Episode 9 – Email List Building On Steroids With Virtual Summits

Discover the four reasons why virtual summits can build your email list quicker than almost any other marketing strategy. In this episode, you'll learn why VSM students were able to generate 100's of thousands of email subscribers.
Virtual Summit Mastery Podcast
Virtual Summit Mastery Podcast
Episode 9 - Email List Building On Steroids With Virtual Summits
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Welcome to Virtual Summit Mastery podcast, today we’ll talk about why summits are excellent tools for email list building.

And this is a topic that is so super important. And I think it is one of the biggest reasons you should consider hosting a virtual summit if your email list is stuck, as mine has been for two years.

I tried blogging every single day, writing at least a thousand to 1,500 words for two years. Still, my email list was stuck at 600 people. Even though I had around 15,000 people come into my website every month, my email list is didn’t grow.

It wasn’t until I hosted the WP summit in 2015 and my email list exploded. I 6-xed my email list in 90 days, adding over 3000 new targeted leads onto my email. And in this podcast episode, I want to break down why virtual summits work so well for email list buliding.

So let’s dive right into this.

Reason 1: Tap Into The Audiences Of Influencers

Reason number one, you bring together influencers on your summit. You are getting introduced by somebody an audience already knows, likes, and trusts, which are the three most important factors for any marketer.

When you’re building a bigger audience and selling more, you want to get more leads that you can turn into sales and customers afterward. Your new audience needs to know you. They need to like you, and they need to trust you.

And what better way to win the trust of somebody that has never heard about you before than by being introduced to them? Getting an intro from somebody they already know, like, and trust is excellent. That is one of the biggest reasons you need to get your speakers to share the summit.

And if you make it a no-brainer for your speakers because they share the stage with some other notable influencers, it is a win-win situation.

While setting the foundation for your summit, you need to position it so that the speakers want to share the event. And you achieve that by making it a no-brainer. I’m making it so that the speakers get publicity from your event and that they want to share it.

One way to do this is by having a good speaker ratio between well-known experts and those that aren’t.

How Coaches, Consultants, Experts, and Speakers Are Using

Our Proven System to Build Wildly Profitable Online Businesses With Virtual Summits

While Making A Bigger Impact On Their Audience, And Adding Targeted Subscribers To Their List.

I called this the A-listers, the trusted experts, and the up-and-comers. A-listers would be somebody like Pat Flynn, Gary Vaynerchuk, or Seth Godin. They will probably not share your event as much because they already have a vast audience.

However, the trusted experts don’t get to share the stage with these well-known speakers that often. They don’t get to share the stage with Seth Godin or with Gary Vaynerchuk regularly – it’s special for them.

They are enticed to share the event because they want to have a little bit of that fame from the other speakers rub off on them.

And then you have the up-and-comer, somebody who isn’t well known yet, but they have a super important message to share. They have something to teach that, you know, will be valuable for you and for the attendees.

You bet that up-and-comers are most excited about sharing your event because they get to share the stage with all these others, excellent speakers you have on your summit, who already have know, like, and trust with their audiences. And they want their fame to rub off on them as well.

So that is why you need to pay close attention to the ratio of the speakers that you have.

Quick Reminder. Here’s Why Building An Email List Matters

And let’s take a step back here. Why do you want to run the summit? And why do you build that email list in the first place? The main thing. And the main reason for having an email list is that you control the traffic.

With a Facebook page, Facebook controls your traffic and organic reach. Heck, they can shut down your ad account for no reason at any time.

With a website and organic SEO, Google controls your traffic.

With YouTube marketing, YouTube controls how many people see the video. They can shut down your account for whatever reason, whenever they want.

It’s the same on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, or any other platform.

If you’re building on a third-party platform, you are not in control of it over your audience.

However, if you have an email list, nobody can take those addresses from you. You can export them at any time. I take a weekly backup of my email addresses. If something goes wrong and Active Campaign decides to shut down my account, I still have those email addresses of people who want to hear from me. I can continue marketing to them via email.

That is the biggest reason you are in control of other traffic of your email.

You are in control over the frequency of emails and there’s no organic reach that can be imposed on you. No artificially decreased number of how many people see your posts or see your emails. That’s the biggest reason you need to have an email list.

If you have, don’t have one by now, you need to start building your list as soon as possible. As you’ll see in this podcast episode, summits are a great way to do this.

So reason number one was that you get introduced by experts to their audiences. You need to make it super easy for an expert speaking at your event to share that they are speaking at your event.

You need to have swipe copy for emails, you need to create social media content, get images designed, and all that stuff. But we’ve talked about this in other episodes, let’s continue talking about email list building.

Reason 2: Keep Your Summit Free To Attend

Number two, why do summits work so well for email list building is because they are free to attend.

Usually, when you run the summit, the visual summit mastery style, you may get attended tenable for free while it’s live. And then people pay for keeping excess after the summit and that they buy what’s called an All-Access Pass.

So you build a membership area where you put all the sessions of your summit into after the summit ended. And then people who buy the All-Access Pass keep the sessions and maybe get some bonuses if you have some.

But the main reason for people to share the event is that everybody can see the sessions for free as long as they sign up. You deliver the summit via email. And we’ve talked about that in the podcast episode about the summit delivery strategy. Listen to podcast episode six to learn more.

Super important that you only share the sessions via email because that is the main reason for attendees to sign up to your email address.

