How to Make Money from Your Email List Without Feeling Like a Rotten Spammer Face
This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I may receive a commission if you use them. I only recommend products I use, love & trust.
Want to make money from your email list without you having to “sell” to your list (and feel like a rotten spammer-face)?
I’m sharing my four-part framework that keeps my PayPal notifications popping, even while I’m on vacation at Disney, without feeling salesly or sleazy. You can make money from your emai list, even if it’s tiny. If you don’t have anything for sale yet, you are selling your people on the fact that you’re awesome, that you are worth being in their inbox, you know what you’re talking about and … you’re going to sell the fact that you genuinely care about your people.
It’s Easy to Make Money from Your Email List When You Sell to People Instead of Subscribers
One of my core business beliefs is that our email subscribers are more than just a number.
Your subscribers are people that you actually care about. You are in this to help them get results. When you genuinely care about the outcome your people get when they spend some of their hard-earned money on your products (or your affiliate products), everybody wins.
My four-part framework is super effective whether you’re selling a course or digital product, promoting affiliate links or offering done-for-you services. If you’ve watched the Little List, Big Profit masterclass, some of this is going to sound familiar.
So what is this framework? What’s the secret sauce? How can you make it so you never have to sell and be a gross giant spammer-face or feel like you need a cold shower or like you’re stealing people’s wallets?
It’s as simple as A-B-C-E
- A is for Attract
- B is for Bond
- C is for Convert
- E is for the secret sauce that underlies everything – Energy
E is for Energy
The biggest missing piece of the puzzle for so many people is Energy. I know, I’m starting off at the end but, seriously, this is where the magic is.
Your mindset and your energy when it comes to your email list is huge.
One of my Love Your List students, Feuza, was struggling with her mindset. She needed to run a flash sale. Feuza had tried to run flash sales to her email list before but they were all total flops. After I gave her a couple of tips and tricks about how to get her mindset in a place where she was excited about what she was selling, the sales rushed in. Without the desperate energy of “I need to make money from my list”, everything shifted for her immediately.
Feuza’s energy was transformed from “I need to make money” into feeling thrilled with what she was offering. She went from feeling desperately hopeless to realizing how lucky her people were to buy what she was selling. She got super-excited about the amazing results her people were going to get once they bought her product and that excitement shone through… and guess what? That’s the only thing that changed!
When people are struggling and desperate, you can feel it. You can feel it in their emails, in their social media posts, in their live streams. The energy of I need to make money oozes through everything they put out there.
When your mindset and energy are high and you’re pumped for the amazingness that your people are going to get after they buy from you, that energy is palpable.
If you’re wondering how Feuza’s story ended, she had a goal of selling seven spots in her program. She blasted past that goal and had 11 sales. Yes, 11 sales! From the same exact subscribers that didn’t buy a thing when she was desperate to make money from her email list.
Your energy matters. It’s huge.
When your mindset and energy around your sales is “I feel so bad because I’m charging seven whole dollars”, you’re going to miss a lot of sales. Even worse, your people are going to miss out on the results that are on the other side of what you’re selling.
Instead, if your mindset is that your people are lucky that they actually get to pay money to get this, sales will flow in. The more you say to yourself “people love to buy from me” “people are excited to buy from me”, the more sales you will make. You don’t have to say it in a mirror or get all weird with it but when you say this to yourself over and over, it becomes the most natural thing in the world. It’s like.. Well, duh. Of course, they want to spend money with me! Of course, they’re excited. Of course, this is amazing.
That confidence that comes with getting your energy on point is going to play out so huge when it comes to not only your email marketing but just sales in general. The same thing with your blog posts, your social media posts, your live streams. Everything.
Your people can feel it when you’re desperate. It’s like you have a big sign flashing that says I need to make money from my email list. And it’s not pretty. When your energy comes from a place that your buyers are the real winners, your people will feel electrified. They literally can’t click over to the buy button fast enough.
Let’s go ahead and break down the rest of the A, B, C, E S of profitable and fun email marketing.
“A” stands for Attract
I have a very different view on list growth and audience growth than what most ‘experts’ have. I don’t believe in having a gargantuan email list just for the vanity of saying how huge it is. What’s the point? I’m not saying you have to have a small email list to be profitable, but what I am saying is that it’s important that your people are your people.
When it comes to my list, I like a bouncer at a swanky club. Not just anybody is allowed in my sphere. I’m extraordinarily specific about the content I create, the attitude I put out there, what I say in my copy and everything I produce for my subscribers and followers.
For example, if you head over to Trello Magic (formerly Trelloing for Traffic), you can see this in action right in the tagline “Productivity & Business Organization For Creators Who Know Life Is Too Short To Worry About Wearing Matching Socks”. Because wearing matching socks IS such a waste of time. And if you have a visceral aversion to that tagline, then my Trello course isn’t going to work for you. It’s that simple.
