As a blogger, I completely understand the importance of building an email list, which is why most bloggers won’t share this simiple productivity hack.
Before I launched my blog I signed up for all the freebies. Handing out my email address faster than taking my bra off after being in public all day.
Consuming all the free content that promised to help me make the best decisions, answer all my newbie questions and guide me step by step to success.
Instead, my inbox filled up with contradicting advice that left me second-guessing every step I took.
I was seeing others having the same problems in Facebook groups. Asking questions like:
How many blog posts should I have published before going live?
Do I need to have an opt-in before I launch my website?
What type of ad network should I use?
I quickly realized that none of the answers to these questions actually mattered.
Why? Because everyone’s answer was different, based on their comfort level, experience and skill set.
One person may advise you have 10 blog posts published before launching your site – which is great if you’re a writer. But if you don’t feel you’re a skilled writer, this answer can totally freak you out and stop you in your tracks.
Same with an opt-in. If you’re being told you should have an opt-in before launching yet you lack the creative resources to make one this could prevent you from moving forward. Instead, you may spend weeks trying to craft the perfect opt-in and end up missing out on using that time to gain traffic your their site.
If there is no traffic to your site, do you really need an opt-in? (That’s a rhetorical question.)
The Inbox Black Hole
Is your inbox overflowing with unread emails?
Or, are you spending more time than you’d like to admit reading all the emails from people you admire. Dreaming of the days when you’ll be as successful as they are?
There are three types of emails in every entrepreneur’s inbox:
- Personal – self-explanatory
- Helpful – emails from people in your industry who inspire you to take action. They are purposefully written to teach, encourage and build trust.
- Time-suckers – these emails have catchy subject lines that make you curious enough to open, but after reading the content you’re left confused, disappointed or discouraged.
Take a look at your inbox and see how many emails you receive each day from people giving advice on how to start and grow a business.
If you have 10+ per day, I guarantee you have some major time-sucker emails in that pile.
It’s time to unsubscribe from these.
Why? Content overload is a real thing. With all of these emails coming in, it’s easy to fool yourself into thinking you’re productively “researching” and “learning”.
In reality, if you’re consuming more content than you’re producing, it’s going to take you a heck of a lot longer to start seeing any type of success.
Personally, I despise having any unread emails in my inbox for more than two days. As I mentioned earlier, after subscribing to #allthefreebies in the early stages of starting my blog, keeping up was dragging me down.
Instead of focusing on my own blog and money making strategies, I was consumed with reading about everyone else’s success and tips.
Once I unsubscribed from more than 40 lists using the strategy I’m about to lay out for you, my blog started to take off and I actually started making money.
How? Instead of spending time sorting through emails and passively learning, I was able to focus and take massive action on creating content and promoting my blog.
The Unsubscribe Strategy
As a beginner blogger, I completely understand the theory behind signing up to tons of email lists. But instead of this being as beneficial as anticipated, you’re overwhelmed by all of the advice and have difficulty deciding whose tips are best for you and your business.
There is no shame in unsubscribing from email lists. You’re actually doing the sender a favor. If you’re unlikely to ever purchase from them, read their emails or follow their links back to their website they are better off not having you on their list.
You could actually be bringing down their reach potential and negatively impacting their analytics.
First, are there any senders whose emails you never open? Even though you don’t open them, you’re still spending time selecting them and hitting the delete button. Instead, stop letting them take up precious space in your inbox. Open one, scroll to the bottom and hit unsubscribe. Do not read the email and start second guessing unsubscribing.
Second, you need to decide which emails fall under the time-suck category mentioned above.
Are there any senders whose emails you read but are often disappointed by the content? What about a sender who often only writes one or two short paragraphs then links to their website to read the rest? This is a great strategy for many bloggers BUT, if you’re not following the link the majority of the time, it’s likely that you aren’t finding immediate value in the content. Unsubscribe.
Lastly, make a list of the senders you are still subscribed to. Choose three who you admire, find most helpful and who have a business model similar to the one you’re working towards.
Unsubscribe from any senders not included in your top three.
Yes, all of them. A week from now, you won’t even remember who you deleted, that’s how little you need them in your life and business.
When you’re down to being subscribed to just three lists, study and learn everything you can from those three senders.
How to Maintain a Clean and Focused Inbox
One of the main purposes of an email list is to nurture readers and eventually convert them to purchasers.
With that in mind, before filling out another opt-in with your email address consider if it’s worth it.
Take a look around the person’s website. If you find they have valuable blog posts or a product/service you may be interested in purchasing in the near future then sign up.
However, if you REALLY want the freebie they’re offering, then right after you get it unsubscribe from their list.
I don’t overly like to suggest that tactic but I also don’t want you suffering from FOMO (fear of missing out). I had to look up what FOMO meant the first time I saw it so for those who aren’t sure, you’re welcome.
The point is, be selective of who you give your email address to. There’s no point unsubscribing from a bunch only to go sign up for new ones.
By following this strategy you’ll be freeing up time to actually work in your business. You’ll be more productive and can fast track your success by following the exact strategies laid out in the three lists you’ve chosen to stay subscribed to.
If you’re committed to growing your business, are ready to be SEEN and want to give and receive helpful advice, support and guidance that will take your business to the next level join us in the She Does Business Community. A collaborative online community of supportive, like-minded women entrepreneurs.