would be a terrible time to set up an email list. The terrible time to be marketing. But what she did is she listened to where her customers were and then gave him some simple steps and advice. She didn't try and do war and peace.

She put together the only five ideas that you'll need for an ultimate lockdown birthday. She met her customers where they were. She met them with the problem they had at that time. And she gave them a really simple solution. She gave them five ideas for a lockdown birthday. And within one week she had a hundred new email subscribers.

So, so good. Cause she kept it simple. She wasn't trying to say to them, here are 50 birthday ideas or here are you know 10 things to do when you come out lockdown. It was like the only five. And I love, that actually the only five ideas you need, like, oh, what are those five ideas? Such a good lead magnet. Okay. So the next thing on our kind of list of stuff that we have to look at, step number three is the tech.

Now the tech is tricky and I have done an episode on tech before. So go and listen to that and we'll link up to it in the show notes. So there are lots of platforms to choose from. And obviously in that, in that episode, I talk about them. But the key thing is in terms of your do's and don'ts, it's do take time to understand the tech process.

Now I know for some of you, even me saying those words is gonna make you shut up because some of you are telling yourself “I'm not good at tech. I don't do tech.” These things, they're not rocket science. You just need to know where to go and where to look and what button to press. What happens in build my list is I literally talk you through three different systems and how to use it. Because you need that kind of click here, do this thing, click here, do this thing.

But once you've got it, it's rinse and repeat. So you don't need to worry about. You know, while I'm going to have to do it differently next time. No, not at all. As long as you're on the same system or on one of the systems that I'm using. And just a very quick aside, the one I recommend for on start so there's MailerLite.

It's really good. That's one of the systems I teach on. You just need to understand the process. Once you understand the process, you've got it and you can create 1, 10, 20 lead magnets, whatever you want. It's the same process. So although you might be filtered, dread thinking, I really don't want to do that bit once you've got it and understand it.

Great. The other thing that often people do and I've done different things is I've got other people to do it. Cause I'm like, don't understand it. Don't want to understand it. Gone. Someone else can do it, but the truth is one in the early days, I didn't have the budget to give it to someone else. And two, you, I need to know how to do everything in my business.

And I pretty much do apart from the real techie stuff, like building a website. I understand how it all goes together, but I couldn't do it. Apart from things like that. I pretty much can do every single thing in my business. Even though I have a team of six now that do all the amazing things for me, I could, if I had to, and it's a really nice position to be in, because I know that if something ever happened to one of them left.

I could pick up the slack if I have to. So learn how to do that. Learn how that process works. And the don't on this is don't spend lots of times weighing up different systems, pick one, and get started. And if you haven't got a system and you're getting started, MailerLite there you go, I made the decision for you.

If in fact we were on coworking on the other day. Was it co-working? Oh no no no, I was doing a mindset call a while back. And the mindset call was about productivity, about big rocks and little rocks. You may or may not know the concept. Anyway, we're talking about it. And I got everyone to work on our mindset calls, which are available to everyone in the club.

We go through an exercise together and then I nearly did ask people to the volunteer or I pick on people nicely only if they want to. Of course. And if it's too sensitive, a subject, I only have asked volunteers. Which my community is so very willing and giving that they do often volunteer themselves. Anyway, get to the point I was doing a productivity mindset call and in that productivity mindset call, one of the things we talked about was what's been on your list for ages that you just need to get done.

And one of my members said, “Oh, I just need to pick an email system and get started.” And what they didn't know. Sort of half an hour before the end. I said, okay, you're all here. Now. You've all scheduled at this time for the mindset thing. You're now going to do that thing that you've just told me. So I literally said to her, right, this is the system I want you to use.

MailerLite get started with that. And I want you to go sign up now and I want you to basically start that process. And she did, which was brilliant, but often we get sort of analysis paralysis. We get like we stopped because of the tech cause we go, I don't know. So if you are at that stage, MailerLite. That's the one. I nearly said Mailchimp then.

MailerLite is the one to go with. Okay. So the next stage after that is step four, How to get them to sign up. So you know what happens and I see this a lot is people do a lead magnet. They get people on their email list and then no one else signs up and they get really disheartened. They're like, I think the lead magnet doesn't work.

And then once I've had a conversation with them, I realize that they're just not putting out there enough. So more is more, you really need to be sharing this a lot. So all different places like popups on your website, social media in groups, you could do Facebook ads. I've done them before on, on some of my lead magnets. Blogs, you can include it on a blog.

You can do speaking. So if you're speaking somewhere, or if you're doing a workshop or something, then have a lead magnet as an option for there. So do focus on the fact that you are helping people and they will want your lead magnet. Now, actually in two weeks’ time, I've decided I'm doing a mindset. So I'm going to go a mindset call with you guys on the podcast.