When I use the right copy to attract my ideal student (and repel the ones that will hate the way I teach), I don’t have to worry about people not buying or not getting results from my program. If you start by attracting the right people who are in the right mindset, you don’t have to worry about that ever again.
Your first line of defense, your first “bouncers”, are your freebies, your landing pages, the content you create, your social media posts and basically everything you put out in the world. You want to attract the people that you genuinely want to talk to and ward off the ones who aren’t a good match right off the bat.
Keep in mind that as you grow and advance, your audience might change.
Maybe when you first start off, you’re targeting beginners, people that are just starting out. The more that you teach and the more you learn, you’ll find that your content evolves with you. As you change the topics you talk about and start covering more advanced strategies and techniques, you’ll attract more advanced people. There is nothing wrong with your audience evolving with you but you don’t want to go out there trying to attract anybody and everybody who will subscribe.
Pick the type of people that if they walked through the door, you’re going to be excited to help. For example, let’s say that you’re a fitness expert and you want to help moms. That’s way too vague to attract the right people.
Is the mom…
- A 24-year-old first-time mom with a newborn?
- Thirty-something with three kids in school?
- A mom in her 60’s, with an empty nest who’s dealing with menopause?
They are all moms and they all want to get fit but those are three examples of wildly different lifestyles and fitness challenges. Which one are you most excited about working with? What can you put out there that will only attract the people you’re passionate about helping?
That’s how you can feel good about selling. It’s by selling to the right people. Where things get gross and icky and slimy is when you’re trying to make money from an email list that is full of subscribers who aren’t your people.
It’s like when you’re walking in the mall and some dude randomly grabs your hand (which is super-gross by the way) and starts buffing your nail. So then you’ve got one shiny fingernail and that makes the rest look even more terrible than they already did and then they try to guilt you into buying. I’m not into that. I’m never going to be receptive to that sales message. The same holds true for your email list.
On the other hand, if I needed help for Facebook ads and I got a freebie that blew me out of the water and solved a specific problem I had and then they tell me about a course that can help with the next steps, I’m not going to get mad. How could I? They literally just helped me solve a huge problem! Of course, I’m going to read the emails about it and look at the sales page. Even if I’m not ready to invest right then, I’m not going to be mad or unsubscribe from their list because they are telling me how they can help me more because I raised my hand and said I was interested.
If someone is telling me the same thing over and over and saying that I’m a giant loser face if I don’t invest, that’s a different story.
When you start by attracting the right people, it’s easy to make money from your email list.
If you want to talk about bacon beef burgers, it’s not going to do you any good to have a list full of vegans. You never feel like you’re stealing people’s money or being shady when you’ve got the right people to begin with.
“B” stands for Bond
One of my favorite stages in the A-B-C-E framework is bonding. What does bonding mean when it comes to your email list, your muses? The way you bond with people is by getting as crystal clear as possible on what’s going on with your people. You want them to almost think that you’re a stalker. Like you’ve been watching them with a pair of binoculars from the end of the block.
Let’s take Trello Magic as an example. Put yourself in the mind of the people reading that page. I can almost hear them asking, “How did she know my socks never match? How did she know I’ve got 15 tabs open?” It’s because I know that’s how being overwhelmed and scatterbrained shows up for my people.
I’m going to use words like spammer face and butt face and home slice because that’s how I talk. I’m a dorky white chick. I’m going to say things like “make money while you…” and then put a poop emoji. The people who are offended by that, they aren’t my people. I’m actually glad they run for the door and hit the unsubscribe button.
Being on my list is a privilege. I don’t need your money. I’m not desperate. Again, it comes back to energy. It’s not being stuck up or full of yourself. It’s about knowing who you can help, what you’re passionate talking about and then putting it out there.
The students that struggle the most in Love your List, struggle because they attracted a whole bunch of randos. This comes from creating a bunch of freebies that don’t speak to what you’re excited about. So what do you do? Just say, “Hey, I’m going to just focus on (topic). You can stay along for the ride or you can unsubscribe. I understand this isn’t what you signed up for.” And then let them go.
You can’t pay your electric bill with email subscribers. You pay it with cash. The way you make money from your email list without feeling gross is bonding with the people that you actually like who are excited about getting the results you’re offering.
That brings us to the next piece of this framework…
“C” is for Convert
I was debating when I was came up with this framework of calling this step “cash” instead of convert. I mean the whole point is to make money from our email list, right? The thing is, converting is more than just making money.
It can be…
- Converting someone from a random Pinterest user to a subscriber
- Converting someone from a subscriber to a buyer
- Converting someone from a buyer to a super-buyer
As you know, just recently, we wrapped up the Back to Business Bundle. Someone new signed up for both of my freebies offered in the bundle that had never been on my list before. She bought not one but both of my Easy Yes Offers on my thank you pages. Within two days, she ended up buying Love Your List from my masterclass. This system works.
What’s great about it is I never feel gross when I make money from my email list because I know my people. I’m not afraid to be me. The right people are going to resonate with what I have to say. Even better, they are going to get massive results when they implement the things I’m going to teach them.
