Small but mighty
Longtime reader Peter John Reilly reacts to my crazy idea of turning off the email automations and interacting with your audience in a more personal way:
This is gold advice. I'm just starting out and every subscriber I get is literally talked about over dinner, the whole family gets excited.
By dumping the automated response I'll have more chances of creating a community, which is what I'd like to do.
So, my thoughts are that I'll implement this idea and run with it until it gets to a stage were I have to hit the automatic button once more. But even then, I'll still try to personalize as much as possible.
A lot of email marketing “best practices” were developed specifically for the top 2% of businesses—sites selling a complex array of products to a massive flood of visitors.
They're using automation to cope with a specific set of problems that are caused by scale.
The vast majority of businesses will never operate at this same scale—and don't need to.
You can run a 6- or 7-figure business with an email list of a few thousand people—IF those people are really bought into what you're doing.
By optimizing his email list to create a community, Peter can create a core group of fans who will run through brick walls for him.
A small community like this is much more powerful than a list of 100,000 people who happened to stick their email address in a signup form one day.