Connection first, Conversion next when it comes to email marketing

Connection first, Conversion next when it comes to email marketing

As a blogger, you have to remember that it is all about building relationships; and email marketing is no exception. Just because you have someone’s email id in your email list doesn’t mean you “have” them.

Unless you have a “relationship” with your subscribers, those email ids have no meaning – they are just entries in the database.

First comes connection and then conversion. What most bloggers believe is that once they have added someone to their mailing list, they’ve succeeded with conversion. This is only partially true.

Of course we all talk about conversions mostly in the context of getting email subscribers, right? But the conversion actually doesn’t end there and you can’t declare yourself to have won unless you have a relationship with the subscriber.

Because, you have activities like “opening your email” and “clicking on your links” that you want your subscribers to carry out. That is where your “conversions” (as you measured when people signed up to your list) takes real meaning.

If you have a list of 100K subscribers and if only 100 of them are opening your emails and only 10 of those 100 are clicking your links, then there is no point in having 100K subscribers in your list!

Read this post for more info: Your email list size doesn’t matter. THIS does!

So, let’s talk about connection and conversion after people have subscribed! Let’s talk about the key elements or “best practices” that you need to follow so your conversions shine post subscriptions!

Add people to your list with their consent

This one is a biggie. No matter what effective methods you use to build your email list, if the people in your list didn’t have their consent or knowledge about joining your list, they are just going to be dead weight.

People you add to your list without consent is dead weight

I get signed up automatically to a lot of email lists – this either happens when I visit a particular website, or when I sign up for one particular list.

When I get emails from those lists that I didn’t myself join, it is a lot irritating. I usually unsubscribe from such lists and report them as spam in wherever places possible!

Whoever added me to their list is essentially wasting their money and damaging their reputation by doing so.

For one, you have to pay for your email autoresponder service. And most services charge you based on the number of subscribers you have or the number of emails you send.

Now, by having a large number of people in your list who didn’t “join” your list by themselves, you are paying to “keep” them in the list – but they are not going to open your emails or click the links in them.

Second, most people just unsubscribe anyway but they mark your email as spam. Most email service providers also provide an option for subscribers to give a reason for their un-subscribing activity.

And if increasing number of people provide the real reasons like – I don’t remember joining this list, or The mails I received are all spam – you are going to damage your reputation a lot!

Above all, you cannot connect with people when you have already annoyed them! And so, let’s forget about conversion!

Provide value

I know – “create quality content” is something you hear all the time. It has become a mantra. I know it can be quite annoying to hear the same advice over and over again.

But unless you are practising it, there is no point in becoming annoyed over hearing this piece of advice. In fact, this is an awesome piece of advice, and let me say it again – “create quality content”!

The content you put out in the form of a blog post, or a newsletter is not merely pixels on the screen. It acts as a mode of communication. You communicate with your prospects and potential customers via your content; so you should take it seriously.

You cannot cook up something in a hurry and hit the publish button because it is that day of the week to publish blog posts! Similarly you cannot simply write a few lines of newsletter and hit Send, just because you send newsletter on Thursdays.

When I say “content”, it applies to all content you ever create – blog posts, newsletters, sales page content, your guest posts, your comments on other blogs and social media, your videos and so on.

Provide value wherever you go and people will easily resonate with you. It is because you can make an impact in people’s life if you continue to provide value.

If you provide value, your readers can easily resonate with you

Even if it is a 4 line email newsletter, be sincere and serious. Make sure you are delivering value, or else don’t send it, even if it is your regular newsletter day.

It is because of this reason, I don’t encourage bloggers to get too strict with their editorial calendar. While I am not encouraging the thought that you can be sluggish, and careless without sticking to your editorial calendar, you should not also become too strict about it.

If you don’t have content prepared for a particular day, you should rather skip the day and publish when you are ready with good quality content.

The more value you deliver, the easier it gets for people to connect with you. You can easily become a hero in your readers’ lives.

Stay in touch with your list subscribers

Stay in touch with your list subscribers

You remember the popular saying “out of sight, out of mind”? It works perfectly with email marketing; but obviously not for your good.

If you stop communicating with your subscribers, they will eventually forget you. Or if you allow too many days between your newsletters, they will not recognise you when you send the next email.

After all, they signed up because they liked you. You have to make sure that the bond is kept sealed.

Stay in touch with your subscribers and keep the bond sealed

Any relationship is bound to die when there is no communication. The same is true with the relationship between you and your prospects.

If you fail to keep the link live you will lose them forever. But it also doesn’t mean that you should be invading their inbox as much as you can.

The communication should be in moderation. Don’t send too many emails; but also don’t forget to email them.

Don’t send all too promotional emails; provide value and promote your products in moderation.

Staying in touch means a lot when it comes to maintaining a healthy relationship. So do it!

Do you connect with your email subscribers before thinking about conversion?

As I said already, you cannot expect to get any desired output from your email list if you don’t connect with them. By connection, I mean building a genuine relationship.

Not just for making that sale. Not just to make your subscriber click on that affiliate link of yours. But you should look to provide value. You should make an impact.

You should continue to serve your subscribers without expecting them to do business with you. I know this might sound ironical. But this works.

If you don’t run after the money, and if you are serious about truly helping people and connecting with them, you will be surprised by the amount of conversions you get!

About the Author

I'm Jane, the owner of Best Hosting And Design, where I help bloggers and website owners to create and maintain their websites. Check out the services I offer here so you can make use of them. For cutting-edge business tips, please head over to Jane Sheeba.

Leave a Reply 12 comments

Sangeetha Menon - July 21, 2015 Reply


Absolutely true.

I had an option enabled in my blog where in whomever comments will be automatically added to my newsletter list. As I was analysing my stats, i wondered why my list isn’t growing.

