I decided to start an email list for my business after reading this little article by Marie Forleo and then seeing this video where she mentions it again. I remembered that when I get emails from my favorite Etsy jewelry seller with a promotion or news about a shop update, I always click over to her shop to check it out and I've even made a purchase on more than one occasion. Creating an email list and sending out newsletters is easier than ever thanks to services like Mail Chimp (that's the one I use, so I'll refer to it since that's where my experience is). With just a few clicks you can personalize a simple sign-up form and get a link to share with potential subscribers. When you are ready to send out a newsletter or promotional campaign you can choose a ready-to-go template or create a custom look, and Mail Chimp will send out the emails on the day you schedule them to be delivered.
Here a few helpful links from Mail Chimp if you'd like to learn more about the process:
And here a few more links if you'd like to research the subject of email lists a little more:
How to Make Your Email Newsletter a Must-Read for Your Customers via Entrepreneur
Creating Content for Email Newsletters via Practical Ecommerce