build a mailing list

How to build a mailing list using list swaps

Summary: How to build a genuine mailing list using the list swap technique. Grow a quality mailing list fast.

A mailing list is one of the biggest assets you can have in today’s online world.

Growing a mailing list can be challenging.

The goal is to grow a genuine list that consists mainly of your target market.

Here is a technique we have used to grow our list, called the list swap technique.

A list swap is when you partner with someone else who has their own list that consists mainly of your target market.

You each send out an email to your  respective lists with links to one another’s opt-in pages. (For example: links to free ebooks, free webinars or free pdf downloads that have been put in place to get people to subscribe to a mailing list).

Partner A sends out an email to Partner A’s list with a link to Partner B’s opt-in page.
On the same time and day, Partner B sends out an email to Partner B’s list with a link to Partner A’s opt-in page.

A lot of things can go wrong with a list swap. For example, one Partner gets a lot more subscribes than the other or one Partner forgets to send out the email and the other Partner loses out.

Here are the steps to ensure a smooth, professional list swap that gets you results:

Click Here to do a List Swap with How 2 for Entrepreneurs

Step 1: Make sure you have a quality list of your own to do the list swap with

You must not expect people to do a list swap exercise with you unless you have made a good start on your own mailing list.

Make sure you have set up and are promoting your own free giveaways, such as free ebooks, free webinars of free pdf downloads to get a good start on your own list.

Make sure that you are using a good auto-responder. Examples of popular auto-responders include A-Weber, Mailchimp, iContact, GetResponse and Infusionsoft. 

When someone fills out an opt-in form to get your free giveaway, the opt-in form should link to your auto-responder so that the subscribes go into a list in your auto-responder.

Check your auto-responder to see if you can track link clicks. This helps to keep track of results and number of clicks on your link versus number of subscribes. 

Step 2: Determine the criteria of your list swap

In order to ensure a quality list swap and a quality list building exercise, determine some criteria that you are not prepared to compromise on when conducting a list swap.

Criteria can include the size of the lists you are prepared to conduct swaps with, the genuine nature of those lists, the types of opt-ins that you are prepared to send out to your own list, the minimum number of clicks you expect from a list swap exercise and the minimum number of subscribes you expect from a list swap exercise. 

Step 3: Set up a list swap promotional page

Create a promotional page that asks people if they would like to do a list swap with you. 

On the page, include a way for people to contact you if they are interested. 

For example, here is a link to our own promotional page requesting list swap partners.

Step 4: Set up a formal list swap agreement template

In order to avoid one partner not doing their part during the list swap, agree to the list swap and the terms of the list swap in writing.

A written list swap agreement can include:

– Exact time and date of agreed list swap.

– The links to the opt-in pages for each list.

– Wording for each mailer for each side of the list swap.

– Minimum expectations of the list swap.

If Partner A has a bigger mailing list than Partner B and is worried that they are not going to get as much benefit from this exercise, Partner B can agree to send the mailer out to their list more than once to ensure Partner A gets just as many clicks to their opt-in. 

Here is an example of a written list swap agreement:

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Step 5: Schedule and conduct your first list swap

Once you have agreed to a time and date,  Partner A must send an email to their list with a link to Partner B’s opt-in form and free giveaway.

In turn, Partner B must send an email to their list with a link to Partner A’s opt-in form and free giveaway.


Step 6: Evaluate the results of the list swap from both sides

Each part to the list swap should be monitoring number of clicks and number of subscribes to see if the list swap has indeed worked.

If one partner got more benefit than the other, see if you can come to an agreement to balance the results of the exercise.

  Click Here to do a List Swap with How 2 for Entrepreneurs