If you’re like most bloggers, you’re in a constant battle to increase the size of your email list AND your social media following.
There’s no doubt you need both to build your online presence and drive traffic to your website.
But, which one should be the top priority?
In this blog post I take the stand that your email list is more important to your online success than your social media following.
Keep reading as I lay out the 5 reasons why building your email list wins the battle over social media.
Why Your Email List is More Important
This post contains affiliate links, which means I will make a commission at no extra cost to you should you click through and make a purchase. I only recommend products that I believe will provide great value for my readers.
On the subject of email marketing, if you haven’t already chosen a service provider to host your list, I highly recommend ConvertKit.
They’re the provider I switched to after being with another popular company for several years.
What you’ll find with them is that they make everything super easy to do.
From managing your list, to setting up sequences and automations and much more, they’re simply the easiest to use for bloggers like us.
With that said, let’s get onto the five reasons why I think your email list is more important than your social media following…
1. You Own Your List (Not Your Followers)
Let’s start with the fact that you don’t own your social media following.
Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or any of them, they’re the owner of the platform and the users.
I know it can feel like your followers are your peeps, but it just aint so.
As I mentioned in my Email Marketing Beginners Guide blog post, an audience built on a social media platform is an audience built on rented land.
You’re the renter and not the owner.
You see, at any point the platforms can change their algorithms or suspend your account and *poof* that audience you worked so hard to build is now gone.
Now let’s talk about your email list.
You own it and you can take it with you from one email platform to the next.
You have a ton of control over who stays on your list and who you can remove.
You can tag them, segment them, communicate with them, market to them and more without worrying about how any of it affects some stupid algorithm.
That right there should convince you!
2. More Consistent Website Traffic
Imagine if you could press a button and a bunch people will come visit your website.
Well, that’s pretty much what happens when you send an email to your list with a link back to your site in it.
Let’s say you just published a great blog post. One of the first things you should do is send out a broadcast email to your list and tell them about it.
Inside that email, include a link to your new blog post with a call to action for your subscribers to click on that link.
By doing this, a percentage of the people on your list will click on that link and read your blog post. Voila… Instant traffic!
If you do this consistently over time, you will remain top of mind with your subscribers and they will continue to come back and visit your site.
Of course, the same thing holds true for links inside your automated email sequences too.
The Problem with Social Media Traffic
Social media traffic is much less consistent. There are so many distractions on the social media platforms and people don’t always consistently check their social feeds.
Plus, your social post appears at the whim of the platform’s algorithms. You may or may not get your post seen by people who follow you online. And even if it does appear, it will quickly go away as posts by others appear afterwards.
Things move much slower in someone’s inbox, giving you a better chance that your message will be read and links will be clicked.
3. Your Subscribers WANT to Hear From You
If you think about it, a lot of thought and commitment goes into subscribing to someone’s email list.
Someone had to make a conscious choice to give you their email address.
At the time of doing that, your subscriber made a commitment that they WANT to be on your list and they WANT to hear from you.
Or else, they wouldn’t give you their email address in the first place.
Choosing to follow someone on social media is much more passive, with very little commitment. Not to mention all the distractions mentioned in #2 above.
4. Better Engagement
Since your email subscribers have chosen to hear from you, they’re also more likely to engage with you.
As a matter of fact, don’t be surprised if you get replies to your broadcast messages and sequences. People will ask you for your advice, respond to your email call to actions or even just share what’s on their mind at the moment.
I love it when that happens!
One of the classic, old school ways to learn more about your subscribers is to ask them (in an email) what they’re struggling with as it relates to your niche. It’s a great way to get content ideas as well.
You can also run surveys and contests through your email list, without having to worry about all the rules associated with doing the same on social media.
5. Better for Selling
Finally, they say the money is in the list and it’s true.
What’s great about your email list is you can take the time to nurture your subscribers, so that they get to know, like and trust you.
Once they have your trust, they’ll be more likely to purchase from you.
And of course, an important part of any good sales funnel is your email list.
When it comes to selling through an automated sales funnel, nothing beats email. There’s just no way to setup the automation you need via social media.
And also, on social media platforms, selling is usually dismissed by people pretty quickly. People are on social media platforms more so for entertainment purposes then to be sold to.
Even if you pay to promote on social media, you still end up trying to get people onto your email list to make the final sale.
So, that makes your email list much better for selling than social media.
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Now that you’ve read my reasoning, I do want to make one thing really clear.
You absolutely shouldn’t abandon your efforts to build your social media following.
Social media is a great way to connect with your audience and it certainly has its place in your brand building strategy.
I’m just saying be sure to give building your email list more priority.
And that’s it… I hope you liked this post and I’d love to know your thoughts.
And don’t forget to check out ConvertKit. I think they’re the bomb when it comes to email marketing!