I know you want to grow that list. We all want and must grow our lists – in order to have a people to “sell” to – people who listen, care, and learn from us! Who doesn’t.
More people means more eyes seeing what you’re up to, more lives you can impact, and maybe a little more pride + confidence in what you’re doing.
But there’s a myth and misconception that I’m tired of and here it is: You aren’t a real biz until you’ve got a big list.
Let’s wash that BS down the drain right now.
Read this post if you want at least 1 piece of proof.
You can support your fledgling biz on less than 1000 subscribers. It is possible.
And in addition to being able to make money for your business – it’s also easier to do what you need to do right now – because the number is manageable.
How to make the most of your scrappy small list
So – you’ve got a small list.
I say – sooo what!
Look at this as a benefit right now as you start your business or make the decision to launch your first product.
Here are some simple tips to engage like a mofo and get to know each and everyone of the people on your list…
Before you get started – let me repeat that your goal here is to engage as much with your current list of people and find out if what they want to learn or what they need is aligned with what you want to teach and/or give to them.
Talk to them everywhere
If you get an email, respond to it, ask them questions, tell them you are putting together something FOR them. Tell them you’re in biz.
Set up google alerts to hear other people talking about your topics or mention you in anyway anywhere. I have alerts set up for virtual team, launching, and my own name and website.
Be A Joiner
Join groups of people who are likely talking about your topic – on Linked In and Facebook.
Group People Together
Start Twitter lists related to your topic – and follow people you know routinely share information or are leaders in your market/industry… or there’s some crossover with what you offer.
Don’t ignore anyone.
Make a system of recording questions people ask and categorize them (you’ll need these for blog posts, product creation, and to know what your peeps want!)
What this will result in…
I know from experience that all this listening, loving, and attention leads directly to sales.
One tip from Derek Halpern – which seems simple (almost too simple) is adding a “what are you struggling with” question to the first autoresponder email out to new subscribers.
That ONE email – has allowed me to connect with my subscribers – find out more about the people who are interested in what I talk about, but that’s not all.
Simply by responding, showing a little genuine caring and support back to people from this email has led directly to sales.
This happened when my list was under the 1k subscribers mark!
Just try it – pay attention to what people are saying, respond to them, be kind, and always thank people for responding the question/blog post/whatever.
Thank people for coming to your party.
Want more advice on how to engage, interact and grow your list by my PAY ATTENTION TO PEOPLE “strategy”?
Sign up for updates anywhere on this page and I’ll let you know about upcoming workshops on this topic!
It's All On You
Do you spend time every single day returning emails, scanning groups for people to help, and generally interacting with people who could be potential clients, customers, and heck – FRIENDS?
Leave a comment below and let me know…
I always respond to every email, tweet and comment on the blog. My list is slowly growing and I am constantly looking for more ways to branch out. Thanks for your tips, I will keep it up! I love the auto responder question, so far no one has responded but I am holding out hope that continuing to follow the advice of the pros is going to result in a growing list.
I love these tips! Going to updated my first auto-responder message now, thanks Anne!
This works. It’s simple. And I can’t wait to see your results!
Devani – I can’t thank Derek enough for this should-be-kinda-obvious tip he gave – that’s why I had to shout it out to him. Also – several others have emailed me telling me they didn’t believe it until they implemented.
Give it time – but all the sudden the floodgates open!
Sue Ann Gleason says
I don’t know how I missed this post, Anne, but I am so with you on this one! My list has grown slowly and organically and it is a loyal list. If we keep our eyes (and ears) wide open we simply can’t go wrong. I am so sick of sleezy list-building strategies that have nothing to do with building relationship. Okay, I’ll get off my soap box. Thanks for the post. It’s rich.
So glad we’re on the same page. I like interacting and getting to know humans, so this is the fun stuff for me – and I think it is for you too!
Tanya McGill Freeman says
Great post, Anne. I completely agree – you nailed it. Listening to people, engaging with them & asking them what challenges they have that you could possibly help with is key. Keeping the connection going with your audience and potential audience can make a huge difference in your biz. Thank you for the terrific reminders!
Jane Frankland says
A great post. I found it inspiring too as my list is building but not even close to the 1000 subscriber mark yet. I do respond to every email & social media message. I loved Derek’s tip. I implemented it when I started my list a few months ago – thankfully. It’s enabled me to know my market better, which IMO is what it’s all about. No second guessing!
I’m currently teaching full time and making the transition to being a speaker & trainer. I’m in the process of writing a book, and creating workshops. What is the best way to engage my followers (list) without burning myself out? It’s a very exciting but very exhausting time but I want to make sure that I also give my best to the people who are interested in what I’m attempting to build. Suggestions?
Connection connection connection. You are great at it Tanya – so glad you enjoyed it!
Jane – stick to it – I am always stunned how much I get from the interaction. I’m not sitting in my email inbox all day either. I spend time every week on it – and it’s so rewarding because people (well I know I do!) like being listened to and knowing their comments aren’t going out to the ether!
I’d say make a plan to check in on your social media, your email, do the responses in chunks. Pick 3x a week and schedule time for FB, for Twitter, for responding to email. For research. You have to block time out. That’s the only way NOT to burn out.
Great post! I am quite a ways under that 1,000 mark and though I looked at this the way you describe here right after a very inspirational business retreat….I had gotten back into the panic mode about building the list somehow in the daily craziness. Love your posts. Thanks!
I sometimes equate reading your blog to having an inspirational book – sometimes you just let it fall open randomly and somehow the universe has picked the right page to help you through a situation. Today I stumbled upon this post and it is the exact information & tips I needed.
Thanks & happy new year.
Tania – I am so happy that you had that experience. I can only speak what I know, my experience, and it’s so nice to know that I can inspire simply by sharing and teaching what I know! Have an amazing New Year! Post your about page love!
Louise Bowers says
Late reading this post but so glad I have. Great tip about the autoresponder question, top of my to do list. Thank you as always your posts are practical and so hit the mark.