9 reasons why I caved and got a mailing list

Jo Watson


I’ve been running agoodwriteup as an official business for around 6 years. Not always full time, but 6 glorious tax-paying years (ugh) nonetheless. In that time, I’ve never had a mailing list.

Why? Because it was always yet another techy element of business that I couldn’t face getting to grips with.

I don’t like buggering around with ‘code’. and there’s no way I’m opening anything up through its back end, or whatever it is, to make something work through/with/alongside my website. I’m much happier being able to throw up a blog every now and then and leaving it at that.

As well as me avoiding the hard work, though, the idea of a mailing list just didn’t appeal to me as something that would solve any problems I was facing in business.

It might just be sheer luck, I don’t know, but I’ve never struggled getting clients, so I always felt like I must be doing something right in my existing marketing – minimal as it is.

I’m going through a midlife crisis, though – sorry, “re-brand” – so this is probably the time to get stuff such as a mailing list sorted, really. Plus, if it gets too technical, I know now that I can just outsource it to someone else.

Yep – that’s another thing I’ve only just started doing in business, too – outsourcing! How am I still even here…

Anyway, these are my reasons for caving. Do any of them resonate with you?

  1. Peer pressure. There’s only so many times you can hear, “You don’t have a mailing list?” like it’s equivalent to not wiping your arse after you’ve gone to the lav, that you eventually just think, ‘Fuck it, I’ll get one if it stops you looking at me like I have no right to be trading.’
  2. Re-brand/Midlife crisis. I decided a while ago I was going to create and sell a new product as another income stream for agoodwriteup, and one that would hopefully do well to boost my personal brand. I don’t think anyone will buy it, as it makes no claims whatsoever of helping anyone to ‘get leads from LinkedIn’ or ‘level up to 7 figures in 6 days’ or whatever. It’s a complete vanity product. It will not help you with your business or be a better person (but I’d still like to let people know that I’m selling it).
  3. Discount. Mailing lists cost money, so when signing up to create one, I took a mate’s affiliate link and got 50% off. Usually, price isn’t the point I base my judgement on when it comes to a service, so it was a massive help that I actually really liked the look of the provider I chose. It screamed beauty and simplicity (like the writer of this piece herself, I know). Flodesk had both – and it was half price!
  4. Affiliate payments. If I could make a career out of 100% passive income, I would. I think we all would (except for the liars reading this, obviously). I found out that if I subscribed to Flodesk, I’d get an affiliate link, just as my mate had done. This means that if you FOLLOW MY LINK and like what you see, you’ll get 50% off your subscription and I’ll get a few quid in my PayPal account from FloDesk as a thank you. Win-Win! You can create an account and try it out without having to give bank details, by the way. Obviously only do this if you actually need a mailing list.
  5. Crippling fear of getting kicked off LinkedIn. LinkedIn is one of my biggest sources of clients, owing to the following I’ve somehow amassed and the exposure and engagement my posts inexplicably afford me. I don’t do well sitting on fences, though, so if I have an opinion, it’s going out on there. It’s only a matter of time, though, before I go too far with my questionably dark humour or my admittedly alternative views…
  6. Saturation. Oh my god, how hard is it to get seen on social media these days? Thanks a lot, Corona. Not only do you make it so that the world and their wife (probably divorced now) has ‘pivoted’ to get online, but you’ve also given us an exceptionally high volume of people who have pivoted to the point of claiming they’re now a social media strategist or ‘get leads quick’ coach. As a result, we are swimming in shit out here, as the unhealthy mix of new ‘experts’ plus sheer desperation from the pivoters has meant that quantity over quality rules the day. There’s a chance you’re not seeing stuff from the people you really want to see content from. Get on their mailing lists – if not mine. Bloody hell… new social media gurus… they’re like a virus. Ironically.
  7. Accountability. If I send something on a mailing list, then to avoid people thinking it’s spam or to deter them from unsubscribing entirely, it’s going to have to be good quality stuff – at least in terms of getting people to open it in the first place! I pride my entire brand and career on producing great (if not acquired taste) content, but this is another way to make sure I don’t rest on my laurels and start churning out crap. Full disclosure – I don’t know what laurels are.
  8. I’m writing a book. Yes, yes, I know everybloodyone is writing a book or is already on their seventh ‘published’ literary musing, but I’m going to do this properly, and rather than spinning the algorithm to get my wordage up the frankly laughable ‘Amazon Best Seller’ list, I want to have as many great ways of making a bloody success at it as I can.
  9. It was either this or a Facebook group. I’m sorry, but I haven’t got the time or energy to even BE in a Facebook group, so I’m sure as shit not gonna run one. A mailing list is the best way I can get info to people if it’s vaguely important or interesting. Thanks to lockdown, I’ve been duped into joining countless free Facebook groups, and the majority of them honestly make me want to cry tears of annoyance and boredom as soon as I see so much as a notification. I won’t do that to you. We’ve been through too much together already…

Sooooo, what can you expect from the emails coming through to you from my mailing list?

Well, that’s the beauty of why you’ve followed me this far, isn’t it? Because you never know quite what I’ll do or say…

Good luck!

Jo x

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