If you want to get your email marketing off to the right start, it helps to think like the pros. There aren't many rules with email marketing and it's important to find your won approach. That said, if you start with these ideas in mind, you'll skip a lot of pain.

Habit 1: Always Add Value

Assume your reader is busy. Also assume they're annoyed and looking to take it out on someone. If you do this, you'll write emails in the right way.

You'll be entertaining.

You'll be useful.

What you won't be is annoying, long winded for no reason, insulting or a waste of time.

Every email you send should be valuable. It should offer a unique insight or provide something useful.

I know one marketer who hadn't quite figured this out. She would send a weekly email talking about what she's up to and the latest offers. The problem was this only changed every month or so, meaning she sent the same email – word for word – three times in a row.

Sometimes you need to say the same thing more than once. That doesn't mean you have to say it the same way. Keep it fresh and reward the reader for opening your email.

Habit 2: Focus On Success and Forget About Losers

Let's say you create an amazing bribe to entice subscribers onto your list.

Then you see someone subscribe, download your bribe and unsubscribe 20 minutes later.

You might be tempted to get upset and start rethinking things.

Don't. You can forget about people like that. Freebie-seekers won't buy from you anyway, so who cares?

Focus on making sales. If a bunch of subscribers opt out of your list but you make record sales, that's a win.

Focus on building the relationship. Someone might be on the fence now and that's okay. Give them time, keep offering value and they'll probably buy later. And if not, who cares, right?

If your readers are trusting you more and more over time, then email marketing is working. If you're making sales, then it's working. Forget about individuals who just want your free bribes – they're not worth thinking about.

Habit 3: Learn From the Best

Who are the best email marketers in your niche?

Who are the best on the planet?

Have a read of their emails. Subscribe to their list. Notice what they say and how they say it. Compare their bribe to yours.

What can you learn from them?

What shouldn't you learn from them, because it won't work for you?

Trust me – the best marketers ask themselves this a lot too. Marketing always changes, so even the best know they need to keep learning.

Habit 4: Find Your Unique Voice

I said learn from the best. I didn't say imitate them.

When you study the best marketers, you'll notice a lot of amateurs imitating their style. I don't recommend it.

For one thing, it doesn't work.

For another, it's harder than figuring out your own voice.

Pay attention to how you speak in person. What's your energy like? Are you upbeat or crotchety? What strange phrases do you like to use?

Write your emails like this.

Yes, you want to come across as professional. Definitely do that. You also want to come across as human, though.

Habit 5: Be Reliable and Consistent

If you say you'll email five times a week, then email five times a week.

If you imply you'll add value with every email, then do so.

Consistency is key. Is it the most important thing? I don't know, but if you're consistent and you live long enough, success is guaranteed.

Habit 6: Sell

Your email marketing exists to sell. This is part of the value you add to the world. If your product or service helps people, then you owe it to them to convince them to buy.

Yes, you get something out of it.

But so do they. If there's mutual benefit and you're transparent about it, then it's the most ethical thing you can do.

Some people sell with every email they send. Others like to break it up with useful content. That's up to you to figure out – though you'll notice I sell with each of these. No matter what you choose, though, don't let a week go by without selling something to your list.

If they don't like it, they can leave. Say good riddance, as per Habit 2.

Habit 7: Keep Growing Your List

Over time, people will opt out. It doesn't matter how good you are or how amazing your emails are. It happens.

This means you keep needing new subscribers, even if you want to keep your numbers stable.

You need to keep growing just to stay in the same place.

Some part of your marketing efforts need to be dedicated to capturing subscribers. In between writing sales letters and emailing your list, you need to go out there into the world to find new readers.

Put your ethical bribe in front of them. Wiggle it enticingly until they can't resist anymore.

But remember, not all subscribers are equal. Go to where your ideal clients live – haunt their forums and Facebook groups and, if it's not against the group's terms, invite people to subscribe.

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