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5 Practical Ways to Serve Your Email List

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Let’s call a spade a spade here, okay? By now you know that you need an email list — but you may be wondering what the heck people mean when they say, “Just serve your email list.”

It’s well-meaning advice that is just… well, not helpful. It’s the marketing equivalent of telling an exhausted and burnt out new mom to, “Just sleep when the baby sleeps.”

If you’re looking for some advice that actually helps and gives you a place to start — keep reading, sis. I’ve got you covered.

Serve your email list with your best tips, tricks, and resources.

When you think about your ideal client or customer, think long and hard about the problems, challenges or pain points they’re dealing with — specifically as those problems, challenges or pain points relate to your area of expertise.

Then — give the solutions away for free.

I know, I know. Totally controversial and counterintuitive — but hear me out before you stop reading.

Sharing your best tips, tricks, and resources with your email list gives them quick wins they can turn around and implement within minutes of reading your email. This not only builds credibility and trust — but it gets them thinking (what I call) the Moneymaker Thought.

My goal when I write emails (or create any sort of content)? To get my readers to think, If this is what she gives away for free, I can’t afford NOT to work with her.

Some ideas you can share for some example industries?

  • Wedding planner? Share a quick tip to help brides through pre-wedding jitters.
  • Mindset Coach? Send a monthly reminder for your list to evaluate where they are on their yearly goals.
  • Copywriter? Send a link to your favorite resource channel on YouTube.
  • Health and Fitness Influencer? Share a recipe you’ve been loving.

I’m not telling you to share your proprietary systems, frameworks or insights. I intimately understand the reality that is needing to make an income — but giving insight away for free will never come back to bite you in the butt.

Tell an entertaining story.

I’ve talked to SO MANY clients who think serving an email list and providing value can only mean one thing: education. And while depending on your industry — educating through your emails may be a strong component of your overall strategy — I always remind my clients not to overlook the basic human desire for entertainment.

Emails that are funny, shocking, or emotionally evocative can increase your open rates by over 100% and increase your click-through rate by over 60%.

When we appeal to human emotion, we forge connection with our audience and inherently build trust. We also know that people relate and connect with people quicker and deeper than they do with brands — so giving a little glimpse into your life or your brand’s story matters.

Host a free challenge.

Call people out and up. Engage your audience by calling them to action in a way that asks nothing of them but their effort. A challenge doesn’t have to be something that’s challenging — but it can be an invitation into a daily rhythm through a series of emails that gives your readers space to cultivate a new habit, accomplish a goal, or learn something new.

Some challenge ideas for example industries?

  • Wedding planner? The week before a bride’s wedding, invite her to sign-up for a 7-day meditation challenge to clear her mind before the big day.
  • Mindset Coach? Write an email sequence leading those who’ve opted-in through a 30-day mindset reset.
  • Copywriter? Host a 14-day swipe file challenge where readers aim to create swipe files for different types of web copy.
  • Health and Fitness Influencer? Host a weeklong clean eating challenge and send meal plans and recipe ideas for each day.

Serve your email list by giving away something that solves a problem.

This one’s my favorite because I love writing and designing lead magnets for my clients. Having a value-based lead magnet available for download is not only a great way to grow or launch an email list — it’s a great way to segment an existing email list based on a particular interest.

Here’s an example of how this could play out with an existing email list:

A mindset coach has a healthy email list of 250 subscribers and wants to gauge her audience’s interest in meditation before launching a new services. She creates a freebie download called, “5 Ways to Stay Focused (or Get Refocused) While Meditating” and invites her existing email subscribers to click a link (or fill out a form) to download it. The subscribers who download the lead magnet are added to a new segment and dropped into an email sequence related to meditation. Based on the engagement and metrics for the lead magnet itself and the following email sequence, the mindset coach has a qualified audience prepared for an ask or sale.

Provide a discount or early bird pricing.

Who doesn’t love a discount, am I right?

This one’s plain and simple: Reward your email list (your early adopters) for simply being your email list with a discount code (to your product or services) or early bird pricing on your next launch.

Make them feel appreciated and like they’re an “insider” in your business.


Want more tips on all things copy, email marketing, branding and web strategy?

Copywriting, Website Tips

March 1, 2021

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