Some of the primary ideas that are passed down for list building objectives include the use of free memberships to encourage sign-up. Some marketers are proponents of 'squeeze pages' that simply pop up and request more information about the visitor for the purpose of list building. Some use a guerrilla approach while others are more organic in their methods.
There is a list building approach that I have encountered that shows promise and I want to share it with you.
Let me begin by saying that this approach is an extension of the idea of reciprocal or coopable links, which is the process of placing a link on your site in exchange for a link on a secondary site that is complimentary in nature to your own. It is a great way to network and can yield positive results.
OK, now with that bit of disclaimer out of the way let's talk about a reciprocal sign up sheet.
This process is sort of a bonus offer for customers. When they sign up for a free membership or newsletter they are taken to a secondary page giving them the opportunity to sign up for complimentary materials, but offered from a partner organization you trust.
And trust will be the key for success. If you allow a company on your website that may not be trustworthy, their failings will reflect on your business. Always make sure you trust the secondary site completely.
In turn, this site will make your sign-up sheet available as a bonus to their customers. In a perfect world this would allow both sites to grow their lists more rapidly. However, we do not live in a perfect world so expect some positive results, but not 100% (maybe not even 30%).
This process would work very well for a company with ownership of multiple websites. It allows both list building opportunities as well as cross-promotion of the sites in your ownership circle.
As an added incentive you could tie your reciprocal sign-up page to include a free gift or knowledge-based download. In essence this process can be a form of inexpensive advertising as well as a means of jump starting your list building objectives.
I can not emphasis enough the fact that this approach should always be taken with a great deal of caution. The trust your customers place in you and your business should be taken seriously. You need to trust the secondary site or work only within the framework of your own business sites.