Don't Cull Your Email List

My circle of author friends recently discussed how they were all pruning their email lists to remove the people who never opened them. I wailed loudly that this is an enormous mistake.

Pardon me while I get geeky for a moment.

Newsletter tools that report "opens" do not, in reality, know who opened your email (let alone who read it.) The only method possible right now to measure "opens" is to include a tiny invisible image in the email and hope that the recipient will enable their email program's ability to include images. In Gmail, for instance, images will not be displayed unless you give permission. Many programs, like Microsoft's ubiquitous Outlook, have a preview pane, allowing a recipient to read your entire email without ever actually opening it and activating the invisible image trigger that notifies the newsletter tool.

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Dear Former Newsletter Subscriber

Social media is not about making the most connections, it's about making the right connections.

Dear Former Newsletter Subscriber:

Thank you for unsubscribing from my newsletter. I hope the process was clear and simple.

Don’t take this wrong, but I’m glad you left. Here’s why:

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Personal, Anticipated, and Relevant: Keep Your Email List Up to PAR

If you were to ask us why you get Ausoma's newsletter, we could tell you that there are only two possible ways: you signed up for it yourself at the website, or you asked to be on the list.

We didn't add you just because we wanted to.

We didn't get your business card at a mixer, and add you to our list without telling you.

We didn't sell you a book, and add you to our list without telling you.

We didn't connect with you on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, or Bob's Social Media and Lawnmower Repair, and add you to our list without telling you.

Your email newsletter is your most valuable marketing asset. Well, it's how you access your most valuable marketing asset.

… more … "Personal, Anticipated, and Relevant: Keep Your Email List Up to PAR"

Using a 'Done' List to Become More Productive

done listDo you find it difficult to get every done on your to-do list? I love to make lists! Whether by pen and paper (my favorite still) or using an online tool or spreadsheet (both of which I make use of also), there's such a sense of accomplishment when you see all the tasks crossed off a to-do list.

However, it's much more effective and productive to keep a 'done' list! I learned this when I started using a iDoneThis.  Every day at the end of my work day I get an email from them where I can list my 'dones' for the day. It feels great to put down what I got done! And every day I can see what I got done at some point in the past. It's a wonderful free tool that I encourage you to start using. I haven't missed a day of using it in nearly 2 years.

How Well Do You Know Your List?

How well do you know your list?

Who are the people on your list that receive your newsletter or blog? Do you have hundreds on your list? If so, do you know where they all came from? If you had to write each one of them an individual message, could you include something specific that you know they would want to hear?

We have an extensive network of people around the world that we stay in touch with via blogs, emails, newsletters, forums, etc. Some have opted-in to a newsletter or blog that we don't personally know. Otherwise, I can tell you something about just about everyone we to whom we send out a  mailing.

Joel and I were recently getting ready to send out a mailing about our web design company, Spinhead Web Design. We wanted to announce our new service, Kindle Formatting. It had been a while since we'd sent anything out so we decided to review the list first to make sure that only people who would really be interested received our email.

We started out with over 300 on the list and pruned it to about 120. But I could tell you where every one of those 120 contacts came from - how we met, whether in person or online. We knew these were people that had either done business with us or were fans of ours. These all are people who are our fans. If they don't need our service, we know they'll refer someone else who does.

It's not effective to send eblasts out to those who are either going to ignore you or feel annoyed. But targeting our fans - that's effective!

Thank you to all our fans!