Use Hello Bar and OptinMonster To Collect Email Addresses
To leverage the power of email marketing, you first need an email address capture strategy.
Take your cue from social media. They use email keep you returning to their platforms with mailings notifying you of recent developments.
Content Marketing Institute’s Joe Pulizzi focuses on the growth of his email list as an indicator of business health. (He discusses this in his book Content Inc. Check his author interview on Actionable Marketing Guide.)
Even better, the list size improves new email registrants by providing social proof.
Minimize the amount of information requested and offer an incentive, either content or a discount, to get readers to sign up.
- BTW, we’d be delighted if you signed up for our email newsletter!
2 Email Address Capture Tools
To help you increase your email address capture, we’ll examine 2 tools the Actionable Marketing uses: Hello Bar and OptinMonster. Both help you get your visitors’ attention at just the right time without annoying them.
BTW, Hello Bar was developed by Neil Patel and OptinMonster was developed by Syed Balkhi. We highly recommend reading their blogs and following them on social media.
1. How to use Hello Bar for email address capture
Hello Bar places a bar across the top of your web pages with a call-to-action message, a submit button and optionally an input field. There’s a easy-to-use editor for creating the bars and setting options controlling where and when they appear.
Hello Bar provides 4 types of bars:
- Capture email addresses.
- Link to a landing page.
- Provide social media connections.
- Display a message.
The first screenshot shows the choices:
Styles are set in the second panel. As you edit and change options, a preview screen changes to show what the bar will look like on your website. The preview screen has a nice feature: you can switch from desktop to mobile views.
You can add URL rules to select or exclude pages and posts. For example, Actionable Marketing Guide excludes the bar from the front page of our website where we believe it can be annoying. It currently promotes Social Media Marketing World 2016, where Heidi Cohen is presenting. When we switch back to a bar asking visitors to sign up for our weekly newsletter, we’ll exclude the bar from appearing on the landing page for signups.
After completing the 5 steps and publishing your Hello Bar, you received a snippet of code and instructions explaining how to add the code to your website. Hello Bar can be added to any kind of website. WordPress admins can install a plugin that will place the snippet in the appropriate place.
The Hello Bar dashboard displays your campaigns, the number of views and conversions broken out in useful ways along with suggestions for improvements.
Hello Bar provides 3 service tiers:
After 250,000 visits, every 25,000 visits are $5 extra
Actionable Marketing Tool Tips
- Give you readers a few moments to scan your webpage before the Hello Bar appears. If they aren’t interested in the page’s content, they’re unlikely to follow the bar’s call-to-action. But don’t wait too long or they’ll resent being interrupted in their reading.
- Disable the “Show Toolbar when viewing site” option (if your website is built on WordPress). When you’re signed in to WordPress, the Toolbar will cover the Hello Bar.
- RECOMMENDED READING: 10 Email List Building Tips
2. How to use OptinMonster for email address capture
OptinMonster is a similar to Hello Bar in that you create marketing campaigns and communications using a sophisticated editor.
OptinMonster offers more features than Hello Bar.
- Drag & drop builder. Create forms optimized for highest conversion rates.
- Multiple Form Types. Includes lightbox popups, floating bars, slide-ins, sidebar forms, and more.
- Exit Intent® Technology. Detects user behavior and prompts visitors when they’re about to leave your website.
- A/B Split Testing across different options. Includes designs, headlines, and content to see what works best.
- Page Level Targeting shows messages on specific pages or post categories.
- Built-in Analytics provide data to determine the best performining forms..
OptinMonster is theme-driven.
To create a new Optin Campaign, choose a form type, such as a lightbox. Then pick a theme.
Like Hello Bar, the editing tools are on the left side of the screen and the right side shows a preview as you edit (click the image to enlarge.)
It’s a powerful editing environment that allows you to customize the content, format and styling of the optin.
Add your own CSS styles and animation effects such as: bounces, rolls, pulses and flips.
3 OptinMonster features standout:
- OptinMonster WordPress plugin brings the entire editing environment into the WordPress dashboard. Once you’ve configured the plugin, you don’t have to leave your site or remember another password.
- Selection by categories and custom post types. The WordPress plugin allows you to provide different optins for different kinds of content types.
- Integrates nicely with popular marketing services. Includes email from aWeber, MailChimp and iContact and marketing automation from Marketo and HubSpot.
OptinMonster also provides 3 levels of service. If you pay annually, you get a 40% discount. This is attractive for marketing agencies that can feature all of their clients for $199/year.
Actionable Marketing Tool Tips
- Start slow and use simple designs with OptinMonster without annoying regular website visitors.
- Integrate OptinMonster forms with Google Analytics to provide insighst on who responds to your campaigns.
- RECOMMENDED READING: Email Marketing Content
When you’re looking to increase your email address capture, don’t just pray. Use tools like Hello Bar and OptinMonster.
- Hello Bar has a free version and is easy to configure and get going.
- OptinMonster is more robust and better supported tool, especially for WordPress websites. (Although it doesn’t have a free version.)
Regardless which tools you choose, start collecting addresses now. Don’t wait.
What are your favorite email address capture tools?
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