6 Ways Social Sharing Can Grow Your Email List

By Olivia Dello Buono

Crafting great content isn’t enough to get your content to go viral. In a world where sharing is social currency, social engagement is more important than ever if you want the world to see your content.

And it could be the key to getting more eyes on your emails (more sharing = more website visitors and exposure to your email sign up forms).

However, shareability is a skill that requires a lot of strategy and iteration. So we teamed up with our friends at AddThis to talk about social sharing. (After all, they are the experts.)

Read on to see what to share, when to share, and how to measure its success.

Sharing is the key to successful content

Sharing can help distribute your content to new audiences that it may not have reached before.

Think of it this way: People share things they find relevant and cool. Content that fits their own personal brand. If you wouldn’t want to see it in your own Twitter feed, is it even worth sharing?

It helps to know your customers. Do your research and identify the things these people are sharing and use this as a basis for developing your content.

Ask yourself:

  • Will my audience find this useful?
  • Is there a unique point of view?
  • Does it make the reader feel something?
  • Would you want to share it?

They’ll be more likely to share it and your content will get seen by people like them.

Q1 Why is sharing so important for content? #EmailChat pic.twitter.com/EvpMqAtNP2

— AWeber (@AWeber) November 3, 2016

A1 Sharing helps distribute and expose your content to new audiences, which’ll drive more traffic. #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

A1 Sharing shows that your audience finds your content useful. It’s a good indicator of engagement and relevance. #EmailChat

— Olivia Dello Buono (@oliviadello) November 3, 2016

@AWeber #EmailChat Sparks conversations. Comment sections are dead. The good discussions happen over social.

— Really Good Emails (@reallygoodemail) November 3, 2016

Creating shareable content is a skill

The average American spends nearly 20% of their time online browsing social media networks. And during that time, they’re being inundated with content. Content that is competing for their attention alongside your own.

So how can you make sure your content is better than the rest?

For starters, it needs to be easy to share. This means adding sharing buttons, interactive elements like Click-to-Tweets, or simply including a note at the end of your content to pass it along to a friend.

It’s also worth noting that the types of content that get the most shares are relevant and timely. Take note of trending topics and hashtags and deliver content that works in the moment. (A great way to repurpose your content!)

Q2 How can we make content more shareable? #EmailChat pic.twitter.com/s5g1ZtMZ3O

— AWeber (@AWeber) November 3, 2016

A2 First, you need share buttons. Second, you need great, timely, and relevant content. Third, a great brand. @AWeber #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

A2 It’s so helpful when the content is relevant to what people are talking about in the moment. We call it trend jacking @AWeber #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

A2 Well-written and unique content that solves big problems makes people want to share. Share buttons make it easy to share. #emailchat

— Liz Willits (@lizwillits) November 3, 2016

THIS is the best place to put share buttons

Now that you have a better understanding of the types of content to create, where is the best place to put your social sharing buttons?

We use AddThis on our own blog – those buttons over to your left. We love that they follow the reader as they scroll, so there’s no searching around. They aren’t intrusive either, which is a plus.

You can also add contextual sharing buttons throughout the content experience. These work best when they feel natural, like when the reader has that “a-ha!” moment.

Q3 Where should we put share buttons? #EmailChat pic.twitter.com/JyFjoOgLoO

— AWeber (@AWeber) November 3, 2016

A3 You want them to be interspersed into the reading experience. @AWeber #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

A3 I like share buttons that follow you down the page as you scroll. You never need to search for the share buttons. #emailchat

— Liz Willits (@lizwillits) November 3, 2016

A3 They should be noticeable, but natural. Where do they feel contextually relevant? When is the reader most likely to share? #EmailChat

— Olivia Dello Buono (@oliviadello) November 3, 2016

Here’s how to measure the success of your shared content

Likes, shares and retweets are important.

But if the goal of your content is to drive traffic and get more eyes on your content, clicks matter. Bonus points if you can measure the time people spent on your page.

Q4 What metrics are important to content sharing? #EmailChat pic.twitter.com/r39vVXRX5z

— AWeber (@AWeber) November 3, 2016

A4 Likes, shares, retweets, upvotes. As algorithms change – looking at you, @Facebook – engagement in all forms matters. #EmailChat

— Olivia Dello Buono (@oliviadello) November 3, 2016

A4 It’s not just shares. It’s clicks. You want those shares driving traffic back. @AWeber #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

A4. Clicks & time spent on page if possible. Reach is cool but you want to make sure people are engaging w/ your content! #emailchat

— Kristen Dunleavy (@KristenWritesIt) November 3, 2016

Social sharing can help build your email list

Now that you know that the goal is in the click, how can you utilize that traffic to build up your email list?

Teasing your email content on social is a great start. Letting people know that the best stuff awaits their inbox generates the buzz your list needs.

Make sure that there’s a prominent sign up form on the page you’re driving traffic to, as well. Just like with social sharing buttons, don’t make your reader work too hard to find it. Or better yet, serve it up at an opportune time.

Q5 How can content sharing help build an email list? #EmailChat pic.twitter.com/BuDDcgEeE3

— AWeber (@AWeber) November 3, 2016

A5 Sharing should drive inbound traffic. The goal is then to leverage that traffic to become new email subscribers #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

A5. Tease your email content on social & let people know they need to sign up for your list to access aaaalll your best stuff. #emailchat

— Kristen Dunleavy (@KristenWritesIt) November 3, 2016

A5. Sharing drives more traffic to your site and then you can convert that traffic with emails sign up forms on your site. #emailchat

— Liz Willits (@lizwillits) November 3, 2016

The way we share has shifted in the past decade

Online content has changed significantly over the last 10 years. Brands have to fight more than ever now to get their content in front of the eyes of their target audience.

And people are being more selective about what they’re sharing, favoring substance over click bait.

As Really Good Emails put it, brands need to know their audience more than ever in order to serve up great content.

Q6 How has sharing changed over the last 10 years? #EmailChat pic.twitter.com/g9gO3Bs19N

— AWeber (@AWeber) November 3, 2016

A6. I’m calling it: I think click-bait-y content is over. People want to share vetted, trusted content that has actual substance. #emailchat

— Kristen Dunleavy (@KristenWritesIt) November 3, 2016

@AWeber #EmailChat A6 Brands now need to know more about their audience and how/where their content is being shared.

— Really Good Emails (@reallygoodemail) November 3, 2016

A6 It’s just going to grow. It’s consolidated around specific social networks. @AWeber #EmailChat

— AddThis (@addthis) November 3, 2016

Mark your calendars

We’re ending the year with a bang! Join us on Thursday, December 1 at 12pm ET for a very special #EmailChat. We’ll be joined by our friends from Litmus, Movable Ink, MailCharts, Really Good Emails, AddThis (and more TBA) to talk about the Best of Email 2016.

This is the one chat you won’t want to miss.

The post 6 Ways Social Sharing Can Grow Your Email List appeared first on Email Marketing Tips.

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