Your Email List Stinks

Remove the term "Email Blast" from your vocabulary. No one likes to be hit by shrapnel, even if it is digital.One of the side effects of my speaking and workshops is that at the end of the talk, I give out my email address. For some strange reason, people attending believe that this gives them permission to subscribe me to their email list. End result: I get a lot of email newsletters from people that I have no idea who they are and no interest in their product or service.

Perhaps out of sheer morbid curiosity (or that these people could be potential clients), I let the emails continue. Drip, drip, drip. I could easily unsubscribe, but I wait to see if the company decides to actually do something interesting. Usually they don’t. And they don’t for a very long time.

Week after week, the same tired, boring content. Over and over and over again. What a waste of pixels. Even worse are the newsletters that pack so much content into the message or provide no mechanism to respond to the content. Seriously, I just don’t get it. Once, just once, read your own email as someone who doesn’t care about you yet.

Here is the problem: someone somewhere convinced you that the person with the biggest email database wins. You fall into that trap rather than doing something worthy of attention.

Here is my suggestion: Only add someone to your email database that asks to be on the list. If this means that no one wants to subscribe, perhaps you should rethink your email marketing strategy.

Since you probably won’t trash your existing list, why not create a new list with people that asked to be there. Now change the message content for each list. To the big list of people that don’t know you, invite them in. Talk about why you are worthy of attention. To the small list of people that like you, engage with them rather than broadcast to them.

And remove the term “Email Blast” from your vocabulary. No one likes to be hit by shrapnel, even if it is digital.