When it comes to converting, get comfortable asking for things. Again, like Feuza when she was doing her flash sale, if she just leaned on the timeline by saying “only 3 days left, only two days left, last day or you’re gonna miss it”, she probably wouldn’t have made any sales – much less sold way more than her goal.
Obviously, yes, you do need to mention your timeline, but that can’t be the meat of the message that you are sending to people. That’s just the ‘salt on the French fries’. We talk more about this in the Love your List course, but your timeline reminders are just a little tiny thing to help momentum because we treat people like people.
When you straight up say “Look, I understand you’ve been at this for a while and A, B, C and D have been happening and you deserve E. I’m telling you when you infuse F (your system or process) you’re going to get X, Y and Z (results) and we’re going to do it together.
How does that feel gross? It doesn’t. It doens’t feel slimy because you’re giving your people exactly what they want. And you want to help people. Whether it’s through an e-book or a one-on-one program or a course, you’re going to help them get the results they’ve been trying and failing to achieve on their own.
You can still mention that their window of opportunity is closing but it’s a “by the way”. As in “by the way, your chance to snag (product) is ending in five minutes”. When it’s a “by the way” and not the meat of your message, no one feels icky or pressured when they read it.
The worst one I see is when someone says “I’m sorry, I know I’ve been emailing you a lot”. Never say that sentence. Ever. If I find out you say that sentence, I’m cancelling your subscription. By saying that, you’re proving to me that you don’t believe in what you’re selling. You’re telling me that you find yourself annoying. If you find yourself annoying, why wouldn’t I?
Instead of saying “I’m sorry I’ve been emailing you so much”, make sure that your segmenting is on point and that you’re only talking to people who are actually interested in what you’re talking about. Make sure that you’re sharing stories and you’re showing them what is possible on the other side of the buy button.
You also want to let people know who would be a bad fit. Tell them who you don’t want in your program. Let them know who shouldn’t buy your e-book. Again, being in your energy is a privilege.
I’m never going to apologize for sending multiple emails about what I’m selling because I know what I’m selling is going to lead to real results for my people. It’s not just a way to make money from my email list.
Let’s be honest, the only people reading every single email have probably already bought what you’re selling. Most people have lives. They are signed up to more than one email list. Even if they like you and they love what you’ve been putting out there, they might miss some of your emails because life happens, right?
If you put your blood, sweat and tears into your product and you only email your list once about it, you’re forgetting one of my core beliefs when it comes to email marketing: your list isn’t just a number, it’s actual people. With lives. With sick kids or a big deadline at work or a Disney vacation.
I can’t tell you how many emails were in my inbox when I got home from Disney. I don’t even know what they are. I’m not going to look. All those newsletters, I’m not going to see them. It’s just not going to happen. Those emails are dead to me. But if someone is running a sale and they send an email about it again, I’ll be able to see it and then act on it.
Don’t be so conceited thinking that everyone’s reading every word you write. Do you honestly read every single email you get? Have you personally been on the fence when it comes to investing in a product or course? How many times have you bought something only after getting a second or third or tenth email talking about the different benefits?
Send those emails because you’re proud of what you created and you’re excited for the results your people are going to get. Send them because you know what its like to have your inbox flooded with a ton of unread emails when you get back from vacation. Send them because sometimes people need a chance to think about your offer and let it soak in a bit.
Making Money from Your Email List Doesn’t Have to be Hard
When you put this framework in place, you’re going to be dumbfounded at how easy it is to make money from your email list. I’m preaching this because this is the key to my success. This is how I make sales every single day. This is how I made thousands of dollars while spending time with my family at Disney.
A – Start by attracting the right people. The more that you’re at this, the more you’re going to get clearer and clearer on who the right people are for you.
B – Bond. That’s your examples. Your vernacular. That’s being able to call out things going on in your people’s lives that makes them wonder if you’ve been stalking them. That’s calling them out on listening to podcasts with one earbud in while doing chores. And not just any chore but laundry. And not just doing laundry but rushing throught it without having time to match socks. Because you know them. You’re obsessed with them. Because you want to see them get success.
C – Convert. Not being afraid to ask for anything, not just cash. Converting your Pinterest people to follow you on Instagram. Convert your blog readers to Facebook followers. Convert your husband into taking the garbage out without having to bug him about it. And yes, ask for the sale so you can actually make money from your email list.
E – Your energy. Your confidence. Your excitement. It’s palpable and people can feel it. Just like getting 6-pack abs doesn’t happen after one sit-up and you can’t get morbidly obese from just one donut, you have to work at this. I don’t want to say you have to work at this constantly but you definitely have to make your energy a priority and pay attention to it a good majority of the time.
So that’s it. My super-effective four-part framework to make money from your email list without feeling like a dirty rotten spammer face. When you put the ABC&E in place, email marketing can actually be fun and profitable… plus you get to use poop emojis.