It’s been well over a month since I wrote the post about pruning my list to get rid of all the deadwood. By deadwood I’m referring to those subscribers who have never bothered, or hardly ever, to read my emails. Normally I’d just let them go to build up my list numbers except that I’m rewarding my list members by placing a link to their site from my List page and I figured it just wasn’t fair to reward them if they weren’t holding up their end.
That post included a youtube video showing my readers how MailChimps star system highlighted the quality of your subscribers. This post has a video which shows how to use that star system to separate the good subscribers from the bad ones.
I have to admit I was surprised how simple the procedure was and I am really glad that I did it. I have to admit there were a few bloggers who were regulars and I struggled with the decision as to whether or not I should delete them with the general culling and in the end I decided it was the only fair thing to do.
I know that there were a few comments in that first post where people thought I was crazy for pruning my list as they felt that the deadwood may actually come to life one day. Well, as far as I’m concerned deadwood is deadwood and you’re better off clearing them out of the way so you can concentrate on growing your live limbs.
There are also certain positives for pruning your list.
If you have a large list and are paying for the amount of emails you’re sending out pruning your list will reduce those costs.
Having a more dedicated list will also improve your open and click through rate which will give you a nice warm fuzzy feeling when you check your campaign reports
In my situation I know I am only rewarding those subscribers who are actually interested in what I have to say which is as it should be.
I’ve also made sure that any new subscribers know what to expect when subscribing to my list, that I only want dedicated members, ones who actually read my emails occasionally and that I will be pruning my list on a regular basis.
What’s that, how many did I cull in the pruning process? Reckon you’ll have to watch the video to see that.
I started my list in December 2010 and it took about 10 months to reach 50 subscribers. I wrote about that milestone in my post A New Milestone As My Mail List Hits 50 and that post tells of the new tactic I had started using to increase my list numbers. One that has been working so well that my numbers have since doubled.
You would think that would make me a pretty happy blogger round about now wouldn’t you? Well, I’m not and that is what this post is all about. I’m just not happy about having a list that is not performing to my expectations. Let’s face it, the whole idea of having a list is to get something from your subscribers. For most list owners it’s usually money related but all I want is that my subscribers actually open my emails to see what I’ve been up to. After all, that is why they joined isn’t it?
Having A Dedicated List Is Important
When people subscribe to a list it’s usually because the person building the list is offering a freebie or something at a discounted rate. In my situation it’s because they want their link to appear on my List Page, as that is the incentive that I am offering.
The thing with lists is they’re of little use if the subscribers are not opening your emails. Lists being what they are, a lot of subscribers do not give their prime email address when joining. Instead they will use an address that is rarely used except when they use it to subscribe to a list or something. These people have no intention of opening your mail and so are pretty useless as subscribers.
I expected to get my fair share of these subscribers but the time has come to sift through my subscribers removing all the dead wood. After all, why should they receive the same reward, a link back to their site, as all my dedicated subscribesr who actually open and read my emails?
This post will serve as a warning to all my subscribers that one month from today I will be deleting all inactive members. That is all those subscribers who for whatever reason have not been opening my emails. Unfortunately for them they won’t know what the hell is going on because they won’t be opening the email linking to this post. I will also be linking to this post from my list’s signup form so that all future subscribers know their link will be removed unless they are active members.
MailChimp’s Star System
I’ve created a YouTube video to show you how easy it will be to sift through my subscribers separating the good loyal ones from those who probably only joined so they could get a free link to their website.
I’m not all that big on doing milestones, although I have done one or two in the past, but I thought this particular one deserves a post. I started my list way back in December last year when I wrote a post called Why The List Hater Has His Very Own List. Since that time my list has grown to a whopping 50 members! Yeah, yeah, I know that is a piddling amount and you know I don’t really care because I know that at least my subscribers are a dedicated bunch who have joined because they are interested in what I have to say.
I’ve done a few posts about my list since then including Why I Chose MailChimp Over Aweber which is really a review about MailChimp, one that has brought quite a bit of traffic to this blog. I can safely say that to date I am more than satisfied with their services and I have no intention to change.
If you’re a regular reader of this blog you know that I’ve never really supported having a list, the reasons being that most people abuse their list by continually trying to sell them something. I vowed when starting my list to never do that to my subscribers. I think when looking at my low list numbers you really need to compare the way I promote my list to the way others do it.
List Building Techniques
The use of annoying popups!
Give away freebies to get them to join. A lot of the time they turn out to be less than useless
I don’t use these on any of my blogs
Nope, don’t do that either although I do reward those you do by giving them some linkluv.
Those are the two main ways that others get people to subscribe to their list and apparently they work quite well but I personally dislike them and so I will not be using them on my readers.
Until recently my numbers were even lower and in fact I was even getting one or two who were unsubscribing which resulted in the post Why People Unsubscribe From Your List! Since them my numbers have been increasing slightly faster but it wasn’t because of that post.
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