How To Start Email Marketing With WordPress and Constant Contact

1. Click here to get access to the special free trial from Constant Contact (no credit card required).

This will take you to the sign up page, where you will need to enter your name, email and other info in order to get signed up.

Now that you have signed up, you will be taken to the Constant Contact dashboard page. On this page, Constant Contact lays out a very easy three step process for getting started.

2. Set Up Your First List

First, click through the “Set up your first list” prompt. You will then be asked to set up your test list.

Give this list a simple name, such as “Blog Readers.” If you already have an email list, you can paste it into the second field.

If you do not yet have an email list, simply enter in your own email address and perhaps a few friends’ email addresses to serve as your test group.

3. Add Your Organization Info

Now that you have set up your first list, you will need to go to step two: “Add your organization info.”

This step requires you to enter organization info to ensure that you are staying on the right side of the CAN-SPAM act passed by congress.

You are legally required to enter this information if you will be sending outbound marketing emails, but Constant Contact makes it easy for you to stay on the right side of the law.

Once you enter your information and click save you can then move forward to the third and final step.

4. Create Your First Email

Now that you have finished the first two steps of the process, it is time to click “Create your first email.”

This step will take you to a page that shows off where Constant Contact really shines: customization.

You can choose from a large gallery of well-designed templates when creating each email that you send. This is a simple way to make sure that your emails are visually interesting and that they look professionally designed.

Once you click “Select” you will be taken to the drag and drop email generator.

This screen will allow you to give a custom title to your email, as well as make tweaks and use all kinds of add-ons.

I recommend playing around in this design tool to experiment with the different options that Constant Contact makes available to you. You can even add your own images, text and branding to give your emails a personalized touch.

Once you have designed the email to your specifications, you can click continue to be taken to the final options page.

This page allows you to make all sorts of final specifications to your email before you send it out. Chief among these is allowing you to choose exactly which email list you want to send your email to.

You are also able to edit the “from” and “reply to” email addresses that your recipients will see, as well as schedule out when the email will actually be sent. This is one of my favorite features since it allows you to plan ahead and schedule emails to be sent at the most strategic time possible.

How To Collect Email Addresses From Your Blog

Now that you have a good understanding of what Constant Contact is and how to use it, the next step is making sure that you are putting yourself in a position to collect as many email addresses as possible.

The best way to get email addresses from your subscribers is to prompt them to provide you with their email address. And the easiest way to do that is by using a default Constant Contact signup form in WordPress.

In order to do this, you will need to click over to “List Growth Tools” on the header bar at the top of the page in your Constant Contact dashboard.

From there, you can click “Create a Sign-Up Form” to be taken to the sign-up form creator.

First, you will need to give your sign-up form a name using the “Form Name” field. This name will only be seen by you, so make sure you give it a name that will help distinguish it.

The “Form Title” and “Description” fields are what your readers will actually see, so make sure you are inviting them to sign up for your email list.

I also recommend letting them know that your email list is the best way to stay in touch with your blog, and also potentially offering exclusive content to entice them to sign up.

Now that you have created the basics of your sign-up form, click “Continue” and move forward to the “Contact Fields” tab.

This page will allow you to select the information that you will actually collect from your readers when they are signing up for your email list.

I recommend keeping this section as simple and straightforward as possible. The last thing you want to do is dissuade someone from signing up for your email list because it is too complicated or time consuming.

Once you are finished selecting the information you will collect, click “Continue” again.

This will take you to the “Form Appearance” tab where you are able to edit the font and background color for the sign-up form.

Once you have designed the form to your specifications, you will need to click “Finish” to move forward with actually setting the form up on you blog.

Adding Your Constant Contact Sign-Up Form to your WordPress Blog

In order to add your Constant Contact sign-up form to your WordPress blog, you will need to click on the “Actions” drop down next to the sign-up form that you created on the “List Growth Tools” page.

From that drop down, select “Embed Code.”

Next, a pop-up will provide you with the embeddable HTML code that you can use to add a sign-up form to your blog.

You will need to copy this code and then login to the Admin area of your WordPress blog.

From the WordPress Admin panel dashboard, select “Appearance” and then “Widgets.”

You will need to select the “Text” widget and then paste the copy provided to you by Constant Contact into the text box.

Once you click “Save” you will be able to view the email list sign up form where you placed it on the page.

Now that we’ve setup Constant Contact and added the sign-up form to your blog, let’s talk about how you can use Constant Contact to promote your WordPress content.

5. Adding WordPress Posts Into Constant Contact Emails

In order to add a WordPress post into a Constant Contact email, you will need to click over to the Campaigns page.

From there, click “Create” and then “Send an Email.”

From here, simply choose a template for your email. Once you are at the email design screen, click “Add-Ons” and then “Read More.”

This screen will allow you to enter in the URL for the WordPress post that you want to promote in your email.

Even better, Constant Contact automatically pulls in an image preview for your article as well as a quick content summary.

This gives your email recipients a nice teaser of the content to come, which increases the likelihood that they will click through to check it out for themselves.

Once you have finished with this step, you can move forward and send the email out to promote your content.

Now you should have a clearer sense of the value of email marketing, as well as an understanding of how Constant Contact can help you create and manage an email list for your WordPress blog.

Keep in mind that the greatest way for you to take advantage of this tool is by creating the best content you can. Constant Contact is ultimately just one more excellent way to make sure your blog is viewed by as many people as possible.

Why All Bloggers Need to Build a Mailing List

Starting your blog can take some work, from deciding on a name, to choosing a good design, to writing your content. But the area I see new bloggers struggle with the most is getting (and keeping) readers on their blogs.

