Newsletters. I just don’t get ’em.

Small business owner rant ahead:

Even though I don’t know a single human being who likes to get newsletters, I am constantly shouted at by business advisers to work that email list, gurl! WERK IT!!!! So I spent two hours yesterday, Sunday, a day when I could have been not doing jack shit, or throwing ceramics, or knitting, or reading… I spent two hours working on a newsletter.

My stats today look really good — Industry average for Arts & Artists is a 23% open rate, and I have a 30% open rate on this email and overall, a 44% open rate based on my newsletter history. Industry average for clicks is just under 3% (I shit you not, 2.9%!) and I have a click rate of 8% on this email and 15% overall.

But all I can focus on are the six people who have unsubscribed in the last 16 hours since I sent the newsletter out. Part of me is wondering… what did I do wrong? Was it my personal introduction? Was it my writing? I mean, I didn’t even drop a SINGLE F-bomb! I didn’t even put in a selfie of me in my new “Knit one, fuck you” t-shirt! Why are people unsubscribing? It’s an opt-in email, I don’t just randomly send it, you have to tell me you want it! Do you all suddenly not like ceramics, soap, and yarn? Do I smell bad? Is it my hair? I know my hair is crazy! You heard me thinking the f-bomb, didn’t you. Gah!

But part of me is all, jeeeeeez, I get it. If I hadn’t written the damn thing I wouldn’t have even opened it either. I hate newsletters, and delete most of them unopened — unless, like me, it is written by a small one-person business.

So, why does everyone who has business advice tell me that newsletters are the end-all be-all of business existence? That confetti will drop from the sky, my adult acne will clear up, and people will throw bags of money at me if I send out emails monthly! Better yet, weekly! ONCE A WEEK! INBOX THAT SHIT!

Sigh. My head hurts and I am cranky. Perhaps some ice cream might be in order with my lunch. For my lunch.

8 Comments

  1. First, and most importantly, ALL THE YESES to the ice cream. Seriously, go ahead. Read the rest of my comment later.

    Back? Okay. I go through stages when I want to declutter my life, and that means I unsubscribe from a bunch of e-mails. It doesn’t mean I don’t like the company or the product or the writing. It just means I feel overwhelmed by my life and an inbox with less new messages helps. My guess is the unsubscribes had very little if anything to do with you.

    • Would you believe I’ve been eating ice cream the last ten days? Constantly. I finally stopped, to answer comments. HAHAHAH. Also now I can’t fit through the door in my house. LOL.

      My heart totally knows the unsubscribes have nothing to do with me. I totes grok decluttering, and good lord, EMAILS. I unsubscribe from almost everything every six months, and then six months later wonder where all these emails are coming from and unsubscribe again. Especially places (Old Navy) that email me a couple of times a day to tell me the countdown to the end of their sale. Good lord.

      But my HEAD says “you are a useless maker with nothing to offer and people are unsubscribing in droves because you talked about cats in your newsletter!”. Stupid head.

    • You’re just afraid I’ll be over at your house and will start quizzing you about my newsletter, hahahaha!

      But let’s have breakfast anyway. I have opinions, too, mostly centered around “your newsletter just offer value and/or solve a problem for your readers”. It’s hard to, like, send someone a free mug via email. Sigh. Maybe I need to learn how to draw coloring pages…. those are hot right now.

  2. What Bonnie said. I can’t stand my inbox full of emails TO WHICH I SUBSCRIBED but never read. And yes, yours is the only one I ever read.
    Mostly because you’re high-larious, and also because I love you.

    • Some newsletters fill me with guilt if I don’t read them (if they are by people like myself, one-person companies trying to make their small voices heard) but most of my emails lately have been from Amazon and ThinkGeek and yarn companies telling me of sales and/or new stock, and really, Amazon, do I *need* three emails a day?

      PS. I love you too!

  3. Caitlin Cieslewska

    I’ve had people tell me they’ve unsubscribed cause they’re on a yarn diet and can’t resist otherwise. Mostly, people who unsubscibe from me have never bought anything (yes, I cross check obsessively cause I’m a giant insecure nerd).

    I love your newsletter–but apparently my email hates it. I think I’ve subscribed at least 12 times already, and I never seem to get it O_o

    • Huh, I never thought to check the history of the people who unsubscribe. I do get a notification from Mailchimp about the email address, and usually they don’t look familiar.

      I will double-check later in Mailchimp and try to find out why you’re not getting it!

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