Why List Minimum Requirements Should be Banned

If I had $1 for every opportunity I had to pass on or get turned down for because I don’t have a bazillion people on my mailing list, I’d be rich.

I’m going to lay it out there – email subscriber list minimums totally suck.

Let me explain before anything gets burned down. I get lists and why some companies and individuals put a minimum as a requirement – they want visibility of their event or whatever they’re promoting. Nothing wrong with that, but I believe they are discriminating against a whole group of people that I happen to fall into.

I know it’s preached that our money is in our list (and I’ve even wrote about it – sigh) and it could be if used regularly and for the right reason. I get it, but for me personally, it’s not important. Yes, I have somewhere around 500 on my email list (not ashamed to admit to that) and I love each of them and appreciate them, but I’m not going to exploit them by bombarding them with emails about an event I’ll be at or to register for something. I just won’t do it. Those who have subscribed to my blog posts or my emails do so because of the content I’m publishing and I’m very protective of that.

Back to the list minimum thing…

List minimum requirements really puts a glass ceiling on so many social media pros and other business owners. I know so many worthy social media pros who would really do well for various social media marketing-related events, but because, like me, not having a bazillion subscribers immediately disqualifies them. The smallest list requirement I’ve seen is 3,000. True story – I had one event organizer ask me if I could get the 2500 or so I didn’t have in a matter of 2 months so I could participate in this one social media event they wanted me at. I told them that wasn’t going to happen unless I bought a list and that’s a line I will not cross. Needless to say I never heard back.

For me and my business, building a massive subscriber list just isn’t a priority. Those who follow me will subscribe if they want, but I would rather publish quality content across my social media platforms and let that and my work speak for itself.

I’m sure some of you right now are thinking “is this woman crazy? That totally contradicts a lot of what’s out there! How can she make it if she’s not actively promoting something to subscribe to???”.

Let me let you in on a secret – you can be successful without a massive email subscriber list. It’s about quality, not quantity. I’d rather have 500 people who receive my blogs and emails and have them find value in that content and share it than 5000 people who could care less (and maybe 100 find value in it). I’d be curious to see the open rates of the emails some of these ones who tout over 10,000+ subscribers. It’s probably much lower than you think.

So what can we do get around this list requirement for events and online seminars? Until they (the organizers and those in charge) change their thinking and approach, not much unfortunately. There is a glimmer of hope – your social following. I did have one waive the list minimum because of the number of followers I had on social media. I believe having a strong social media presence and following circumvents a having a certain number of email subscribers. Afterall, these are people who are actively following you and reading your content (like you are right now!).

So, what are your thoughts? Do you think list minimums should go away? I’d love to hear your view on either side of the topic!