strategies for authors to grow their mailing list

Winning Strategies for Authors to Supercharge Their Mailing List

Are you an author struggling to grow your mailing list? You’re not alone. Many talented writers find it challenging to connect deeply with their audience. It’s not just about writing great books; it’s about forming lasting relationships with readers who eagerly await your next release.

In this blog post, I’ll share proven strategies to help authors like you build a robust mailing list, ensuring you never miss out on engaging with your readers. Discover the secrets to attracting loyal subscribers, maintaining their interest, and creating a buzz around your upcoming projects. Your journey to a thriving reader community starts here!

Optimize Your Sign-Up Forms

Growing your mailing list is crucial for authors wanting to expand their audience and connect with readers. One of the best ways to do this is by optimizing your sign-up forms to make them more appealing and accessible.

Use Pop-Ups and Embedded Forms

Pop-up forms and embedded forms are incredibly effective in capturing your visitors’ attention. Here’s how to use them effectively:

  1. Strategic Timing: Don’t bombard visitors with pop-ups as soon as they land on your site. Give them a few seconds to engage with your content first. Timed pop-ups can be triggered after a visitor has spent a certain amount of time on your website or scrolled to a specified point.
  2. Exit-Intent Pop-Ups: These pop-ups appear when a visitor is about to leave your site, giving you one last chance to grab their attention. It’s a perfect moment to offer a special incentive like a free eBook or a discount.
  3. Embedded Forms: Place these forms in prominent locations on your website such as the sidebar, at the end of blog posts, or within the body of an article. This ensures they are always visible and easy to access.
  4. Design Matters: Make sure your forms are visually appealing. Use contrasting colors for the sign-up button and keep the form’s design consistent with your website’s branding.

For example, Omnisend explains how using high-converting pop-ups can effectively build an email list (source).

Simplify the Sign-Up Process

A complicated sign-up process can deter potential subscribers. Simplifying this process can significantly boost your subscription rates. Here’s how to minimize friction:

  1. Ask for Essential Information Only: Limit the fields in your form to only the essentials—usually just a name and email address. Asking for too much information can overwhelm users and reduce sign-ups.
  2. Clear and Concise Messaging: Ensure that your call to action (CTA) is clear and compelling. A simple “Join our mailing list” or “Subscribe for updates” can do wonders. Highlight the benefits they will receive, like exclusive content or special offers.
  3. Mobile-Friendly Forms: Many people will sign up using their phones, so your forms must be mobile-friendly. Make sure fields are easy to fill out on smaller screens and that buttons are big enough to tap.
  4. Auto-Fill and Social Sign-Ups: Utilize auto-fill functions or allow users to sign up using their social media accounts. This reduces the effort required and speeds up the process.
  5. Visual Progress Indicators: If you must ask for more information, use a progress indicator to show users how many steps remain. This reduces frustration and keeps them motivated to complete the form.

For further insights into simplifying sign-up processes, OfferingTree provides a detailed guide on making the registration process smoother (source).

By following these strategies, you can create sign-up forms that are more appealing and user-friendly, which will help grow your mailing list more effectively.

Leverage Social Media

Harnessing the power of social media is a smart way for authors to grow their mailing lists. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and others offer unique opportunities to engage with potential subscribers. Here are two effective strategies to boost your email list using social media.

Run Social Media Contests and Giveaways

Everyone loves free stuff, and social media contests or giveaways are a surefire way to grab attention and attract new subscribers. Here’s how you can make the magic happen:

  1. Choose an Enticing Prize: The prize should be something that resonates with your target audience. This could be a signed copy of your book, a free eBook, or exclusive content.
  2. Set Clear Rules: Make it easy for participants to understand how to enter. Common entry methods include liking your page, sharing the post, and signing up for your newsletter.
  3. Promote Across Platforms: Announce your contest on all your social channels to reach a wider audience. Don’t forget to use relevant hashtags!
  4. Use a Contest Tool: Tools like RafflePress or Gleam can help you manage entries and ensure everything runs smoothly.

Contests not only grow your mailing list but also increase your engagement and reach on social media. For step-by-step instructions, check out Constant Contact’s guide.

