After a tetchy period of mutual distrust, email marketing and social marketing are now the very best of friends.

Plenty of articles happily recommend you “integrate” the two. But so far, marketers have generally limited this integration to using email to boost their social success. A common example is a campaign urging email subscribers to “join us on Facebook.”

Another option is using your social network presence to increase your email subscriptions. After all, social networks are not yet a powerful direct response channel, but email is. So it seems sensible to encourage social network followers to also become email subscribers.

Here are three ways to do so:

1. Tell your social network followers what they’ll miss in the next email if they aren’t signed up. Or post a link to the online version of the latest email so they can grasp the value of joining your list. Obviously, if people can get exclusive email-only offers or content, then signing-up becomes more attractive to them.

2. Post links to:

  • Email sign-up forms and copy at your website.
  • Your email archive.
  • Featured or “best of” emails.

If possible, embed actual sign-up forms and promotional copy in your social network profile pages.

3. Add “share this on Facebook/Twitter/…” links and icons to your email campaigns. People can use them to essentially recommend your email list to their own networks. Consider these questions to get the widest possible impact:

  • Which social networks should you feature – where is your audience most active?
  • Where should you place those links – top, bottom, after each snippet or section, or only on the campaign landing pages?
  • How can you give people a reason to use the links – what call-to-action and what content or offers will trigger more sharing?

All three tactics help you move people from a conversation (social) to a conversion (email). What’s not to “like” about that?

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