My Biggest Email List Building Mistake And Here’s My 3 Excuses

Email List Building

I have read of many experienced internet marketers saying that one of the things they should have done in the first place was building an email list.

Here’s what a typical online money making journey of starts like:

  1. When your start a new blog or website and you’ve put the effort into writing some content and finally you sit back and relax and wait for the traffic to come…
  2. You check your google analytics account…nothing! And you check the everyday for the next 2 to 3 months and no visitors.
  3. Then one day, finally, you have your first visitor and you are so excited for this just one visitor. Then the daily visitors gradually increase as time goes on and then you reach your first 100 visitors a month.
  4. And the visitor numbers are increasing because now google is starting to rank you for certain keywords on your pages or posts that you’ve written. Exciting times!
  5. Now you realize that since you are getting some visitors, you need to put some adsense code in your blog to make some money or place some affiliate banners or links on your site.
  6. Soon, you see that you are making some money…not much, anywhere from 2 cents to 20 cents each day in Adsense maybe. But you are excited because that’s money, google is now paying you or you may get some sales as an affiliate.
  7. One year goes by, your website visitor traffic increases but your earnings may not necessarily increase.

And you have not built your email list yet….

Does this story sound familiar? Guess what?

That’s my story…well, not all, but something along that line you’ve just read.



Sometimes as a blog owner, I wonder about those visitors that come to my website, do they ever come back? Or when they leave, they are gone for good, never coming back?

The sad fact is that many visitors that end up on your sites will never come back…EVER!

Now, if you don’t have something enticing to temp them to give their email addresses in exchange, like a free ebook, then they are are most likely gone for good.

I should have built an email list form the very start, ideally, before the very first visitor sets eyes on my blog. I’f I did, my email list could be over 10,000 subscribers by July 2015 before I sold it on Flippa for a sum of money that I was very pleased with.

That was one of the biggest mistakes: never building an email list from the very start.

Now, the fact is, you cannot get everybody’s email address. That ain’t gonna happen. But at least, you should have something on your website that will make your visitors give you their email addressed in exchange for that free ebook, or software or free report etc.

It does not matter even if I had 5 visitors a day during the very early days of my blog, I should have done something about building my email list from the very start.



Oh, well! I got some very convincing excuses below why I did not build an email list in the first place:

  1. the technical details of building an email list with an email service provider like getresponse seemed complicated to me and after reading a few “how to build email list” tips on the net, I threw up my arms in the air and pretty much gave up trying.
  2. I did not have a lead magnet or how can create one
  3. One day, I will build an email list.

You may have other excuses for not building an email list right now. But that excuse may be costing you right now and you may not know it.

For me, I figured, I was  missing out between $200-500 a month of adsense earnings by not building an email list.

Now, you are wondering…how can I use my email list to make money off adsense?

Well, the concept of making money with adsense is really simple: drive more visitors to your website and there’s a likely chance that a certain percentage of these visitors will click the adsense ads on your site.

Now, this strategy of building an email list so that you can use your  list to increase your adsense earnings is  not usually preached around too much from what I’ve seen (I may be wrong).

But from my, personal experience, most times when I email my list, I’ve witnessed very big increase in adsense earnings.

Now, the money I made off adsense may not be life changing but the process I used can be easily copied across any niche.



This was my biggest problem in building an email list. I procrastinated for 2.5 years before eventually building an email list.

During that time, how many thousands of visitors passed through my site and some never to be seen again. I should have got some of their email addresses but I did not. I could have mad a lot more money off my list but I did not, because I had no email list.

Here’s the thing: I wanted to build the email list myself. So I also spend a large part of my time trying to understand how to build an email list myself and I really got to nowhere.

Some people are capable of easily understanding technical concepts lightning fast…not me. Me, I learn by doing and this usually takes a lot of time and when it came to building an email list, I wanted to do it MYSELF!

That was a BIG MISTAKE!

When I eventually gave up trying and hired an expert to setup up my email list for me, it took less than two days!

All the technical stuff like setting up the lead magnet to be sent to the subscriber once they have confirm their opt-in, setting up my getresponse account etc.

I was struggling for 2.5 years and it took this guy just 2 days to set it all up and running.

The very first day, I got 10 subscribers and I was like: “S**t, why didn’t I do this in the very beginning?”



A lead magnet is an “ethical bribe” that you temp your visitors with on your website in exchange for their email address.

A lead magnet can be an ebook, or can be daily course on a subject that gets drip fed to the list, or it can be a free software.

Only when they enter their email address then the information gets sent to their address.

When I eventually to to creating my own lead magnet, which was a 120 page ebook titled “The Ultimate Guide To”_____.

Title Example: The Ultimate Guide To Building Your Email List From 0 To 10,000 Subscribers in a month.

There are so many catchy title ideas you can search online and use.


The lead magnet does not have to be an ebook. It can be a free software. Or it can be a free course that you drip feed daily to your subscribers over a period of 7 days, for example.

You’d be surprised, people will give your their email address for such things.



We all keep putting off things we could have done today for “tomorrow.” When I kept saying to myself “one day I will build an email list”, to me, that “one day” happened 2.5 years later.

Its a total waste of time and time does not wait for anybody.

My problem was lack of focus and commitment. Often I get so many things running through my head screaming for my attention that all my thoughts about building an email list are locked away somewhere in the brain.



Now, my blog was averaging 6000 visitors a month. I was ranking for some of the most expensive cost per click keywords in google in the forex trading niche (not necessarily high search volume).

So, for example, I was getting clicks that paid me $3 to $5. That’s how expensive some of the keywords were with with I was ranking for.

Now, one thing I never did was promote products to my email list. I never did that because much of what gets sold in the forex niche is usually high priced or too much hype about getting rich quick in trading forex  and looks like every body is out to rip off somebody else and that did not settle well with me, personally.

Secondly, I really established my blog as a free resource and If I had to promote something to my list, its got to be something that I’m using myself and I did not  have any except one, which was my own product.

And with this product, which was an ebook I sold for $27, it was a soft sell, not a hard sell.

Here’s how I did it: when somebody subscribed by downloading my free ebook (lead magnet), instead of being taken to the thankyou page telling him to check and verify his email address on his email account, they were taken to a sales page were they this ebook was on sale for.

Even if they buy my ebook or not, they are then taken to the thankyou page and then once they confirm the link sent to their inbox, they are then sent the download link to the free ebook pdf.

All this system was setup up buy the guy I hired to do for me and do you know how must it cost me to pay him to do that? $100

Now my blog actually started to have 5000-6000 visitors during the 2nd year. There was one month were I email posted a lot of content on my blog and every time I did that, I emailed my list. That month, I made over $230 in adsense.

The following month, I only did one post. And my adsense earnings dropped to $119 for that month.

That was a very clear indication that the more visitors you bring to the site, you chances of adsense earnings increasing are great.



  • you are not selling your own stuff so you can get paid more.
  • when these visitors click those adsense ads, they leave your website to go to another website
  • some niche, the amount of money you earn per click is very low so you really need a lot of clicks to make a reasonable amount of money as well as a lot of visitors



You should only promote stuff you use yourself to your list. That’s the best way in my opinion.

What’s the point of promoting something If I don’t have experience using it or know how it works.

So when it comes to your list, respect your list enough to do the right thing with them. You will gain more respect and in the long run you will make a lot more money.