Social media is the most visible, active, connecting force online.
It’s exciting! It’s the global phenomenon that everyone is talking about (which we know because they’re posting on social media). And yet…
When you create a new social media account (whether Facebook, Twitter, or elsewhere), what’s the first thing they ask for?
Your email address.
Email isn’t as glamorous or exciting as social media, but it’s been the default online communication platform for the last thirty years.
Email dominates the professional landscape, and email is how people contact companies, family, and friends on their own time.
Email is how you’re reading this newsletter right now.
Conversation That Scales
Have you ever tried to have a conversation with one hundred people at once? How about a thousand, or one hundred thousand people?
Not a lecture or a presentation, but a conversation. Simultaneously looking one hundred thousand people in the eyes, and speaking directly to each of them with a personal, coherent message.
Sounds crazy, right? Perhaps impossible? Up until recently, it was.
Today, though, this is the keystone strategy for building a relationship with an audience online.
You craft a message for your subscribers, and then email each of them, one-by-one—of course, modern-day technology means you don’t actually have to email each subscriber individually, but that’s how they receive it on their end.
Friends Don’t “Blast” Friends
Some people refer to email marketing off-hand as “sending a blast,” and that’s exactly how they do it—blasting out information as if they were yelling at a hundred thousand people from a stage.
But that’s not right. Communicating with an email list is less like yelling to a crowd, and more like knocking on a friend’s door to hand them a letter you wrote (that’s why we’ve used terms like “address” and “mailbox” since email came to exist).
The internet has done a lot to change the way in which we interact, but the core element of what we do online is still the same as it was long before the internet:
Human people interacting with human people.
Despite what platforms rise or fall, and which gatekeepers fight for control—email remains the only consistent direct connection to your audience. Incidentally, creators have been making a full-time income from email for more than twenty years! No social media platform can compare.
Your #1 Priority
Email marketing platforms like ConvertKit make it possible to have one-to-one conversations at scale.
They facilitate the direct connection between you and each human being who has said yes to following you online. Building an engaged email list should be your top priority.
A magnetic brand identity and independent website with content are important, primarily because they set you up to build an engaged email list of subscribers. This is the goal.