Many years ago I bought a storefront business from an existing owner. The business was doing mediocre, but I saw big potential in it. I didn’t have a huge advertising and marketing budget, so I had to get creative to bring in customers. Within 2 years, I had doubled the revenue of that business.

I explored many different ways to get traffic to my store. These were the days before social media, so I tried all the traditional types of marketing, including radio advertising. But for a small business owner, it was way out of my price range. Even newspaper advertising was outrageously expensive and there was no guarantee that it would even work.

Then I discovered a secret asset hiding in my business, that when I activated it, produced great revenue for me. It was my database, or email list. Many businesses don’t spend the time, energy or money to build their list, but it can literally be the asset that could be worth millions, if created and utilized correctly.

It doesn’t matter if you are an online business or offline, such as my store. Email marketing benefits any kind of business. You need to keep in touch with your customers and potential customers. If you aren’t in front of them often, they forget about you.

When I purchased the business, I discovered the hidden gem of a large email database of past customers. I had been marketing online for several years at that point, so I knew how email marketing worked, but I had no idea it would work so well offline as well. Fast forward many years later and I’ve helped tons of businesses of many different sizes and varieties build their businesses using email marketing.

$1 Per Subscriber Per Month

Assuming you have a follow up system in place, and you are sending regular offers, your email list can expect to produce approximately one dollar per month per subscriber. Some businesses achieve more than that.

By sending offers to purchase your products or services regularly, your customers will be reminded to purchase, maybe even more often than they would have if not reminded. When I had my store, I could literally bank on bringing a certain amount of income each time I sent my newsletter.

Other ways to bring in money via your email list are through affiliate or commission offers where you promote offers from other businesses that are complimentary to your own, through joint venture agreements where you and another business email each other’s lists, and through advertising.

Built-in Consistent Leads

Not every person that signs up to your list is ready to purchase from you immediately. They need to go through a customer sales cycle before they are comfortable buying from you. By sending free information about your business and services, it allows the prospects to get to know you better so that they will be ready to purchase at some point. You need to guide them through the process with your emails.

Even if you have a sales team, an email list is a great tool to help nurture leads. When you create trust and educate the potential buyer through email, it will be easier for your sales people to close the sale.

Saleable Asset

Your database can be worth more than the equipment in your business. If you are considering that you may sell your business at some point, it is common to include your customer database as an asset especially if you can prove that there will be future sales.

This practice was common in certain industries such as the financial services and insurance sectors, where retiring agents would sell their “book of business”, also known as their customer database. Now it is common practice in any type of business.

More Repeat Business

If you have a consumable product such as food, vitamins or even paper goods, that people purchase on an ongoing basis, an email list is essential. You can remind them to reorder, so that they don’t run out and you continue the sales. Likewise, if you have a service-based business, such as a dentist, financial services or health related service, you can remind people that it’s time to book an appointment and also remind them to show up for their scheduled time.

Don’t let this potential asset sit idle. You could be leaving thousands or even millions of dollars on the table. It’s time to activate that sleeping database or get started building your list if you haven’t begun yet.

Debbie Peck Digital