Getting traffic to your blog is an absolute must if you want to build a good following, which will not only result in a popular blog, but one that has the potential to make a good amount of money as well.

There are a variety of ways to do this, but the most effective I have found is to ask your readers to sign-up for your mailing list from the very start of your blog. Having an email subscriber list is, without a doubt, the fastest way to grow your readership and your bottom line.

First, let’s briefly discuss some of the reasons why email is often overlooked by both beginning and experienced bloggers.

Why Is Email Overlooked?

The truth is that these days most people don’t consider email to be very “exciting.” Email has been around since the beginning of the internet, so at this point many people consider it to be boring or even outdated.

The trend now is all about social media promotion. Whether you are promoting your new posts via Twitter or sharing content on Facebook, these strategies often feel like they are the way we should be promoting our blog. In fact, it can sometimes feel like social media is the best way for us to get a promotional edge.

I’m certainly not here to talk you out of promoting your blog on social media, but rather to tell you to make sure that you are giving more of your focus to where your readers can be more easily reached. And where is that exactly? In their email inbox!

The simple fact is that while social media platforms have different levels of user adoption, none of them will ever catch up to email. How can I be so confident in this? Simply because these platforms still prompt new users to sign up with an email account.

So if social media users have email, and there are millions of other people who use email but not social media, then it stands to reason that you are missing out on a lot of potential readers if you are spending more time on social media strategy than email strategy.

What Are The Benefits of an Email List?

Email represents one of the easiest and most direct ways of reaching the people who are most interested in your content. After all, if they visit your blog and opt-in to receive emails from you then you can be sure that they are interested in hearing more from you!

The primary reason that email is so powerful comes down to how personal it is. Your readers will receive each email as a direct note from you, which truly helps to build a relationship between your blog and your readers.

Even better, it also allows you an incredibly high conversion way of driving traffic to your blog, by tapping into a self-selected audience of your most interested readers.

Whether you are trying to drive traffic to a new article or promote a your own product or service, email allows you to make a direct appeal to your audience. You spend a lot of time creating high quality blog content, so you want to make sure that your most interested readers are seeing that content.

So how do you build your email subscriber list?

Building an Email Subscriber List: Common Questions

Whenever I talk with bloggers about building out their email subscriber list, a few questions tend to come up. Those questions usually boil down to the two listed below.

I’ll answer each question, so read on to learn which email list management tool I recommend as well as some of my tips for how to build out your email list.

Which Tool Should I Use to Manage My Email List?

There are a lot of tools out there that are designed to help you manage your email subscriber list, but after trying all of the most popular tools, I recommend Constant Contact.

Constant Contact is the most user-friendly email tool, and the best part is that you don’t have to sacrifice any functionality in order to get that easy-to-use interface.

Besides the fact that they offer a free trial with no credit card required, there are a few reasons I recommend Constant Contact:

Easy To Use

The most common feedback I hear from other bloggers about Constant Contact is straightforward: It’s simple.

As a blogger your main focus should be on creating great content, so you want an email tool that delivers results without making things more complicated than they need to be.
Constant Contact is specifically designed for beginners to be able to get up and running in virtually no time at all.

As soon as you sign up, you will be prompted to dive in headfirst and begin designing your first email. While there are a ton of cool features, the basics are all very easy to use, and if you need help at any point there are text and video tutorials, as well as live support, to walk you through any questions.


Constant Contact allows for incredible levels of customization in all of your emails. This feature is the one that I most often hear positive feedback about, and it’s easy to see why.

From within Constant Contact’s sleek setup you can choose exactly who to target with each email, whether you want to send it to the entire subscriber list or a specific subset. You can also choose from a number of pre-generated templates that take care of the hard work of design for you.

All of this easy customization frees up more of your time to create top-notch content that will engage your readers, while still being able to promote yourself to your readers with easy to read, professional looking emails designed to look great on desktop, tablet, and mobile platforms.


Creating great looking emails is all well and good, but how do you measure whether or not they are making a real impact on your blog? Constant Contact offers some of the most complete analytics available anywhere that are designed to help you do exactly that.

These analytics will help you track everything from how many people actually open your emails, to how many people click on the links in your emails. You can even test out sending two different emails, each to half of your subscribers, to see which one gets opened more frequently.

Analytics are an easy way for you to take a more sophisticated approach to your email marketing, which in turn drastically increases your return on investment for each email that you send.

How Do I Start Building My Email List?

Now that you understand the importance of building your email list and how to use Constant Contact can help you manage and utilize that list to its full extent, you might be wondering exactly how you should start building out your list.

First, check out my step-by-step tutorial on how to use Constant Contact with your WordPress blog. That will show you all the details of how to actually collect email addresses and send emails.

Aside from that, the most important tip is make building your list a priority. There two basic rules to follow here:

1. Make sure to put the form where people enter their email address in an easy to see place on your blog, ideally somewhere at the top of your blog’s sidebar menu.

2. Give people a good reason to sign-up. One of the best ways to do this is to offer exclusive content. For example, if you have a recipe blog, offer to send them some exclusive recipes not found on your blog in return for signing-up.

Too often a blog’s email list will just contain recaps and reminders of content that regular visitors will already be aware of. While those things serve their purpose, creating exclusive content will help you sign up and retain as many email subscribers as possible.

What now?

1. Sign up for a free trial account at Constant Contact.

2. Use my step-by-step guide to get your email list up and running one.

As always, feel free to contact me if you have any questions!