Wednesday, 27 January 2016

The Number One Reason I Unsubscribed To Your Mail List

Your mail list aren't subscribing to your mail list for your products, if they were, they'd have bought some. They want you, and they want your content, they don't want spam!

I used to be very wary about handing out my email address and joining mail lists. I would avoid subscribing to anything, even if it were websites and blogs I enjoyed, but over time, and with the appeal of free ecourses, reviews of which you can check out here and here, I've become a little lanx in giving out my email address and joining mail lists. This is now a serious problem, because as much as I've enjoyed my free ecourses, my inbox was no longer my own, so I cleared it out, got rid and unsubscribed from mail lists I didn't want to be a part of anymore.

But what made me unsubscribe? What was the big trigger for wiping my hands clean of those emails and waving goodbye to the senders who put them in my inbox? Possibly the most irritating, time consuming problem of all..

Receiving several 'promotional' emails in one day

There is absolutely no reason why you should be emailing your subscribers more than twice a day, and sometimes, even two is one too many. There's a difference between just emailing your mail list to keep them 'in the know' and spamming them with emails too many. I'd been suffering from the latter, and I decided I'd had enough.

Related: Dear Mailing List Moron: Permission Not Granted!

Some mail lists I were subscribed too would email me about a webinar taking place later that day, maybe 8 hours in advance, which is absolutely fine. Then they'd email me again around 2-3 hours later, reminding me about said webinar, and that email goes straight in the trash without a moments reading because whether or not I'm actually going to check it out or not, I don't need a reminder that soon after being told. I may have been in work. I may have been out shopping. God forbid, I may have stopped blogging for the night and gone to sleep. Do you know what's then not acceptable? Receiving yet another email 30 minutes before said webinar is set to start. Not cool sender. Not cool.

For some, this is acceptable emailing practice and is a-okay, for me, this is spamming. This is sending me email after email after email about one subject, pushing me, nagging me, trying to guilt trip into doing something I don't want to do, and it's wrong. Sure, the science behind getting quick responses like saying 'limited time!' or 'only x amount left' is true, but it's annoying as fuck, and it's not on.

I felt as though I was deleting almost every email I recieved, before I'd even read it!

The funniest part of the whole experience was when I realised that there were some emails from some senders that I just never opened. Just 'pop', straight in the trash without a seconds thought, even the emails that weren't promotional, but were from senders who had done the above, and that's not because I didn't like the sender, or that the subject line wasn't as good as it could have been, or the whole reason for the email wasn't what I was interested in, but because I didn't want them in my inbox anymore. I was getting frustrated even thinking about checking my inbox, pointless when I'd spent oh so long getting it organised with labels. Shameful, because I should have unsubscribed to those senders sooner, not just for my own sanity, but because the sender didn't need a 'fake follower'.

The cherry on the top? When I received an email asking me to explain why I hadn't opened their last few emails. An email, asking me why I hadn't opened their emails. The irony was painful, hilarious, but painful, and the guilt I felt over being on their mail list when I didn't want to be, and they couldn't understand why became so overwhelming, I gave in. I unsubscribed, all because they'd overwhelmed me with promotional emails I didn't mind receiving, a few too many times.

The world we live in means we're being sold to all the time, and that sucks.

The internet has become one big promotional playground, advising you on the best practicing for increasing sales, the best words to use when trying to put the fright into people so they start buying, but in the end, if your product or service is worth having, it'll sell itself better than any promoting you could do for it.

Related: I'm Tired of Being Sold To

I do totally understand that the best way to sell your product to someone is directly, and you don't get much more direct than an email straight to the one place somebody is bound to check, but there's saying 'hey, I have this great thing you might be interested in' and there's constantly shoving something in somebody's face until they either walk away forever or poke you in the eye in response.

There's a phrase that says you should give give give give, then ask. It's right.

When I subscribe to your mail list, it's not because I totally want your next free webinar or ecourse, or have an interest in your products, if I was, I'd have already signed up or purchased them. When I subscribe, it's because I want more of your content, your knowledge, your advice, your witty comments or your award winning positivity. When it comes down to it, your mail list is not an easy target for your sales pitch, and you are not a supermarket. It's okay to have somebody walk into your 'store', browse and walk out without doing anything that benefits you, and the sooner that's accepted, the better.

Sharing tidbits of yourself with your mail list is okay.
Sharing your available products or services is also okay.
Making every email you send a promotion is not. It's spam. And it sucks.

What makes you unsubscribe to a mail list?


  1. This was really interesting since I'm also working on building my mailing list. I actually also hate the webinar reminders! I mean, I think it's fine if you remind me a day before, and then send me the link when it's starting soon, but I can get up to like 5 emails. It's especially funny because most webinars take place when I'm sleeping, so I basically wake up to that slew of emails and still be far too late to join in. I also delete so many emails without even looking at them, but I just can't be bothered to unsubscribe.

    Interestingly enough, I also send a "hello, you haven't been opening my emails" email now and then, but the main objective of that one is to ask people who aren't interested to unsubscribe, instead of explaining why.

    1. I still just delete emails rather than unsubcribe, it's just easier, you know, but I think I'm finally making my way through the emails and I'm coming out the other side, which is super good news. I don't mind the whole 'you haven't opened my emails thing', that's fine, and it might encourage me to unsub, but to ask me to explain is just awkward and puts me off, feels like their invading, so your method works well Alyssa! :)

  2. I wonder if we're following some of the same people. This past week I got a ton of webinar reminders from one person in particular.

    I'm fine with one email telling me about a webinar.
    I'm even fine with a few reminders **if I sign up for the webinar**.

    But if I don't sign up, then I don't want 3-4 emails reminding me about a webinar. (And yet, that's exactly what I got this week.)

    1. I think we might be you know, I find I get a lot of 'reminders' when they're simply not needed. If I want to see it, I'll remember, you know? It's crazy, just leave us alone for five minutes to actually consider it..