UnsubscribersThe truth hurts. A lot. Sometimes it dents our confidence. Oftentimes, it should help catapult us to a better place. The truth about email subscribers is that they are notoriously fickle.

What does this mean?

That it is likely you will see people unsubscribe, even if you know they are an ideal prospect. Even if you know they have gained value from you.

If we know and respect this we can move forward and see positive results from taking the time to keep in touch with our audience through email.

2 Types of Email Subscriber

If you’re looking into Content Marketing, Lead Nurturing or just about any other form of keeping in touch. It is widely recommended that email is the best medium to do this. And, there are a multitude of tools (CRM, Contact Management, Marketing Automation, Email Management etc.) that enable you to do this in budget and effectively. Either way, you will have a database or a list.

There are 2 types of email subscriber that can be added to this ‘list’. Organic Subscribers and Manual Subscribers.

Say what??

Yes. Manual also.

If you consult the interwebs for ‘growing a subscriber list’, or similar, the majority of information will be about driving traffic to your site and converting those visitors into subscribers. I refer to these as Organic Subscribers. (Note – you could add a third category, Paid Subscribers, from advertising, but we’ll leave that for now). EmailSubscribers

What is often overlooked is adding the people to the list, with their permission of course, that you already know.

I strongly encourage you to add people to your list that you already know.


They’re the primary people you want to keep in touch with.

My ‘golden rule’ is to keep in touch first and monetize later. This is because keeping in touch, and nurturing people, on this mass level is saving you a ton of time from doing it on an individual basis. It also enables you to add value that can sometimes be construed as a sales tactic when done on a individual basis.

So, don’t forget there are 2 types of email subscriber.

Now, even though you have this list and you are creating valuable, engaging content. People will unsubscribe. That is the truth. However, there are some things that you can do to overcome this hurdle.

3 Tips For Dealing With Email Subscribers Who Opt Out

  1. Be Thankful – Instead of looking at it as a negative. Think of it as a positive. I get that it can be demoralizing when you see people take conscious action to unsubscribe. My suggestion, see it as something to build from and that it is likely they weren’t the ideal prospects you thought/hoped they were. You’d rather have an audience that was smaller and engaged than large and uninterested, right?
  2. Be Proactive – The majority of people will see people unsubscribe and leave it at that. Try being proactive and reach out to them to see what the reason was. Chances are they either did it by mistake, forget who you were or can share valuable insight into why they felt it wasn’t for them. Either way, there is a possibility they may want to opt back in after you send a personal note to them.
  3. Be Spiteful True To Yourself – Keeping in touch by email, call it what you will, is a component of your strategy. It’s a strategy to keep front of mind, add value and nurture prospects until they are ready to buy. As with anything, you can’t please everybody. If you try to please everybody you may as well kiss your a** good bye. :)

What is important is that you are keeping in touch with your audience and prospective clients. As such, don’t worry about people unsubscribing. People are fickle by nature, we all want certain things, preferably for free, and we oftentimes change our mind about things.

People are people.

What are your experiences with email subscribers? Have you reached out to people with a personal note after they unsubscribe? What did they say? Leave a comment below and join in the discussion.