email sales

I go to a lot of events for bloggers around my city. One of the things I see most often is how people build entire businesses on social media, but fail to build an email list.

Here’s why that’s a problem. You don’t own social media. Algorithms change and shadow bans happen. On the flip side, you do own your email list. Your social media page could get shut down and your entire website could crash and you would still have those emails.

In my experience, people don’t typically buy off of social media either. They are more likely to buy from you once they have opted into your email list.

That being said, I’m still a huge fan of social media and use it for my business daily. I’m even investing in a camera to improve my Instagram game. However, I use social media for the specific purpose of building my email list. Here’s how I do that.

Build trust.

The main thing I use social media for is to build trust. For example, I’m starting to share more personal posts on Instagram. I find these types of posts perform very well for my audience there.

Here are some of the most effective ways to build trust on social media:

  • Share valuable content (more on this in a minute)
  • Show behind the scenes footage. For example, I show my followers how I set up my apartment for media interviews.
  • Share your fears and insecurities. This works so well because it shows you are human.

Once the trust is built, people are more likely to opt into my email list. Of course, trust is just one part of the equation. You also have to provide what the people want.

Share your opt-ins.

One way that I use social media to provide value is to share my multiple opt-ins on social media. I have a few freebies I share on social media which people can get in exchange for their name and email. These freebies include:

  • A worksheet where I teach people how to pitch clients and media.
  • A webinar that teaches people how to become influencers
  • A worksheet that teaches people how to find their blogging niche.

I use a social media scheduler to share these three freebies all over social media several times a day. I also post them on Instagram and Instagram stories. With Instagram, I go as far as using a text to opt-in service because I know people are using Instagram on their phones.

The only thing this costs me is my social media scheduler (about $300 a year) and the text to opt-in service ($49 a month). Some email marketing systems come with the text to opt-in feature included.

Drive traffic.

The final thing I use social media for is to drive traffic back to my website. Similar to the freebies, I share my content on social automatically several times a day. Again, this costs me nearly nothing because I’m not paying for ads.

The key here is to have a lot of content built up so you don’t find yourself repeating everything. Once you have that, it’s simply a matter of loading it onto your scheduler.

Final Thoughts

Social media does have its uses in business, it’s just that several people are confused as to what those uses are. By using social to build your email list, you can ensure that you won’t be affected the next time there is an algorithm change.


Amanda Abella is a full-time writer who specializes in online business and finance. She's also an online business coach and the Amazon best-selling author of Make Money Your Honey.

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