11 Free WordPress Plugins That Can Boost Your Email Marketing

Update: As time goes up, plugins fade out. As of this update (8/27/13), the CalendarPress plugin no longer exists and the FacebookShare and Instant Highlighter plugins have not been updated in over 2 years and therefore may or may not be supported at this time.

Power can come in many forms. Popeye gets his power from spinach. Green Lantern has his ring. Harry Potter has his wand. And email marketing has…plugins!

If you’re running your blog with WordPress.org, you should know the power of the plugin and how it can benefit your email marketing campaign. Plugins can help your campaign go from average to awesome.

What plugins can make that happen? We’ve picked out some good ones you can use.

Build Your List

AWeber WordPress Web Form Widget
What it does: Adds your AWeber web form to your WordPress blog.

Why it’s good: It’s a quick and easy way to start gathering subscribers from your blog! You can create beautiful forms using our templates, then just log into WordPress to connect the form with your blog!

What Would Seth Godin Do
What it does: Popular marketer Seth Godin recommends using cookies to distinguish between new visitors and returning ones. This plugin adheres to his advice by welcoming new visitors with a special message and invites them to subscribe to your mailing list.

Why it’s good: New people coming in may not know who you are or what you do. This plugin gives you the ability to differentiate how you approach new visitors vs. repeat ones. This means you can give new visitors more background information while also asking them to subscribe.

What it does: Allows you to include upcoming events plus a signup system on your blog.

Why it’s good: People can see what you’re doing and when. You can list the schedule of topics you plan to talk about, webinars and podcasts, or live events you’ll be hosting. This can be a way for you to set expectations for subscribers, and get them curious to see what’s in your emails.

Include your calender near your web form, so those that are interested can immediately sign up.

Encourage Sharing

Facebook Share
What it does: Facebook Share adds a link that allows Facebook users to easily share your post.

Why it’s good: Facebook currently has over 500 million users! You want your material shared on Facebook so more people can come back to your site and subscribe.

Make sure you have one of the list building plugins set up so any new visitors coming from these Facebook links can subscribe!

Twitter is another popular social media site with over 200 million registered accounts. There is a plugin called Tweet This that you can also include for Twitter users.

What it does: Automatically adds links to your favorite social bookmarking sites such as Digg, StumbleUpon and del.icio.us.

Why it’s good: Readers are able to use links to bookmark posts via different platforms. If people continue to bookmark and go back to your posts, they are more likely to want to subscribe. They will have seen that your content is helpful and they continue to go back to it and share it.

You can set up a form that allows subscribers to choose which list they would like to subscriber to, and one of those lists can be for just your blog posts.

Learn What Subscribers Want

WP Polls
What it does: Allows you to set up a poll on your blog for readers.

Why it’s good: You can learn more about what your audience wants. You can ask questions about how often they’d like you to email, what you should talk about, or learn the demographics of your audience. Once you have more information, you can use it for content ideas when creating emails.

Post Ratings
What it is: Blog readers have the opportunity to rate your posts.

Why it’s good: Letting readers rate your posts can give you insight on what they like and don’t like. You can try presenting your content in different ways and see how your readers respond.

The blog broadcast feature can be set up so you can choose which posts go out to subscribers.

Optimize Your Marketing

All in One SEO Pack
What it does: Optimizes your blog for search engines.

Why it’s good: This particular plugin is good for both beginner and experienced marketers. A blog that’s optimized for search engines will get more traffic, so you’ll have more potential subscribers coming to your site.

Make sure you have a form on every page of your website, so no matter what page visitors are landing on they have the opportunity to sign up.

What it does: Gives you stats for how many visitors you’re getting on each page, where visitors came from, visitor behavior, etc.

Why it’s good: You can see what pages are popular, so you know where your web forms should go if you don’t want to have it on every page. You can also learn more about your audience, and you can use this information to set up split tests for your web forms.

Engage Subscribers

What it does: Restricts certain content to show only for registered subscribers.

Why it’s good: Allows you to share premium content to a select group. AWeber integrates with many shopping carts, so if it’s paid content you’re offering they can be sent a confirmation message for your list upon purchase. You can offer sneak peeks for your “premium content” to get people interested, but they have to subscribe to get everything.

Instant Highlighter
What it does: Readers can highlight parts of your page and then share that page.

Why it’s good: Your blog broadcast can be set up to include the first paragraph of your post and a “Read more” link for your subscriber to go to your site. From there, subscribers can use the highlighter.

It’s a fun way to get subscribers engaged and note their favorite parts. Sharing the highlighted version with friends can bring out what they/their friend find interesting, potentially bringing in more subscribers.

What AWesome Plugins Do You Use?

There are lots of plugins, so surely you know some that we don’t. What has helped your campaign?