A subscriber was telling me the other week how he recently unsubscribed from more than 50 marketing email lists.
“You survived the cull,” he told me. “Congratulations.”
I too aggressively unsubscribe from things that are no longer providing me with value, so I thought it might be worth sharing my rules of thumb.
The people I stay subscribed to are the people that show up frequently with the deepest level of insight. Deep insight usually requires a multi-disciplinary perspective. Most copywriters only write about copywriting, and frankly it’s dull.
I’m subscribed to one particular marketer who provided me with huge value when I first subscribed to his list. But he’s still writing about the same things, eight years later. I’m still subscribed for legacy reasons, but I don’t pay much attention any more.
I think most marketers are operating in default. They write about their thing, or their specialism, but their narrow focus quickly causes their emails to become boring even if the content itself is still good.
The first rule of thumb is you should only continually subscribe to people who are always trying to raise their level of insight. You can only grow if the people you are following are also growing.
The second and perhaps more controversial rule of thumb is you should only stay subscribed to people who take a broader, multi-disciplinary approach to their subject. Real insights often require information from unusual sources. Most marketers are too scared to do this, worrying they won’t be relevant.
Everything is relevant if you can show how it ties together.
We all have specialisms. Mine are copywriting, Infusionsoft and AdWords. You probably opted in down one of those routes, but if all I ever did was write about those things you would be bored out of your skull.
I think most marketers try to milk their list, rather than grow their list. Sure, they might have a big list. But you opt-in and it’s a thinly veiled nag-fest, wrapped in the same information repackaged over and over.
We were talking a little about newsletters and email lists last night on a mastermind call I’m part of. One of my comments was that I actually write these emails primarily for my own sanity, with half an eye on you as the reader. If I didn’t have an email list I would still write a daily something; probably a daily journal.
I write these emails because from a selfish perspective they enable me to grow. They enable me to mix and match seemingly disparate bits of information to see what works. And hopefully in doing that there is plenty of value for you too.