I understood the difference b/w genuine who want-our-articles and i-went-by-you-site-got-your-freebie-thats it readers too. So obviously when my newsletters went to the latter team, they gor irked ..some of them mailed me too.

Such an important lesson I learnt from my mistake and the first thing I did was deleting that plugin which didnt give me any valueadd to my blog wither.

    Jane Sheeba - July 24, 2015 Reply

    Hey Sangeetha,

    Thanks for honestly sharing your mistake here. I’m sure many marketers do that.

    I’ve did some really crazy blunders too when I started out. Its perfectly OK and that’s how we learn right?

    Glad that you have improved your email marketing tactics now 🙂

    Thanks for your comment. Have a wonderful weekend ahead!


Cedric Markwatson - July 22, 2015 Reply

Hi Sheeba,

This stuff really helps all of us to grow our dream business. And this detailed blog is showing your hard work and great research.

We youngest marketer always in great search of new and helpful stuff. Hope you would come up soon with your new thought.

This stuff would be helpful for both newbies as well as experienced. Thanks and keep up the awesome work. 🙂

    Jane Sheeba - July 24, 2015 Reply

    Hi Cedric,

    I am glad you found the post useful. Thanks for stopping by!


Donald McLeman - July 23, 2015 Reply

Hi, Jane, do I know that question of too often/not often enough!

It really is impossible to know what is the right frequency. I’m often amazed at the volume of emails some people send out, how can that possibly work? I send an email whenever I post something new, which isn’t on a set schedule… but at least I am only contacting people when I’ve got something new to say.

It makes sense what you say about people thinking that the conversion has happened when they get a name on their list, that must be why they think it’s time to just bombard them with their products.

Thanks for a very realistic view!

    Jane Sheeba - July 24, 2015 Reply

    Hey Donald,

    You are SO right. We don’t know whether we are emailing too much or not sending enough mails – but we could learn by trial and error. Or we could simply ask our subscribers about their preference.

    One could also include this option while people sign up. I once remember signing up for a list and I was provided with the options to choose from – as to how frequently I want emails from them: The options were like daily, twice a week, and once a week.

    That did sound smart to me.

    Again, I appreciate that you are contacting your subscribers only when you have something to say – even if it is not a regular “frequency”!

    Thanks for sharing your insights 🙂 Have a great weekend ahead!


Adrienne - July 23, 2015 Reply

Hey Jane,

Boy can I sympathize with you pertaining to being put on people’s list without my approval. I find it annoying and irritating as well. I will unsubscribe and mark them as spam. They’re only hurting their own reputation so I can’t see this as ever being a positive thing.

I also work with clients that aren’t emailing their list at all. So why are they building it and how do they intend to convert those people to customers if they eventually forget they ever opted in? You definitely have to start building up a relationship with your list if you want to start seeing some positive results.

I’m on a very popular marketers list who also teaches about relationships. I found it SO surprising when a few months ago I emailed them letting them know that what they were offering a particular week for their subscribers, I wasn’t going to be available and wanted to know if they were going to see the information after the fact. Do you know that this relationship marketer never responded to me? What kind of relationship marketer are you then if you are ignoring the people on your list? I was shocked and very surprised so you can imagine what I did next. I opted out of that list and stop following that marketer. He definitely is not walking the talk. Sad!

I can see this as being a wake up call for a lot of people. We’re not all perfect but as long as we keep improving upon what we’re already doing then we’ll eventually get on the right track.


    Jane Sheeba - August 4, 2015 Reply

    Hey Adrienne,

    So you know how it feels to be bombarded with promotional emails from unknown people? It is a great feeling to know I’m not alone here lol. I certainly don’t understand the logic behind this kind of email marketing – such companies are working to damage their own reputation. Awesome!

    I too don’t understand the logic behind people building their email list but never email them.

    I’ve also experienced such curious cases of marketers where they don’t respond to emails 🙂 Relationship comes first and everything else next. That has been my mantra so far with email marketing and I am glad it works.

    Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views Adrienne 🙂 Have an awesome week 🙂


Mark - July 25, 2015 Reply

Excellent advice as usual Jane!

BTW, I was completely surprised by the particular URL.

I didn’t realize one of the services you offered was web hosting.

And I love the way you pointed out, that getting so few opens and even less click through s on your links, shows just how meaningless it is,to merely concentrate of building a huge, and by in large non responsive list!

That is a really good point, that often gets overlooked!

And your equally great advice about doing your online reputation potential permanent harm, simply by adding people to your list without their permission and or consent!

That’s another big no no!Thanks so much for sharing your excellent tips!

Theodore Nwangene - August 4, 2015 Reply

I agree with all your points Jane,
Adding people to your list without their consent is just a waste of time, effort and money because just like you, i always unsubscribe from such list without wasting any time at all.

People should join your list willingly not even because they were asked to. When someone made up his mind to optin to your list, he become a very loyal subscriber and will always open, read and click on your links now, that’s the type of subscriber we all want isn’t it?

And like you said, everything has to start with the connection. You have to first connect with them, show them you truly care and respects them and that you’re not just about to make money through them only but, you also want to educate and give more value to them and i doing so, they will happily give you their money.

Thanks for sharing Jane.

Arbaz K - August 6, 2015 Reply

Great article, Jane.
I agree that you need to make your connections strong without worrying about conversions when it comes to email marketing. Once your subscribers and you have established a relationship, you will be able to see the conversions automatically.

Mark Theaban - March 29, 2017 Reply

Hi Jane

i am totally agree with you that relationship is more important than having just an email id, this situation perfect suits with the quote of Zig Ziglar “If people likes you they will listen you but if they trust you they will do business with you” and trust can be built only with the honest suggestions and helping others.

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