List Building-Don't Sweat the Lost

by Tellman Knudson - Date: 2007-02-12 - Word Count: 574 Share This!

Have you gotten out of bed, gotten some coffee, turned on the computer, let it boot, and then opened your email client only to find that you have some subscribers that no longer want your emails?

Dun, dun, da... They unsubscribed!

Oh, well.

Listen, here's what I do. I shut the notifications off. Why should you be bothered with that stuff? It's just depressing, and in the worst cases, it could halt your list building efforts. Some inexperienced people may think, Why bother list building, when everyone on my list wants off? That's not true, number one, and number two, you can never give up on list building. You know where the money is, right? It's in the list. That's not just an old saying; it's true! List building is essential.

And when people unsubscribe, it often has nothing to do with you. People unsubscribe for a lot of different reasons. Oh sure, some of them won't like your style and will unsubscribe after the first message they receive from you.

But it could also be that they forgot that they signed up for your list. You may even be reported for spamming from these people. You can't worry about that! Your autoresponder should be able to back up any complaints that come in.

Or, it could be that the people who unsubscribed are on more than one list of yours and are tired getting several emails from you all at once. I know that probably happens to me a LOT. But that's something I don't care about, really. Losing subscribers is just part of list building. You have to constantly be list building because you're constantly losing subscribers.

And what about undeliverability? Is it a bad problem?

Depending on your autoresponder, it can be. Some services just have better deliverability rates than others. But mail might bounce for several other reasons.

The most obvious one is that people signed up with false email addresses. They're the same people who don't play fair across the board.

Or, your email might bounce because the person's email box is full. That happens a lot, especially with Internet marketing because people sign up for a bunch of stuff and then never read the messages or take them off their servers.

However, part of the problem could be you.

Some of the ISPs are blocking lots of stuff based on keywords alone. Never put "free" anything in your title, or you're probably doomed. Comcast, AOL, Hotmail, and Yahoo are just a few of the ISPs, which use aggressive spam filters. They don't discriminate about whether or not someone requested the information, they just block it.

You might send a message with an attachment. Never, ever do that. Always upload whatever it is that you're giving to your list and allow people to download it from the Internet. Large messages or pictures can hang up someone's email client for a long time, especially if they're on dial-up, and it may even cause their mail programs to freeze up.

Never send large files. In fact, don't send anything that might come across as an attachment. Some ISPs and mail programs just filter attachments, period. And they filter some HTML mail. Use plain text. It works fine. I never use anything else.

List building is a delicate business. Once people sign up, you have to build trust, and you have to be sure your messages are getting to people. Otherwise, you're probably right. Why be list building at all? Along with list building comes list maintenance.

Related Tags: list building, list, email list, opt in list

Tellman Knudson is CEO of OvercomeEverything, Inc. Learn how to build a powerful and responsive list quickly through his premiere list-building course,

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