So I'm going to go into that with more detail. But I think this is the problem. People feel like they're bombarding people and you're not. First off you're putting it on social media. So they're not going to see it. You know, it's not like they see every single thing you put out there. Secondly, if they do see it over and over then they're probably one of your biggest fans because they're seeing all your stuff and you don't need to worry about them getting annoyed.

And like I said, you are helping them. You have created something for free, you're not asking them to pay for it. So make sure you're putting out over and over and over again. Try and find some like different images and different texts. That's something I teach really strongly. And then basically like I said, Put it out there over and over and over again.

And the don't is, don't worry about sharing it. Please. Don't worry about sharing it. Like, like I said, if anybody gets annoyed and unfollows you, then they're not your customer, but as long as it's something that is going to help your customer, then you need to be confident and you need to share it. So we have the amazing Caroline from Hunkington House Kitchen on build my list and she shared everywhere.

So she put it in the bio of her Instagram. She posted it on her grid on Instagram several times. She put it in her Facebook posts. She put it on her story. She wrote a blog around it and put it in a blog and she still, she has it to this day. I still see it. It's now on a website. So literally every way, you want to put it everywhere.

Also remember you're attracting new people all the time, so they haven't had the chance to see this thing that you've created. That's wonderful that they can get for free. Okay. Step five. What to email them? So this is often something that happens. Everyone focuses on the email list and getting the email list. Then they forget to actually talk about what you actually emailed them.

So the key thing is here is you have to start from day one. Okay. Day one is the day that you start emailing them. Because they don't know how many people are on your list. They don't know they're only one of seven or one of 20 or one of a hundred. They just know they signed up for your list. So you need start emailing them.

Now your frequency can be more separate as in it could be you know, every few weeks or a month or whatever. And then as your list gets bigger, you can pull it in a bit more on email more often, but you do need start emailing them. Don't do what I did, which was to build an email list and not email them.

So definitely, definitely email them. Okay. So you're do for this is when you're thinking about what to email. Do you add value and see this as another form of communication. Okay. This is another place like your social media posts, like your blog or your podcast or whatever it is that you put out there. Your email is just another way of helping people.

It's just another way of supporting them, of adding value, giving them advice. Yeah you're going to sell on it occasionally, but as long as you're adding value, then no one is really going to mind that. And then your don't is, don't just email them when you've got something to sell. I am very consistent. If you're on my email list, which I hope you are, you get email three times a week.

Those three times a week, I try and add value, tell you something, support you, encourage you, make you laugh very occasionally, make you laugh. Um, but yeah, I try and do all these things. So like I said, you know, I'm consistently emailing you, so I'm not just sending you something when I've got something to sell, because the problem is it looks really selfish.

It's like, yeah, I don't want to talk to you. Oh, I've got something to sell to you I want you to buy it. So I'm going to email you. So don't just do that when you've got something to sell. So we've covered off, those are five different steps in building your list and we've looked at the do's and the don'ts of each of those steps.

So you might be sat there now thinking, okay. That's cool. But I literally still don't know where to start Teresa. And that's fine because I am like your guardian angel. I have got the build my list self-study course, which has everything in it for you to understand what a lead magnet is, create a lead magnet.

Do the tech, write the copy, do the onboarding emails, create the social media posts and actually get people on your list and email them, everything in there. So I've got landing page copy. I've got videos on how to do the tech. I've got follow me along stuff, so you literally, like people say to me and they do the tech, they have me on one screen and they do it on the other.

I've got all the templates you're going to need. So all the swipe files for the emails, I've got all of the templates for canvas. So not only for the lead magnet itself, so you don't have to design the PDF. Which I know a lot of people struggle with. Also, you've got all the designs for the images that you're going to put on social media as well.

So all the stuff is in there. Everything you are ever going to need in order to build your email list. So if you want to go and check that out then go to my website or if you just go to the home page and scroll a bit down, you'll find a link there.

So go and check that out. There'll be a link in the show notes as well. Don't put off building your list anymore. Honestly, I promise you, the time and the effort and the money that you spend on this will pay back in dividends. My list is one of the best things I have in my business. Not only in terms of communicating with my audience, but then communicating back with me. It's wonderful. I love it. Okay. I'm going to leave you there. Like I said, we're just focusing on emails for a bit. The next week's interview is with Martha. That's a really good one about branding. And then the week after that, we're going to do mindset around some of these things we've talked about today.

Can you tell, I'm trying to batch ahead and I'm trying to get organized, so yeah, we're, we're getting there. We're getting there. Okay. Have a great week. And I will speak to you very soon.