Collect more email addresses online by offering coupons in exchange

One thing to know about sending emails to consumers is that most of the time they are signing up to get coupons. RetailMeNot’s 2013 Shoppers Trends Report showed that 93% of respondents use coupons that they receive in email.

If you’re offering a special, they want to know about it. Send them too many non-sale emails, and you might lose them. Send too many, and they’ll become immune to your promotions. The survey also showed that people prefer to save dollar amounts on a purchase, rather than a percentage off. However, when offering a percentage off, almost half thought that 25% or less was a good deal.


If you’re a service-based business that generates leads on your website, one of the best ways to get people on your email list and master local business email marketing is to include a field that asks for the customer’s email address in the “request quote” form, and ask if they’d like to receive special offers and sales through email in the future.

Cottman Transmissions does a bang-up job of this by having a prominent ad on its homepage for money-saving coupons. In order to get the coupons, you need to fill out a form and sign up to the email list.
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Are you driving shoppers to your store or restaurant with a plan that delivers the right message, in the right place, at just the right time? See how you rank vs. your competitors ›

However, local business email marketing doesn’t begin and end with coupons. Gem Plumbing has an email newsletter it calls Pipe Up. Each newsletter includes a feature article about a seasonal topic, a special, and home project tips. Tying seasonal idea articles to specials on products you offer in the same newsletter can inspire someone to pick up the phone now, rather than later.

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G&L Clothing‘s email sign up may be hidden at the bottom of its website, but the copy is just right. It reads, “Sign up for our email newsletter to stay in-the-know about all of our sales and in-store events.”

The copy that comes right before your email sign up is crucially important. Sales? Yes.  In-store events? Cool. Many businesses make the mistake of telling potential subscribers that they’ll send them news which isn’t as tempting as sending them coupons and letting them know about times they can save money with sales alerts.
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Another excellent thing about this sign up is that it’s one field, only asking for an email address, so the entry barrier is low. Keep in mind though, this is a retail store and they need to collect much less information than say, Gem Plumbing or Cottman.

So what about leveraging social? Law firm Robbins & Associates has a tab on its Facebook page with a call to action to sign up for its email newsletter that says “Free consultations to our super fans. Become a super fan today by sharing. If you join our list, you are a superfan and get free consultations. If your friend joins our list, they are a super fan, and get a free consultation.”


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Finally, Dunham’s Sports does not hold back. The first thing you see when you visit its website is an email sign up to receive 20% off. If a person visiting the site had any intention of hitting the back button, this instant coupon may sway them. Although pop-ups get a bad rap, they’re the most efficient way to collect an email address. Users say they dislike them, yet a/b tests show that they keep filling them out.

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The one thing you’ll notice all of these email newsletters have in common is that they promise a deal for signing up. Nobody wakes up and says “I need more email newsletters today,” so make them an offer they can’t refuse. Coupons? Yes. Free? Sold.

Learn more about email marketing in our free white paper, “Top 5 Digital Marketing Services for Local Businesses” ›

Do you offer coupons or email specials to your customers? Have you had a particularly great success or can you offer any advice on what to avoid? Share your local business wisdom below!