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We talkin’ about unsubs? Not sales. Not sales. But unsubs?

“We talkin’ about unsubscribes? Not sales. Not sales. But we talking about unsubscribes?”

— Allen Iverson (probably)

One big ol’ fat mistake many brand owners commit is caring too much about unsubscribes.

I get it. It dings your ego when you realize someone has no interest in what you’re saying or selling. But this ego bruise hurts more than just your ego...

It also butchers your sales!


Well, once you care too much about unsubscribes, you fall into a deadly trap:

A scarcity mindset.

Which leads you into committing more money-devouring mistakes, like not sending more emails.

Here’s why I bring it up:

A new client recently reached out worried about the number of unsubscribes we’ve gotten.

Why are so many people unsubscribing?

Am I the worst email copywriter in the world?

Well, no.

But we changed up our email style, volume, and frequency. We’re sending more emails than this brand ever sent — and it’s causing some of the worst subscribers to unsubscribe. (It’s always the worst subscribers that unsubscribe…)

Here’s a bit of harsh news:

If you send more emails, you’re gonna get more unsubscribes at first.

But that’s a good thing.

In fact, I looked at a handful of profiles that unsubscribed in Klaviyo for this client. There was one common thread between the unsubs:

They didn’t buy diddly!

Not last week.

Not last month.

Not last year.

Not never!

That’s what I told my client. I reassured her that only the worst subscribers are leaving, opening up more room for better, higher quality subscribers.

Now, take this with a grain of paprika:

Getting too many unsubscribes—or worse: spam complaints—can tank your deliverability. Or if you’re too brash, you can scare some of your best customers or clients away.

But sending a high volume of emails—as many as 10 emails in a 3-day period, for example—is a way to pre-qualify your list:

The folks who aren’t interested in you or your products will unsubscribe. I say let em!

But your best customers? They won’t leave.

And more importantly:

The folks debating in their head if they want to try your products or a competitor’s? Well, if’n you’re persuasive and personal enough, they'll choose you instead of your competition.

Plus, you’ll start developing brand loyalists, who abide by every word you utter, buy every product you promote, and tell all their friends and family about you.

So, question:

Would you rather have a list full of people who would never buy from you? Or a list full of these brand loyalists I’m talking about?

I hope the answer’s as obvious to you as it is to me. And to develop these brand loyalists, you’re gonna have to suffer through some unsubscribes.

But y’know what?

The more consistent you are with your email strategy, the fewer people will unsubscribe over time.


Wanna force your email list to unsubscribe, so you can create space for brand loyalists?


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