If you share them on social, maybe you get a social follower. Still, you don’t control the traffic over a social media platform. So you need to make it exclusive to email. When something is free, and when something is valuable, People are encouraged to share it because they look good amongst their peers.

Suppose they can forward your summit to a coworker. In that case, they look good in the eyes of the coworker because they’ve referred an excellent resource to them. And that is super important. You should position your summit in a way that makes sharing it a no-brainer.

You need to understand your target audience so well that when they come to the website, they think:

“God damn it. That summit host is reading my mind. I have all these questions that the summit speakers are talking about – this event is made just for me.”

That is how well you need to be able to understand your target audience. Your attendees need to feel like you are hosting the summit just for them. And you bet that attendees have friends and coworkers and family interested in a similar topic on the same topics even, and they share your event with their friends and peers.

You can increase organic shares even further by using something like Early Parrot, which is a referral marketing tool I highly recommend. Or what you can do is you can build up an affiliate system. So with that Alexis pass, why not set up affiliates that get a commission when they refer a sale for you?

That’s a win-win situation, both of you. And that way, you can increase how many people share your event with the appeal.

Reason 3: Leveraging Media Partners For Email List Building

Reason number three is getting media partners on board. That’s another way to exponentially grow your audience with a summit.

You get companies involved who don’t want to sponsor you but still want to have a little bit of the light of the summit rub off on them. And they still want a logo on your summit website.

If they cannot pay for a sponsorship or don’t want to pay for a sponsorship, they might still want to help you promote. You build up a section for media partners on the website, put your logo there, maybe link it to the website (but make sure it opens in a new tab).

In return, the media partners agree to maybe sending three emails, writing a blog post, and doing a YouTube video about your summit. Who knows?

You can set up that agreement based on the type of media partners you have, and some will have more extensive email lists. Others will have a more prominent blog. Others will have more significant social profiles, work out an agreement that works for all of them.

And leverage the authority that your media partners already have with their audiences and make them introduce you to their audiences. And again, you gain immediate trust by being introduced to them.

So media partners are a brilliant way to accelerate your email list building. Remember, the more eyes you get on the summit website, the faster and bigger your email list will grow.

As a side-note: We won’t talk about retargeting ads, paid traffic, and all that stuff, even.

You could also pixel somebody when they come to your website. You track your website visitors with a Facebook pixel or Google pixel or whatever. Then you show ads to them, right. If they didn’t sign up and you remind them with something like:

“Hey, this special virtual summit is going on. You might want to sign up before it’s too late, and you will miss out if you don’t sign up before the summit starts.”

You get the idea. So those are some things I want you to keep in mind. We are not going to dive deep into Facebook ads or paid traffic in this episode.

We’ll focus on the reasons why virtual summits are so good for email list building.

Reason 4: The Ripple Effects After Your Summit

And the fourth reason probably is the strongest. And the one that I enjoy the most, those are the ripple effects after the summit ended.

Those are things you can not necessarily plan, but they are just fun to experience. For example, you can put up a waitlist page for the next event. For the next time you run the summit, just put a Waitlist page online. You are building all those links to the summit website that will drive traffic after your summit ends.

Maybe going on podcast interviews before the summit, maybe you’re getting interviewed on YouTube.

Maybe you’re doing Facebook AMA’s, Reddit AMA’s, answering questions on Quora, and driving people to your summit website.

Those links don’t magically disappear just after your summit. You have to keep this in mind. There are countless email list building opportunities after the summit ended.

People will come to the summit website even after your event is over. And that’s a good thing because you can add them to your email list by having a Waitlist page.

You can also expect that you will get invites to speak at other conferences or other podcasts, and you will have a way easier time pitching yourself as a guest. On a podcast or speaking for a conference, I’ve seen countless, which are some mastery students who got paid speaking gigs offer to them after the summit.

And it is just beautiful to see because that’s more exposure, and you can drive people to a landing page with a free bonus during those sessions. I make sure that I have a landing page built for that specific audience for every podcast interview I do. I offer a bonus for that specific audience, with the proper marketing and the messaging that targets that specific audience.

So that they feel spoken to when they come to that landing page, and that’s how you capitalize on being a guest on a podcast. You can do the same when you’re invited to speak at a conference or when you’re doing some consulting and stuff like that. You can build your email in those situations as well.

You need to get creative on doing this. And the last thing is the biggest reason why I think everybody should consider hosting a virtual summit. You can launch a project with your speakers and with your sponsors after the summit ended because you are building a genuine relationship during the summit.

You’re trying to understand the other person. You should try to become friends with them at some level because that makes the summit sessions you are doing even more engaging. Plus, having a good network is necessary for lasting success. Doing a summit is a great excuse to reach out to speakers and sponsors, but then it’s up to you to nurture that relationship.

And suppose you’re doing an excellent job with building relationships. In that case, you can do combined projects and collaborations with speakers and sponsors and tap into their audiences again and again so that you’re continuing to build your email list.

To summarize, there are four reasons why virtual summits are brilliant for email list building.

  1. You tap into the audiences of your speakers and gain immediate trust by being introduced.
  2. Virtual summits are free to attend and they are valuable. You understand the target audience, which makes it easy for attendees to share the summit.
  3. You’re getting media partners involved and exponentially increase your audience with their help.
  4. You’re leveraging ripple effects, get booked on podcasts, speak at conferences, and launch joint venture projects with your speakers and sponsors.

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