Successful Email Marketing, a highly effective marketing technique, is dependent on having a sizable and updated email list. That doesn’t happen overnight and involves a certain degree of strategizing. But without an active list, email marketing is less helpful in marketing your restaurant.  A recent article explores a couple strategies that I will add to and explain.

There are four proven ways to collect email addresses. Two are in restaurant while the other two are only online. Let’s start online. An absolute requirement is that your website should have a place to sign up for your email list. The real question is should an offer to join pop-up on your website. Pop-up are not as taboo they once were as many people who don’t like that kind of thing already have a pop-up blocker. A possible solution to not angering first-time customers with a popup is that the pop-up is not landing site but on an interior page such as one dedicated to promotions.

We cannot forget Facebook as a source to collect email addresses. If you give their email as a place to collect a coupon for your restaurant, you can always offer for them to join your email list. Just make sure that the check off box’s default is to be included in the email list. Otherwise, it forces your customers to opt out of your email list.

For in-restaurant techniques, the first is the email sign-up sheets (normally at the host’s podium), E-club card, or surveys. The last two should be given out with the check. This paper method may be difficult because many people’s handwriting isn’t up to par.

Nowadays, you need not deal with paperwork. There are electronic hand held devices, the Sterizon wiZit being the foremost, allow customers to type in their information. This is the direction the industry is going. The devices go from 150 dollars on up. Sooner or later, I also expect email collection to go through smart phones and/or iPads.

Whatever way you do it, a full, active email list is a powerful marketing tool. So come up with a plan and stick with it. It will undoubtedly pay off in the long run.