Share article:

How to grow your contact list

Image for How to grow your contact list
Tips, tricks & hacks 6 min read | Jade Gebbie wrote in blog on April 17, 2024

Simple strategies for massive growth

Want to get the word out about your awesome products? It all starts with a killer database. With a rich, well-organised list of contacts, your marketing is more likely to reach the right ears, improving your engagement and conversion rates. Sound good, but wondering how to grow your contact list? Well, to grow your list of phone numbers and email addresses the right way, here are three things you need to keep in mind:

1. Build a fanbase, not just a list

There’s no use adding a contact to your list if they’re not in your target audience. You’ll be sending messages out into the void. A smaller, highly engaged list of people is far more effective. You do that by zeroing in on people who get excited about what you’re selling – who actually want to hear from you. They’re more likely to buy, sure, but they’ll also start talking. They’ll tell friends who’re into the same stuff – and just like that, one happy customer can lead to a whole group of them.

2. Get permission: stay legal and liked

Getting permission to contact people or save their contact information is not just about being polite – it’s about being on the right side of the law. Whether it’s a text or an email, every country generally has its own privacy, data collection and spam laws. Find out what’s allowed wherever you’re planning to send your messages. If you’re unsure about the rules, consult experts who know what’s what.

3. Earn trust with every interaction

Once you have a new contact, maintaining their confidence in your brand is key. Here are a few things to remember so you can keep their trust every step of the way:

Nothing breaks trust faster than a leak.

Use good security measures, regularly update them, and be transparent with your customers about how you’re keeping their details safe. They should feel confident their info won’t end up in the wrong hands when they’re with you.

Spam belongs in a can, not in your marketing strategy.

Only send the stuff that gets people excited to hear from you – like a hot sale or a cool event. You want to be the name they’re happy to see pop up on their screens, not the one they groan at.

Always show your guests where the door is, with no strings attached.

Brush up on the opt-in and opt-out regulations to make leaving straightforward. And when in doubt, consult with experts who know what’s what.

Want to try texting your database?

Image for Want to try texting your database?

Effective strategies for collecting email and phone contacts

Whether it’s a quick nudge or a long chat over coffee, SMS and email will keep the conversation going strong. Here are our favourite strategies to make your database bigger and better. As noted above, remember to stay legal and liked when using these strategies and ensure that you have complied with any privacy, data collection and spam laws.

SMS collection tactics

Run text-in competitions

Get people to send a text to enter a competition. Tell them what they can win, how to enter, and how their information will be kept safe. Also, ask if you’re allowed to continue to contact them with further ads and marketing.


Create keyword campaigns

Have deals where customers text a special word to get an offer. Make sure it’s a good deal and something they really want.

illustrated person above a promotional text message example

Get sign-ups at events and conferences

Use sign-up sheets or digital kiosks at events where people can leave their contact details. Throw in something extra, like discounts or freebies, to boost sign-up rates.


Email collection tactics

Leverage your SMS database

If you have a good database of SMS contacts, give them exclusive content or discounts if they opt into both channels.

Offer special content

Keep all your best quality content behind forms that ask for email addresses. Use this content to solve specific problems or answer questions your target audience has.

Run free trials or demos

Promote free trials or demonstrations of your product or service, but ask for an email sign-up in return. Just make sure the sign-up process is simple, and the value of the trial is clear.

Want to try SMS?

Image for Want to try SMS?

Combined strategies for both SMS and email

Promote VIP clubs and loyalty programmes

Create exclusive clubs or programmes that give people real benefits. Use these as incentives for them to share their contact information so that you can continue to deliver those benefits.

Create partnerships

Partner with businesses that offer complementary products or services. Joint campaigns can introduce your brand to a new audience, growing your contact list while giving value to both customer bases.

Improve website forms

To help boost conversion, ensure your website forms are user-friendly and mobile-responsive. Test different placements and messaging to see what works best for your audience.

Run in-store campaigns

Talk with customers in-store and give them a special offer or gift for signing up on the spot. You can do this at the counter, through digital screens or with QR codes that link to sign-up forms.

Leverage social media

Use social media to ask followers to join your contact list. Engaging content, live videos and direct calls to action will prompt sign-ups.

Ask after customer support and chatbots

Develop a process for your customer support team to ask customers if they would like to provide their phone numbers or email addresses after helping with a problem. Use chatbots to automate part of this process so the process is seamless for customers.

Advertise your contact channels

Make it clear across all your advertising that customers can reach out and subscribe via SMS or email. Use creative calls to action to stand out.

Ask during the onboarding process

When you’re onboarding a new customer, make sure to collect their contact information. Explain how it will benefit them and how you will use their information — for example, receiving updates or exclusive offers.

Ask directly

Sometimes, a simple ‘Hey, can we please grab your contact information?’ is the best approach. Whether in-store, through your website or during customer service calls, couple it with a cool incentive, and you might be in luck.

Data done right

Nail these data collection tips, and you’re not just sending messages into the void — you’re launching ad campaigns that your customers see, hear and feel. It’s about striking the balance between getting what you need and keeping your audience happy. Start nurturing your contact list now and watch them grow into a community of engaged and loyal customers.

Need help with your contact list? Reach out to Sinch MessageMedia. Let’s make your marketing work smarter.

This material is intended to provide general information only. The contents do not constitute legal or professional advice and should not be relied upon as such. Formal legal advice should be sought in certain circumstances.

Ready to roll?

Image for Ready to roll?