What if you were hanging by a single thread? The moment that thread rips off, you’ll fall and hit the floor hard.
It’s metaphorical, almost poetic. But it’s safe to say that’s exactly what happens if you just rely on social media and not an email list.
Creators on the Facebook network were anxious about their livelihoods. Literally because of an internet glitch. I mean it’s hard to say that, but that’s the world we live in today.
But should they have been that anxious? I’m sorry, that’s not the right question.
Should they care about their livelihood just because an app went down?
The reason is they shouldn’t (and if you’re a creator, you shouldn’t) depend on a single social media platform. Because it’s controlled by algorithms and outside parties.
No matter how big they get, you’ll always be a small creator in comparison to the giant network. Nobody’s worth more than that.
That’s why you need to build and have complete control over some of your digital assets. The one I’m going to talk about today is called an Email List.
What is an Email List?
An email list is a collection of emails comprising of people who’ve given their consent to receive emails from you. In marketing, you call this an opt-in or subscription.
This blog is not going to talk about how to market to that list. That’s email marketing which is quite a big topic in itself. Read this instead.
Rather, I’m gonna talk about email lists as a digital asset. And why not only brands or small businesses but even creators should have them.
Is Building an Email List Worth the Hype (for creators)?
The long answer is below. Pointers, I know, right!?
1. Saves you from a Rainy Day: As social media creators, you never know what’ll get banned or be inaccessible.
While it’s a great place to create and display content, your email list can never go off the grid. Till the time your internet is working. There are a lot of email clients like Google or Outlook, but they just provide a platform.
You have end-to-end control over it.
If there’s an emergency, you still have a list of your followers to engage with and market to them in a way you like. You’ll never lose your audience, and honestly, what matters the most are the people. Your community.
2. No Algorithm Bullsh*t: With an email list, you’d never have to become a prostitute of the algorithm again. The unpredictability goes out the window.
You create content and, you can literally send it to all of your audience in one click if you like. It won’t just reach 3-5% of your audience, and then you need to do the engagement dance to get more reach.
In this no-rules rules scenario, you’d have plenty of time to focus on creating the perfect content. Most importantly, you’d spend more time on providing as much value as you can.
3. Razor-sharp segmentation: As a creator, it’s quite natural to feel burnt out. While there might be a lot of reasons, one of the most popular ones is creating too much content in the same niche.
To the point where it becomes saturated, and you’ve no ideas anymore.
Creators solve this problem by creating 2-3 great content pillars. But email lists are better because they allow segmentation.
This means that you can create specific content for different segments all in the same list.
You can create introduction content for your new subscribers. Whereas you can send content on a much more advanced concept to the existing people in your list.
At the same time.
How cool is that?!
4. Personalization: While segmentation is a form of personalization, emails by design are personalized.
Just imagine how you get emails. It lands in your personal inbox and usually starts with hey (your name).
It’s certainly more personalized than social media.
As a solo creator, it’s much easier to share tidbits from your life on emails. It lands in people’s inbox who’ve actually subscribed to seeing this side of you.
It’s not openly accessible to anyone, so you won’t have to think twice before hitting send.
5. Conversions are easier: Emails have been around for quite some time. Much before social media and more people exist on emails than social media.
The fact that 58% of people check them first thing in the morning says something, doesn’t it?
The conversions are significantly higher and faster than social media too. It also makes sense.
Let’s say you have to remind your followers about a purchase they wanted to make but forgot.
Putting a story on social media is only going to reach so many people. But with an email, you have the chance to send them the reminder personally. Also, probably the last chance to turn their ‘not so sure’ decision in your favor.
How should I start my Email List?
Building an email list is not just an emotionally better upgrade. It makes business and financial sense too. The sense of community is too high to miss, and that’s what the creator wants, right?
Here are 3 tips that’ll help you get your first few subscribers:
1. Create a lead magnet or freebie. This is what you give in exchange for getting people’s email info.
2. Create a form to sign up directly on your website. These are also called squeeze pages, or you can even create a small popup or widget.
3. Announce your email list on social media with stories and posts. To attract people, talk about a benefit only your list would get access to. It should be exclusive.
We’re living in strange times. Nothing is permanent, and everything changes daily.
An email list ensures that your community is safe with you no matter what happens.
So, get out there and start giving a sh*t about your email list because regret is the only option if you don’t.