How we managed to collect 85,000 email addresses in 3 months

Has email marketing hit its peak? It’s getting more and more difficult to get people’s attention and some may even be more hesitant to give out their emails lately due to security concerns raised in the media. But, just like in every other form of marketing, there are always ways to keep it exciting, stay relevant and make sure that your efforts have an impact.

As we learned, successful email marketing is about standing out from the crowd. How? Well, we used a combination of gamification and good, engaging content to collect and retain 85,000 email addresses in just 3 months – definitely worth the effort.


Lots have been said about gamification, the bottom line is that it’s just a great motivator. We were able to collect emails on this basis, motivating people to sign up with their email address in order to participate in a game that could win them prizes and receive updates along the way.

This is a simple, but effective tool. People are more used to signing up for services with their email addresses than ever. Offering them the chance to win something in return adds a new layer of motivation and often makes them forget that they’re giving out their email address. Of course, they do so knowingly, but even as they fill out the email field, they’re probably thinking about the game and the prizes they might win.

There are all kinds of gamification methods to choose from. We went with a bounty program, offering users the opportunity to help us out with various tasks (posting to social media, reviewing code for bugs – that sort of thing) in return for all different kinds of rewards.

Relevant content

The second key that helped us keep our 85,000 subscribers interested is good content. Getting users to sign up is great; convincing them to stay subscribed and keeping them interested enough to read your emails is better. We were able to accomplish them by carefully planning who we were targeting and then producing content that we knew would interest them or teach them something – content that would offer some kind of added value.

Participants in our bounty programs, like most people, probably wouldn’t have responded very well to a bombardment of advertisements in their inbox. So we formed a more personal and intimate connection with them, offering content and discussion of their areas of interest.

Have any unique ideas of your own on how to make an email marketing campaign stand out from the crowd? Let us know.