Promote Sign-Ups Through Social Media Posts

Creating engaging social media content that directs followers to sign up for your mailing list is another excellent strategy. Here’s how to craft posts that convert:

  1. Craft Compelling Calls to Action (CTAs): Your posts should have clear and enticing CTAs such as “Join my exclusive mailing list for updates” or “Subscribe to receive a free chapter of my book!”
  2. Use Eye-Catching Graphics: Visuals are vital! Use vibrant images, videos, and infographics to catch your audience’s attention and make your posts stand out.
  3. Highlight Benefits: Clearly state what subscribers will gain. Whether it’s exclusive content, special discounts, or early access to your new releases, make sure they know what’s in it for them.
  4. Leverage Stories and Reels: Utilize Instagram Stories, Facebook Stories, and Reels. These temporary posts can generate urgency and prompt immediate action.
  5. Link in Bio: Keep the sign-up link handy. Include it in your social media bio and direct followers there. According to The Social Media CEO, incorporating sign-up links in your bio can simplify the process for your followers.
  6. Run Paid Promotions: Sometimes, a little investment can go a long way. Use targeted ads to reach potential subscribers who might be interested in your content.

For more tips, check out OptinMonster’s article on using social media to grow your email list.

By leveraging these social media tactics, you’ll be able to expand your mailing list significantly, connecting with more readers than ever before. Remember, consistency and creativity are key!

Collaborate with Other Authors

Collaborating with other authors can be a powerful way to expand your reach and grow your mailing list. By sharing audiences and resources, you can tap into new reader bases and create a more engaging and dynamic promotional strategy.

Participate in Joint Newsletters

Participating in joint newsletters with other authors allows you to introduce your work to a fresh and wider audience. Here’s how you can make the most out of it:

  1. Share the Load: By collaborating on a newsletter, you share the workload. Each author contributes content, making the process less time-consuming and more enjoyable.
  2. Diverse Content: Joint newsletters often offer a variety of content that appeals to different readers. This diversity keeps subscribers engaged and looking forward to each issue.
  3. Increased Exposure: When you partner with other authors, their audience becomes your audience. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship where everyone gains increased exposure. For example, platforms like Substack make it easy to manage group newsletters.
  4. Built-In Promotions: Joint newsletters often include promotions for each author’s work. This can be a direct recommendation or a special feature, ensuring that your books reach a wider audience.

Sharing a newsletter with other authors can be like playing in a band instead of going solo. Each member brings something unique, creating a richer experience for the audience.

Cross-Promote Mailing Lists

Cross-promoting mailing lists with fellow authors is a strategic way to expand your audience without much extra effort. Here are some effective strategies:

  1. Feature Each Other’s Work: Agree to feature each other’s books or newsletters in your respective mailing lists. This can be as simple as a shoutout or a dedicated section in your email. According to BookBub, cross-promotions can significantly boost visibility.
  2. Joint Giveaways: Partner with other authors to host a giveaway where the entry requirement is joining both of your mailing lists. This approach provides a dual benefit, ensuring subscribers to both lists.
  3. Swap ARCs (Advance Reader Copies): Exchange ARCs with other authors and include them in your mailing list promotions. This not only diversifies the content you offer but also integrates new audiences.
  4. Guest Appearances: Write guest articles or features for each other’s newsletters. Your readers get introduced to a new author, and their readers learn about you. This can create a personal connection with potential new subscribers.
  5. Social Media Announcements: Use your social media to promote each other’s mailing lists. A simple post can drive your followers to check out another author’s work, and vice versa. Learn more about strategic collaborations on Forbes.

When authors come together to cross-promote their mailing lists, it’s like planting seeds in each other’s gardens. The more you cross-pollinate, the more your audience can grow, ultimately leading to a thriving community of readers.

If you've just started your mailing list and want to get more subscribers discover winning strategies to boost your mailing list. #authors #indieauthors #mailinglist #emailmarketing


Implementing effective strategies to boost your mailing list can take your author career to new heights. By optimizing your sign-up forms, leveraging social media, and collaborating with other authors, you can reach a wider audience and foster a loyal reader base.

Remember, a robust email list isn’t just about numbers—it’s about quality engagement. Tailored content, personalized communication, and consistent updates nurture relationships and keep readers excited about your work.

Start today to build and refine your mailing list. The long-term benefits will not only enhance your promotional efforts but also create a dedicated community around your writing. Happy growing!

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  1. Good deal Cori! Happy to spread the word for you. List building does rock, and breaking it down in a work shop setting helps cut thru many misconceptions around the process. When I did build a list I was confused as hell at the process sometimes LOL. Helpful to have clarity and your expert instruction buddy.


  2. Hi Cori,

    This will be a great workshop. I must confess, my mailing list hasn’t been great from the start. But over time it picked up, and I think I still need some heads up as well.

    I just shared the content across social media and schedule on other platforms to help spread the word.

    I hope you’re doing great, Cori.

  3. Hi Corin,
    I have heart many people talk about this platform. I think Pat Flynn uses and promotes it. It’s beginning to pick my interest 😉

    I just registered and thanks for sharing this with us

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