Ayswarrya G
Ayswarrya G 9 May 2016
Categories B2B, B2C, Email & eCRM

How To Triple Email List Growth Using Proven Offline Tactics

Tired of using opt-in forms and not seeing the desired numbers? Out of online strategies to grow your email list? Maybe you should consider looking for some offline tactics. In this post, I'm going to talk about 5 extremely effective, tried-and-tested offline tactics to grow your email list.

Tired of using opt-in forms? Out of online strategies to grow your email list? Maybe you should consider looking for some offline tactics. Offline methods of growing an email list are equally important as online methods, and quite effective too. In this post, I'm going to talk about 5 extremely effective, tried-and-tested offline tactics to grow your email list. Read on!

In-person Events

I work at Redehost, a hosting company in Brazil. One of its brands is Umbler (a cloud hosting solution), and a team from Umbler recently participated in the iMasters PHP Experience 2016 conference held in Sao Paulo, Brazil. They set up their stall with the company logo and branding, which looked something like this:


They were offering T-shirts to all major agencies gathered at the event and store credits as freebies for anyone who visited their stall. The result? 120 new emails gathered, 50 new email sign-ups, the brand popularity itself soared off the charts. According to Rodrigo, the marketing manager at Redehost, there was a 100% increase in conversions and email list growth due to the event, and this effect lasted for quite a bit even after the conference. To achieve the same amount of success via online methods, they would have required –

  • Display ads
  • PPC
  • SEM
  • Blog & social media posts
  • Pop up form on the website

See? In-person events work wonders for your brand!

So what should you be doing? Create an event calendar, listing all the conferences that are going to take place about your niche area. 

Next, prioritize the events in terms of location, costs involved, importance, etc. among others. A smart move that our friends at Umbler made was partnering up with iMasters, a huge community of programmers and developers (they’ve got roughly 300 mil IT professionals in their community) that organizes events for their community to get together, learn, and grow professionally. By partnering up, Umbler ensured that they have a space in all of the iMasters events to showcase their brand and products. You could follow Umbler’s example and do the same with high-profile communities in your niche area.

Lastly, participate in as many events as you can (time, budget, and resource constraints taken into consideration). The benefits, in addition to growing your email list, are three-fold:

  • Your brand gets a huge space to show what it can do
  • You get to network with other professionals in your field, share experiences, etc.
  • Your team representing your brand learns and gains infinite knowledge and wisdom regarding your niche area, which in turn helps you grow.

If you don’t know where to start, you can check out websites like Meetup and Eventbrite to find and/or create events.

Your Store

If you have a physical store (a brick-and-mortar store), then you could collect emails when your customers make a purchase, and then stay in touch with them. This is another great way of growing your email list.

A very good example is the loyalty programme that most stores have. Pantaloons, an Indian fashion retail brand, offers Greencards to its customers, in exchange for their email addresses. Using this Greencard, the customers get Payback points, a Sale preview, discounts, etc. The Payback points can be used for availing offers and discounts on several brands instead of just a single brand. Pantaloons would send email newsletters and updates about promotions, sales, offers, etc. to its Greencard customers.


Another example is Panvel, a pharmacy chain in Brazil, which offers a store card in exchange for the email address. The customer earns a few points every time they make a purchase. Panvel sends these customers its email newsletters, offers, promotions, etc. to keep the customers engaged.


So what should you be doing? You can create a similar programme wherein you offer information in exchange for email addresses and/or personal details. As a token of goodwill, you could also offer a souvenir to every customer who makes a purchase above a certain value. Additionally, you could organize a promotion every once a while and offer discounts or promotional items (such as pens, USB drives, store credits, to-go cups, T-shirts, shopping bags, free consultations, a chance to win something, etc.) in exchange for email addresses.

Print Marketing

I went to an education fair couple of months ago and there were several education consultancies vying to catch the eye of the visiting students.

Almost all of these consultancies came well equipped with brochures, booklets on universities and courses offered, and tonnes of other print material. However, there were a few that came with just a brochure providing a general overview and … wait for it … a QR code (That’s right, QR codes aren’t dead yet).


They would ask students to scan the QR code to access more detailed information about their services, universities, courses, etc. online on their website. The students also had the option of downloading this material by simply providing their email address.

This simple yet ingenious method helped them gather tons of email addresses in just a day (there were almost 3000 students attending that education fair). You could use it in a way that people can scan it to opt-in to your email list.

So what should you be doing? Use QR codes in your print marketing material (business cards, publications, catalogues, etc.). This really does help grow your email list. Creating a QR code is no rocket science. There are plenty of QR code generators out there, such as Kaywa, and QR Stuff. HubSpot has a nice article on QR codes and how to make them. Check out this article here.

Customer Service & Sales Calls

Customer service calls and sales calls are a good opportunity for gathering email addresses.

According to Experian, “customers are highly receptive during customer service calls. You have their full attention and should use it to your advantage by requesting email addresses. You may be surprised at how many will comply.”

So what should you be doing? Follow what some popular brands and businesses are already doing. Create monthly instead of yearly incentives (sales incentive programs) for your customer support and sales teams and reward the ones collecting the maximum number of email addresses. And before you know it, your email list would have tripled (or even quadrupled). 

Internal Marketing for your Employees

Any time a customer interacts with an employee, it affects their overall satisfaction. Everyone from a sales clerk to an over-the-phone tech support specialist helps to shape that customer’s experience. Therefore, customer satisfaction is deeply dependent on the performance of a company’s staff.


You should capitalize on your employees – a vastly untapped pool of marketing. Internal marketing implies treating your employees as ‘internal customers’, leveraging their value and network, and promote the image of your brand. Think of your marketing numbers (and new email list signups) if each and every employee shared, liked, retweeted, favorited your post! How to get your employees to do this? Treat them in a way that they want to do it. Incentivizing their efforts is a good way to motivate them to participate in your marketing efforts. Many companies offer incentives like bonuses, vacation days, family benefits, acknowledge the employees for the brands’ success etc.

So what should you be doing? You can create performance-based incentives. You could identify and appreciate their work and success, train them regularly so that their skills are up-to-date, among others. You end up growing your email list exponentially and your employees end up benefiting from it too. What’s more, their belief in your brand’s values and work culture would be strengthened, and they’ll be quite motivated too. Last time I checked, motivated & self-driven employees = success!

So there you have it. To summarize,


What offline tactics do you use to grow your email list? Share them with me in the Comments section below. Remember, sharing is caring. :)

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