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Email Marketing (All)
Three Ways to Capture Skiers’ Email Addresses

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I can hear you now, “Gregg, the post title was about email marketing but the picture is of a baseball field.” I know, they don’t seem to be at all related, but they are…I assure you.

When I did my analysis of resort websites a few weeks back I noticed a strange trend, something I call, the “field of dreams” idea. It seems that a lot of us think that just by creating a place for visitors to stick their emails will magically capture thousands of addresses. In other words, all you have to do is “build it, and they will come” as the famous movie quote goes.

Let me show you what I mean:

“Enter Email Address”

(displayed on 6% of the websites)
Saying “enter email address” is like saying, “insert money here”. The natural question? “What do I get?” If there’s no answer, don’t expect a lot of emails to come through.

“Join Our Newsletter / Mailing List”

(displayed on 18% of the websites)
Slightly better because it shows when they are signing up for, but very small is the number of visitors who want to be on a mailing list unless there are other perks involved.

“Email Alerts / Information”

(displayed on 4% of the websites)
Once again, a small improvement over the previous but what am I being alerted about? Snow? Deals? What kind of information am I getting? Spam?

Now, as for the field of dreams idea actually working? Unfortunately, this is not so. Today, email addresses are almost a form of currency. People won’t hand theirs over until they are given a legitimate reason to do so. The website needs to give a a reason. And a compelling one at that. The more compelling the offer, the more addresses you’ll get.

Most resort websites don’t give the visitor a reason. They simply place the form on their site and that’s that. This may be a reflection of lack of focus on email marketing, but if you are going to have a list at all, you might as well do it right. If you are going to throw a hook in the water, at least stick some bait on first.

The Solution
You’ve probably guessed it, give them a reason. Lure them onto your list. When doing so, remember three simple keys:

  1. Make it enticing
  2. Make it exclusive
  3. Make it specific

Here are a few ideas of simple bits of text you can place before your email sign up form that will likely double or triple the number of subscribers you get:

  • Wanna save up to 50% (enticing) on your lift tickets (specific)? Enter your email address below to get on our exclusive (exclusive) deals list.
  • Insiders snow report (exclusive). Be the first to know when a big dump(enticing/specific) is heading our way.
  • Ski for Cheap. We have lots of exciting discounts(enticing) planned this year. Join the deals list to be the first to know(exclusive).

Entice people onto your list, make they feel exclusive, and be specific about what they’ll get when they hand over their email address and your list will grow like a weed.  A really, good, profitable weed.

About Gregg & SlopeFillers
I've had more first-time visitors lately, so adding a quick "about" section. I started SlopeFillers in 2010 with the simple goal of sharing great resort marketing strategies. Today I run marketing for resort ecommerce and CRM provider Inntopia, my home mountain is the lovely Nordic Valley, and my favorite marketing campaign remains the Ski Utah TV show that sold me on skiing as a kid in the 90s.

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