Here I am always encouraging you to build your email list in lieu of sole reliance on social media, and I’ve never even gone over the basics with you. You know, like How to Start Your Email List. My bad! All Pretty Darn Cute Design themes have the capability to add a subscription box using the Genesis eNews Extended plugin, but you must first have an email list for your visitors to subscribe to and you must have the eNews Extended plugin installed.
How to Start Your Email List
There are several email marketing services available that provide varying levels of function. I use and recommend MailChimp. In order to start your email list, you must register with the service of your choice, for the purpose of this post I’m going to use MailChimp as the example.
Once you’ve created an account, you’ll login and select the “Lists” menu item which is at the top of the page.
Next, select “create list”.
You’ll be taken to a new page where upon you’ll fill out the necessary information. Keep in mind the address shown on this page will appear at the bottom of each of your emails, so it’s advisable you do not list your home address.
Once this form is completed you’ll be taken to your brand new list’s page. This page displays the stats of your list, which will be a whole lot of nothing until we get this puppy up and running on your site.
On this page, select “Signup Forms”.
On the next page, select “embedded forms”. You’ll be taken to a new page that has a code in a box below a preview of your form. At this point you can choose to configure the form and proceed to copy and paste that code into your site wherever you like (page, text widget etc..), or you can use the eNews subscription widget that is styled to go with your theme. We’re going to use the eNews widget.
Let’s grab the necessary part of this code to place in our eNews widget. Select all of the code as shown in the previous screenshot and paste it into a text editor of your choosing. I use plain ‘ol text edit that comes standard with every apple computer, but also recommend Coda 2 if you plan on getting serious about customizing your site. Within this code we’re looking for the words “form action”, from there you’ll see the piece of code we’re looking for. Highlighted in the screencapture below. Copy this url.
Next open up your WordPress dashboard and navigate to the widgets page.
Drag the eNews widget into the sidebar, or widget area of your choosing. I’m gonna go old school and just use the primary sidebar, most newer themes have a subscription specific widget area.
Once in your sidebar you can start filling out the forms.
To display First name enter: FNAME
To display the last name field enter: LNAME
The other fields you can choose to configure however you wish. I like to throw in a “yay” instead of “go” or “submit” to keep things interesting. It’s the little things, and I’m easily amused. 🙂
Once you have it all filled out, save and go check it out live on your site.
Carrie Dils has created a video tutorial here walking you through this process that’s extremely helpful if you’re left with any questions.
Now that you know how to start your email list, would you like to learn how to take this even further and create exclusive content only made available to your subscribers? Join our TADA Tutorial Library at learn.prettydarncute.com.