I subscribe to just about everything that interests me, from: Home Renovation, to Retail Stores, daily deals and more newsletters then may be healthy for one individual.

Why would you do that to yourself?! Curiosity mostly. I want to see what people are sending, how they are deploying it (which ESP, or home grown system), or in some cases I’m investigating a client or prospect. In almost every case subscribing to a companies newsletter takes just a few minutes – marketers want this to be the easy part (If you don’t you should!) – and I’m happily off and running with another message in my already bulging inbox.

Today I had the unfortunate experience of being unable to subscribe… What’s that you say – unable to subscribe? Yup, I sure did.

In an age where mailers are looking to grow their list and add to a shrinking client base (30% a year attrition) you would think that making an opt-in page easy to find would be your top priority.

Tips for making opt-in easy:

  • Make it easy to find – have a clear call to action, a easy to find and noticeable location to collect information. EmailKarma.net’s opt-in is usually the 3 or 4th item on the right hand side
  • Don’t over ask for information – some forms are simply too long – capture 4 or 5 solid pieces of information (Email, First Name, Last Name, Postal/Zip Code and Opt-in), the rest can be asked later as optional data points to help with segmentation – but the basics can get you started well enough.
  • Don’t use confusing language/double negatives – Click here to not get email from us, or Uncheck the box to not get email
  • Get consent from individuals – Opt-out is no longer good enough, new and evolving legislation and ISP requirements are continually moving towards a consent based regime. Under C-28 (FISA) explicit consent last forever (until an unsub occurs), and implied is good for 24 months

Remember the easier it is and the more clarity you can offer to your potential subscriber the more likely you are to grow your list.